Friday, 29 June 2018

Opportunity - Do I give enough of this? Mediators

What did you find?  What did you notice?

Following the completion of the Cool Schools Mediation program,  a number of students  applied via a letter for the role of mediator for this year.
Students were shortlisted based on those applications and were then interviewed in  two groups, where they were asked a set of questions they were given  a couple days prior to the interview.

Cool School Mediation- a brief breakdown.

What did I find and What did I notice?
The responses to these questions talking about the depth and width of the language was evidence of how confidence and language has grown.

Add some annotation.
What is the main role of a Mediator?

  • "A mediator is a role model for others including the younger students in our school to demonstrate how the use of 'I statements', to express themselves, giving them confidence and skills to help them resolve problems they may met in the playground." 
  • " These skills that we have learnt, help us to reach out and help others, while also allowing us to grow in the same way to express ourselves, it is also good for me to break down a problem and to use active listening to identify what the problem is.
  • "Being a mediator, is a leadership role and that shows when people ask for your help,and it builds your own skills and you feel good about that."

What do you think is the most important thing you have learned
from Mediator training?  

  • "For me, I think that learning about the different ways that people respond to conflict or problems - like how some people just pretend nothing is wrong, and how important it is to take the children away from other people and getting them to take turns to say what has happened rather than have other people saying things that sometimes can make the situation difficult."
  • "That talking at eye levels to juniors, and giving them time to say what is wrong,engages them in sharing their ideas."
  • "Letting people know that you care about their views and using active listening, but also knowing that you are helping people to be strong."
  • "Connecting our Mission Charism to how we act at our school and that we as seniors have a role to play in helping others to make that connection."
  • Recognising the ways that people can react, helps to know what to say to help students to move from that point and then when you see those students, you can interact with them to see how they are doing and giving them positive feedback.

Am I as teacher, providing time for the confidence and application of the introduced and known vocabulary to be implemented?
From these responses, made me realise how important it is to continue to build oral language skills and discussion in all learning areas. Where that be one to one or peer discussions, feedback from peers is and important aspect in understanding that promotes growth in oral language and confidence.
See, Say Do!  Combining all of these together to practical use is powerful!

Saturday, 23 June 2018

Whakarongo me te kite i te korero o nga tamariki - Listen and notice the talking of the children




This week has given me several of those opportunities we love where as teachers we are left feeling tired by engergised.

The first of these evolved during the process of interviewing 13 students, who applied for the leadership role of mediator for 2018.

Following the completion of the Cool Schools Mediator programme, student applications were made - in the form of a letter.  This process provided opportunity for me to target purpose and audience in an authentic context.  Letters  were forwarded to our principal resulting in a short list.

Students were interviewed in two groups, interview  questions were given to students the day before the interview process. Mediator Interviews 2018

The responses to questions asked made me wish that I had set up a camera to capture what occurred.



Friday, 22 June 2018

Research ELLPs and Mathematics


One idea born from discussion with colleagues around possible tools to use to message progress in oral language, the English Language Learning Progressions were discussed.
Ideally I thought this was an idea worth looking at as, all the students in my target groups have english as their second language and as such there would be records of that progress from entry to as school.     (Background  - For 5 of the 6 year 8 students, we were their first school)

This week I decided to look at the ELLPS to see where my target students were in relation to their oral language. I decided to be ruthless in this analysis to open my own eyes and provide me with evidence of where to next.
The results were eye opening to say the very least.  Results placed students at Stage 2.
Using the same documents together with  Effective Literacy Practice.
Suggestions to support  language development included continuing to allow opportunities for students to express themselves in their first language.

I encouraged students to interact  - sharing their ideas but this then showed that a number of them were unable or perhaps were reluctant to be active in these interactions and instead went in and out of their mother tongue.  Some did not have the language that I had assumed in their languages to respond and lost they interest.
Within the English Language Learning Progressions (ELLPS) it is recognised that:

  • 'Learners will generally understand more than they can say – their receptive language will be more advanced than their productive language' and that they need 'to develop oral language in all the learning areas, not just in English'
  •  English language learners need continuing access to oral input in their first                                   language and encouragement and opportunities to think and talk in their first                               language. 
Mathematical Context
I also one student use her first language to share a math problem with the group. This initial problem was  just above where the students are to provide interest and challenge. She asked additional questions to  support the students analysis and understanding of what was required.  This met with some increase in participation and understanding.  The interaction that followed was generally from the girls and my observations of follow up work, linked to a mathematical process.
Developing language is not limited to one curriculum area, and this is another thing that is necessary to remember to support learning across the curriculum.
A variety of problem solving used includes the analysis and breaking down of a problem with ..
What do we know already ..  and the range of context for problems also includes cultural contexts that provide opportunity for students to make further connections.
'Bobbie maths raising Pasifika maths'
The Additional reading and discussion with colleagues has increased my own pedagogical awareness of the pathway to support teaching and learning . Mangere East students' can't get enough of Bobbie maths.


Thursday, 31 May 2018

Col 4 31st May 2018


Language in Abundance
Dr Jannie Van Hees


Language carries the meaning - heighten levels of acquisition  increase levels of complexity. Need to be really concerning about what you are doing..
Where does language occur? We could have mileage with language but is it heightening the level that children can produce
Teachers asking questions is a pervading pedagogical questions?
Learners need to try out
Sometimes too much teacher talk
Kids are asked all these questions and not receiving enough.to be able to respond.
Elaborative style  responses.
  • Tuning into and picking up the message and meaning expressed by the child
  • Valuing and including
  • Offering more - structurally word choices, contents
  • NOT posing questions or bringing more out of the child
  • Co constructing or  co contributing - focused on the child and growing their language and understandings.
Optimising Learning Conditions
Attention to and noticing
Effortful and purposeful engagement and interaction
Language carries the meaning - heighten levels of acquisition  increase levels of complexity. Need to be really
concerning about what you are doing..
Where does language occur? We could have mileage with language but is it heightening the level that children
can produce
Teachers asking questions is a pervading pedagogical questions?
Learners need to try out
Sometimes too much teacher talk
Kids are asked all these questions and not receiving enough.to be able to respond.
Elaborative style  responses.
  • Tuning into and picking up the message and meaning expressed by the child
  • Valuing and including
  • Offering more - structurally word choices, contents
  • NOT posing questions or bringing more out of the child
  • Co constructing or  ceraction
  • A conversation in chain linking.
  • All participating
  • Triggering the known to connect to the new
  • Stretching the learners current language repertoire
  • Multiple encounters
  • Context relevant
  • Facilitated through engaging mediating tools persons taks activities sources.
  • Language Understanding Language expression.
  • Contributing  - focused on the child and growing their language and understandings.
Optimising Learning Conditions - Skills we need and students too.
Attention to and noticing
Effortful and purposeful engagement and Focus and Notice
Put in the effort
Take part (participate fully)
Push yourself to the edge
Dig deep for what you already know
Learn from others - notice and focus
You share - others learn from you
Think and talk think and read
Wondering and ASKING opens up possibilities to know.
Need to get children to peer share to dip deep into their brain and share that.

Peer Share potentionally, people get more ideas from the other person ie we can learn from each other.
You elaborate responses to the learners - the learners need to be elaborative to each other.

Talking together” teaching and recognising:
How do we talk together?
What does this mean to me outside of school and inside school?
To and Fro talking Chain linking what you say to each other - get kids to realize that if they are shaping up
One child says one sentence and then another adds to this, second person needs to link to the first. Each person
needs to link: Example -  When we opened our compost bin yesterday, we saw so many crickets (what could
you say to support) .. crickets really scared me, they help the environment, I think it’s probably because they
come out of the sun and into the shade.
That’s because it’s warm in there and there’s food… why on earth would they …
That’s just what mum said she said they might be mating before the winter.
Do they die in the winter? I think so. That’s what I read somewhere.
WE need to teach our kids to be conversationalists - we may  need to do this in pairs.
A CONVERSATION:
Chain linking what you say to each other
I hope we go swimming on Saturday.
Yes it’s still warm enough for swimming even in the outdoor pools
No .. we go to the Freyberg pool. They are indoor only.

Suggestion: - not inquiry
Where to next?
Back to noticing ... What do I notice? What do students notice?










  

Sunday, 27 May 2018

Developing language - In the context of Science - Learning language has not limitations when it comes to learning areas




I have observed and noticed increased levels of participation and confidence in learning and using language in the area of science.



My target learners are part of this class and I have noticed increased levels of  oral language and use of the science terms which are introduced and reiterated by the teacher during the experiments they do and again when they record their findings that include the labeling of associated diagrams.
This has made me re think and critic my own practise to include hands on opportunities for students to  be more active.  Activity that promotes language use while working with a peer or in a small group situation.

Add photo of diagram here. 




Friday, 25 May 2018

Building Vocabulary

I have been making the most of all learning experiences to encourage and promote awareness of language that occurs during learning by providing opportunities for students to work collaboratively in recalling, and noting words they have heard and use in their lessons, in this case technology.
The discussion that evolves from this with encouragement will be transferred to writing.

As a consequence of this, I have several word sheets and finding room to display these is becoming a challenge.  This week I encourage students to write about their experience and to then transfer that writing into a wordle.

Is a candle stronger than a burner?

The wordle above described the new vocabulary and the items we used in the 24th of May 2018 in Technicraft (Thursday - Week 4 Term 2).

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Purpose ... Audience .... Language


In my previous reflection, based on the data and reinforced by 'noticing' learning behaviour, there is a reluctance for students to include introduced or unfamiliar vocabulary.
In conference with students (writing) I have asked:
T: "What is the purpose for this writing?"
S:'To show what you know"  (this response indicating - awareness of purpose)
T: "What do we need to consider / think about as we write?"
S:If the reader will be able to understand what you write?

Group activity:  Interaction and learning
T: How can writers use purpose and audience awareness as they write ?

  • Write complex sentences
  • Use sophisticated words
  • Use vocab that is linked to the thing your writing about  - using science words when writing about science and art words when your writing about art and topic words.
  • Don't make sentences too long or too short
  • Think about if your work links to the reason you wrote it

  • T: Describe the possible effect / impact the use of sophisticated vocabulary could have, firstly on your writing and secondly on your reader audience.


















A Feast of Words