Thursday, February 26, 2015

Teacher Inquiry

"How can being aware of next learning steps help cognitive engagement?"

As a teacher at Point England School part of our professional practice is to carry out an inquiry. This inquiry is to refine, develop and learn within a particular area/topic.

My personal inquiry is related to awareness of learning steps and cognitive engagement e.g learning. This awareness relates to two areas, students and teacher. As I have reflected on learning and the process of learning I have become increasingly aware of the need for learning steps to be known. These steps are labeled as many things such as goals, aims, WALTS, and learning intentions. But the key similarity is that they all give the learner the focus/aim for what they are learning. In my inquiry I want to take the next step with these learning goals/aims and inquire into how can learning be accelerated by being aware of the progression of learning steps. If a learner is aware of where they are currently at, where they have come from and what their next steps are, will personal engagement and ownership bring increased learning and cognitive engagement?

As I am in a 1:1 digital classroom, visibility of learning is important and also more easily carried out. So visibility will be key within the implementation of this inquiry. A couple possible steps for this inquiry are to:

  1. Establish where students are at in progressions and what the next learning step is.

  1. Ensure learning steps are visible - on site with learning tasks, on blogs with published work etc.

  1. Ensure students are aware of what they are learning - share and discuss.

  1. Use learning steps to reflect on work - rubrics, conferences, peer feedback, blog commenting.

  1. Publish reflections along side work on personal blogs.

Monday, February 23, 2015

A new path...

Three years ago I started this journey to become a teacher not knowing what it would really be like or how I would find it. Today, I now share a class of 60 amazing students who I get to spend the year unleashing potential and success in each one of them. I have had such an amazing teacher training at Laidlaw College in New Zealand. I look back and see how significantly I have changed and developed as a person and as a teacher in these past three years. 

I am now extremely blessed to begin my first teaching job at Point England School in Auckland, New Zealand. It is an amazing school which has a big heart for it's community and students. Being a decile one school with mostly Pacific Island and Maori students it has fought to give their students an education that is innovative, modern and excellent. These students are often 'last' in society but are now equipped with an education that is innovative, modern, digital and leading the way in society. Therefore enabling these students to achieve great success and be enabled to achieve in this world. 

As I reflect on my upcoming year I am excited for what will come and all that I will learn and grow throughout the year. I know that my teaching practice will change and develop significantly but that this is to be expected and prepared for. Throughout this year I will seek to become a teacher that everyday provides all my students with a positive success in social and academic excellence. Everyday I hope to provide an environment where learning is enjoyable, strived for and achieved. 

I know that teaching is such a privilege, yet a deep responsibility. And I know that the journey ahead will be one of many long hard hours filled with tears and laughs, but also one that I look forward to with great anticipation.