Tuesday, 12 November 2019

Key Changes in Teaching

Summarise evidence about key changes in teaching and other factors that influence student learning. (WFRC Ev1)

During this year, I have done a few strategic things to change my teaching practice that I believe have influenced student learning.  I discussed these methods at length in a previous blog post found here.  However, I have summarised the four strategies below.

1. Strategically planning my Deliberate Acts of Teaching and writing anecdotal notes during the lesson (or shortly after) that help with future planning. This enables me to remain on task while working with my reading groups, and focus in on the correct reading strategy, comprehension question, or connection to the wider world that I have decided to focus on before, during and after reading the text.

2. Digging Deeper Through Deep Diving.  We discussed this with Dr. Jannie van Hees from Auckland University and it is such a simple change in how I present and discuss new vocabulary words and phrases to my students. The influence this has had on student learning was the focus of this blog post

3. I have been strategically trying to talk less while encouraging the students to talk more. I do this generally by providing them with the topic (video, paragraph, question, etc) for discussion and then providing them with 30-60 seconds of "prepare" time to formulate what they are going to share. They then have 30-90 seconds to "share" their information with a partner before we come back together and "report" back to the whole group/class.  Students have learnt that they have to pay attention and have a take away from the lesson, video, etc to share with their partner and they also have to be prepared to report back to the whole class. 

 4. Providing opportunities for students to take notes and teaching them how to work collaboratively to do so has provided them with ways to help with summarising what they have read. It has also helped with retention of the information that we previously would have simply orally discussed and moved on. This was evident when we completed summary tasks later on in the week or had class discussions as the term progressed. 

I have also tried to provide various new ways for students to complete their CREATE tasks this year. As year 7/8 students, they sometimes feel like they know all there is to know about the GAFE (Google Apps for Education) tools that they use on a daily basis. However, while attending the Digital Fluency Intensive this year, I realised that there were some fun creative things that the students could be using to share their learning. The new elements that I was able to teach the students how to use sparked new interest in some of my students to complete their assignments, especially my year 8 students. They were excited about discussing their learning and showing off their tasks while working on them and especially once they were completed. They often needed many prompts to stop working and move on to their next class. An example of this is found on a previous blog post here.

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