How do I keep my brick wall strong?

The first term of 2013 finished last week coinciding with Easter and it’s time to reflect on my year so far. This year I’m teaching a junior grade made up of grades 1 and 2. After a number of years teaching a Prep grade, following on with a junior grade was a logical move for me as an educator. Having said this, I’ve been around long enough to have taught all levels of primary education a number of times.

Time changes best practice and I’m working with a colleague where I’m definitely the learner. The teaching of maths is my personal focus this year. Last week, I was able to be a part of one of my colleague’s math sessions, and as I love being in the ‘learner’s seat’, it was enlightening. I have so many questions!

Each year I find something to inspire my personal professional development. It doesn’t always mean attending out-sourced costly professional development. I have the mentor in my own work place!

Personalising Learning: My favourite words – I need help or I don’t understand….

Setting the scene: I want my students to understand that being a learner is about taking risks… Recently, we discussed brick walls.

Learning Walls and Personal Walls

Analogy: Our learning is just like a brick wall. What happens if some of the bricks are missing or not placed properly? What makes a wall strong?

They knew instantly! The beauty of this analogy is the children know you can take out wobbly bricks, position the brick again and make a strong wall. You just have to know which bricks are wobbly. That’s why pre-assessing knowledge and sharing results with children is important. They also explored their personal school/ learning wall and how to keep this wall strong. It was a great topic for the children to write about. How can I keep my brick wall strong?

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Cheers Nina

3 Comments

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3 responses to “How do I keep my brick wall strong?

  1. nina davis

    Hi Mark,
    Thanks for the comment and I agree. We certainly know a weak wall causes disaster.
    The Brick Wall
    I wanted the children to understand that they can put bricks back by filling gaps in their learning identified in pre-tests for maths. We’ve pre-tested nummeration, measurement and data for this level and found many wobbly bricks. The bricks have to be put back with demonstrated understanding.
    We’ve collated the data and identified gaps in our teaching or the children’s learning. Each child’s learning is personalised… within the whole-part-whole.
    Enjoy your time off,
    Cheers Nina

  2. I really like your brick wall image and how you connected learning behaviours to the wall via a brick – we know only too well when a wall is weak and causes disaster.

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