Tag Archives: International Baccalaureate

Working with Mark (Year 10) to ‘be a better writer’ using Be a Better Writer by Steve Peha – documenting Mark’s learning.

Mark is in Year 10 in Victoria, Australia. I’m working with him to ‘be a better writer’. I’ve asked Mark if he’s happy for me to share his journey here and he is! We’re using Steve Peha’s book to guide us. Mark is an extremely bright, articulate young man.

Documenting Mark’s learning: Initial sample and observations

I asked Mark to write something he had to do for school and I discovered Mark is left handed. He suffers hand cramps and doesn’t have keyboard skills either. However, Mark is very computer literate, but had chosen to use his iPad or phone for everything. His subject content knowledge is high and he knew what the question was asking, but he has to be able to record his thoughts in an essay.

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Above is Mark’s starting piece and my reference sample.

516aatihrgl-_sx348_bo1204203200_Where to start: The Basics

I immediately asked Mark to change his posture and I checked his pen grip. I also asked him to write on every second line from now on and not scribble through changes. Dotting every second line gave the visual cue he needed. Mark’s incredibly receptive to advice. Just these few simple changes would enable Mark and his teacher to read back his writing and for Mark to correct his spelling and grammar whilst writing.

What do we/I want/need to learn? Kunyung P.S Learning Cycle

learner-cycle

After observing Mark write and talking with Mark, he decided that punctuation is where we need to start first. Mark is invested!

The pen must be always in the hand of the writer. The writing belongs to the student! The student needs to be able to articulate their understanding of each question in the learning cycle

Below: After focusing on two punctuation and spelling rules you can already see a difference in the quality of Mark’s writing.

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Whilst reading Steve’s book, I’ve tabbed certain reference points for myself. Unpacking Chapter 8: Better Punctuation has been interesting for me as a teacher.

Each chapter starts with ‘the stuff that matters most!, 10 things you need to know.’  This is followed by background information about rules and the bsteve-page-272-2est ways to learn about punctuation rules.

The beauty of this book is that its not written just for teachers, its written for students too.

Next is ‘Your Checklist for Better Punctuation.’ Steve explains the key things that effective punctuation involves using. He uses the phrase ‘Ask yourself’ after questions, which is an invitation to inquire.

On the side of the page are tips, each with an icon. These are terrific!

magnify-2Light bulb: Think About This

Clip board: Three Great Things To Do OR Learn

Question Mark: Ask Yourself

A Key: Key Ideas

Magnifying Glass: Look Closely

Steve explains that the checklist doesn’t cover everything, but it covers the ‘most important five groups of punctuation’.

1. End of sentence punctuation

2. Mid-sentence punctuation

3. Capitalization

4. Paragraphing

5. Dialog

The chapter includes examples, explanations, tips and tasks for :

Punctuation Changes Almost Everything

Punctuation Reading

Punctuation Inquiry

When Sentences Go Wrong

The Muddle in the Middle

Example: The Muddle in the middle: I love the way Steve explains the Cantankerous Comma, the Dashing Dash, Polite or Impolite Parentheses, the Commanding Colon, the Superfluous Semicolon and the Ethereal Ellipsis.

What will Mark be focussing on this week?

At the end of each chapter there are activities to complete and Mark and I will be doing these. One activity we’ll do this week is: Take an Edit Pass Approach to Correcting Your Own Work following Steve’s steps. I’ll write about this in my next post!

Cheers Nina

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Student Agency Part 3: The Teacher

Student/Learner Agency is essential if we are preparing our learners for their future. Student/Learner Agency starts from a child’s first year of school for the teacher. In previous posts I’ve talked about the student and the task and now I’ve added the teacher. All three components are crucial to Student/Learner Agency. Student-Teacher-Task

The Role of the Teacher

Plans collaboratively for student needs based on a sound knowledge of curriculum and students.

Refers to the 5 essential IB elements – Knowledge, Concepts, Skills, Attitudes and Action.

Provides tools and strategies for students to be aware of, and monitor, their own learning e.g. pre-Assessments, continuums, rubrics, exemplars, etc.

Supports students to use evidence when personalising and revising their learning goals.

Clarify students’ misconceptions, in order to refine individual learning goals.

Discusses connections between learning goals, learning activities and assessment requirements.

Help students make sense of connections within and between curriculum areas.

Supports students to identify ‘stretch’ goals and set goals to achieve them.

Plans collaboratively to meet student needs based on a sound knowledge of exemplary teaching practice.

Develops students’ metacognitive skills by modelling the language of thinking, and providing tools and strategies to assist them to be aware of, and monitor, their own learning.

Monitors students for cues and notices when students need assistance.

Makes students responsible for establishing deliberate practice routines.

Provides students with a choice of learning activities that apply discipline- specific knowledge and skills including literacy and numeracy skills.

Facilitates processes for students to select activities based on agreed learning goals.

Supports student to select learning engagements that support their areas of strength and areas for development.

Ensure dialogue is distributed, so that teacher and students both take an active role.

Raises students’ awareness of the characteristics of inquiry and the process of inquiry.

Involves students in adapting the learning space to support everyone’s learning.

Shares responsibility with students for reinforcing agreed learning expectations and refers to agreed routines and protocols throughout the lesson.

Paces the lesson, giving students enough time to intellectually engage with the concepts, reflect upon their learning and consolidate their understanding.

Demonstrates respect for all students’ ideas and ways of thinking.

Negotiates group arrangements with students, appropriate to particular learning goals.

Designs activities that incorporate cross-curricular applications and real world connections.

Present concepts of the discipline in multiple ways to all students and identify diverse perspectives when presenting content.

Supports students to hold each other to account for their contributions to the group’s outcomes.

Facilitate students’ self-assessment by giving them tools to assess, and reflect on, their own work.

When articulating assessment requirements, the teacher uses examples of student work to demonstrate the expected standards.

Organises opportunities for students to articulate what they have learnt and to say which learning strategies are most effective for them.

Explain the taxonomy used to structure the learning activity and to inform the assessment criteria, so that students understand the intellectual demands of the task.

Provides students with opportunity to reflect critically on the strategies they have used to complete the learning task.

Negotiate assessment strategies with students, ensuring these are aligned with learning goals.

Supports students to assess their own use of academic language and measure their own progress in this area.

Support students to critique one another’s ideas, in order to increase the intellectual rigour of the conversation.

Uses a variety of formative assessment activities to help students assess their own progress.

Provides opportunities for immediate feedback. Kunyung PS

Cheers Nina

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Student Agency Part 2: The Task!

In the previous post I wrote about the behaviours of a learner developing Student Agency. In this post I’m describing the elements of tasks which empower Student Agency.

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Supports students to identify their learning goals

Encourages self-responsibility.

Allows students to be immersed in the possibilities open to them.

Provokes thinking beyond the known, opening up further possibilities.

Makes connections to appropriate tools e.g. pre-tests, continuums, rubrics, exemplars, reflection, etc.

Incorporates a variety of transdisciplinary skills.

Incorporates cross-curricular applications and real world connections.

Makes connections to previous learning, reflections and evidence.

Designed to allow students to achieve their learning goals.

Allows for connections between learning goals, learning activities and assessment requirements.

Provides a range of options for students e.g. teacher focus group, peer tutoring, hands-on, thinking routines, etc.

Develops students’ metacognitive skills, providing tools and strategies to assist them to be aware of, and monitor, their own learning.

Makes students responsible for establishing deliberate practice routines.

Provides students with a choice of learning activities that apply discipline- specific knowledge and skills including literacy and numeracy skills.

Allows for students to select activities based on agreed learning goals.

Allows for the use of the characteristics of inquiry and the process of inquiry.

Allows for students to intellectually engage with the concepts, reflect upon their learning and consolidate their understanding.

Allows for group arrangements, appropriate to particular learning goals.

Incorporate cross-curricular applications and real world connections.

Supports students to hold each other to account for their contributions to the group’s outcomes.

Supports students to generate their own questions that lead to further inquiry.

Supports students to use different representations to develop their understanding of particular concepts and ideas.

Incorporate cross-curricular applications and real world connections.

Includes multiple entry points.

Supports the development of academic vocabulary through oral and written construction.

Involves the community – parents, peers, other classrooms.

Various assessment tasks and tools for students to select from to assess and reflect on their own work.

Allows for a variety of thinking routines.

Promotes the use of evidence and assessment criteria to support assessment outcomes.

Provides opportunities for students to articulate what they have learnt and to say which learning strategies are most effective for them.

Allows for the critique of one another’s ideas, in order to increase the intellectual rigour of the conversation.

Builds in a variety of assessment, reflection and feedback systems (teacher, self, peer). Kunyung PS

Quality planning, accurate assessment, point of need learning goals and rich tasks are required to develop Student Agency. Part 3 will outline the role of the teacher.

Cheers Nina

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Student Agency Part 1-#EduTechAU What the twitter feeds are telling me: The Student!

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Bill Ferriter  Follow the link to read more from Bill Ferrier

Learner Agency is something we talk about often, but what does this look and sound like? Engagement is a word teachers use but has its meaning changed? So what is Learner Agency and why do we want our students to be empowered?

A student developing Learner Agency strives to:

Identify their learning goals using appropriate tools e.g. Learning Cycle, pre-tests, continuums, rubrics, exemplars, reflection, etc.

Identify their learning goals based on previous learning, reflections, evidence, etc.

Be open to and explores possibilities for appropriate learning goals.

Use learning goals to monitor and advance their own learning.

Manage a number of learning goals at the same time – incorporating different transdisciplinary skills.

Identify ‘stretch’ goals and understands the incremental steps to achieve them.

Focus on the process, in addition to the product.

Articulate why they are learning it and how it connects to previous and future learning and how they will use it in life.

Make sense of connections within and between curriculum areas.

Make connections between learning goals, learning activities and assessment requirements.

Select learning activities which best support learning goals e.g. teacher focus group, peer tutoring, hands-on, thinking routines, etc.

Select group arrangements appropriate to learning goals.

Select activities that best engage them (Thinking routines, watch a clip rather than reading, writing)

Hold themselves and others to account for their contributions to the group’s outcomes.

Use the characteristics of inquiry to deepen understanding.

Identify the process of inquiry and working through the various stages towards authentic action.

Make cross-curricular applications and real-world connections.

Use a range of strategies to solve problems when learning becomes difficult.

Seek support when ‘all else fails’ to maximise learning time.

Manage transitions to maximise learning time.

Adapt the learning space to support everyone’s learning.

Respond to questions, formulate own questions and share ideas with the class.

Connect classroom practices to the world beyond the classroom.

Practise and transfer learned strategies into independent activity.

Display learner profile attributes.

Select appropriate method to demonstrate learning.

Provide evidence to demonstrate meeting learning goals.

Use exemplars, rubrics, success criteria and other methods to monitor progress.

Reflect on formative and summative assessment to support development of learning goals.

Articulate what they have learnt and which learning strategies are most effective for them.

Develop rubrics according to the specific learning goals.

Initiate self-reflection using appropriate tools

Invite peers and teachers to provide feedback.

Critique one another’s ideas, in order to increase the intellectual rigour of the conversation.

Reflect on previous learning in Transdisciplinary theme.

Taking authentic action as a result of their learning. (Kunyung PS)

These behaviours/actions are goals for a student who exhibits high level Learner Agency. There is also the role of the teacher and the quality of the tasks required to support the student which need documenting. However, I agree when a student starts exhibiting a sense of Learner Agency they are indeed empowered and certainly engaged!

Keep tweeting #EduTechAU

Cheers Nina

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Nelson Literacy Directions Comprehension Years 3-6 Sample: Planning Reading Comprehension- Example and some questions answered!

This post has been written to answer specific questions I’ve been receiving, so I thought I’d share some ideas I’ve collected here….

Each day I’m learning something different about this resource. It’s like peeling the skin off an orange and pulling apart the segments. (What strategy?)

Explicit Teaching: Learners need substantial guidance. Below is an example of how NLDC Digital Texts for Box 5 can be planned across the year, linking the 6 comprehension skills, focus reading strategies and different text types.

First: Gather data – PM Benchmark RAR – Use Software to expedite analysis

Lesson Structure

WHOLE – Launch / Whole Class Focus

PART – Modelled / Guided/ Reciprocal Teaching /Independent Reading/ Read Aloud / Literature Circles

WHOLE – Reflection / Sharing

NLD Comprehension Box 5 example to get us thinking… ????????????????????????????????????

Term 1. Whole Class focus

EXPILICIT TEACHING OF:-

Text Type: Narrative (imaginative)

Focus Skill: Making Inferences

Comprehension Strategies Focus: Cause & Effect, Figurative Language, Main Points & Bigger Ideas & Problem/Solution

Digital Text: Amy’s Brainwave (You’ll be using other supporting texts e.g. Big Books as well )

Term Planning Outline: Text Type, Reading Skill & Comprehension Strategies Example

Term 1: Text Type Focus for Reading and Writing – Narrative

page 1

Assessment of students: Benchmark recommendations for future learning – form groups of students with similar reading ability and learning goals.

Example Group Spread: Assessed for Guided Reading – NLD9/10 These levels are correlated to PM Levels and Reading Ages

 Example Below – Part: Guided Reading- Text Selection: Reading Age 10.1-10.3

Page 3

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To add to the mix there is the NLD Directions Exemplar Cards and Big Books, levelled novels and Guided Reading Card box sets.

Hope this helps! Any thoughts?

Cheers Nina

 

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Assessment: Choose tools that will help you expedite this process!

‘the IB helps schools teaching the Primary Years Programme (PYP) to identify what students know, understand, can do and value at different stages in the teaching and learning process’

‘In the PYP, learning is viewed as a continuous journey, where teachers identify students’ needs and use assessment data to plan the next stage of their learning.’

learner-cycle

Kunyung Primary School

 

Documentation-ToolsFive-Considerations-for-a-Just-Right-Fit

Love this chart and it’s so relevant to what I’m doing!

Emma RAR

The above report provides recommendations for future learning: reading behaviours, retelling and comprehension at the students ‘point of need’. I can also print a report of what the student ‘knows, understands and can do’. Fantastic!

Expedite Analysis: Choose tools that will help you expedite this process. Angela Stockman

This is why I’m choosing to talk about the PM Benchmark RAR and digital software. We must have ‘point of need’ data to plan future learning goals and we need to teach! We have to know what our student’s understand, know and can do and our students need to be able to  demonstrate what they know and articulate their learning goals.

Balance is the key… assessment which supports future learning is what I’m about and when a benchmark reading system gives you what you need to set goals with a learner… I’m going to spread the word.

Cheers Nina

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READING: Two presentations complete and I’m still learning!

This week I presented the new PM Benchmark Reading Assessment RAR for Cengage Learning and other resources which support comprehension. I’ve always loved PM for many reasons. The PM Assessment RAR impresses me because it provides ‘point of need’ information. I’ve snipped a few of my slides to share here.

My first presentation was for a small group of teachers and I thank them for coming. I enjoyed chatting to them and ‘soaking up’ their commitment and passion for what they do!

My second presentation was to a much larger audience and I had the opportunity to speak to a number of them after the presentation. They were amazing and inspiring! Some were working in special education settings and I loved the commitment they had to maximizing the potential of all students.

Teacher Judgement and Student Learning: There will always be a need for teacher judgement. We know our students! Regardless, we must have accurate assessments to plan for future learning.

Teacher Judgement

Philosophy

I love the fact that the philosophy of PM starts with success and enjoyment. We want our students to love reading and understand what they’re reading at their point of need.

Core skills

These six core skills are the main skills and I’m saying it.  We need to unpack and build a deep understanding of what each means in terms of teaching and learning.

strategies

Given how busy teachers are we need to be…

blog effective

effective definition

Allocating our time carefully to make sure what we are doing will be effective in our classrooms is vital. Being constructive, productive can mean evaluating what we are doing and making changes.

How can it be used.

What I really love! This is just an example of a few future learning goals for a student I assessed. There is so much more! And the assessment and online RAR gives me this information about the student so I can plan. This is just a snippet…

Recommendations

Planning teams

Unpacking future learning goals in teams and what it means at different stages of reading is powerful and effective use of our time. The online program can have as many students as you want – whole school data.

I’ve snipped a copy of a document I’ve printed which will guide my future planning for this student. It contains recommended learning goals for reading behaviours, retelling and comprehension and I can also add my own. I’ve also printed a document which tells me what the student is doing. Effective!

Emma RAR

There are so many amazing resources which I’m loving which support comprehension!

NLDL

Next week I’m in QLD! Above photo: Love the NLD Comprehension…

Tuesday 10/5 – Robina: Improving Comprehension Skills

Wednesday 11/5 – Camp Hill: Assessing and Teaching Reading Comprehension

Thursday 12/5 – PM Benchmark and New Digital Software

Cheers Nina

 

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