As a Mum to a Year 9 student I was interested to read in the Independent Education Union’s (IEU)”Independent Voice” today that they are calling for and expert review of NAPLAN. They suggest this due to the poor results across all year levels in the writing task. ACARA is defending its roll in setting the questions and blames ‘teacher coaching’ for the students’ poor performance rather than the questions. The IEU is wanting the federal government to undertake a review of NAPLAN as they suggest the review should ask the fundamental questions as to the “value and validity” of such testing. What do other students think?
My first lesson back after Labour Day holiday is poetry with the students. I am nervous about this as, and I hate to admit it, I am not really a poetry fan. I am losing sleep over it! However, the C2C states that the poem will be “My Country” by Dorothea Mackellar. Wow, that takes me back to primary school when I first learnt to recite it. This week will see me in-depth with books to brush up on what I need to do to make this interesting and engaging for the children. My mentor teacher has given me some resources from the C2C that deals with onomatopoeia, alliteration and adjectives. The end result (hopefully) sees the students write and present their own poems.
My first lesson with grade three was an ICT presentation I had made two years ago in a literacy unit. The students watched the movie-maker presentation on the “Little Refugee” (A & S Do) and I asked them to put their own ending to the story. Most of the students came up with different answers while some of them were able to pick up on the ‘boat-people’ theme of the book. My mentor gave me feedback, pointing out both and good and not so good things I did during the lesson. There is a lot to learn about standing out the front of students and trying to pull it all together!
My first day was spent observing and help students with different areas of their learning. It was such a full on day but it went so quickly! My mentor teach is terrific and encouraging. Initially I was in a panic as this Year 3 class is the highest grade class I have had. (Prep being the highest to date prior to this prac). The class is made up of a diverse group of students and they are busy finishing off assessments for the end of term 3. Can’t wait to get back next Tuesday although my mentor has me teaching the students poetry. How scary!
Confirmation today that I am back to the school I had prac with this time last year. I am rapted about this as I enjoyed last year’s practicum so much. Had the most amazing mentor and I hope this year’s mentor is every bit as good as she was. Incidentally this year sees me with a male teacher–my first male mentor teacher! I am looking forward to this experience purely to get a male’s perspective on teaching the early childhood “littlies”. I can’t wait for the 19th of September, my first day, although I am having nerves about the incorporating of ICTs successfully, giving the students rich-ICTs learning experiences.
The concept of creating a Weebly for the above assignment filled me with dread! While I experienced some problems and loads of angst in the constructing of it, I enjoyed the looking at the final result and was proud that I was able to get to the end of it! The mark came in at 15.6 out of 19 and I was truly happy about this. I initially thought if I could get double figures, say a 10 mark, I would be over the moon with it. The mark I received was truly a delight and I am hoping that Assignments 2 and 3 are as successful for me as the first assignment.
I elected to do a past History Unit that we had created (as a group) for the History unit a few years ago at Uni. The unit was “My Family History. I incorporated ICTs but found it a little difficult as I didn’t want to make it too complex for the Prep class it was designed for. David seems to be against showing Youtube clips but I thought the use of these clips was an effective way of introducing timelines, family trees and families. The other ICTs I used was incorporating the use of a digital camera for the students to take photos of their peers and then stick the photos on a “Prep Family Tree” displayed in the classroom.
I have a last finished my Weebly on ICT’s and their use and importance in today’s classrooms. I can’t say I really enjoyed the assignment but however when ICT’s are not your strong point, it is a lot to get your head around! I would like to do another web-based site like powtoon or wix but certainly not in the foreseeable future. I enjoyed the research and the finding of resources for the assignment and it was only my limited knowledge of ICT that probably dampened my joy of working with ICT’s. I think it is something I need to get my head around as I acknowledge the importance ICT’s have in today’s classrooms. I hope you can have a look at my assignment and I hope there is something in it that you agree with.
My assignment 1 – ICT’s —susanduers.weebly.com
Reflective practice, while used primarily by professionals, helps children to think and learn in different styles. Teachers can support their students’ learning by questioning them to “think aloud” by giving the students open-ended questions that require a more than yes or no answer (Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework, (VEYLDF), 2012). Using reflective questions with children demonstrates to the children the teacher’s interest in their work and ideas which can lead to children engaging and feeling more motivated to try new tactics. It is believed that reflection on learning enables students to transfer the learning from one context to another and helps them build on existing skills and knowledge (VEYLDF, 2012). The VEYLDF research shows children whose views are valued and respected are more likely to take responsibility for their actions compared to those whose views are not.
Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework, (2012). Retrieved 8 August, 2014 from www.education.vic.gov.au/earlylearning/eyldf/default.htm
Children’s learning is complex and encompasses many contexts in their day to day experiences. The State Library of Queensland (SLQ) defines lifelong learning as “a combination of processes whereby whole persons construct experiences of situations and transform them into knowledge, skills, attitudes beliefs, values, emotions and the senses, and integrate the outcomes into their own biographies” (n.d.) The SLQ further asserts the ongoing concept of learning gathers together the knowledge, skills and understanding from “the cradle to the grave.” Children who are lifelong learners can expect to develop personal qualities such as efficacy, self-management and initiative and build upon interpersonal skills, critical and creative thinking, multiliteracies and communication techniques. The SLQ (n.d.) suggests creating rich learning environments for young children will promote agency and democratic and collaborative processes. These attributes are supported by Price-Mitchell (n.d.) who states “lifelong learning is critical in today’s fast changing world” and suggests that “learning through experience is one of the best ways to give youth the skills of lifelong learning, living and working in the 21st century.” Price-Mitchell also posits that this form of learning provides the child with the development of other internal skills such as curiosity, perseverance and the skills to confront tough challenges.
Price-Mitchell, M. (n.d.). Is your child ready for lifelong learning.Retrieved 6 August, 2014 from http://www.rootsofaction.com/is-lifelong-learning-in-your-childs-future/
The State Library of Queensland. The lifelong learning framework: Children and young adults. Queensland Government. Retrieved August, 2014 from www.slq.qld.gov.au