P & P No: 1.2
Important Note: This document is currently being reworked extensively, please see the Curriculum Leader for more information.
Effective teaching, assessment for learning, curriculum, and strong and engaged communities are aspects of personalised learning which are reflected in effective pedagogies. The students of Arahunga range in age from 5 to 21+, have a diverse mix of strenghts and learning or sensory needs, and are educated in a range of environments. It is acknowledged that the teaching aproaches and teacher actions discussed below may appear substantially different within different classes of the school, depending on the ages, stages and abilities of the students that make up each class.
To create a supportive learning environment, teachers…
- foster positive relationships between students and their peers and teachers
- facilitate the inclusion of students into the wider school and community
- develop strong links and communicate regularly with parents and caregivers
- foster positive relationships between parents and the staff and specialists who make up the team around that student
- attend to the cultual and linguistic diversity of their students, perhaps using signing, visual or
- tactile supports to assist students to understand and communicate
To encourage reflective thought and action, teachers…
- encourage reflective learning in a range of ways, including the use of social stories and
- learning intentions with next steps learning
- assist students to set their own learning intentions and monitor progress
To enhance the relevance of new learning, teachers…
- assist students to understand what they are learning, & why, and how they will be able to use this knowledge, through social stories or learning intention charts
- stimulate interest and curiosity
- provide opportunities for choices and ownership
To facilitate shared learning, teachers…
- provide opportunities for being – talking, playing, working- with a range of others
- ensure regular communication with parents & caregivers
To make connections to prior learning and experience, teachers…
- help students integrate new learning with what they already know
- help students make connections to home practices, across learning areas and to the wider world
- use appropriate assessment tools to guide next step learning
To provide sufficient opportunities to learn, teachers…
- provide opportunities for skills to be used and practiced across a range of settings, both environments and learning areas
- prioritize learning goals as required
To enquire into their teaching, teachers…
- use quality assessment data in order to inquire into their practice
- adapt strategies and resources to suit students and situations
Educational matrices are a way of making planned, purposeful connections between the classroom programme and timetable on one hand, and the individual learning intentions set in a student’s IEP on the other.
Many of the skills targeted in the IEP are likely to be required across the day in a range of contexts, or will be best able to be taught and practiced at specific times or during specific parts of the programme.
The team needs to identify the various opportunities to practice targeted IEP skills across these different functional activities. An activity / IEP objective analysis form or Educational Matrix assists staff to identify these opportunities.
Staff are able to choose their own format for this purpose. A number of examples are attached (see Appendix 1A) for staff information. Whatever format is chosen, the baseline expectation is that it will clearly show when targeted teaching or practice of individual student learning intentions will take place, whether this is at set times of the day or in set timetabled blocks.
Teacher inquiry and knowledge building
“ Great teaching is an important influence on student success. Effective teachers know what works best for their students, and continually reflect on and refine their teaching practice.” (Personalising Learning p 6).
Teacher inquiry is a process where teachers critically reflect on their own professional practices and the effects of those practices on learners, in ways that challenge their assumptions, knowledge and beliefs. The process involves educators in seeking evidence to inform future practices and outcomes for learners and identifying answers. Personalising learning for our students requires that teachers be lifelong learners and researchers, in order to insure the best possible outcomes for students.
The following pointers for teachers reflective practice are taken from the NZC p35. Please see http://nzcurriculum.tki.org.nz/Curriculum-stories/Case-studies/Inquiry/Teaching-as-inquiry#1
“Since any teaching strategy works differently in different contexts for different students, effective pedagogy requires that teachers inquire into the impact of their teaching on their students.
Inquiry into the teaching–learning relationship can be visualised as a cyclical process that goes on moment by moment (as teaching takes place), day by day, and over the longer term. In this process, the teacher asks:
What is important (and therefore worth spending time on), given where my students are at?
This focusing inquiry establishes a baseline and a direction. The teacher uses all available information to determine what their students have already learned and what they need to learn next. Please see http://nzcurriculum.tki.org.nz/Curriculum-stories/Case-studies/Inquiry/Teaching-as-inquiry#2
What strategies (evidence-based) are most likely to help my students learn this?
In this teaching inquiry, the teacher uses evidence from research and from their own past practice and that of colleagues to plan teaching and learning opportunities aimed at achieving the outcomes prioritised in the focusing inquiry.Please see http://nzcurriculum.tki.org.nz/Curriculum-stories/Case-studies/Inquiry/Teaching-as-inquiry#3
What happened as a result of the teaching, and what are the implications for future teaching?
In this learning inquiry, the teacher investigates the success of the teaching in terms of the prioritised outcomes, using a range of assessment approaches. They do this both while learning activities are in progress and also as longer-term sequences or units of work come to an end. They then analyse and interpret the information to consider what they should do next.” (NZC p.35). Please see http://nzcurriculum.tki.org.nz/Curriculum-stories/Case-studies/Inquiry/Teaching-as-inquiry#4
Review schedule: Within 3 years