Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Reading is a real challenge!

Learning to be a confident READER. Have you stopped to think about all the cognitive and linguistic skills it takes for everyone to do this ?
Have you stopped to break down all the parts that have to align to make us into capable confident readers?

Let me list some components of a skilled reader. 

  • phonological awareness
  • word recognition processes 
  • vocabulary
  • syntax
  • decoding accuracy
  • learning to read, children start out acquiring elementary decoding skills and learn to apply these with greater accuracy and speed.
  • comprehension processes
  • concepts about print
  • spatial awareness
  • cognitive performance
  • fluency
  • visual modality 

In addition to these:
 attention, perception and working memory are extremely important aspects of information processing and significant in children’s reading development.

If we could assess these different components and see where our students have specific difficulties could we then provide more support for their specific learning needs? 
Do we currently digging deep enough to help our learners?

Friday, May 26, 2017

Assessment for Learners with Special Education Needs

Narrative assessment

Narrative assessment is  for students who are expected to learn long-term within Level One of the New Zealand Curriculum .

Narrative assessment provides a rich picture of students’ skills, strengths, and learning support needs. It uses learning stories to capture progress in students’ learning, and records the often subtle interactions between the student, their learning environments, their peers, their learning support team, and their learning activities.

The use of this information to engage with parents and whānau, allows those who know the child best to collaborate in planning next steps learning as part of the child’s Individual Education Programme and plan. In this way, narrative assessment provides clear and specific reporting about the individual student’s learning, support needs, and progress.

This form of assessment fits very well with Manaiakalani pedagogy ' Learn , Create, Share' - putting our young learners at the very centre of their learning.

To learn more check out this website, or book some time with me to learn more.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Alternative assessment for students with additional needs

It is necessary for New Zealand schools to design and shape assessment in our classrooms so that teaching and learning is meaningful and meets the needs of their particular communities of students?

Are you aware of this assessment for students who need  additional  support?

The frameworks, or matrices, expand and enhance Level One of the New Zealand Curriculum in literacy and numeracy, following national matrices and leading directly into Level One. Holistic learning progressions are set on a continuum, identifying the fine-grained progressions that some students make.
The matrices were developed to help teachers identify the key features of learning, achievement, and quality in relation to each achievement objective. Teachers are able to use the matrices to place each student on an individual starting point, identify next step planning and teaching and hold suitably high and realistic expectations for achievement.

Support for our Learners and their families.

As part of my new role working across the Manaiakalani schools to support our diverse learners, I wanted to find out what support services were out there in our community.

Tāmaki Regeneration has created this list of Tāmaki health, community and social services on the Healthpoint website: https://www.healthpoint.co.nz/central-auckland/tamaki/

Great starting point for our families.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Do you have students who need support to remember a task sequence?

Some of our students need additional support to remember a sequence they are suppose to follow during a class learning task.

This checklist is kept inside the students writing book. She self monitors as she has completed each step. The checklist are individualised to each student's needs and to match their specific learning goals. These check list stop a lot of repetition, wasted time and frustration by teachers and students.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

New Zealand Sign Language week - 8 and 14 May

New Zealand Sign Language Week
It is NZ Sign Language week, time to celebrate Aotearoa’s third official language (since 2006).
New Zealand Sign Language Week provides an opportunity for schools to reflect on the inclusion principle and explore the values of diversity and respect. Students can make use of key competencies, especially using language, symbols, and text and relating to others.
Check out the great resources online
Have you checked out the fabulous songs on Youtube that have NZ Sign Language

How about learning our National anthem with all three of our official languages.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Inquiry Model

I attended my first  Maniakalani COL teachers meeting on Thursday and was introduced to the Manaiakalani Inquiry framework for the first time. Well done to the team who collaborated on this.

At Sommerville  Special school we have been looking at the Spiral of Inquiry by Helen Timperley, Linda Kaser and Judy Halbert.
Graphic credit: Judy Halberg and Linda Kaser (2013)

These frameworks seem to blend together quite well.  I am currently in the 'LEARN' stage in the 'Learn Create Share', so moving through the scanning, focusing and developing a hunch in the spiral.
I found the TKI information on Teaching as inquiry very helpful - thanks for sharing Fiona Grant.