The last two weeks in @sixonitsown.
We have continued to re-visit important kaupapa from last year as a reminder to us all about what is important as a community of learners. I will start where we left off in the last post.
This question, which a student asked, along with the others which I put to the kids generated some inspiring responses. I was blown away by the level of depth in their thinking. As much as I was blown away, I was also heartened that ideas, concepts, and dispositions which are vital for future focused pedagogy (and for these kids as they move into their future) have been embedded. What they had to say was honest – I made sure they knew to write what they thought NOT what they thought I wanted them to say.
Here is the link to a presentation of the questions and snippets of my #KIDSvoice.
Since the last post we have started #NZreadaloud10 which happens to be the sumptuously illustrated ‘Aotearoa’ by Gavin Bishop. This kaupapa will take us through the term without a doubt. We began with a discussion about the cover and the style of illustrations. Along the way we have learnt about names of waka, maunga, birds, fish, insects, places, and Gods to name a few. We are going to learn our mihi and discuss ways to make sure we are being culturally responsive about this too. I had set up a Google Hangout with the four classes we have connected with for #NZra10Aotearoa and while we managed to see them we could not hear them … so that was disappointing. We will try again!
The book lent itself to a day of self directed learning about Te Tiriti o Waitangi. I opened a Padlet for the kids to add their thinking to and we also had some good discussions. The last question on the Padlet was a lead-in to our learning around argument writing. This question alone had kids thinking and making sure they gave reasons. We will come back to this at some stage. Here is the link to our Padlet and ongoing learning:
The curriculum vision of confident and active learners was displayed when we spent a double period making choices about statements I read out using an imaginary continuum in the classroom. This was some preliminary learning about how we make choices and how we need to be able to justify our opinions. It was a magic session. Kids loved it.
The final statement I read out was “If you had the opportunity next week to participate in some language learning, would you choose to learn Te Reo Māori or French?” This brought out some wonderful discussions and very intense feelings. It was the perfect way to have these kids demonstrate the use of emotive language, giving detail and elaborating on your comments, how important it is to use evidence and research if you need to quote ‘facts’ and how we need more than one reason to win an argument. Just brilliant.
Having discussed the issue of land loss and the gradual decline of speakers of Te Reo Māori during our learning about Te Tiriti, it was this blog post which prompted me to use this kaupapa as the basis of our argument writing this Term. He taonga rānei te reo Māori? Is te reo Māori a treasure?
In the next post I will update our progress learning about forming opinions and how to justify them
As part of our learning around Early Aotearoa and how early Maori traded flax fibre for a variety of goods, I decided to spend a morning learning how to extract muka from a harakeke leaf. Nicely integrating some Science / Social Sciences objectives.
Social Sciences: Understand how people pass on and sustain culture and heritage for different reasons and that this has consequences for people.
Science: Ask questions, find evidence, explore simple models, and carry out appropriate investigations to develop simple explanations.
This was just awesome seeing these kids totally engaged for the morning and part of the afternoon.
Here is the link to a video compilation explaining our process for the day.
We spent a morning re-visiting our thinking around connectedness and why we think being connected is important. Major themes which came out from this were:
- so we can learn from others
- so we can learn to collaborate
- so we can learn to ask questions and talk with others
- so we can share thoughts
- so we can learn other’s point of view
I also asked what skills we are learning through being a connected learner – overwhelming responses were:
- learning how to be safe online
- learning how to communicate
- learning how to listen
- learning how to be a better learner
- learning how to learn with others
- learning how to be a good digital citizen
- learning how to ask questions
- learning how to use different platforms properly like Twitter
I am pretty happy with their understanding about why connectedness is a major part of learning in @sixonitsown
The other thing I tried over the first three weeks which has been really successful was the idea of book teasers – reading the first chapter of a selected book in the hope of inspiring the kids to pick it up and read independently for pleasure. So far I have read the first chapter of these books:
And many kids have chosen to continue reading in their own personal reading time. Fabulous to see kids reading, just reading – especially boys.
As we move into Week 4 and 5 we will be:
- using the playlist to create our own timetables and work on our level of agency
- having class leader presentations and announcement of class leaders
- continuing our learning about how we form an opinion and ways to justify what we think
- we will continue to read the sumptuously illustrated ‘Aotearoa’ as part of #NZreadaloud
- the kids will continue to connect in Edmodo
- the kids will follow any curiosities which arise to do some self-directed inquiry
- we will have another Twitter session and learn how we can use twitter for learning
- we will create our learning tribes
- the kids will do some preliminary learning in preparation for Seaweek and the LEARNZ virtual field trip we will participate in later in the term
- the kids will carry on discussions around what is learning and I will look to set up each learner with an inquiry of their choice using the inquiry web below as a way to scaffold them through to creation and this slideshow as a starting point for them and their thinking.