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On the couch with Professor John Hattie

The major points I gathered from this interview with John Hattie was the intertwining between AITSL and the teaching profession. It allows what is being said to be put into practice and by extension see how effective the program are with a common goal of maximizing student learning. Through this opportunity, AITSL is constantly being reflected and reviewed with room for modification if necessary.

I found it interesting when the challenge arose about universities working in conjunction with the implementation of the AITSL standards. I remember when I was university and attempting to unpack the standards proved repetitive and didn’t match our practice purely based on timing. I feel that if universities planned the teaching of standards at the same time as placement in school would allow university students to better benefit from their understanding of the standards.

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Reflection – Will web 2.0 tools help improve student writing?

Our PARTS question, “Will web 2.0 tools help improve student learning?” enabled us to see the importance that students placed on their writing, who was viewing their writing and whether it was important to improve or edit their work.

We asked students at the beginning of our project to take part in this survey where they responded to the questions. One student’s responses are as follows:

Who do you write for now?
“I like to write silly storys and mistakes in them when I read to myself”

When you have written something, how important is it to you to improve or edit your writing?
“Not very importent for me when I do it myself. Importent when I do it for alot of people”

Many students displayed this opinion, demonstrating that they do not place a grave importance on their writing and are not aware of the audience that is viewing their work.

After this survey was taken, as a team we discussed on ways that we could improve the students awareness and the quality of their writing. The ideas that we tried were to follow a set structure when students are commenting on posts, viewing anonymous comments with errors and discussing as a class on ways to edit the mistakes and taking part in surveys to compare students’ opinions. I realised that when students were exposed to these activities, it started to change their opinions and they started to put more effort and detail into their posts.

As our PARTS project concludes we re-took the same survey given to the students at the start. After analysing the data, we found a great change in student’s opinions. The same student whose responses were shared before wrote:

Who do you write for now?
“I write for Miss. Olagama and, my parents and the world.

When you have written something, how important is it to you to improve or edit your writing?
When I am blogging it is important, when I am not blogging it isn’t.

This student in particular demonstrates not only more detailed responses to the same questions but also an improvement in spelling and self-correction.

After discussing with my team, we found that a majority of students realised that when they are blogging, it is not only their classroom teacher and themselves that see their writing but that it is available to the whole world. I feel that this project and the activities the students took part in gave them an opportunity to come to this realisation. We also found that students were now placing an importance on their blogging but this was not transferring to their pen to paper writing.

In the future, I hope students continue to realise that when they are blogging, they are blogging to a much wider audience than when they are writing a story in their books for their classroom teacher. I hope to incorporate the students’ blogging skills to the wider community, perhaps frequently interacting with a particular school blog to reinforce this realisation. I also aim to find ways of adding more purpose to their story writing in the classroom so that they can develop the quality of their writing as a whole.

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Blog surveys

This Friday we are going to blog with our buddies, where students will tell the Level 3 teachers all about their buddies. We hope that this will place an importance on their writing as they are assured that the Level 2 teachers and their buddies will be viewing their comments.

As a conclusion to our project, after discussing with my team, we found that the perfect way of showing whether students’ opinions have changed would be to give them the same writing and publishing survey they took when we started this project. Through this survey, we will be able to decipher whether students are placing an importance on their blog comments and posts and embrace the fact that their efforts on the blog are open to the public.

I look forward to seeing the results from these surveys!

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Exploring Google Drive

Post reflecting our PARTS question, will web 2.0 tools improve our students’ writing, we feel that our students have improved immensely with their writing. They have been able to add detail to their past comments and reflect on how their writing is viewed by anyone who views their blogs.

With this in mind we have decided to incorporate Google Drive into their publishing. I am keen to, like the Level 4’s, use Google Drive as a collaborative tool, where students can write their own comments and allow their peers to edit their work. Students will be encouraged to highlight and possibly change the font colour of their peers comments so that when they are revisiting their own work they can see what suggestions their peers have made.

Throughout this process, students will be encouraged to use the AuthorThink process and to make a working copy, have an Author’s Circle through Google Drive, self edit their work after modifications have been suggested and then finally publish it onto the blog.

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Blogging comments

This week I got to go through the level blog past comments and review of what needed to be changed and how can we make sure that these comments consist of the correct criteria. I feel that this was very beneficial as students were not only made aware of what they and others were posting on the blog but they were also able to evaluate their own comment posting and ensuring that they were following the criteria.

I discovered that students were not ensuring that they had every element in their comments but they were also able to add more detail into their comments. I feel that students were only in need of more practice and reinforcement of the structure to ensure that they have a detailed comment.

I aim to have students regularly posting on the blog to see whether they are able to write a detailed comment and remember the structure.

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Adding depth to their comments…

This week we finally looked at editing students comments and used the comment template whereby students have to incorporate the following 5 elements:

1. Greeting
2. Compliment
3. Answer the question
4. Ask a question
5. Signature

We explored past comments made by students, not including their names of course, and explored what sorts of elements were missing and how to modify the comment so that it includes all aspects a comment should have. The students were very receptive and engaged with the activity. They were able to generate plenty of ideas on how to change the comments so that they contain more detail and depth.

It was interesting to see how much students comments changed after this demonstration and how they were adding more and more detail into their own comments. I aim to have this lesson again to see whether students are able to retain the information and produce an in depth comment on their own.

 

 

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Google drive

We discussed as a team a new idea of incorporating Google Drive into the students learning time. Students were instructed to edit each others scripts on Google drive and illustrate what parts of their partners work they were changing by either highlighting or changing the font to demonstrate their modifications. Students were very engaged and excited to use their learning in Media of Google Drive and being able to incorporate it into their learning time.

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New ideas…

This week, as a team, we discussed the next step in our blogging journey. We thought it would be beneficial for students to participate in blogging as part of their homework. This way parents monitoring and immersing themselves in the blogging process. Students are also becoming aware that their posts are being viewed by a bigger audience rather than just their classroom teacher and other Level 3 students.

After planning our new inquiry unit we also thought it would be insightful to incorporate the student’s learning of Google Drive as an editing tool. Hopefully this will also give students a bigger purpose with their writing and therefore generate a change in their writing.

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Blogging journey

My current focus for students is to look through their current comments and discuss what is wrong with them and how the mistakes are corrected. Students will be able to view their own comments and as a class we will look and edit them together. Hopefully, students will be able to take this learning with them when they are writing their own comments.

I intend of following the structure of:

1. Greeting
2. Compliment
3. Answer the question
4. Ask a question
5. Signature

Fingers crossed!

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The journey thus far…

This week has been all about creating usernames and passwords so that students are able to have personal access to the blogs and are able to either comment and/or post. So far, students have saved their posts on word documents due to the technical difficulties in the past weeks. For the next two weeks, my aim is for students to be able to post and/or comment on previous entries made by the teachers. I am intrigued to see whether the quality of their writing does in fact change when they are aware that a wider audience, other than the level teachers, are witnessing their comments and posts.

Fingers crossed!