Monday, March 21, 2016

Planning my timeline

Today was spent tidying up my proposal and organising a timeline. By setting mini goals linked to the Spark MIT hui each term, it will keep my inquiry on track.

I feel that today has given me clarity around the type of data that I will be using to inform my direction and where I had previously thought I would use eAsTTle data I am going to find out more about Paul Nation's Range Programme and see if this is a better fit.
I will have to begin with a control piece of writing which the tamariki will do next week and then begin my analysis.

Looking deeper into providing the virtual experiences I have come to the realisation that this means that I should not only expect children to increase their world of experiences according to 'Whaea Heather '- but that I need to broaden my knowledge of what experiences my learners DO have under their belt and in their life. It is a presumptuous thing for educators to say our kids have limited experiences and perhaps it is more a case of teachers having limited knowledge of what the children bring. My next mission is to work out - How do I uncover that??

This is AKO - theory of learning through reciprocity in action and it is exciting to be able to implement it explicitly in this inquiry. To further explain, if I am providing experiential input that I believe the tamariki need to improve their writing, I also need to have them provide input for me on their real life experiences so that I have my lens into their world sharpened By doing this I am asking them to actively engage with their regular experiences rather than be passive participants in life. 

Writing can be the authentic purpose for creating critical thinkers who are highly engaged in life. With me being that person that is vitally interested in their world, it will hopefully creates intrinsic thinkers. I believe it also shifts the ego and develops people who are interested in others and people who notice the perspective of others resulting in socially/emotionally responsive tamariki. I will need to be careful though not to overload them in the domain of sharing,as it can quickly become overwhelming and work against the goal. I will need to be the manager of this.

Mission 2 - In knowing the learner, if writing isn’t their preferred mode of communicating - how do I use their preferred mode and quietly encourage writing alongside?

The tamariki have really been enjoying having agency over their learning and I have been noticing that this power of choice or Mana whakahaere is making a huge difference to their task engagement. I hope to nurture and provide as much agency as possible.


  1. I enjoyed your reflections Heather. You have been doing a lot of critical reflection and digging deeper into children's learning. I look forward to you uncovering children's prior knowledge and how this impacts on their writing and motivation to write. You have identified the importance of engaging children in their life experiences. Keep up the great work!

  2. Professional conversations, be they kanohi ki te kanohi or in a forum like this are really stimulating. You now have me thinking about a couple of my own struggling writers and its making think more carefully about scaffolding them in by providing them with an "experience" and a quality exchange to develop the oral language quickly followed by the opportunity to write. I'm looking at my role afresh - thanks Heather!