Thursday, 15 December 2016

End of an Era

This is my final post as a teacher at Point England School. I have been at Point England school since 2006 and have learned a great deal. Thank you to Russell and Dorothy Burt and all the staff for their support and leadership. Thank you to the office/ admin staff who are the backbone of the school. Thanks to all the support staff for their help throughout the years. Thank you to parents for allowing me to teach your children. Thank you most of all to the children, who as much as I have taught I've also learned from you. I will take a bit of Point England with me. I'll still be posting to my inquiry blog. Thanks Point England, I love you all.

End of an Era from Priscilla Lavakula on Vimeo.

Monday, 5 December 2016

End of Year Reading Data

Here is a deeper look into the end of year data collected over the year. Looking closer at the data helps to determine why shifts were made or not and where to next.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Inquiry Update: Change in Pedagogy

I've been reflecting on how much my teaching has changed this year. When it came to reading, I was in the mindset of the children reading a text and then having a followup for it. This also meant the children had to get through at least two texts a week.

My focus around what the children are reading in class has changed. Yes, I still need to have a followup for each group but because of what we're doing in our team in reading, has changed so has the focus, slightly.

Team 4 teachers and I decided to have mini topics under the school inquiry. The topic for this term is the Olympics and we looked at it from a point of view as the: Olympics Exposed. This meant that we were teaching children what goes on behind the scenes of the Olympics. I hadn't really thought about that point of view before but not only did the children learn about these mini topics, but so did I.

I'll be honest and say that it wasn't easy at first. This meant that there weren't many books or journals for children to read under these mini topics. So, as a team we had to delve into online readings. The children have one main text that they have to read but we also have also included other readings that support the main text. It's still a work in progress for myself. But as a team we are working collaboratively. I check out what others have been doing on our site and might use some readings or followup activities and make them my own.


Monday, 29 August 2016

Term 3 Inquiry Update

This term our team focus was around issues that went on behind the scenes of the Olympics, called "Olympics Uncovered". We had to teach issues that covered two to three weeks at a time. The following texts were found on Journal Surf. The focus of my mini topics were: Doping in Sport, the Zika Virus, Muscles and the Human Body and some sports. These are the books I found that specifically related to these topics.

Boost is a story about some children that had enhancements from a clinic and how they behaved in class. When children read this, they could tell that this was cheating and that it wasn't fair on others. For extended reading texts, I found articles online based on doping in sport.

Mighty Muscles is a short article that gives students a brief idea of why it is important to have healthy muscles. From observations, few children knew only one or two muscles in their body. For extended readings, I've had to search online to find articles and readings that related to the muscular system.

The texts around viruses and bacteria that I found were The good, the bad and the ugly and Double, double, toilet trouble. My top reading group are able to explain the difference between bacteria and a virus. I found articles on the Zika virus online and used these as extended texts. One teaching "a-ha!" moment is when one of my students said "oh, I didn't know that'.

The follow up activities were based on agree/ disagree, compare and contrast and short fact presentations. Some children made advertisements about Boost and whether people should be using it or not. Check out an example here. Here's are movies made by students about the Zika Virus here and here. Here's an activity for Mighty Muscles here

Monday, 4 July 2016

Term 2: Inquiry Update

This term I have been focussing on getting the children to think from the 'author's point of view'. The tasks I got the children to use were agreeing or disagreeing with statements. However, the children had to think from the 'author's point of view' not from their view. This was quite difficult for some children because they had to switch their thinking. It generated good discussion and healthy argument amongst the children and they had to use their books as evidence.

Thursday, 16 June 2016

LIteracy Tasks for Reading Followup

Here is a selection of followup tasks that I have been using and practicing in my classroom. Please feel free to use them if you wish. They are suitable for all reading ages and can be changed to suit your own groups.

Monday, 11 April 2016

Term One Inquiry Reflection

My focus has been having followup tasks that engage students motivation in reading. Here is what I have found out so far.

Sunday, 28 February 2016

Inquiry Focus in 2016

Welcome back to 2016. At Pt England, our school-wide focus is formative practice in reading and writing to improve students achievement. My personal inquiry will focus on: How to get engaging follow-up activities to increase student motivation in reading.