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Inquiry Update Term 1 Week 9

Will culturally responsive practises improve writing motivation and in turn increase achievement in standardised writing testing?

As I reflect on the last month, I am beginning to see changes with my students ability to write simple sentences.

I am creating follow up activities on the iPad around alphabet sounds to support the students who are currently solidating this. Some days they do not write and do this as their writing task instead. These students are struggling to record 1 clear simple sentence on their iPad and the sentence is usually far too challenging when they have recorded it themselves. We have been working on writing 'I like to ___ ' & 'I went to the ____' where the students know they can find these words on their helper cards around the room, identify the correct word and write it. I plan to start recording the sentence for them to copy and hopefully build words into their vocabulary throughout the year.

My students who are identified as below (major…

Inquiry 2019

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Manaiakalani COL Achievement: Raise Māori student achievement through the development of cultural visibility and responsive practices across the pathway as measured against National Standards and agreed targets for reading Years 1-10 and NCEA years 11-13
Inquiry question:


Will culturally responsive practises improve writing motivation and in turn increase achievement in standardised writing testing

This year I have decided to base my inquiry around writing. As I collated the 2018 data and reflected on the learners lack of motivation throughout the year in 2018, I decided to focus my inquiry around writing. Within the first 4 weeks of the school term, I have identified 10 learners who specify themselves as cook island/maori (4) or maori (6).  Reflecting on last year, I found a pattern within the attitude towards writing and my learners, beginning to plateau and show little interest of completing their writing. I have identified these 10 learners to focus on this year with 8 of these learne…

Wrapping up my first year of teaching!

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My inquiry focus for this year is:
Will visible/feeding vocabulary with directed discussion increase kids language acquisition and participation within class discussions and be seen in their mathematical language?
This integrates with the Manaiakalani CoL achievement challenge #6 which is:
'Lift the achievement in maths for all students years 1-13.'


This has been a super busy term so I set out with small achievements. I decided to work closely with my Priority Learners - these are my learners who struggle to stay focussed and share their ideas in mathematics and are below standard. I worked on getting these students included and participating, speaking up about others ideas and being the scribe of the group. This was hugely beneficial and these students felt a sense of ownership to participate.

I plan on continuing what I am currently doing next year but identifying these learners earlier, hoping it will impact these learners to make a shift in their learning and language acquisiti…

Speaking at the University of Waikato

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During the school holidays, last week my brother (Zac Moran) and I were invited to go and speak in a lecture of studying teachers on their final year about 'Teacher Life' and Literacy in the Classroom at the University of Waikato. This was a huge privilege to speak to studying teachers about how awesome this profession is, while also sharing a few 'Tips & Tricks.' Thank you to Marianne Robertson and the University of Waikato for this great experience and taking me outside of my comfort zone! 

Inquiry: Are they making the expected shift?

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What value have I added to my children so far?
Looking at the data I collated at the beginning of the year to where my class is now is very rewarding based on the confidence my students have gained to share their ideas and talk in mathematics. 
My students have gained confidence to share their ideas in mathematics and speak up when they don't understand. When I say it's time for maths, you hear an outpour of 'YAY' filling the classroom which is a huge change! Students are able to understand a range of mathematical language and are beginning to notice these words when appearing across all curriculum areas, eg diagonal and recognizing this, understanding the meaning. Students can confidently attempt to answer word problems as they understand the language and can then decide the best strategy to implement!
I am still working on getting the students to use this vocabulary themselves, rather than just hearing it from myself which is a work in progress and a goal for term 4. So…

Term 2 Inquiry Update

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Will feeding vocabulary with directed discussion increase kids language acquisition and participation within class discussions?


This associates with the Manaiakalani CoL achievement challenge #6:
'Lift the achievement in maths for all students years 1-13.'




I still find myself regularly gifting vocabulary to the students hoping they retain some of this eventually and it becomes a part of their own vocabulary. To simplify my inquiry, I have split it into 2 sections; language acquisition and participation within classroom discussions.


Current Vocabulary: RED: Unknown words GREEN: Words they knew
This was a huge shock to me as I saw so many holes (red spaces) where I am probably using these terms with the students being clueless about what I have actually said. Once I begun to fill the holes of unknown words, it came to my attention that I'm still not improving their own language acquisition as they're still saying terms such as 'and 1 more to it' instead of counting, add…

Term 1 Inquiry Update

I have found the mathematical challenge a struggle to start off with during my inquiry. I had to get the students to be filmed and say a sentence and this was when I was beyond shocked - some students couldn't even string a sentence together?! How am I expecting the kids to improve their language acquisition in a targeted subject area when they are struggling in social situations and find it a challenge to communicate?


This made me 'rethink' what I was aiming to achieve.  I have realised that their communication skills with peers is crucial.  I realised my over-arching goal was going to be too challenging for my learners and have decided to narrow it down. I will still focus on mathematical language, meanwhile enforcing students to simply be able to converse and discuss their ideas with confidence. This is a huge focus - I am aiming to have students conversate in mathematics and it's a bonus if it is about maths currently! Now... I am attempting to use vocabulary aroun…