Shifting Focus

Wow! What a term!  I feel guilty for neglecting this blog, but encouraged that I spent the time focusing my energy on student learning and engagement.  I’ve done a lot of thinking recently about my fabulous group of learners and their strengths.  They are all very independent and motivated learners and I have realised that traditional teaching methods will not engage them as much as a larger project based on their interests will.

I was very lucky to spend a day with Ralph Pirozzo of Promoting Learning International.  His ideas about project based learning using Bloom’s Taxonomy and Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences have inspired me to shift my focuses as to how I teach and how I engage the students in learning.

I’ll have to start small as I get my own thoughts in the right space with this, but I’m sure the students will enjoy it.  To start with, I’ll probably just use the learning grids for one Key Learning Area (mathematics) and build from there.  Students will start with explicit teaching from me where we unpack the concept for the week.  We will then move into free choice activities where students are expected to demonstrate their understanding of the concept.  They will be encouraged to choose an activity that suits their learning style (based on multiple intelligences).

I realise there will probably be some teething problems to start with and the students will have to have a deep understanding of the behaviour expectations during this time.  I am, however, very excited about changing the way I teach based on the needs of the students, rather than continuing with a one-size-fits-all approach.

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2 thoughts on “Shifting Focus

  1. Love your posts, to the point, not deliberately complicated by overuse of meta-language, obvious passion for the profession and needs of students shining through! It will be great following the ‘evolution’ of your teaching this year.

    • I could use all of the meta-language but I think I’d just confuse myself more than anyone else. It’s great to have the research background behind things, but at the end of the day I need things to be in plain English so that I can explicitly teach my little chooks that way 🙂

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