John Hattie: AITSL Update

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on October 15, 2014

After reading the Question and Answer with John Hattie some of my thoughts are:

– I agree with the three challenges that the profession faces. I think it is very important that graduates are supported in their first year of teaching and that leaders work together to support teachers to maximise student learning. I also agree that practising teachers need to be supported to improve their teaching and have opportunities to work collaboratively.

– I think that we definitely have the same philosophy at our school that is line with what John was saying when he said that it is important  that schools see all the children as the responsibility of all teachers and staff and that we as all have an impact in some way on all our students. I think we stand by that at St. E’s.

Reflections…

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on September 3, 2014

1. Talk about what you have found out as you have answered the question?

Through this parts project I have found out that we have many different forms of communication with parents at this school that all work very well but that it was time to step out of my comfort zone and move away from traditional forms of communication and move on to more contemporary ways of communicating and presenting our children’s learning to the parent community. I learnt that it was time to become more forward in my use of technology (which I can be a little bit reluctant to) and reach out to parents in a different way. Our first step was to survey parents on our current forms of communication and their views on accessing a class blog. It was good to hear their points of view on which communication tools worked well for them and which tools they didn’t find as useful. I think that parents may have interpreted communication meaning in terms of issues about their children rather than information about their child’s learning. Most parents preferred emailing and verbal communication rather than reading a communication board. I have to agree that I would much prefer a conversation with someone too as a form of communication if I had a issue about my child. We were at a little bit of a cross roads when it came to actually starting our blog because only half of the parents who responded felt positive about visiting our blog. Parents were most concerned about their child being visible on the internet as the blog is public for anyone to view. I can definitely see where they were coming from. We decided to persist and create our blog and hopefully with awareness and word of mouth from parents it will catch on and parents will enjoy looking at the blog at home with their children and it will be a positive experience for our community. We then learnt how to create and set up our blog, made it look pretty, thought of a name for our blog and now ready to start our blogging journey. I think that time will tell if blogging is an effective form of communication and it is still a little bit early to answer that question.

2.  What do you see as being the next steps ?

We have a number of next steps to go on with for our project. We will begin by starting to add posts of events and learning that will happen in our community, starting with fathers day. We will send a message to parents through Tiqbiz letting parents know that the blog is up and running and also a letter home for those parents that do not have access to Tiqbiz. We are also going to slowly add pages to our blog that we took inspiration from a South Australian blog that included useful information for parents to access any time such as lunches, what to do at home, reading, birthdays, investigations etc. We also thought a good idea would be for the Foundation 2015 teachers to run their goal setting info night straight from the blog. Showing parents how to use the blog and explaining all the info on the blog to them and they could access that to re-read at any time. We would also try to survey parents again to see after using the blog for a short time if their views about blogging have changed at all.

Week 7: Designing our Blog

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on August 27, 2014

Today we chose a theme for our blog and a name for our blog too. We researched other junior blogs to come up with a name that would engage parents and students and be targeted to Foundation Students. We are calling our blog “foundation smarties” and included our class motto: Rain, hail or shine, we love learning all the time too. We began looking at the different pages that we are going to include on the blog that will give parents another source to access information about common questions that come up quite a lot throughout the year. Hopefully this will be helpful to parents as they will be able to have their questions answered without having to wait until the next day to ask the teacher. We also looked at the Junior Steps blog that the year 1 and 2’s use which have us some great tips on what information to include about blogging to parents. Next week we will add the pages to our blog and get a letter to parents informing them about the blog organised.

Setting up a blog…

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on August 20, 2014

Today we began setting up our blog. With the help of Bec we set up a new site, as it had been a long time since I had set up a blog. We set up widgets, domain names, feedjits, cluster maps,  blog names etc, some words I had never heard of before this. Next week will continue to create pages and the finish the bones of our blog and the fun part of decorating and making our blog look appealing and inviting. By the end of our PARTS project we hope to have learnt enough to be to able to navigate and add to our blog confidently.  I am looking forward to creating our blog.

Week 4: Research Continued…

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on August 6, 2014

Jessica and I continued to research blogs of Foundation classes from all over the world. We created a list of what we would like to put on our blog. We would like to include information to parents about the day to day running of the classroom, admin procedures and ideas for them to use at home, as well as useful links to education sites. We would also like to include lots of visuals such as photos and videos of the children learning and of special events. We are looking forward to beginning to create our blog next week.

Term 3: Week 3

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on July 30, 2014

Today Jess and I began researching blogs and how to begin to set up a class blog. Bec gave us some very useful sites to visit that taught us how to set up our blog and also linked us into other Foundation blogs. This gave us some great ideas for our blog and a starting point. We found a great blog from a school in South Australia that posted photos about special events such as their prep 100 days, pj day etc They also posted information to parents about all aspects of their classroom such as homework, curriculum, healthy eating etc. It was great to see examples of how blogs can be used in the Foundation level.

Term 3: Week 1

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on July 16, 2014

Today we began analysing our Parent Survey Data.  We tallied up the responses and here are some results that we found:

  • 25 out of 53 families responded to our survey
  • The diary is most commonly used form of communication, followed by Verbal Communication, Level
    Newsletter, Email and lastly Communication Board.
  • Out of the main forms of communication, parents believe that verbal communication is the most effective form of communication.
  • 6 families have used a blog before and 19 families have not.
  • 8 families said they believe that blogging is effective, 6 families disagree and 11 were unsure
  • 13 families said they would visit our blog, 4 said that would not and 8 said maybe.

Our next step will be to analyse our data a little bit further and come up with questions, thoughts and ideas that stand out from the survey to assist us in setting up a class blog and to decide whether a blog will be an effective form of communication for us in Foundation in the near future.

 

Week 8: Creating our survey!

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on June 11, 2014

Today Jess and I created our survey that we will send home to parents.

This is what our survey looks like.

Dear Parents,

We are currently conducting a research project that focuses on improving communication between home and school in Foundation. We are in the process of developing a community blog, where we will endeavour to share events, photos and the children’s learning online. This blog will give the children the opportunity to share their learning with a wider audience and for parents to connect with their children using an online forum.

We would like to begin by collecting some data from parents to assist us in finding out your views on how effective our current forms of communication are and to find out your thoughts, feelings and prior experiences with blogs.

We would appreciate if you could assist us by completing this short survey.

Yours Sincerely,

Louisa Azzopardi & Jessica Connolly

Foundation Teachers

Diary

Level

Newsletter

Communication Board

Email

Verbal

Comments

 

What current forms of communication do you use?
Which forms do you feel are most effective?
Rate each form’s effectiveness out of 10.
Have you used blogs before? What type? YES NO
Is blogging is an effective form of communication?Please tick…

Agree

Disagree

Unsure

I would visit and comment on the Foundation Blog? YES NO MAYBE

 

 We look forward to receiving feedback from parents in the next few weeks.

 

 

 

Week 7

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on June 4, 2014

Today will be a very short post due to limited timing and technology issues!

Today Jess and I  discussed the questions we are going to ask parents in our survey and which avenue we will take in terms of collecting the data.  We discussed the comments that others had made on our blogs which were all handy suggestions and will use this to begin next week when we will get well underway with collecting our data.

 

Week 6

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Posted by Louisa Azzopardi | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on May 28, 2014

This week I caught up with Jessica and brought her up to speed our PARTS project. We discussed the question and the data sources that I had chosen. We talked about where to begin our research and the first steps involved in gathering data from our parent community. Our first step is going to be creating a survey for all parents to fill in about our current communication procedures and their response to using blogging in the classroom. We will also begin looking at other Foundation level blogs created by teachers from other schools for inspiration. They often have guides on how to set up a class blog which will come in very handy.

 

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