It may not have escaped my readers’ notice that this blog is being increasingly ignored by myself. Posts are rarer. You may be sitting there thinking…consider the time elapsed between the first Star Wars movie, and the latest – worth the wait? I wouldn’t go that far, but I would hope that the difference in posts from ‘then and now’ is not the equivalent to the difference between Star Wars episode 6 and one. Seriously though…Episodes one to three aren’t great, but they aren’t terrible either. But I digress.
This year has found me studying part time, which requires active involvement in online discussions related to that. I have been snowed under of late. The year has started well enough. Students are settled, our new arrangement for MLE/ILS is working well and I’m in the privileged position of working with some Christians who get together and pray about stuff (in our own time, when the students are not present of course as it is a secular, state school I work in). Again, with the digression.
My inquiry this year is focussed at present on student literacy achievement, and is focussed on four specific children and strategies that can be used to support these students in their literacy development. Through the support of the wonderful Rosemary Smith (via Ministry of Education PLD contract), I (along with the other staff) am examining my practice, and putting a more critical lens on this. It will be interesting to see how this unfolds. As yet I am working to identify the specific strategies I am using to accelerate learning. Formative assessment plays a key part in my strategy, along with phonics and teaching the strategies (learnt from a colleague) of ‘Does it look right, sound right, make sense’ and reading on and back.
The difficulty I find with this kind of inquiry is pinning down the exact strategies I am using. I can sit back and discuss good practice easily, identifying what I do in general, but it is the ongoing tweaks that I make in my practice that become a part of my ‘hidden’ teaching practice/ hidden curriculum.
My other inquiry which I plan to look into is that of play based learning and its potential impact on how we run our programme. I will try and get back with more on these things before the term is over.