Tag Archives: Personalised Learning

My Ako Goal

11 Dec


My Ako Goal this year was to lead student-centred, innovative and collaborative pedagogical practices. Things I had in mind at the start of the year were to reject the deficit thinking. Caring for the learner – building a relationship with our students. Having high expectations which must be voiced and demonstrated through the dispositions of Manawa Mission. Manage a classroom for learning not behavior and creating a culture for learning. I wanted to deepen my own content knowledge.

Did I do this in 2017? To a degree. It was my mahi. I developed a new strategy or rediscovered one. Student voice is always a powerful tool – it allows the teachers to check in with what is happening in the class with 3 simple questions: What are you learning? How can you show me your successful at learning? What happens next?

I tried to keep things fresh. As students have access to any information possible, there certainly is no need to “spoon-feed” the knowledge or teach “one-size fits all” content. I recognized through my learning plans as students have different personalities, goals, and needs, offering personalized instructions is not just possible but also desirable. When students are allowed to make their own choices, they own their learning, increase intrinsic motivation, and put in more effort — an ideal recipe for better learning outcomes.

I deepened my knowledge by reading some wonderful pieces of literature and attending some great courses. Perhaps I need to work on the fact the students must be aware the environment is student centred not teacher centred. My students were often passive.

My Next Steps

  1. Keep getting teachers to share their learning.
  2. Continue to have disruptive conversations.
  3. Work on creating a collaborative teaching environment.

Personalising Learning

10 Jun

Personalizing learning means reversing our thinking so that is built around our students. Recognizing that all our girls are a gift from God. This means that we need to take much more account of who learners are, where they are, and to what and to whom they are connected in order to build the experiences and networks that strengthen every learner’s capacity. We need to consider how to deploy resources for teaching (teachers, spaces, time) more flexibly to meet learners’ needs, as well as how to support learners’ access to new resources beyond those that are traditionally part of the schooling system. We are now using a data more and this has been an observable cultural change. Our staff learning plans are comprehensive but it needs to go further. There needs to be collaboration amongst staff and they need to be living documents. I would challenge our staff to break the model of “one size fits all.” The idea that we see students in a holistic way-he tangata, he tangata, he tangata – acknowledging our past, present and future.

The evolution of learning

6 Apr

This week our school implemented a new reporting and parent teacher interview system. It is a huge change that I will keep you informed on. Basically it is a move from the 5 minute speed dating system to 1 interview over twenty minutes where one teacher covers everything.

It got me thinking the world’s education systems are in the midst of change unlike any other time over the past century. We are in the greatest change since de la Salle introduced classroom teaching in France. It’s a historical moment where governments, teachers, parents and school communities are exploring visions of an education system that would embody increased flexibility (curricular and otherwise), innovation (technologies and pedagogy) and more individualized and self-directed approaches to student learning. Within this 21st-century parade of change, the notion of personalization in education is moving to the forefront.

Every day teachers enter classrooms to engage diverse minds across multiple activities and to support each student as he or she inquiries into problems. These same teachers, who hold a keen awareness of each of their student’s particular learning styles and passions, are also simultaneously contending with issues of poverty, lack of parental involvement (or conversely helicopter parents), large classes, familial and community influences, student effort and numerous digital and popular culture distractions that add to complexity of their professional practice.

We now have many deep cultural undertows that are worth supporting; primarily differentiation that recognizes the diversity and complexity in the classroom, and the taking up of emerging technologies to engage learning.

We are entering a digital age where students access the information they want—how they want it, when they want it and where they want it. This will have a profound effect on critical thinking as people are increasingly fed only the exact type of information and sources (individual blogs, new media and ethnically oriented online spaces) to which they digitally subscribe. The time where mobile devices were banned in classes is a distant memory.

Perhaps an immediate action that teachers can take is to embrace the wiki way of influencing meaning by visiting Wikipedia.org and contributing to or (re)shaping the definition of personalized learning. As educators and others search out the meaning of this term, you will then have put your personal stamp on the concept as you see it lived out in your own unique educational contexts. Ultimately, we need to individually and collectively define this term, and in doing so be empowered to share a vision of what knowledge and pedagogical approaches are of most worth in the 21st century.


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