Literacy Tools And Strategies Final

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Please cite as: Owen, H., & Schwenger, B. Using literacy tools and strategies as a foundation to enhance students' learning and study success.
Paper presented at The New Zealand Association of Bridging Educatiors: 2008 Conference.

Students’ learning and study success are at the heart of education provision. A strong concern in this context is how to enable staff to assist students more effectively in their learning journey and in their participation in the community, especially those learners who are facing difficulties in engaging with the literacy and numeracy demands of their programmes. The potential gap of course demands and student skills is at the centre of a programme initiative at Unitec New Zealand, which is at the same time concerned with curriculum redevelopment and wider institutional initiatives.

It has been identified that an integrated approach to combine content learning with literacy and numeracy skills enhances students’ learning and study success in terms of retention, completion and stair-casing into higher levels of learning. Capability building that engages staff and helps them to review their methodology is an essential ingredient for supporting tutors in implementing best practice into their every-day teaching strategies.

Tools and strategies for integrating and embedding literacy and numeracy as part of the teaching and learning experience are available but not always accessible to teaching staff. The Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation (CTLI) at Unitec New Zealand is working closely with staff to introduce appropriate strategies and tools which can be easily integrated into courses whilst taking into account the needs identified by each school for their specific learners.

This paper is based on an initiative between Automotive Engineering staff and CTLI. At this stage, eleven literacy and numeracy related tools, sourced from a variety of places, have been chosen to demonstrate best practice in collaborative and interactive contextualised workshops. The presenter will showcase three tools and conference participants are then invited to critique and discuss in small groups if and how these tools could be adapted to fit within their context of teaching and learning. Thoughts and opinions will then be collected and discussed in the large group. The theory informing the literacy tools and strategies and the workshop delivery (including the iterative cycle of evaluation and improvement of the workshops in response to participant feedback) will be shared with conference participants to conclude the session.

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Literacy Tools And Strategies Final

  1. 1. Using literacy tools and strategies as a foundation to enhance students’ learning and study success Hazel Owen and Bettina Schwenger Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation Unitec NZ
  2. 2. Overview • Supporting student success • A continuum of learning • Tools and strategies - underpinning principles • Making decisions about tools and strategies: three examples • Interactive task for you • Conclusion / feedback
  3. 3. Supporting student success through ... Learning in real-world contexts Analysis and Transferable skills interpretation tasks Strategies CRSP Tools Small group work Investigational work Problem solving July 24, 2009 Hazel Owen & Bettina Schwenger 3
  4. 4. A continuum of learning... “Literacy is the ability to identify, understand, interpret, create, communicate and compute, using printed and written materials associated with varying contexts. Literacy involves a continuum of learning to enable an individual to achieve his or her goals, to develop his or her knowledge and potential, and to participate fully in the wider society.” (UNESCO, 2003, p. 5)
  5. 5. Tools and strategies - underpinning principles Deliberate and explicit Constructivist Purposeful Underpinning Principles Encourage Appropriate independence and relevant Using tools Practitioners’ and best capability practice
  6. 6. Literacy expert Discipline expert Students (Smith, 2008)
  7. 7. Dynamic variables affecting literacy Reading Teacher culture training Pedagogy Opportunities Education to read Literacy Access to books Wealth Freedom/ creativity Vocational Political skills policies Family Society & culture Literary canon Status of literature
  8. 8. The 'tradeshow' approach
  9. 9. Initiated & championed by Iain Seymour-Hart, Head of Tools Department Vocabulary profiler Issues with Tradeshow 1 – teaching Survey – reading 6 tools demonstrated, Lesson plan 10 minutes each Numeracy Multi-media Feedback from lecturers. What are the issues? VOCABULARY Approaches to vocabulary: Hot Potatoes Tradeshow 2 - E-flash cards Teaching vocabulary Numeracy On-line assessment Critical thinking An example of teaching: Tradeshow 3 - Vocab Demonstration lessons Reading Information literacy 15 minutes each (Smith, 2008) Numeracy July 24, 2009 Hazel Owen & Bettina Schwenger 10
  10. 10. July 24, 2009 Hazel Owen & Bettina Schwenger 11
  11. 11. July 24, 2009 Hazel Owen & Bettina Schwenger 12
  12. 12. Review quizzes
  13. 13. July 24, 2009 Hazel Owen & Bettina Schwenger 17
  14. 14. Hot Potatoes July 24, 2009 Hazel Owen & Bettina Schwenger 18
  15. 15. Hot Potatoes (cont.) July 24, 2009 Hazel Owen & Bettina Schwenger 19
  16. 16. Feedback Keesing-Styles, L. (2008). Automotive Tradeshows - Literacy and Numeracy in Vocational Education. The VET(31), 7.
  17. 17. Feedback (cont.) This is a superb model for staff professional development, no matter what the topic. Here, a whole department is engaged in reflecting on and improving their teaching and their students’ learning. Linda Keesing-Styles Keesing-Styles, L. (2008). Automotive Tradeshows - Literacy and Numeracy in Vocational Education. The VET(31), 7.
  18. 18. Management support Workshops Feedback Specific Building follow-up Capability sessions Tradeshows Professional Individual Toolbox help Location (on-line) & food (Smith, 2008) July 24, 2009 Hazel Owen & Bettina Schwenger 22
  19. 19. Interactive task for you 1. Turn to the person next to you 2. Using the handout, discuss the questions, and 3. Write your responses 4. There will be opportunity for people to describe their conclusions/ reaction 5. Please hand your completed handout to Mark and Bettina (the presenters)
  20. 20. Items to discuss 1. Describe a tool or strategy that you have used to teach literacy and numeracy. Explain what you feel made it effective. 2. Would some of the tools and strategies demonstrated today be useful in your context? Why / why not? 3. What are the questions we need to ask of the tools and strategies when deciding on what to use with learners?
  21. 21. Conclusion • More successful teaching and learning can take place • Ask ‘why’ – purpose and rationale • The tradeshow must go on Open Blackboard in a browser: http://bb.unitec.ac.nz Login in with the username: eittl2008 & password: eittl2008 Click on: UATI Automotive Toolkit
  22. 22. Thank you for listening Any questions and feedback please email: howen@unitec.ac.nz msmith@unitec.ac.nz bschwenger@unitec.ac.nz

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