Nerang Cluster Leading From the Middle by Nerang State School


Published on

Presentaton by Make It Count Nerang Cluster - Nerang State School - about Leading from the Middle.

Published in: Education, Technology
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Nerang Cluster Leading From the Middle by Nerang State School

  1. 1. Leading From The Middle Nerang State School 2012
  2. 2. BACKGROUND During 2011 teachers from Nerang State School were involved in the Leading from the Middle Project aimed at improving outcomes in Maths for indigenous students. Four teachers were involved, two from the junior school (Year 2 and 3) and two from the senior school (Year 6 and 7). Each team completed three successful Action Learning Cycles during 2011, the results of which were presented at the Make It Count Conference in early 2012.
  3. 3. The project continued during 2012, this time involving all teachers. The aim now was expanded to include improving the outcomes in Maths for indigenous and non-indigenous students school wide through sound and sustainable professional development. The Action Learning model was maintained with problem based teaching chosen as the focus area. Back To Front Math (B2FM), a problem-based teaching resource developed by Tierney Kennedy, was selected as a useful tool to achieve the aims for 2012. A flow chart of the planned actions for 2012 follows. The need for such an approach is outlined in the extract ‘What Does That Mean For Me’ taken from B2FM website.
  4. 4. PROCESS After successful discussions with Tierney Kennedy in January 2012 it was decided to organise in-service sessions led by a B2FM representative to enable teachers to evaluate the B2FM resource. An outline of what problem-based teaching looks like in the B2FM format is shown in the extract taken from the web site. Each teacher was given the opportunity to observe a lesson which highlighted the main features of the B2FM approach. These modelled lessons covered lower, middle and upper levels and were followed by a meeting briefly outlining the features of the B2FM resource and the associated web site.
  5. 5. Following a trial period using the site, teachers decided this was a worthwhile resource. Purchase of a school license was arranged. To ensure teachers had a sound working understanding of the site, a further in-service session was organised. During this session teachers were walked through how B2FM works in practice. An outline of how B2FM works is shown in the extract taken from the web site. Teachers were shown how to access the lesson bank section of the site and the B2FM lessons which are aligned with the C2C units.
  6. 6. To establish a base line, all indigenous students completed a moderation task for their year level. This provided an overview of where the students were at across the proficiency areas of: - Problem Solving / Thinking and Reasoning Reasoning / Communicating Understanding / Reflecting The results of the moderation task for each indigenous student follow.
  7. 7. Planning Action Learning Cycles 1 and 2 To prepare Cycle 1, teachers were provided with a planning session to decide : - which unit/s from C2C would be assessed. (eg 1 unit from a 5 week block) - which lessons from B2FM would be integrated into the chosen C2C unit/s. - which students would be involved. (Indigenous students or all students) Teachers built Cycle 2 into their C2C units.
  8. 8. To assist teachers in the effective delivery of the B2FM lessons a copy of the ‘Tips For Teachers’ booklet was provided with particular attention drawn to the questioning techniques and the common misconceptions student are likely to make. Teachers were also provided with a booklet explaining what each proficiency area means and a guide outlining how to make judgements about the level each student has achieved in these areas.
  9. 9. Data Collection At the completion of Cycle 1, work samples, data, anecdotes and photos were collected from classes and the results for indigenous students and some non indigenous students recorded. At the completion of Cycle 2, updated results for the same students were recorded. A summary of these results follows.
  10. 10. Final Observation  While results for indigenous students were mixed, it must be remembered that improvement for all students may not be realised overnight. For problem-based maths to be successful, it must be implemented consistently over time.  The true measurement of the success of this approach to teaching will be reflected in future NAPLAN results.  As Tierney notes “The Australian Curriculum places a very heavy focus on deep-level understanding and mathematical reasoning,” and “ The new requirements are best met through student inquiry and active participation in problem-based teaching environment.” 
  11. 11.     Recommendations To ensure the benefits of problem based Maths teaching continue to be realised and students are assessed in all the proficiency areas described in the Australian Curriculum, the following suggestions are made : Teachers are encouraged to ensure they establish a classroom environment that encourages and rewards risk taking. Following the suggestions outlined in the Tips For Teachers handout is also encouraged. A major focus should be placed on using good oral questioning techniques as these are the key to leading students to self discovery.
  12. 12.           ORAL QUESTIONING avoiding saying no. asking non standard questions eg. working backwards, filling a gap, multiple steps. Strategy questions. Rephrasing questions. Clarifying questions. Evaluative questions Leading questions. Communicative questions. Generalising and Connecting questions.
  13. 13. As identifying common misconceptions plays an important role in successfully leading students to work out a new concept, it is recommended teachers revisit the “Did You Know’ sections from the First Steps program and combine these with the suggestions made in Tips For Teachers to help identify some common misunderstandings students are likely to have.  As access to the B2FM site will conclude at the end of this year, teachers are encouraged to develop their own problems and use the How To Make Judgements handout to assign grades in the proficiency areas of Problem Solving, Reasoning and Understanding.  The following flow chart is an example of how one teacher successfully organised problem based lessons in their classroom. 