Thursday, 15 February 2018

Lauching a problem

Last week I decided to use Bobby Hunt's method of launching a problem to a group of children. I wanted to find out what the children already know and how well they work with each other in terms of talking about the ways in which they solved the problem. This was my very first attempt at teaching a maths lesson this way.

 What I noticed was:
1. Some engagement when I read out them the problem to the group. They were enthusiastic and shared some knowledge of what they new about caves and bears.
2. Some children could stay on task much longer than others.
3. One boy almost completed task and attempted to share his workings but the others were so restless and distracted that the others missed out on learning the strategy he used to solve the problem. He did the learning, the others missed out.

Problems I encountered:
1. Some children in the group found it difficult to focus and concentrate on the set task.
2. They ended up playing with the lego's and started play fighting with the dinosaurs, going completely off task.
3. They could not work in pairs.
4. The whiteboards and markers was not a good idea. The resource was not appropriate for the age level of the children.(should have used marker and paper)
5. We spent a long time on the task which led to self management and behaviourial problems.

This is a new approach to teaching maths and I am still learning about:
How it all works and what it needs to look like in a Year One class.
I am continuing to do readings on DIMC and have those conversations with my colleagues about what I doing with my learners.
Continuing to reflect on my practise and inquire about what I need to do next to make this work.

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Focus Inquiry for 2018

I have a class of delightful Year One children. Many of them started school last year and I have a few new entrant children. I consider myself lucky as I have worked with most of the children last year in my CoL role. I see this as a huge advantage for both the students and myself. In saying that I still encountered a few surprises for example, I have 12 boys and only 4 girls. There are about 6-8 children that tend to dominate our class discussions while others are still developing their confidence to participate in discussions.

Our school wide focus is Acquisition of language.

My inquiry will focus on the CoL Achievement Challenge:
#6. Lift achievement in maths for all students Year 1-13.

I will be focussing on language, mathematical terms and concepts. Children will be having conversations, discussions and will be able to explain their thinking to each other.

I have six children in my target group and four of them started school last year. Over the next week, I will be assessing the children's Maths knowledge and strategies.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

End of year reflections

JAM Testing Data- June and November for 2017 (Year 1).

From the data above we can see that some children have made huge progress compared to when they first started school.They have made progress not only academically but in terms of their confidence and conversations around number talk. They have grown in confidence and are taking more risks now. Students having a go at working out problems without the fear of getting it wrong. They talking about the strategies they used and are becoming confident in using the mathematical terms and language. High level of engagement in the classroom: Working within a group. Peer to peer teaching Completing follow up tasks on their iPad. Developing digital fluency and making connections with the digital language: Copy paste, duplicate, add a page, save your work, close the tabs. All these essential skills and language that will needed as they move up through the school. They are making connections to mathematical terms and language across the curriculum areas for example: In reading page 3 comes before page 4. In writing conversations would be around what happened first, then next and finally. The data shows that when they began school many of the learners where at a stage 0-1(Emergent) in some modules whereas now some children they are at a stage 2-3(At) and even a stage 4(above). The children have come a long way this this learning journey and I am so very proud of each one of them

Monday, 23 October 2017

Inquiry Focus Term 4

We are now moving toward the end of the year and many children in my class have made significant progress. There are a few children who are still struggling especially with the holiday break. The first week of school was basically trying to get back into routines and catching up where we left off at the end of Term 3.

My inquiry focus for this term is continuing to work on, mathematical terms, languages and concept especially when solving word problems. Yes, many children can solve number sentences but once given in a word problem they have difficulty comprehending, understanding the question and therefore get the answer incorrect. I find that sometimes children revert to guessing or simply shrug their shoulders. The group that I’ll be working with, will be looking at word problems, understanding and talking about what strategy they have to use to solve the problem but most importantly highlighting key words in the problem that tells us what we need to do. Once again we will be focusing on unpacking and analysing mathematical terms and language.

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Teaching and learning

Some of the learners in my group struggle with understanding mathematical language and terms.
I discussed this problem with a colleague(Rachel) that I am presently job sharing with. She talked about a warm up activity that she played with her older children and explained how we could use it in a Year 1 class.

We practised counting backwards with support of materials.

Hypothesis and trends

Children are quite confident in counting forwards. With my teaching experience over the years I have always found that they always struggle when it comes to counting backwards, saying the number that comes before. I think that they may not understand the term before, backward, or that it means one less. Not only have I heard this in the junior school but across most year levels.