Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Effective Pedagogy in Mathematics/Pangarau

This term I have been looking at maths strategies that may be more effective in my teaching practise with my priority learners. This involves reading literature, asking questions about how well current strategies are working, searching my own and colleagues past practise for more effective strategies. Fiona Grant shared this wonderful resource which helped me get started.

It was an interesting read and  I think we can apply some of the key points to other curriculum areas like reading and writing. I would like to share some key learning points that I got from this article:

Key Learning Points:

  • Anthony and Walshaw clarify that we need to build on students existing proficiencies rather than fill gaps in students knowledge and remediate weaknesses. When planning teachers need to focus on students current mathematical competencies and interests as these constitute resources on which the teacher can build. I think this is a really important point. Sometimes we pay more attention to filling in the gaps that we neglect to look at what the child can do. I am sometimes guilty of this and will now keep in mind to plan and create activities that interests the child and at the same time build his self esteem, confidence and love for maths.

  • Ongoing assessment is an integral part of instruction. Teachers need to continually adjust instruction as informed by ongoing assessments. At the Junior level I use JAM testing data, group and class observations,my Overall Teacher Judgement (OTJ), Student Reflections, Student Profile Sheets to inform my planning and practise. Knowing your learner and their personality plays an important role in your OTJ's.   I often use this evidence to regroup and sometimes cross group my learners. This information also assists me and my colleagues in planning our Explain Everything activities .
  • They also state that when designing and selecting tasks the teacher has to take into account both the students current competencies and  interests and their long term learning goals.- In my classroom learning goals are visible and children are aware of  where they are in their learning  journey and where they need to get to by the end of the year according to the National Standards. This is an important  visible tool for teachers, children and their parents. I need to start referring to them more often as children make small shifts which are just as important. 
  • The image of effective mathematical pedagogy that emerges from Anthony and Walshaw's synthesis is of teaching as a coherent system. This pedagogical system encompasses: a non - threatening classroom atmosphere, instructional tasks, tools and representations, classroom discourse.  I feel that creating a happy and safe environment in the Junior classes are so important. Developing those rules and routines especially during the first term is essential. Teaching children about caring for their device (iPad) being CyberSmart , teaching them how to use the tools within Explain Everything are all essential skills that needs to be taught well for children to be able to work independently and successfully during the course of the year. Sharing children's work on Apple T.V.  Class Blog and Individual blog boosts self esteem and confidence. 
  • The available evidence also indicates that a strong network of colleagues constitutes means of support  for teachers. There is every reason to expect improvement in teaches instructional practises and student learning where teachers participate in learning communities whose activities focus on mathematical ideas and how to relate them to student reasoning.  I would like to work on this and develop it further, having those conversations within and across year levels. When we shared our inquiry within our teams a common thing that came up which was our children were  struggling with knowledge of number even at at higher year levels. This was quite an interesting topic for discussion which  led me to think about what I need to do at the Junior Level as we share a similar problem.

1 comment:

  1. This is a helpful reflection on important points from the BES Khismira. I appreciate the way you have selected pertinent points and added comments about your own practice. Are you sharing this document with your team?