Welcome to my blog! I'm Karen Belt, a teacher and leader of digital learning, working at Lynmore Primary School in Rotorua, New Zealand. I'm teaching in a Year 2 class using iPads to engage and motivate learners and improve student achievement. This blog documents my teaching journey and my learning processes with iPads in the classroom. I've proud of having been a member of the inaugural Manaiakalani Digital Teaching Academy(MDTA) program and last year a Spark Manaiakalani Innovative Teacher (MIT) and Manaiakalani Google Class OnAir teacher.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Oral Language .... to the fore!

Earlier this week I participated in a school wide Professional Development session led by Dr Jannie van Hees, around creating a Conversational Classroom - something Michelle and I are focused on doing with our 1:1 iPad trial.

Today we had two instances where this conversation was extremely rich, and to me it showed how far the students have already come!  Firstly, we have having some major school building developments occurring around the school and as part of these developments two of our classrooms are being lifted, and moved to another section of the school.  This process enthralled the students when we took them out to see a classroom up on hydraulics, waiting to be moved via truck later tonight.  Using a photographic lead in to encourage students to think about what was happening, we used the pair/share technique to have all students actively thinking and sharing their ideas before taking the students (with their iPads of course, so they could take their own photographs!) out to view the building site!

On returning to our classroom, the following class story was constructed:
The hydraulics pushed the classroom up!  Now the trailer can fit underneath.

Later in the day, during a maths session learning the number "after", students were extremely keen to use video (rather than a photo) to document their learning, particularly when they were encouraged to use their oral language skills to explain what they were doing.  This sample from Phoenix, is one of her first attempts at using video to document her learning, and shows how comfortable the students are becoming with Oral Language and their iPads.

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