Welcome to my blog! I'm Karen Belt, a fourth year teacher working at Lynmore Primary School in Rotorua, New Zealand. I'm teaching in a Year 3 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.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Reflecting on my First Term of Inquiry

As we wrap up Term 1 with a Teacher Only Day, I've been reflecting on the progress I have made with my Inquiry.  I've been asked to make a small presentation to the whole staff which I will present this morning.





I'm really happy with the observable progress from my learners, and in particular their ability to make a choice and use a "because" to explain why they made that choice.  I will be continuing to use my Wanted Template in Term 2 and plan to add it as an additional slide to many of the existing Explain Everything reading templates.  Most learners are able to complete the activity independently now and locate words in their book to support their drawing.

Some of the things that have worked particularly well this term, and came about as a result of my inquiry and university paper are:
  • using icons to scaffold learners into knowing what to do on Explain Everything projects
  • using oral language to capture learners ideas and thinking
  • using the same activity template multiple times, and gradually decreasing the scaffolding that is provided

The following small video was created to show some examples of the oral language and the progress made over the four weeks we've used the templates to date.


I have some "next steps" which I have outlined in my presentation.  I'm looking forward to creating a new template to use in Term 2, and am particularly keen to incorporate some of the relational and extended abstract concepts from SOLO taxonomy into the template.

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