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.

Friday, 3 July 2015

A continued inspiration

As part of my continued involvement with Auckland University's Top of the Class blog, the following post is my latest contribution:

I have seventeen wonderful reasons that constantly inspire, challenge, motivate and yes at times frustrate me - those seventeen reasons are the seventeen wonderful learners in my classroom!  I was reminded of this recently when an injury kept me away from work for a week.  The welcome I received when I returned blew me away.

Every learner in my classroom is an individual and I want to ensure that they have the best possible start to their school journey.  Being a new entrants teacher, for me, is a special privilege.  As with any teacher, I get to make a year-long impact on a young persons life, and encourage and inspire them to be the best that they can be.

As the second term at school for most of my class draws to a close, and I assess their progress and what we've achieved to date, I'm proud of all my learners.  Many have entered the primary school system with very limited English, coming from an ESL (English as a Second Language) background yet they have continually tried their best, climbed the reading ladder and made significant progress with maths and writing.

Having 1:1 iPads definitely assists with engagement and allows for purposeful small group and individual activities.  It also gives me a visibility of what the learner has been doing during this individual time.   This is most noticeable during reading time where each learner has an activity using Explain Everything to support the guided reading completed with me.  The projects increase in complexity and number of slides as the learners move up the reading levels.

This short clip features some of the many projects we work on during reading to follow up our guided reading lessons.

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