Wednesday, 16 October 2019

Digital Citizenship Week

This week is digital citizenship week. With this, I have been directed towards several links which are getting people thinking about being cybersmart online.

1. Commonsense Media: Digital Citizenship Week

Is this resource focused on the positive behaviour? Mostly!

Is the link between interpersonal skills and critical thinking touched on? YES!! In fact, 'critical' is the third word in the article!

2. Commonsense Media: Kahoot

This could be a fantastic fun activity to reinforce the cybersmart learning we are doing in class however these public kahoots are more directed at teenagers.

3. NZ Cybersmart Week

This resource reinforces reasons why we are teaching children to be cybersmart from a young age. It is applicable and necessary in the wider world so it is really important the children understand it's importance.

Thursday, 26 September 2019

2. DESCRIBE: Evidence about the effects of my changed practice and intervention on desired learner outcomes.

Link to overview blogpost​

The Tool: Cybersmart Clips

Describe the evidence you have so far about the effects of your changed practices/intervention on desired learner outcomes and how you summarised and recorded these.

What methods have you used to collect information?​

- Start of Year/ End of Year Cybersmart Assessment

(as seen in previous blog post)

- Student collaborative planning/brainstorming docs

(See example on previous blog post)

- Student movie clips

- Student voice

In the last blog post, you will see some word walls which show responses from two other questions asked.

- Regular collection of blog comments/ replies to blog comments

I am currently analysing blog comments by comparing blog comments at the beginning of the year to blog comments now. This qualitative data is difficult to analyse and I am having to think of the best way to measure progress. I am wanting to measure progress in interpersonal skills and critical thinking in blog posts. On an initial look, it is clear that many children are writing more detailed and thoughtful blog comments compared to at the beginning of the year.

How have you been systematic in that collection?​

Each week, I have been collecting and updating data in a spreadsheet which is organised in the above categories. I am working on collating this data into graphs and noticing trends and patterns mainly around interpersonal skills and critical thinking.

What does the data/information tell you?​

Through the process of making movies in learning cybersmart skills and collection of data, I have realised that the creation of the movies and collaborative script-making is just as important as the sharing of the movies to a wider audience. This is where this method of teaching children to be cybersmart is effective in integrating the teaching of the key competencies at the same time. In particular, children are developing their ability to think (about the cybersmart topic given to them), relate to others (through the creation of the script in preparation for movie-making), managing self (to work through the process of creating a movie, from storyboarding to sharing of the movie) and participating and contributing (in creating the script but also in being confident to present/act in the movie or to direct and be responsible for the filming). Overarching the development of these key competencies (NZ Curriculum) is the final key competency of understanding symbols, languages and texts. This overarches the others in this process as the children are learning skills in being able to make sense of the online world and respond responsibly and appropriately.

Data from student voice tells me really clearly that the children are really enjoying using movie-making as the medium to learn how to be cybersmart. I showed this in an answer garden. A higher frequency of the same response is represented by a larger word.


I have also been collecting comments that children in my class are writing on other children's blogs. A continuing step in my inquiry is to collate these in a way that will show any development in the quality of the blog comments over time.

I also need to begin collating and making sense of the data which shows development of interpersonal skills and critical thinking through the children's collaborative scripts and movie clips.

What are you going to do with the data/information in terms of ‘tweaking’ your intervention?​

Currently, I am really satisfied with how the intervention/ tool is working. On the whole, the children are engaged, they are learning valuable skills in film making, being given opportunities to develop their critical thinking and interpersonal skills, and being able to share their learning with the wider world through the school news and their public blogs! How cool is that!?

As with anything in teaching though, there is always 'tweaking' that can be done to make it better! At the moment, my focus needs to be on continuing doing what we are doing and now beginning to make sense of what the data shows.

So...what am I going to do with the data to make sense of it?

- I have already analysed the start-of-year cybersmart assessment data (see blog post). This will be followed up later in the year (early in term 4) by children completing the same cybersmart assessment and seeing how the data changed over time.

- Student collaborative brainstorms/planning docs: I need to analyse these for evidence of interpersonal skills and critical thinking. As a result of a range of research (seen in previous blog posts) I plan to make a tally of the following when reading through the docs and watching the cybersmart clips:

  • Collaborative plannning (all team members given a role and contributing to ideas; efficient planning in group)
  • Communication between group members to produce a coherent and connected script (i.e. not different ideas per child but rather, a script that flows from one child to the next)
  • Creativity (have they thought outside the box or just used class brainstorm ideas and copied it?)
  • Critical thinking (thought deeply about how to portray the message in an effective way)
  • Positive role play
  • Perspective taking (each 'character' shares their own ideas)
  • Empathy/interpersonal skills (evident through role play - rather than just saying lines without connection to others in the group; thinking about how others feel and how actions can affect others)
  • Listening to each others ideas
  • Questions asked
  • Challenging each others ideas
  • Reflecting/ making changes
  • Summarising the main ideas

Thursday, 19 September 2019

Final week of term 3 - What's the plan going forward?

As we go into our final week of term 3, I wanted to reassess where I am at in my inquiry. 

What have I achieved so far?

  • A lot of research into what it looks like to be cybersmart.
  • Narrowing all of the research down into a focus on the connection between interpersonal skills and critical thinking.
  • Planing for a tool which can be implemented into the classroom.
  • Creating a website on which the cybersmart clips created by the children can be shared.
  • Altering my pedagogy when it comes to teaching year 5 children to be cybersmart.
  • Supporting children in the filming, editing and sharing of their cybersmart clips.
  • Collecting and documenting the data in a spreadsheet. 

What do I want to achieve in this final week of term 3?

  • Sharing of "The words we use" Cybersmart Clips (that have been filmed)
  • Time for children to comment on blog posts (to add to the data collection)
  • Work with those children who have not yet completed any cybersmart clips.

What is there still to do in term 4? What are my ongoing challenges?

This term, my focus has very much been on altering my pedagogy and implementing the cybersmart movie clips tasks. In general, the children are loving learning how to be cybersmart in this way! This is a real positive. I have had to change the groups slightly to ensure when learning groups are out, others are not disadvantaged in their learning. The children have dealt with this really well.

A challenge I have is that there are a group of children who are having difficulty with the collaborative planning stage of the process, which is causing a challenge with getting their movies filmed, let alone edited. I really need to work with these children to ensure they have success in their learning and to ensure they are learning the important skills when it comes to being cybersmart and making thoughtful decisions online. These children need to become my priority learners for next term.

I will begin term 4 by introducing a new cybersmart topic: Reflecting on our own or others work and giving and receiving feedback.

Thursday, 29 August 2019

1. SHARE: Evidence about what I have done differently

Link to overview blogpost

Share data that you have collected/ recorded about the implementation of your changed practices or intervention. What evidence do you have about what you did differently?

As a result of a lot of research, some data collection demonstrating the children's knowledge at the beginning of the year, and several years of observing and pondering, I have implemented a new way of teaching how to be cybersmart into my classroom. Basically, this change in practice/student learning includes a shared class brainstorm of a topic and then time for the children to collaboratively plan a 30sec-1min movie before filming and editing their movie to share their learning.

Data collection began in term 1 where I had the children in my class complete a cybersmart assessment to decipher their current knowledge and skills. This was followed by a lot of research. The combination of these two things clearly showed a need for the children to be taught interpersonal skills and critical thinking in a digital/ online environment. It also showed a clear connection between these two skills.

Since implementation of the intervention/tool/ change in practice began, I have been collecting a range of data which includes blog comments, collaborative planning, movie clips, student voice, and examples of when situations may not have gone as smoothly as expected online. These assessments have been ongoing throughout the year. Information collected in google forms (blog comments in particular) as well as movies (shared in blog posts) are time-dated.

Blog comments

These are documented in a spreadsheet so I can track blog posts of individual students.

Collaborative planning

Whole class plans:

Here is an example of a collaborative planning script which suggests deep connections being made by those in the group as well as successful collaboration:

     The Words we Use…

                S.F.A: Welcome to S.F.A news.
A: Broadcasting to you live!
S: In this production we are telling you about…
S.F.A: The words we us
F: Meaning everyday life online.
S.F.A: Here's a short clip of some of the words we use.
F: How you say it is how you mean it.When do you use it?In your everyday life.
S: Why is it important?Well because it creates your reputation and your furture.Heres the words you should use. *F's comment does not sound right*Movie script: Then S and A come in and say* *Then F is about to press publish*

S and A: Whoa whoa whoa whoa stop right there. Is that what you really meant F? 

F: Yeah
S and A: Try read it doesn’t sound as thoughtful as it could be...
*F reads comment* 
A: you realise you didn’t finish your last slide?
F: I didn’t mean it sound that way….
Now that I think about it.Could you guys help me?
*S and A help F* 
F: Thank you for helping me.

   *S and A correct her*

S & A: You're welcome F.
S.F.A: Did you enjoy this episode of S.F.A news?
S.F.A:Well we hope you did

S.F.A: Sayonara and goodbye.

Movie clips

Student voice - What do you like about cybersmart learning?

Student voice - What would you like to do differently?

I have had to make changes and tweaks throughout the year. The current intervention/teaching practice is very different to what I first envisaged. I set out at the start of the year to create a set of child-friendly posters to instruct for a range of situations which may be faced online however, moved away from this when data, research and various conversations did not see this as the biggest need. You may notice that the first movies which were created (Passwords) were difficult to hear. These first movies were created much more independently by the children, without editing, however there were a lot of frustrations. In particular, the sound caused a lot of frustration for the children as they were not using microphones. We have now adapted this so the children use a microphone attached to the camera. We also use the camera on a tripod rather than the iPads now as this creates a more stable picture. Now the children are able to share their knowledge confidently and clearly through their cybersmart clips. I have also been providing them with a lot more support in the filming. I tell the children that I am their cameraman but they are the director so they are in charge. They enjoy the fact they can boss me around!

Thursday, 22 August 2019

Key reading practices at year 5 and 6 (according to the research and according to team 4)

In our CoL meeting earlier in the term, Russell asked us to consider what we believed were key reading practices which are needed at the various year levels which we all teach. We are thinking about how we can create a consistent language across reading in our different schools across the classes in our school and also across the schools in our CoL.

The Ministry of Education resource, Effective Literacy Practice for years 5-8, states that the strategies which are necessary include:

- Attending and searching
- Predicting
- Cross-checking
- Confirming/ self-correcting
- Re-predicting

The Ministry of Education resource, Effective Literacy Practice for years 1-4, states that the strategies which are necessary include the above, as well as:

- Connecting prior knowledge to the text
- Forming/testing hypotheses
- Asking questions
- Visualising
- Inferring
- Identifying purpose/ POV
- Identifying/summarising main ideas
- Analysing and synthesising
- Evaluating

I asked the team 4 teachers what they felt were essential strategies required at our year levels for reading and we decided on the following two strategies:

- Retelling a story/text in their own words.
- Development of vocabulary.

Interestingly, retelling (summarising) is a practice for years 1-4 however, we still see it as one of the essentials needed at year 5-6. Development of vocabulary doesn't actually appear as a strategy as such, however many of the other strategies require a developed vocabulary knowledge to be able to be used. 

I decided to take this away to find suggestions for how this could be taught consistently across classes. 

I looked through some of the Sheena Cameron books to see what she thought about this. Her reading activity handbook has a whole chapter dedicated to focusing on words. In her Teaching Reading Comprehension Strategies (a practical classroom guide) book (2009), Sheena Cameron discusses the following strategies for reading:

- Activating prior knowledge
- Self-monitoring
- Predicting
- Questioning
- Making connections
- Visualising
- Inferring
- Summarising
- Synthesising
- Skimming
- Scanning

As well as this, she also has a whole section of the text dedicated to building vocabulary knowledge, with suggestions for how this can be done.

Monday, 12 August 2019

KPMG Term 3

Today we had the opportunity to pitch our tool to our MIT colleagues. This was a great way of sharing our work so far this year. I felt confident with presenting my work and I had some really useful feedback and suggestions.

- We discussed the use of the word 'cybersmart.' We talked about how this word is a noun, not a verb. Therefore, we wouldn't talk about 'doing cybersmart' but instead 'learning about being cybersmart.'

- Dorothy suggested that I look at the latest Summer Learning Journey report which touches on the importance of interpersonal skills.

- It was also suggested that I use the word 'kind' rather than 'nice' when describing how we communicate online. Using explicit language which makes sense to the children is essential when teaching how to be cybersmart.

Thursday, 8 August 2019

Keeping a record of each assessment type used to monitor the effect of the changed practice/ intervention on learner outcome

Below is a template of the spreadsheet I will use to record the information I find to monitor the effects of the changed practice/ intervention on learner outcome. This spreadsheet will incorporate links to teacher practice, evidence of learning and student voice.