The collaborative process for development and creation of 30 second to 1 minute movie clips.
The causal chain:
1. Pre-implementation Data for Intervention Group:
2. Post-implementation Data for Intervention Group:
3. Post-implementation Data for Comparison Group:
4. Quotes from cybersmart clips showing interpersonal skills and/or critical thinking:
"Your password must be atleast 8 characters long. Why is that you may be wondering? Because it will be trickier and longer so it will be harder to guess."
"Being cybersmart looks like helping the person that's beside you but you can help the people from a different country and if people want help you can help them."
"...but that doesn't mean that you can't disagree."
"...looking out for people and helping them if they are stuck on something on the internet."
THE WORDS WE USE:
"Is that what you really meant?!"
"...I didn't mean it to sound that way. Now that I think about it, can you guys help me?"
"When you write something like a blog comment, you want it to make sense and come across to the reader as you mean it to."
"Think about what you have written and how it will make the other person feel."
"Write appropriate and sensible words."
GIVING AND RECEIVING FEEDBACK:
5. Other data:
This graph shows the level of interpersonal skills and critical thinking found in the collaborative plans, cybersmart clips and blog comments. This data was collected from student work throughout the year.
A graph of individual student levels of critical thinking across collaborative plans, cybersmart clips and blog comments.
This graph shows the relationship between reading level and Interpersonal skills/ Critical thinking. There is a positive correlation between reading level and level of interpersonal skills/ critical thinking.
This graph shows the relationship between writing level and Interpersonal skills/ Critical thinking. There is a positive correlation between writing level and level of interpersonal skills/ critical thinking.
Summary of the evidence about key changes in teaching and other factors that influence student learning.
This year, I entirely changed the way I approached and thought about cybersmart learning in the classroom. Prior to this year, my cybersmart teaching approach and beliefs were very superficial, with a focus on 'right and wrong' rather than teaching skills which would allow the children to make smart decisions online. Learning activities tended to stem from the Manaiakalani Cybersmart Curriculum which I feel were highly beneficial for the children to learn certain skills.
Examples of what my previous cybersmart teaching looked like can be seen on the 2018 Team 4 Site. Teaching notes for my class from the year can be accessed at the bottom of the page.
Here is a comparison of the cybersmart topics covered between 2018 and 2019:
I feel that going forward, a mix of what I was previously doing (before 2019) and what I am now doing would provide the best benefit for the children. Also, a stronger focus on critical thinking and interpersonal skills across the curriculum would also be extremely beneficial.
Summary of evidence about key shifts in the problem of student learning.
When you look at the quotes above which were made by year 5 children in the cybersmart clips, there is definitely evidence of interpersonal skills and critical thinking being present. However, when the data was analysed in terms of blog comments, there did not appear to be a strong improvement in level of critical thinking. In fact, most of the data showed that children were unable to show the same level of critical thinking that they demonstrated in their collaborative planning and cybersmart clips in their blog comments. Graphs comparing reading and writing level and level of interpersonal skills and critical thinking showed a trend that those who were stronger readers or writers also tended to be stronger at using interpersonal skills and critical thinking. This is where my reflection that a focus on interpersonal skills and critical thinking across the curriculum was necessary.
In the graph called Collaborative plan, Movie and blog comments, the pattern of the level of interpersonal skills/ critical thinking in blog comments (yellow) is totally opposite to the pattern shown of the level of interpersonal skills/ critical thinking in the collaborative plan (blue). A more positive trend was evident for the collaborative plans than for the blog comments. This shows that although the collaborative plan was a good support for students showing critical thinking and interpersonal skills, the skills learned did not appear to translate to a more applied setting (that is, blog commenting).
What does this mean for student learning?
- Focus on interpersonal skills/ critical thinking across the curriculum (a common language?)
- Focus more on developing blog comments which demonstrate stronger interpersonal skills and levels of critical thinking - give the children more practice at this.
Overall evaluation of the intervention in terms of the causal chain I had theorised:
- To what extent was the intervention successful in changing factors such as teaching?
- To what extent were those changes in teaching effective in changing patterns of student learning?
The blue elements of this causal chain diagram, suggesting a connection between interpersonal skills and critical thinking, were consistently reinforced throughout the year.
The pink elements of the causal chain: I taught deeper interpersonal skills and critical thinking whilst connecting with others online.
The red elements of the causal chain: I did not get to this separate part of the causal chain. This could be a focus going into next year.
My teaching of cybersmart skills changed considerably this year. My focus was on much deeper skills (based around the key competencies) which could be used both in and out of the digital world. Going into the future, I feel that I need to continue with this focus however with continuing some of the more superficial skills required when working in a digital environment.
I feel that the intervention was successful in terms of changing student engagement in learning interpersonal skills and critical thinking in a digital context. Children made attempts to use the new skills learned when communicating with others online. For example, when commenting on someone's blog, some children made a conscious effort to make a connection back to the blog post and add supporting detail. However, more regular blog commenting will be necessary to see any progress.
Reflection on my own professional learning through this inquiry cycle.
Throughout this inquiry, I have made a connection between the research and literature, my teaching and the children's learning. I believe that the reason the data (above) did not show an obvious shift in use of interpersonal skills and critical thinking included the factor of time. I did not get the intervention into full swing until about term 2. With this, a large focus was on learning the routine of planning and then creating (and completing) our movies. A regular focus on blog commenting was still missing. From next year, I aim to begin a more regular programme from the beginning of the year.