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Nigel Coutts

Student voice, choice, agency, partnerships and participation - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    This week I joined with teachers, students, researchers and policy writers at Melbourne University to discuss student voice. This conference was hosted by Social Education Victoria and made possible by the conference partners, The University of Melbourne, Education and Training Victoria, Foundation for Young Australians and Connect. Over three days, participants engaged in rigorous dialogue about the significance of student voice and what is required to ensure its benefits are maximised for all.
Nigel Coutts

Supporting students in uncovering complexity - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    One of the thinking moves that we hope our students will confidently engage with is centred around the disposition of uncovering complexity. As we endeavour to shift our students towards a deeper understanding, the capacity to uncover complexity is a vital step. However, the ability to uncover complexity is itself complex and an excellent example of a skill that is best achieved when considered as a disposition. 
Nigel Coutts

Powerful Provocations for Learning: Sparking curiosity and increasing engagement - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    Powerful learning begins with the perfect provocation. Creating, refining and skilfully presenting the perfect provocation is an essential capability for teachers hoping to engage their class in rich dialogue. Claims that the percentage of students engaged by their learning declines from 75 percent in fifth grade to 32 percent by eleventh grade suggests a need for a more provocative environment. 
Nigel Coutts

Number Talks for Number Sense - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    "Number Talks" is an approach to the teaching and learning of Number Sense. Rather than relying on the rote-memorisation of isolated number facts achieved through drills of "table-facts", Number Talks aim to build confident, number fluency, where learners recognise patterns within and between numbers and understand the properties of numbers and operations. Number Talks are a "mind on" learning task that engages students in an active learning process as they search for patterns, decompose and recompose numbers and develop a flexible understanding.
Nigel Coutts

Taking time to design programmes for understanding - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    Identifying what our children need to learn is one of the most important processes within education. For the teacher this is the question they engage with as they design their teaching and learning units. By no means is this an easy task and the teacher must balance multiple factors to ensure that the programmes they design provide their students with the learning they require. Even the most effective sequence of lessons is of little value if what it sets out to teach has little importance in the lives our learners are likely to lead. 
Nigel Coutts

Teaching mathematicians shouldn't be like programming a computer - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    Traditional methods of teaching maths have more in common with how we programme a computer that what we might do if we wanted to engage our students in mathematical thinking. We shouldn't be overly surprised then when our students consider mathematics to be all about learning a set of rules that they need to apply in the right order so as to output the correct response. But is there a better way?
Nigel Coutts

Engaged, Disengaged and Overengaged - The consequences of engagement on learning - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    If you consider the day to day life of many of our students today, you see that they have very little time that is free from some form of programmed activity. Indeed, it is increasingly the norm for families to fill their children's time with the maximum number of learning, sporting and co-curricular activities. Schools naturally are happy to facilitate this and many see the breadth of programmes that they offer as a measure of success. But is there a consequence to all this activity and constant state of engagement?
Nigel Coutts

A curriculum built on the fundamental questions of our disciplines - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    As we make plans for how we will engage our students in their learning the decisions we make become fundamental to how they will grow to understand the purposes of learning. How our learners approach the curriculum and the disciplines is fundamental to the outcomes we may achieve for them. One path will set them up to view learning as the acquisition of information the other to see it as a process of asking and exploring questions of significance through the many unique lenses.
Nigel Coutts

Becoming Learners: Making time for OUR Learning - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    At the heart of all that we do as teachers lies the act of learning. Our hope is that our actions inspire our students to engage in a process that results in their acquisition of new knowledge, mastery of new skills and the development of capacities and dispositions which will prepare them for life beyond our classrooms. Increasingly our focus is on developing the skills and dispositions our students require to become life-long learners. We recognise that in a rapidly changing world, the capacity to take charge of your personal learning journey, to become self-navigating learners is essential. 
Nigel Coutts

Educational Disadvantage - Socio-economic Status and Education Pt 3 - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    Pedagogy and curriculum that engages students from low-socioeconomic backgrounds and is deemed personally relevant to the lives they live, are seen as important factors towards equality of outcome by Wrench, Hammond, McCallum and Price (2012). Their research involved designing a curriculum and pedagogy that would be highly engaging to students of low-socioeconomic status. 'The interventions involved curriculum redesigns that set meaningful, challenging learning task(s) (culminating in high quality learning products); strong connection to student life-worlds; and a performative expectation for student learning.' (Wrench et al 2012 p934)
Nigel Coutts

Making Time for Quiet Contemplation - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    In our busy and highly connected lives it can be difficult to find time to slow down, to deliberately and mindfully engage in reflective contemplation. Taking the time to do so can be significant for success, creativity, mental well-being and learning and yet we seem to struggle to commit time to this valuable practice. Schools, in particular seem to offer little time for students to slow down and think, and with the busy lives students lead such time is often entirely absent.
Nigel Coutts

Helping students to become problem finders - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    For students engaging in creative personalised learning projects such as a 'Genius Hour' or 'Personal Passion project it can often be difficult for them to uncover the right project. Students have become so reliant upon their teachers to pose them problems that when they are given the option to explore one of their own design they don't know where to start. This is indeed a significant challenge as we know that our students will enter a workforce and world of learning beyond school where they must be active problem finders. How then might we provide the support they require without removing the opportunity for truly personalised exploration.  
Nigel Coutts

Engaged by, in and with learnng - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    As teachers we hope our lessons are engaging and that our students are engaged. We understand that positive learning experiences are more likely to occur when we are engaged cognitively and affectively by what we are doing and that when we are, new ideas and skills are more likely to stick. Engagement is an important consideration in learning and as such it is worth taking time to consider what it means to be engaged and perhaps how we bring the benefits of engagement to our teaching and our learning. 
Rhondda Powling

Culture of Creativity or Constraints? - Curiosity, Exploration, Wonder - 2 views

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    "There are a few possibilities discussed here that help to create that culture of free creativity and innovation. Educators need to build this culture at a young age and when challenges arise students will have what it takes to innovate. How will we bring about opportunities for students to explore their creativity and innovate?"
Nigel Coutts

The rewards of highly collaborative teams - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    Not that long ago I was a writer of interesting and engaging educational programmes. Fortunately, that is no longer the case. The programmes that I wrote and shared with a team of teachers were generally well accepted and the feedback offered was always politely positive. I enjoyed writing these programmes but in recent times I have enjoyed even more stepping away from this process and in doing so empowering the team of teachers that I learn with. The programmes that this team produces far exceed the quality I could ever have hoped to produce but more importantly the students are benefiting from their experience of highly engaged and thus engaging teachers.
Rhondda Powling

Students Can Learn From Their Mistakes If We Let Them - Finding Common Ground - Education Week - 1 views

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    "There are many ways to build student engagement in the classroom. What we need to get away from is the adult in the classroom answering their own questions, and fostering an atmosphere where students can rely on each other and work in collaboration. As with anything, this requires balance because we want to make sure the student who doesn't want to answer questions actually takes the opportunity to do so. As Hattie says learning is hard work and it offers us challenges. We know that as adults but want to prevent our students from seeing the challenge because it doesn't always feel good. We need to change our expectations to make sure that students understand they do have to take ownership over their own learning, and not giving them the answers sometimes may be the place to start. "
Nigel Coutts

Making the most of Bloom's Taxonomy - 0 views

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    Spend time in any school talking to teachers and even students about thinking and learning and you are likely to hear the phrase 'Bloom's taxonomy' passed around. More than likely you will see it displayed on a wall as a set of processes learners engage with when working in the cognitive domain but how might we maximise the benefits of Bloom's Taxonomy?
Rhondda Powling

3 Classroom Tools to Measure Student Learning | Edutopia - 3 views

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    "Formative assessment is vital to teachers in any classroom environment. Teachers have been formatively assessing students for years, because they need to know what students know in order to help them understand what they do not know. Many classrooms are moving to 21st century with technology initiatives. Suggested here are three tech tools will help teachers engage students while simultaneously gauging their understanding of concepts: Kahoot!, Formative and Padlet"
Rhondda Powling

Science4Us Digital Science Curriculum: Includes Embedded PD Resources | Class Tech Tips - 0 views

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    "Science4Us is a standards-based digital science curriculum that teaches science using the 5E inquiry-based instructional model. In addition to over 350 digital games and online activities, there are tons of offline experiments and hands-on projects to keep students engaged and excited about science.  It's a great choice for teachers looking to include cross-curricular activities that connect science instruction to math and language arts. Students will also learn the importance of notetaking and observing, with their very own digital notebook."
Rhondda Powling

Classroom Design Matters | Tip of the Iceberg - 1 views

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    "The classroom environment truly is The Third Teacher. There are those who make a considerable effort to consider an holistic view of classroom design. Physical space, classroom displays, learning opportunities, student preferences, movement of people - all contribute to an engaging learning environment and a positive learning climate"
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