Teachers are Learners too!

Learning Landscape Wednesday, 16 Nov 2022

Learning is a lifelong undertaking and our teachers are no exception. 

Over the course of the year, each teaching team runs a research project, collects data and prototypes new or innovative teaching ideas and methods to target particular needs within the school. These projects are called prototypes and add to the collective wisdom of all Living Faith teachers. This year our teacher teams have been working on the following prototypes: 

The Prep team has been implementing authentic student-driven Project-Based Learning (PBL). Often, educators find it difficult to provide young students with the opportunity to direct their learning. However, this semester Prep teachers did just that, providing organic learning driven by student inquiry questions and creatively incorporating a range of areas from the Australian Curriculum.

In Year 1, teachers have been researching and prototyping effective writing strategies to overcome some of the barriers students present in their early writing days. This has included research into ‘big thinks and big writes’ as well as implementing interactive and multisensory approaches to English such as Kung Fu Punctuation. Their prototype has been a great success with significant student growth in writing structure and creativity over the year. 

Our Year 2 team has been prototyping and implementing collaborative teaching strategies which encourage students to be more flexible in their seating choices. They have trialled ‘plains’ teaching where students mix between classrooms rather than returning to a home room space. This aligns with pedagogy already in practice within our other year levels. 

The Year 3 teachers have been focussing on improving student number fact fluency with hands-on, short and engaging activities. Students saw an improvement in their knowledge of multiplication which will improve their ability to solve more complex operations later on. This prototype was designed to supplement the deep understanding developed as part of Maths Number Talks. 

Our Year 4 team has been working on ways to improve student engagement in ‘Work on Writing’ sessions by providing purposeful ideas to stimulate student thinking around their writing. This has seen significant improvements in the quality and personal value students placed on their work. Their ideas and intrinsic motivation have been reinvigorated by providing them with authentic purpose in their written tasks.  

In Year 5, teachers have designed a prototype to target student understanding of spelling conventions. The purpose of this prototype was to improve the overall quality of student’s written work by encouraging them to apply what they are learning in Word Work. Teachers designed a program that mixed explicit teaching of concepts with hands-on, multisensory activities designed to reinforce and deepen students' transferable knowledge of spelling concepts. 

Our Year 6 team has been researching ways to improve the presentation of student learning in the public domain. This has included investigating and trying innovative ways for students to express their PBL Learning journey at Exhibition Evenings. Public products are an essential element to PBL and this prototype has reflected ongoing improvement in providing students with a voice in their learning. It has also addressed the need to provide new ways to articulate the challenges and successes of student learning through PBL. 

As you can see, it has been a busy year of ongoing professional development at Living Faith. Teachers continue to strive to improve their practice so that students can have the best possible learning outcomes and experiences.

Bianca Ravi

Director of Learning