Coming back from @ulearn13 I was completely inspired to create a 'learning focused', 'learner centered' curriculum in which children knew about their learning; their goals; where to next; how to get there. I quickly realised that this had been the missing link in my practice. Whether my students got this straight away or not, the end result was exciting - they had become self-managing, self-directed learners. I was ready to do more!
The next thing I know an email informed me that we were opening our own MLE for 2014. Yuss!! The holidays rolled around quickly and for the first time ever I couldn't begin any planning! (Because there were three others to consider!). Our MLE began in 'Poutama' with 4 amazing teachers. Colourful furniture filled the space, walls were removed and others were painted.
So where does one start?
120 students, 120 devices, 4.7 teachers, 1 teacher aide, 4 x music release times, 4 x PE times, 4 spaces, 4 breakout rooms, reading groups, maths groups, writing groups, workshops, timetables... Where DOES one start? I still can't believe that we got it going!
|We take our Maths kids for PE lessons every Tuesday and every second Thursday|
directed, guided, self-managing, self-directed and self-agency. Self-directed learners have to prove that they are able to work independently in spaces outside of the classroom. Their quality of work is higher and more in-depth. They are expected to use strategies to solve problems or to be solution seekers.
|Literacy Priorities and Specials are like 'must do' 'can do'|
We have organised our timetable so that there is always a "roving" teacher. We also have "conference" time where we can individually work with individuals or a small group for assessment purposes.
|This is my timetable by fortnight (I'm colour coded blue).|
There has been some resistance from the community; some parents are concerned for their children's well-being. We have been very open to parents coming and sitting during the day. If you can, have a teacher sit with them and "talk them through" what they are seeing - it's a lot different to how they were taught! We are slowly winning some families over but on the whole, everyone else can see the huge potential that MLE's have to offer!
Where to from here?
I would like there to be more time for student-initiated inquiry. This should be our level up - it takes the focus off the teacher and puts it on the learner and the learning.
Make learning fun and engaging and relevant.
Great! Now I can have a break!