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Lake Illawarra South Public School

The students at Lake Illawarra South Public School are engaged in learning in an environment in which teachers communicate high expectations and explicit criteria for achievement.
by

PSP and Equity

on 7 May 2012

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Transcript of Lake Illawarra South Public School

Introduction School Context Student Engagement The school's high level of student engagement in learning is supported by strong evidence. Acknowledgements Understanding student engagement (cc) photo by Metro Centric on Flickr (cc) photo by Franco Folini on Flickr (cc) photo by jimmyharris on Flickr (cc) photo by Metro Centric on Flickr (cc) photo by medhead on Flickr Enabling factors that facilitate high levels of student engagement (cc) image by jantik on Flickr Move the right arrow keys on your
keyboard to move through the presentation. The school operates in 14 literacy classes, 14 maths classes and 11 home classes. Students may have a different teacher for each class and the group of students with whom they interact may also differ for each class. Students move flexibly through the groups according to student need, which is regularly assessed. This is made possible by the employment of an additional three teachers through the Low SES School Communities National Partnership funding. This school structure ensures a high level of individual attention as Literacy and Numeracy class sizes are greatly reduced.

Kindergarten students remain with the same teacher all day. However they receive additional support for both literacy and numeracy made possible through the Priority Schools Program (PSP) and National Partnership. Each class receives the assistance of three teachers for literacy and numeracy three days per week.
The school has an extensive focus on technology as an integrated component of classroom teaching. All classrooms and the school library are equipped with Smartboard technology. Lake Illawarra South Public School is situated in the Illawarra and South East region of NSW. The school has an enrolment of 265 students, including six per cent Aboriginal students. Fourteen per cent of the students are from language backgrounds other than English. The school receives funding under the Priority Schools Programs and the Low SES School Communities National Partnership. A survey of teachers, in 2010, demonstrated that a high majority agreed that:

the groupings for literacy and numeracy facilitate higher levels of student engagement
teaching programs respond to students’ interests, needs and abilities
teachers clearly articulate purpose and scope of learning and set explicit criteria for assessment to students and parents
teachers share their ideas and experiences with colleagues to refine practice
it is the teachers responsibility to incorporate technology into teaching and learning. Teacher feedback A male student was often overheard saying, "this is too hard, I can't do this" and as a result he was disengaged during each lesson and wouldn't attempt any written tasks. After much encouragement and support, the student is now performing to the best of his ability, working 'in task' rather than just on task, and he is proud of his achievements.

We believe that applying the Accelerated Literacy pedagogy in our Literacy sessions has provided this student with the necessary scaffolding to begin his learning journey and enabled him to experience success. Furthermore, through regular feedback sessions, the student has become aware of his strengths (medal) and his area of need (mission). The student now has a clear understanding of his future path on the learning continuum.

As a result, the student is now happy to come to school and he is motivated to learn. The teachers provided the following report
on one of the students. NAPLAN results, in 2010, indicate that the school has achieved or exceeded its targets in literacy and numeracy. Thirty four per cent of students in Year 3 achieved the top two bands in Reading, compared to the school target of 22 per cent.

Thirty per cent of students in Year 5 achieved the top two bands in Reading, compared to the school target of 25 per cent.

Thirty one per cent of Year 3 students achieved the top two bands in Numeracy. This equalled the school’s target.

Seventeen per cent of students in Year 5 achieved the top two bands in Reading, compared to the school target of nine per cent. Student achievement A survey of students, in 2010, demonstrated that a high majority agreed that:
they participate well in literacy and numeracy classes
groupings for literacy and numeracy improve their confidence and engagement
the learning prepares them for high school
they learn more throughout the day. Student voice A survey of parents, in 2010, demonstrated that a high majority agreed that:
the school expected students to achieve to the best of their ability
students are asked to learn information and skills that are important and provide class activities that are interesting and appropriate to their child’s needs and abilities
the school provides clear information about student achievement through the school’s reporting processes
their child has access to good technology and equipment that helped him/her to learn. Parent feedback The teachers at Lake Illawarra South Public School define student engagement as when students are encompassing the deeper knowledge and deeper understanding, making connections with and within texts, and showing that they are 'in-task', not just performing a task. Pedadgogical
Features The features of classroom practice that the students, teachers, parent and the principal have linked to improved student engagement in learning are listed below in the five categories of the engaging messages within the MeE framework (Munns and Martin 2005) which underpinned the Teachers for a fair go project. Background information on the Teachers for a fair go project can be located at the end of this case study.

Students, teachers, parents and the principal from Lake Illawarra South Public School identify and disseminate the engaging messages for students in:

1. Knowledge - Provide access to contextualised and powerful knowledge
2. Ability - Establish feelings of being able to achieve and a spiral of high expectations and aspirations
3. Control - Share classroom time and space: Interdependence, mutuality and 'power with'
4. Place - Value students as individuals and learners and feelings of belonging and ownership over learning
5. Voice - Establish an environment of discussion and reflection about learning with students and teachers playing reciprocal, meaningful roles. Knowledge: Provide access to contextualised and powerful knowledge - We can see the connection and meaning. Employ discovery learning with students exercising choices in the learning processes.
Incorporate subject topics of interest to students.
Include student cultural knowledge and background in the learning.
Utilise technology, interactive whiteboards and ipads, to locate and present knowledge.
Plan virtual excursions to support learning.
Create a culture in which there is a love of learning and clear understanding of purpose.
Make explicit the relevance of the learning to their local context and needs.
Engage parents in learning to make the connection to the learning with real life purpose.
Demonstrate high levels of interest in subject matter. Ability: Establish feelings of being able to achieve and a spiral of high expectations and aspirations - I am capable. Control: Share classroom time and space: Interdependence, mutuality and 'power with' - We can do this together. Design group learning roles and responsibilities.
Organise classroom for students to freely access materials and resources as required.
Ensure learning is seen by students as fun and enjoyable.
Plan for conversations between students and jointly discuss the best ways for learning.
Encourage a culture in the classroom of joint responsibility for learning.
Group students according to prior knowledge and access to technology.
Design time management structures for teacher and students.
Provide ongoing, explicit details of the expectations and the learning.
Encourage self-regulation by redirecting behaviour issues to focus on learning, not compliance.
Provide flexible assessment strategies to demonstrate learning.
Design task joint construction and publication of collaborative work.
Provide a well organised learning environment. Place: Value students as individuals and learners and feelings of belonging and ownership over learning -students feel and say that it is great being at Lake Illawarra South Public School.
Promote a sense of belonging for all students in a shared learning environment.
Validate positive perceptions of the local community.
Link authentic learning tasks with the students' local community.
Connect local contexts with the wider world and direct student learning to different audiences and specific purposes.
Recognise the effort of all students.
Encourage a love of learning and the desire to be at school.
Promote the school and classroom as a safe place where students are valued. Voice: Establish an environment of discussion and reflection about learning with students and teachers playing reciprocal, meaningful roles - We share. Promote student voice through choice of learning options within the structure of learning design.
Encourage students to “have a go” and express opinions on learning styles.
Allow students to choose subject matter when possible.
Facilitate frequent operative and kinaesthetic activities.
Promote substantive communication with all students.
Develop structures in which students reflect on their learning in discussions with their teacher, peers and parents.
Utilise a variety of questioning techniques to promote student discussion.
Align teacher design and decision making processes with student choice and feedback for lesson design. 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 14 2 13 1 The principal identifies the following enabling factors that create a culture to facilitate improved student engagement in their learning: create a culture in which improved
learning is the focus of all activities adopt a shared responsibility
approach for student learning analyse data to inform teaching and learning identify explicit criteria required to achieve learning outcomes adopt a case study approach to improving student learning designate time for professional dialogue around data analysis, programming, assessment, teaching strategies create professional
learning relationships with in-school
and outside providers employ a literacy coach appoint a Teacher Mentor implement a 3 way reporting process involving students, teachers and parents design training for parents to support their children at home adopt a common language around learning for students, teachers and parents implement focus groups to identify effective teaching and learning practices value student voice in teaching and learning strategies and relevance of learning to real world situations. Numeracy Engaged Teachers, Engaged Students
Lake Illawarra South Public School Explicit Criteria Literacy This case study identifies and describes engaging messages for students at Lake Illawarra South
Public School.

The case study includes both text and video excerpts.

The organisers for the case study are:

the school context
defining student engagement
identifying engaging messages for primary students
enabling factors that facilitate high levels of student engagement. Technology Background information on the
Teachers for a fair go project High Expectations Thank you to the following participants for their contribution to the development of this resource.

Lorraine Bradwell, Principal, Lake Illawarra South Public School
Teachers, students and parents from Lake Illawarra South Public School
Kerrie Vogele, Regional Equity Coordinator, Illawarra and South East Region

For more information contact:
Ryan Macpherson
Coordinator PSP, Innovations
Schools in Low SES Communities and Equity Co-ordination Unit
NSW Department of Education and Communities
Level 14, 1 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst NSW 2010
ryan.macpherson@det.nsw.edu.au
(02) 9244 5391 Maintain high expectations communicating explicit criteria for all students.
Support the learning with scaffolds and guiding questions.
Plan learning in manageable chunks.
Develop individual confidence and aspirations by allocating specific individual group roles for all students.
Encourage all students to offer responses to questions.
Provide constant feedback, praise and encouragement to inform processes for improved learning.
Jointly construct manageable goals and provide clear strategies to achieve the set goals.
Provide teacher and peer modelling of tasks to encourage effort.
Provide clear strategies to achieve goals.
Provide opportunities for 2 way feedback.
Establish and maintain a culture of learning.
Encourage students to share their work with other students. The End
Full transcript