Tuesday, 4 April 2017


Term one 2017 has been one hell of a journey. My wife has been battling breast cancer, throwing me into chaos. I lost my mojo and my focus wavered. Taking this time to gather my thoughts and reignite the passion I had towards teaching was a challenge.  A discussion on line regarding Indigenous Knowledge and Cultural Responsiveness in an ILE   stirred me up. It made me revisit the unique way I look at problems and my approaches to build the mana of learners.

Relieving in schools reopened the pedagogy and practises that I evolved in our ILE at Richmond School.  Like Leonardo Di Vince who as a child was fearful of the monsters in a cave urged by curiosity ventured into the pit, later driving him in all kinds of directions. I had to enter back in and fight back the curiosity I had before the news about my wife. 

As I stand still and glean the past weeks of relieving, I can see patterns that I have used across all deciles, learning levels, behaviour dispositions and age groups up to year 8. Before I forget, I need to thank all the schools who have allowed me to play! All the students so far (roughly 300) were fully engaged and wanting more. In all the circumstances I adapted the teaching program and did some meaningful, targeted teaching of my own. In the words of the "Navi" (oel ngati kameie), I SEE YOU. I might seem a bit porangi or it might simply be because I am born under the pieces star however it makes me .....me. 

Hattie's influences on student achievement sits comfortably within my kete and challenged my approaches. Like the Borg its about ASSIMILATING the parts I need to enhance the collective, "He aha te me nui o te ao? He tangata!!!!" Maorifying the first ten influences, marrying them with the fun part of me and leveraging it all with technology is my Pounamu. Years ago I tried to moonshot ideas, images around 3 Dimensional planning and practise, talk about head ache! It's only now that it is all making sense, my thoughts are my own. I recently read Smyth's article about Hattie's influences being a con.....my answer ..... "it is hard to fill a cup that is already full". Closed mindsets are like a snake in a tree beguiling you to eat the apple to loose your momentum and turn back on itself, covering yourself with leaves, hiding in the shadows. It is a privilege to share some of my korowai and no doubt I will need to make changes later, nga mihi nui.

Hattie’s influences on student achievement

  1. Student Self-Reported Grades
  2. Piagetian programs
  3. Response to intervention
  4. Teacher credibility
  5. Providing formative evaluation
  6. Micro-teaching
  7. Classroom discussion
  8. Comprehensive interventions for learning disabled students
  9. Teacher clarity
  10. Feedback

My Kete 

  1. Pumanawa (fostering natural talents and strengths)
  2. Tumanako (attending to aspirations)
  3. Whakamana (empower), 
  4. Aroha (compassion, empathy, love)
  5. Tautoko (appropriate, timely support),
  6. Manaki (taking care of physical, mental, spiritual, social needs)
  7. Whakapapa (More than just family and whanau. In a learning context its understanding the journey, narrative of all learning paths and how they bring forth the light!)
  8. Whanaungatanga (establishing relationships, belonging, collaboration on another level)

Student Self-Reported Grades
  • This strategy involves finding out what the student’s expectations are and pushing the learner to exceed these expectations. Tasks are related to specific learning needs identified by essence and passion goals discovering core tasks as children move through both the physical and digital learning wall. Once a student has performed at a level that is beyond their own expectations, he or she gains confidence in his or her learning ability. Mana Potential model is an excellent resource for this, highlighting key factors about building Papatuanuku and coaching students through Ranginui.

  • Imogi's are used similar to class dojo, attached to curriculum expectations and then augmenting them through co-designed goals. Carol Dweck discusses the power of "yet" which I carefully mould within feedback and feedforward statements. These can be as simple or as complex as you need both written or verbal.

  • I cannot express the importance of Whakapapa (More than just family and whanau). In a learning context it's understanding the journey, narrative of all learning paths and how they bring forth the light!. I often use this time to project ahead to allow students to see beyond the task so they can see "the grey journey" (Thanks Nathan Mikaire Wallis). Leverage technology to present the journey.
  • Nā tō rourou, nā taku rourou ka ora ai te iwi
Piagetian programs
  • Through a series of stages, Piaget proposed four stages of cognitive development: the sensorimotor, pre-operational, concrete operational and formal operational period
  • Piagetian programs: Focus on the thinking processes rather than the outcomes and do not impose the adult thinking process on to children.
  • Pam Hook's "SOLO Taxonomy" has been endorsed by John Hattie. In this approach SOLO becomes a powerful mental model for students – and is capable of changing the way we think about learning outcomes. 

  • Over the past few weeks students have leveraged technology to present their own next steps and give reasons. Students used book creator videos to create rewindable moments. Other examples can easily use Telegami, Doink, Explain Everything, Time lapse, and Mine craft. I have had lots of opportunities to explore Chrome based systems using Goggle Slides with supporting videos.
  • Making thinking visible with "thinking maps" was a little challenging given the time I had while relieving however this did not stop me and the results were astounding!! 
  • He kai kei aku ringa
Response to intervention
  • It is essential that approaches are created for early, systematic assistance to children who are struggling in one or many areas of their learning. While relieving the quickest way to identify the varied levels was class discussions on Showbie platform. Students send in an image of themselves attached to well designed questions during core sessions. It is easy to quickly group the results in a timeline game.
  • For more established classes "TAI" teacher as enquiry focuses on specifically designed programs to create accelerated growth by pinpointing the specifics needed by both teacher and student.
  • In an effective ILE environment this is made very easy due to flexibility of the learning programs. Programs can be differentiated through Visible learning walls to make the most of the time available. Here students are encouraged and empowered to explore. Furthermore, of worthy mention is the use of "must do - can do". Personally I do not like them simply because they substitute single cell classroom taskboard activities after you have finished the main assessment task. Time is wasted! Utilise FLOW THEORY instead. 
  • I also spent some time talking to Nathan Mikaire Wallace this term showing me the neural brain pathways of students and how to intervene on a totally different level. 
  • Children can ask for extra assistance in any way, media flips, extra workshops, showbie feedbacks and Tuakana Teina Ninja's. 
Learner /coach timetables are both digital and on paper. It allows for dynamic use of teaching staff and student leaders. Effective communication is paramount in an ILE.

  • Learner coach timetables are essential for maximum mana enhancement
  • I have been amazed that these approaches can be used while relieving on a slightly smaller scale however wishing I was in a larger pod which is even better!!! E hara taku toa i te toa takitahi engari he toa takatini.

Teacher Credibility
  • Teacher credibility is vital to learning. Students are very perceptive about knowing which teachers can make a difference. Maori learners are experts at inferencing attitudes both negative and positive. I needed to be in tune as quickly as possible. Starting the day explaining Ka-Ra-Kia places learners into a type of wananga (alignment). Keeping that "state" during the day is the challenge. 
  • Its easier to explain like this......HOW CAN YOU MAKE THE INVISIBLE VISIBLE
  • There are four key factors of credibility: trust, competence, dynamism and immediacy.
  • I must say my size is an advantage here making the forth factor immediacy easier however it is important to realise there are levels of actions within immediacy which I continually develop.
  • Making spaces available for immediate response can vary. Using Apps like showbie makes this easy. Digital pathways (Whakapapa) are easily created and followed. It can sometimes be a challenge to ensure the information passing between is constant and meaningful "just in time" learning. I love the way Hattie describes this "Reduce distance between teachers and students by moving or moving away from barriers".

Learning Modules are carefully constructed and are visible to all. Trust is gained as learners are coached through the challenges. It also provides effective opportunities for formative evaluations and mini chats.

  • Trust, competence, dynamism for me flows together as I present the learning Task, Challenge or Module for the day. My main type of thinking linked using MATES philosophy combining (Maths, Art,Technology, Engineering, Science) utilising working presentations from other students, images, gamification and other media links.
  • I suppose its about modelling an interest in ideas that I don't fully already know the answer creating a culture that is powerfully intellectually engaging 
  • Whāia te iti kahurangi ki te tūohu koe, me he maunga teitei
I Kiwiised the 21st Century skills into my own visual images. How do we prepare learners for jobs that don't exist is the question......simple give them the skills to create it!  

Providing Formative Evaluation

  • Formative evaluation refers to any activity used as an assessment of learning progress before or during the learning process itself. 
  • Spend the same amount of time or even more on formative assessment as you spend on summative assessment. Give descriptive feedback to students: What is the goal? Where are you in relation to it? What can you do to close the gap?
This sample was from a year 3 student who hated writing and explored the "yet". These challenges were based over two days of 2x20 min slots. The focus was built around the amount of words used in a sentence. She rose to the challenge and found ways to make bigger sentences based around the theme of minecraft mods. The main type of feedback/forward was through group sharing. She begged me to show the principal.....She was stoked!

  • Showbie portfolio provided an easy method for formative evaluation. The time needed can be considerable especially when grading video presentations therefore place time limits on presentations. Snapshots above are easy and provide a visual and verbal trail.
  • Voice overs are also available along with live annotations which give a special touch. While relieving students loved being part of the voice over discussion to help other students.
  • Letting children know that information can be shared directly to parents is powerful. Seesaw can also give audience feedback from outside the school.
  • Another way to view formative evaluation is to develop and use simple procedures consisting of a few steps to provide a framework for focussing attention on specific thinking moves that help to build understanding. 
Micro Teaching
  • In Visible Learning Hattie describes micro-teaching as a practice that “typically involves student-teachers conducting  (mini-) lessons to a small group of students, and then engaging in a post-discussion about the lessons”. Richmond didn't only do this for students but also teaching staff.
  • ILE's provide an arena for this to become more dynamic. Richmond invested time into something we call "Te Kete Panui". It is a platform for "just in time PD". As things quickly evolved in our ILE's we needed a way to keep up with the change as a team. We did away with the waterfall leadership model and began enabling shared leadership. Anyone who was able to teach became a learning coach therefore we needed to unpack what this should and could look like.  AKO and TUAKANA TEINA needed to be used as a meaningful strategy as opposed to a tack on or above the water iceberg approach. 
Tuakana Teina is a meaningful strategy that promotes leadership values. Here we had children running workshops across three schools successfully. Teachers facilitated mini leadership groups to promote collaborative discussions and actions with NXT Robots. Again Showbie was used to link students across schools. ILE's enhance powerful collaborative opportunities. 

  • Student and teacher agency was constantly promoted and developed. Mini lessons were happening everywhere, anytime, both digitally and verbally. Workshops were carefully designed to enhance time, and were run by anyone which over time crossed between pods and other schools.
  • I had huge success implementing this approach while relieving. At the forefront of my belief "if the teacher is still the centre of the universe then something is very wrong"! Providing systems for this to occur is the key!
  • A key aspect of micro teaching will have to include rewindable learning opportunities where students video record key points of the discussion or teacher records and flips it out before, during or after the session. With success I have included flipped opportunities within Explain Everything, Book Creator tasks and good old fashioned video.
Classroom Discussion
  • Setting the scene with karakia and waiata is important and brings together lymbric patterns that allow all involved to create flow. 
This Whakatauaki recognises the importance of partnerships especially in group discussions. It reminds me of when I would collect pipi with my dad and nephews. He would talk about his adventures which we clung onto and is something I often use today.

  • Students get together as a class to discuss important issues, improving communication skills by voicing opinions and thoughts.  Moreover, a classroom discussion creates an environment where everyone learns from each other.
  • I use this time to allow children to see possibilities, dreams and future aspirations. It is a fun time to cast out lines and see what kinds of nibbles you might get. Setting whole class tasks is just the tip of the potential that can be achieved.
  • Showbie also allows the use of class discussions. I have used this to model sentence structures and to empower students to share, grow and nurture ideas.

Comprehensive Interventions for Learning Disabled Students

  • Personally I hate this label however approaching this with an open mindset paints a different picture.
  • Flexibility within an ILE gives another arena to be played. Longitudinal data collection is a special kind of whakapapa. This can lead to more dynamic conversations. Depending on the level of support and the amount of progress made is the opportunity to use "outside the square" thinking and approach?
  • Game-like Learning Principles has been a godsend. I first used this approach 4 years ago accidentally. I had a severally hearing impaired ADHD year six student who communicated with grunts and pointing (and often with his fists). His learning age was year 1. To make a long story short I used Minecraft. He self regulated to work on a range of tasks in the gaming platform learning patience, teamwork, art, patience, success, failure, joy, co-operation. It opened the door! I can still remember the first time he heard himself read, he cried along with me and the entire class!! By the end of the year he was reading, writing at a year 3/4 level, solving maths questions up to stage 4 and asking millions of questions!!! The good thing is this strategy works for everyone!

Teacher Clarity

  • One of the main points of Hattie’s books about Visible Learning is the importance to clearly communicate the intentions of the lessons and the success criteria. Clear learning intentions describe the skills, knowledge, attitudes and values that the student needs to learn. Teachers need to know the goals and success criteria of their lessons, know how well all students in their class are progressing, and know where to go next.
  • My rule for this is simple, If a child doesn't get it "find another way"! If they still don't get it check with kids who do and see if they can explain it in a better way........if that doesn't work........FIGURE OUT ANOTHER WAY!!


  • Yay the last one!!!!
  • According to Hattie and Timperley (2007) feedback is one of the most powerful influences on learning and achievement, but this impact can be either positive or negative. They developed a model of effective feedback that identifies the particular properties and circumstances that make it work. Feedback on task, process and self regulation level is far more effective than on the Self-level (e.g. praise which contains no learning information). Descriptive feedback is closely related to providing formative assessment. In an interview Hattie emphasised that the most powerful feedback is that given from the student to the teacher. This feedback allows teachers to see learning through the eyes of their students. It makes learning visible and facilitates the planning of next steps. The feedback that students receive from their teachers is also vital. It enables students to progress towards challenging learning intentions and goals.
  • "Just in time feedback" is a constant heartbeat in my classes. 
  • Having the next step at my fingertips is a must as you coach and guide students through the maze. Have fun on the way. A comment from some intermediate students who hated maths and found it challenging "OMG Mr K, you make this stuff sound like fun and I actually get it!!!". My feedback was through thinking maps. They then went on to teach others in the class! (I must say I miss them too). This has worked in all the classes I have taught.
Well that's it folks! I cant believe how much I have internalised. No doubt some of the things in here won't make sense.............yet. My apologies for any miss spelt words or bad grammar. Not to mention I could be changing some as people leave comments or my brain suddenly remembers something else. Some awesome colleagues asked me "what goes on inside my brain" and even now I still don't fully understand "it doesn't stop it sits on standby"(Thanks aunty Anne from Rotorua). I am really, really going to miss all the kids that I have influenced this term and hope that I did enough for them. Live long and prosper.

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