DEC Scan Journal : Volume 34 Issue 2
2015 Volume 34, Issue 2 34 Contents Editorial Reflections Teaching & learning Research Curriculum support Share this Resource reviews Putting weight on ownership in this way creates a communal identity (In this class, we...). It also conveys a strong message about student capabilities, and reflects positive messages about students’ place and their voice... partly accomplished by working on a degree of student ownership of classroom practice. Such ownership was manifested in students having choices (of tasks, topics, texts, presentation modes, or with whom they worked), giving them a voice in the conditions of successful learning. Putting weight on ownership in this way creates a communal identity (In this class, we...). It also conveys a strong message about student capabilities, and reflects positive messages about students’ place and their voice (see discussion of learning experiences above, and Sawyer et al, practice for student commitment and buy in. From this brief overview of the cross- case analysis initial discussions on meeting challenge, a key theme that has developed is the emphasis on community and this is the focus throughout the rest of this article. It is interesting how often successful engagement in these classes revolved around some manifestation or other of community, or community building. For example, when analysing what the Fair go teachers were doing around high affect in their classrooms, practices which built a community were highlighted. Creating real commitment to tasks and to learning overall, across the range of teachers, stages and contexts, saw community building as a central practice for student commitment and buy in. Teachers may have high expectations, but students need to buy in. Developing student ownership The first key principle was working toward student ownership of the learning space in order to create the class identity referred to earlier. In the early years of schooling, this was manifested in a physical environment, which was inclusive of students, reflected their work and was characterised by: • easy access to resources • flexible planning • students being trusted to use technology • developing a sense of student responsibility through strategies such as using students as teaching assistants and expecting accountability. The use of inclusive we language was also notable in the classrooms from the early years of schooling: • we make the decisions • we can work with others or by ourselves • we are learners together. In the middle years, this language was more you focused and tended to encourage students to see the classroom work and related decisions about that work as theirs. In the later years, practices such as having students design assessment rubrics for the class also reflected the principle of ownership. A strong part of this principle was a degree of negotiation of classroom curriculum at all levels, including preschool. This sometimes reflected students’ interests and tended to give a sense of agency to students. Thus, student buy in (commitment) was Kudryashka/Shutterstock.com Creating real commitment to tasks and to learning overall across the range of teachers, stages and contexts, saw community building as a central practice for student commitment and buy in.
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