DEC Scan Journal : February 2013
Volume 32, February 2013 15 Contents Editorial Currents Teaching & learning Research Curriculum support Share this Resource reviews Negatives: 4 Working with a friend meant you could get distracted. 4 Choosing a focus question was difficult. 4 Finding accurate information online was difficult. Teacher reflections: Julie felt it was sometimes difficult for her to stop herself from providing the students with their questions. Bronwyn felt that one of the challenges for the students was tackling the higher order thinking. Future plans: 4 More time needs to be allocated to the project. 4 More resources should be available when students are just beginning to explore the topic. Work samples involved, the process was of paramount importance rather than the end result. They learned much about the process and its effect on their students. It highlighted particular areas of research, which required additional teaching. It showed the students the highs and lows of working with a partner, the importance of self-reliance and commitment, and it gave them skills and practices that they could apply to other research tasks. Snapshots of the findings of the GI projects undertaken at the five schools follow. GI at Austinmer PS Bronwyn Gleeson, teacher librarian, and Julie Reid, Stage 3 teacher, worked with a Year 6 class on the topic of Antarctica. The following comments are examples of student feedback. Positives: 4 [It was] good to choose your own topic. 4 Using PowerPoint was easier than writing the information. 4 Choosing your own partner meant you could work with a friend. 4 Antarctica was an interesting topic. 4 The class presentations were interesting as everyone had different topics. 4 The majority of the class would like to do another GI project. Table 1 Seacliff Community of Schools participating in 2012 GI project The research wave On that day in November, 2011 teacher librarians discussed possible project topics with their teacher colleagues and made commitments to commence the projects in Term 1, 2012. Jenny Scheffers shared Lee FitzGerald’s The research river posters, which, with Lee’s permission, were adapted to the Illawarra’s coastal environment, using the analogy of the research wave. Knowing the value in obtaining student feedback during the research tasks, the teaching partners aimed to document the project. Each school used elements of the School Library Impact Measure (SLIM) toolkit (Todd, Kuhlthau & Heinström, 2005) which were adapted to their topics, and developed a work booklet for each student to use. The resources included three surveys and a learning feedback sheet. In addition to the feedback collected via the booklets, they established the Seacliff COS TLs blog and encouraged students to use the comments feature. Each school completed the project, adapting it to suit local conditions. For the teaching staff and students School Teacher librarian Class teacher Austinmer Public School Bronwyn Gleeson Julie Reid Bulli High School Kylie Martin Heather Gardiner Helensburgh Public School Stephen McQueen 3 X Stage 3 teachers Thirroul Public School Sharon McGuinness Andrew Mathews Waniora Public School Jane Pretty Michael Darmody Knowing the value in obtaining student feedback during the research tasks, the teaching partners aimed to document the project.