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Student voice
Thinking ahead to term 2
Student survey
On Edmodo 9XA got to choose what kind of format they want next term, this got them to reflect on how they were getting their information in class and if this worked the best for them
9CC did the same but on Moodle instead. 
Each class had a different response with 9XA wanting to keep the 2 books format rather than another method. 9CC were wanting to change to 1 comprehensive booklet.

Shut The Front Door

Interesting, I hear some things others say and question them, I try and let it advise me to not become lax and always keep trying to do what’s best for my students learning


A treasure unearthed at the e-learning and BYOD professional learning group, one of the Japanese teachers uses it for vocab, we spent time looking at uses and value, for me the value over my use of quizlet is the Jewels on Wisdom game that turns the vocab into a bejewelled style game

My favourite activity at the moment

When making a table of examples
(I did this for examples of physical and chemical change and also examples of elements, compound and mixtures)

I print off the examples on small strips of paper mix them up and sellotape them under the students chairs (some randomly also have a wrapped lolly stuck there too) after i give instructions i tell them to find their example under their chair then to decide what area of the room they go to, after checking they write their example on the board

At the end they have a table of examples they can put into their books

Good fun and breaks up any sitting around for long stretches of theory work

Good days always follow not so good days

I worked out my frustration at the gym, replanted and tested, and though positive and good. Attitudes (mine and the classes response) was much improved and we had fun and things worked. I also got back my 12 Chem results and they aren’t as bad as I had thought. I’m much relieved

Also here are 2 girls from my tutor group :p


Mistakes I’ve made

12CHE had their assessment yesterday and we were marking together last night, when I notice a big difference in my class compared to DY and PA

This was due to me having missed an acid base reaction to teach them until the last couple of classes, and this hurt their chances for merit and excellence significantly which I feel bad about as well as annoyed.

I am annoyed as it was not in the scheme and I had not come across it previously, in their textbook, or at the last school I had taught at.

I am also having few issues with other work. My 9xa class (mostly) is struggling to follow instructions. I will need to cut back to very basic instructions. I will also have to adjust my demeanour and attitude as I am getting more frustrated and this could be transmitting to my students.

Tomorrow we will redo the practical that didn’t work in some respects today
The 2 reactions that involved HCl and CaCO3 didn’t work. So I will try them again before school and adjust reactants where needed

My frustration also lapses parts of my planning and control. I ignored the homework catchup i had intended to do.

Individual classes 27/2

Today I had the first big homework return. Only 2 are needing to do catchup. Today I couldn’t run this at lunchtime as there was a schoolwide litter consequence at lunch. We have been working well on devices on states of matter and I am enjoying it.
We did fun Science with dry ice and they enjoyed it, we got a few key ideas out about carbon dioxide and sublimation.

We also did fun science with dry ice, I was able to pick out quite a bit of information on carbon dioxide and gases from them and expand on this and we had a lot of demo and practical that we enjoyed doing.
Also an interesting thing, was students were using their devices, not just to record for later use but researching as we went through it for their own records.

Moved on from atoms to working on the differences between elements, compounds and mixtures. Now we are using this and expanding on testing for different gases. It is a difficult task for most of them but it is engaging and enjoyable and I will keep them at it until the have had a lot of practice, seen some demo and have got a good grasp before moving onto metals and their properties.

We are at the end of the micro-organisms topic and are spending time doing a lot of practice writing. While it is necessary and challenging for them, it hasn’t been easy or too exciting at times. I’ve been breaking it up with videos, activities and other small things that help with engagement and picking up key difficulty areas I have noticed through reading their practice writing.

Monday will be their first internal assessment and most are starting to find it easier, it is just picking up bits and pieces that they may be making mistakes on or missing things out. I keep thinking of a lot of things I would have liked to have done different and a lot of little things I have missed or have done different as I am teaching this subject for the first time at a different school ,so there are some differences.

Reflection 26/2

My goals have been my focus lately and with that in mind I’ve been trying to make the most of having devices with a mixture of success and frustration
While it is good the school is offering choices of devices for students to bring in depending on their personal preferences and budget, as a teacher of 50 year 9’s with many different devices, I have to be careful, i keep hitting a range of different difficulties and frustrations.
I can easily see with a lot of teachers how they would stop and not use them, I am trying to keep working on solutions and also working with an extra frustration of have not just device issues but issues with students who aren’t following instructions so a problem will happen later that could have been avoided.
What I have done:
Put notes and work (activities and project outlines) as PDF forms, students can download them and type directly into the spaces.
Problems and my solutions
P - can’t get onto network to download  
S - write site into diary and do later in day when can connect or from home
P - can’t save it
S - look through with them (often are clicking view not save, or can’t find the save option)
P - can’t type into boxes (tablet only)
S - wrong application (get adobe reader)
P - can’t find it (next class)
S - save into a folder (create a Science folder to collect and keep ALL science work for the year)
P - it didn’t save (hit this today, big frustration)
S - Evernote not compatible, try Adobe reader.
S - Click a save button!, have to find it!
Students are not 100% able to use devices without guidance and need time and help, laptops and netbooks are much much easier to use and navigate. 
Also if the network is down, some students can’t seem to focus on anything else apart from connecting. I am trying to get them to use an alternative in the meantime, or work with someone else, and not to spend the whole lesson trying to get their device to work. It is not an efficient use of their time.
What I have done:
To help with literacy, I have put terms and definitions into Quizlet, and will keep adding new ones as we go through the unit. Students have found the set and have a set of flash cards where they can also do games, such as mix and match, scatter, write the term, speed matching etc etc

So far this is working really well. Students have been racing each other and when they have spare moments or finish an activity early they will do these games, again and again. Trying to improve their scores, etc.
I will keep adding terms and definitions as we do them in class and they will eventually have a whole set (vocab list) for each topic.

Reflection week 1 2014

Week one, I was nervous and excited but all went very well :)
I felt very good about how I started all 5 of my classes and my tutor group. I kept my goals uppermost in mind and also a tip we were given
  • Start the year how you mean to continue
The first day was with year 9 and 13s, we had a powhiri which had a large attendance of parents and whanau, it was nice, however, went a bit long for students (and some teachers and parents).
We then got to introduce ourselves to our year 9s in our tutor groups and show them around a bit. They then got a chance to ask questions. The year 13s joined us after and we talked about goals and the future with the year 13s, we did some introductions and getting to know you.
The year 13s then took a year 9 each around the school with their timetables and showed them where their classes are and all the other areas in the school they need to know about.
The next day we took down the old tutor group displays and started creating new displays, lead by the year 13s. I then got to meet the rest of the tutor group and we did more getting to know you and some classwide introductions.
We had our first house meeting, and discussed upcoming events. Then after some goal setting we got to start classes. On the first afternoon I had my 2 senior classes 1Science and 2Chemistry
I really enjoyed my introductory classes. I felt prepared but nervous and having an hour again was awesome especially to have enough time to get each class started properly.
My juniors got the rundown :p a mix of OSH, Expectations, lab groups and equipment. 
We also did some troubleshooting with devices and about using BYOD in the class.
This part was very interesting to me as my Term 1 goals revolve around BYOD, and using learning with devices to maintain high engagement and pair with the school focus on SOLO taxonomy to achieve high outcomes for student learning, enthusiasm in Science and using higher thinking and skills in their Science work/
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