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Expert learning: It’s essential or. ‘Teacher-librarians write new curriculum!’ Mary Manning School Library Association of Victoria. Expert learners. Experts see patterns and meanings not apparent to novices.
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Expert learning: It’s essentialor ‘Teacher-librarians write new curriculum!’ Mary Manning School Library Association of Victoria
Expert learners • Experts see patterns and meanings not apparent to novices. • Experts have in-depth knowledge of their fields, structured so that it is most useful. • Experts' knowledge is not just a set of facts -- it is structured to be accessible, transferable, and applicable to a variety of situations. • Experts can easily retrieve their knowledge and learn new information in their fields with little effort. (The list above was adapted from "How People Learn," published by the National Research Council in 1999.) Source: http://www.thirteen.org/edonline/concept2class/inquiry/
Teacher-librarians have long held the view that it is the generic cross-curricular skills, attributes and behaviours which are vital in the development of the autonomous (or expert) learner
Teacher-librarians believe that such skills should: • Be articulated in the curriculum documentation • Be able to be used by students in a range of situations (transferability) • Be interwoven throughout all elements of the curriculum • Be valued, assessed and evaluated • Have identified statewide standards • Have a whole-school approach to the integration into curriculum development
Introducing……….The Victorian Essential Learning Standards • A new approach to organising curriculum • A new approach to learning
VELS addresses • The economic and social changes associated with the development of our global, knowledge-based world and their implications for schools, and • The growing evidence base about how people learn and its implications for teaching that works
A move away from increased content towards:- • A student-centred approach • Developing the learner who can apply their knowledge beyond the classroom to new and different situations ►Expert learners
Becoming an expert through an inquiry approach Inquiry-based learning • Student-centred learning • Focuses on ‘how we know’ rather than ‘what we know’ • Develop information processing and problem-solving skills • Students construct their own knowledge ‘SLAV CD ROMs and publications’
Purposes of VELS • Students will leave school with the capacity to: • manage themselves as individuals and in relation to others • understand the world in which they live • act effectively in that world.
Three components • The processes of physical, personal and social development and growth • The branches of learning reflected in the traditional disciplines; and • The interdisciplinary capacities needed for effective functioning within and beyond school (we like it already!!)
Three strands • Physical, Personal and Social Learning • Discipline-based Learning • Interdisciplinary Learning
Structure of VELS Interdisciplinary learning strand Discipline-based learning strand The Humanities Physical, personal and social learning strand
Integration and equality • Knowledge, skills and behaviours in each of the three strands • Together the three strands provide the basis for students to develop deep understanding • An ability to take their learning and apply it to new and different circumstances • The disciplines are related to the other strands in a new and integrated manner
Interdisciplinary learning Students are better able to: • develop • demonstrate • use discipline-based knowledge and skills when they are able to employ the knowledge, skills and behaviours described in the interdisciplinary domains of Communications, DCT, Thinking Processes and ICT
This means that: • Skills that have never been explicitly stated before are now acknowledged and standards stated • Interdisciplinary skills and behaviours are of equal value to discipline skills and knowledge • A whole school approach is necessary for planning • Integration and collaboration required • Focus on what is essential for expert or autonomous learning
Some examples from the VELS: Thinking processes • Our world and the world of the future demand that all students are supported to become effective and skilful thinkers. Thinking validates existing knowledge and enables individuals to create new knowledge and to build ideas and make connections between them. It entails reasoning and inquiry together with processing and evaluating information. • Students develop strategies to find suitable sources of information and learn to distinguish between fact and opinion. • Students increase their repertoire of thinking strategies for gathering and processing information.
Thinking Processes Level 1(learning focus) • Students explore a wide variety of familiar contexts. With encouragement and support, they wonder, question and become adventurous in their thinking about these contexts. • They reflect on their thinking (for example, why they think what they think about a text)
Thinking Processes • They further develop their skills in using a range of sources of information when investigating selected questions. Level 2 • Reasoning, processing and inquiry • At Level 3 students collect and organise ideas from a range of sources to answer their own and others’ questions. They question the validity of sources when appropriate. They apply thinking strategies to organise information and concepts in a variety of contexts.
ICT • In their learning of new material, students experiment with some simple ICT tools and techniques for visualising their thinking. They organise and classify information and ideas, and present them in a manner that is meaningful to them. • Students develop an understanding of the importance of checking the accuracy of facts that are going to be processed
ICT • They also use simple graphic organisers such as concept maps to provide a framework for visualising thinking. Students reflect on the usefulness of such tools and strategies in new circumstances. (level 2) • They locate information on an intranet, and use a search engine and limited keywords to locate information from websites. (level 3)
ICT ExampleThey use complex search strategies (for example, Boolean) to locate information from the Internet and other sources, and they evaluate the integrity of this information. They organise and store gathered information to enable easy retrieval. They access online interactive e-learning tools to help them to develop knowledge across the curriculum, and explain how these tools differ in supporting learning and whether they assist the development ofdeeper understanding.
Personal learning This domain provides students with • the knowledge, skills and behaviours to be successful learners both at school and throughout their lives. • They need to develop a sense of themselves as learners and develop the knowledge and skills to manage their own learning. • As they do this, they move from being supported learners to autonomous learners.
Assessment • Assessment in the areas of personal learning and interdisciplinary learning will be challenging (Di Peck, DE&T, 2005) • Teacher-librarians can make a very positive contribution in this area
Assessment is part of the learning process Purposeful assessment considers both: • process (how the learning takes place) • product (what was learnt) Assessment of the VELS requires a mix of: • Summative assessment to determine student achievement • Formative assessment to inform next stage of learning Assessment must evaluate students’ knowledge, skills and behaviours in an INTEGRATED way. • All teachers can contribute to a student’s assessment.
Formative Assessment • Formative assessment is most productive when students are trained in self-assessment so that they can understand the purposes of their learning and grasp what they need to do to achieve See • The teacher-librarian program P-6 • Making a difference: Research guide • Researching together: Engaging minds
Assessment as learning • Occurs when students reflect on and monitor their progress to inform their future learning goals • Student-centred approach • Students engaged in their own learning
Integrated assessment Thinking Processes ‘… use a range of question types’ Communications ‘…use the communication conventions, forms and language appropriate to the subject to convey a clear message across a range of presentation forms Historical reasoning and interpretation, level 5 …students frame key research questions, plan their investigations, and report on their findings. They use a range of primary and secondary sources including visual sources … Students use a variety of forms to present their understanding. They evaluate historical sources for meaning, point of view, values and attitudes. ... Use a range of appropriate strategies of reasoning and analysis to evaluate evidence and consider their own and others’ points of view
Integrated assessment Historical knowledge and understanding, level 5 ‘…They demonstrate understanding of key concepts such as … ICT for visualising thinking ‘…students select and apply ICT tools and editing functions that support the filtering, classifying, representing, describing and organising of concepts, issues and ideas.’
Implications for the school library • leadership • auditing • common understandings • collaboration and integration • authentic learning • student-centred inquiry approach • rich ICT and print resources All within the context of interdisciplinary and personal learning enjoying equal billing!
Leadership At a SLAV conference, Assessing the evidence, assessing the learning, in 2002, Dr. Ross Todd said: • ‘Empowerment, connectivity, engagement and interactivity define the actions and practices of the school library, and their outcome is knowledge construction: new meanings, new understandings, new perspectives.’
Auditing • Audit your program against the Victorian Essential Learning Standards This will: • familiarise you further with the concepts and standards • allow you to identify your expertise and where the opportunities arise
Common understandings • Information process • A whole school approach to planning ‘Making a difference: Research guide’
Integrating thinking skills • Explore concepts and strategies to integrate thinking into classroom activities • Researching together: Engaging minds offers understandings of concepts, interdisciplinary skills and teaching strategies
►authentic learning tasks • R2G offers six research formats that facilitate collaboration focusing on process as well as content. The teacher-librarian program P-6 offers • Learning outcomes • Evaluation strategies • Templates and practical tools
ICT for visualising thinking ICT tools that facilitate visual thinking are ones that allow ideas and information for all areas of learning to be easily and quickly drafted, filtered, reorganised, refined and systematically assessed in order to make meaning for students. Students use linguistic, and non-linguistic representations, such as graphic organisers, ICT-generated simulations and models and ICT-controlled models to help structure their thinking processes and assist in constructing knowledge. Source: Making a difference: research guide, SLAV
Student centred Supporting both the VELS and the Principles of learning and teaching, the school library provides a positive and supportive environment for individuals and small groups to discuss, problem-solve and reflect on their learning • Making a Difference and learning styles Making a difference ’
Inquiry-based approach • Jamie McKenzie: ‘The question is the answer’ Acknowledge learning styles and develop rich and challenging questions: ‘Making a difference’ Designing questions matrix
Rich ICT and print resources • Collection development • Management of print and virtual resources • Value adding by creative use of resources ‘VELS will require teachers and students to use different learning and teaching practices …. Some of these approaches will include digital multiliteracies.’ (2006)Bronwen Parsons
Victorian Education Channel Webquests - retrieved, March 29, 2006 http://www.education.vic.gov.au/teacher/themes.asp
Assessment Work with teachers to build assessment into their learning activity A range of assessment tools can be found on the CD ROMs MaD, R2G and TLP, e.g. • Learning journals • Personal management rubrics • Peer evaluation
Assessment strategies • Personal learning plans – resource location and use • Rubrics • Observation sheets • Small group reports • Shared correction of units of work – teacher -librarians might correct the research or bibliography or an agreed part of the assignment • Evidence based examples from R2G • Templates and strategies from TLP • Self-assessment templates from MaD • Use of ICT’s in the library Ocean Grove (Vic.) BPA (2006)
The Victorian Essential Learning Standards is a curriculum approach that has long been understood by the teacher-librarian This reform is an opportunity too good to miss – we must take to initiative and lead the way!
Where to start? • Find your entry point and then make the links (John Firth, VCAA 2005) • Visit http://vels.vcaa.vic.edu.au http://www.sofweb.vic.edu.au/blueprint/fs1/