Visually, the process of Teaching As Inquiry is represented in the background slide. "Teaching Gap Analysis" in our school provides initial ideas about the areas of development. "The New Zealand Curriculum, teachers were asked to specifically focus on the needs of four to five priority learners in order to manage and monitor the effects of the change they made more effectively." (Lindsey Conner, 2015).
Hypothesis: using Gamification and some game play will contribute positively to the students' engagement in year 10 classes. In 2017, two year 10 classes' engagement level will be compared. The comparison will be done as an experimental design.
Students who are 'interested' in learning is more likely to participate in various activities willingly. For example, students, generally engaged will be eager to get into a competitive team like Mathex. Mathex is a source of satisfaction in the learning process. Also it is a thoroughly collaborative process.
When it comes to creating a highly collaborative classroom teachers need to model listening, paraphrasing, artful questioning and negotiation any and every chance they get. All these contribute towards students' learning engagement.
Our school's built in Teacher appraisal system will be used to execute the process.
Inquiry Based Teaching and College Appraisal System: they are integrated
A year's educational quest is about to finish. Today (End of Year 2016, December), I completed the year's appraisal cycle. In our school teacher's appraisal is linked to the overall inquiry teaching and learning events. It begins with the goal setting based on 'teaching gap analysis'. Teaching gap analysis is created with the data obtained from various sources e.g feedback from the students, appraiser, asttle results, overall results and performance of the classes taught by me. So it deals with graphs, tables, qualitative and quantitative data.
Throughout the year, I had an important educational quest: students' engagement during lessons. Student classroom engagement, in my opinion is important. I think engagement matters and their success is dependent on how engaged the they are in a class.
Another overarching thing is how collaborative the teaching and learning process is . Collaboration is essential to teach social skills to the students.
Preparing for 2017 : Classcraft and gamification
End of 2016, we started using Classcraft which is a gamification tool that teachers can incorporate into any class. It is simple to use, as it does not change the structure of the class itself, but simply adds a layer of gamified elements to the class.
M.Sherriff, M. Floryan & D. Wert (2016) said "..that basic changes, most notably an XP based grading system, increased student understanding of their standing in the course and were the most effective at motivating students".
My school's appraisal system is integrated with our Inquiry Based Learning. At the beginning of year the professional partnership is established which remains an ongoing process throughout the year.
Where do we begin? : Benchmark
School's Inquiry based learning starts from analysis of 'Teaching Gap Analysis' which sets the broader picture on a teacher's overall positioning e.g strength and weakness. Asttle results, beginning of the year sets the 'baseline' which the teacher does by Interpreting Individual Learning Pathway Reports. Asttle's database is comprehensive and requires skilled and time consuming analytical methods.
Whole teaching staff has to work together and the process is usually led by one of the Deputy Principals of the school. The first meeting happens at the beginning of year where the broad outlines are provided to the teachers. Here the teachers are advised to select a Professional Partner who remains the partner throughout the year.
Teachers identify their gaps in teaching process by analysing the 'Teaching Gap Analysis' forms which is based on previous year's 'Teaching Performance'. The data is mainly 'qualitative'
Bulk of 2016, I attended/& attending the Mindlab Post Grad Certificate in Digital Collaborative learning which created a new opportunity for me to research on some of the important aspects of contemporary education. We, as educators, are so much used to discussion on students' disengagement and lack of interest in classroom learning which eventually aroused my interest in the issue of 'student engagement'. All educators are in agreement that if we can have good engagement in class the teaching will be so much easier.
Gamification, as a concept, came in new to me, it sounded innovative and interesting. My interest grew and I wanted to investigate this particular area in my practice. I thought, an action research in this issue of gamification will be interesting and useful.
In 2017 this experiment will be used on 2 year 10 classes. Students of both classes will complete start of the year Asttle test. The aim is to find the 'differential' of Asttle outcomes comparing it to the End of Year Asttle result.
One year 10 class will be registered with the Classcraft, Socrative (gamification) applications, whereas the other year 10 will be subjected to minimal BYOD materials and they will not be registered to use Classcraft. The groups will differ in the way the lesson is delivered, but the content delivered to both the groups will be same.
John Hattie in his book, Visible Learning, introduced the concept of 'Effect Size'. "The effect size of 0.40 sets a level where the effects of innovation (e.g Gamification) enhance achievement in such a way that we can notice real-world differences, and this should be a benchmark of such a real-world change" (Hattie, 2009). Attali (2014) in his studies showed effect size of Gamification in the classroom is not significant (d=0.27, which is below the hinge point of d=0.4), but indirect effect of gamified lessons is also is to provide 'Feedback" to students which is significantly beneficial (d=0.7).