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Moving Towards A Curriculum for Excellence in the Early Years

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LECT Study Visit October 2006. Theme of visit. ENSURING GREATER CURRICULUM COHERENCE BETWEEN ... Margaret Carr hosted our visit to Waikato University ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Moving Towards A Curriculum for Excellence in the Early Years


1
Moving Towards A Curriculum for Excellence in
the Early Years
  • Grainayre, Pickaquoy Centre
  • Wednesday 28th March 2007
  • 7.00pm 9.00pm

2
The New Zealand ExperienceLECT Study Visit
October 2006
3
Theme of visit
  • ENSURING GREATER CURRICULUM COHERENCE BETWEEN
  • PRE-SCHOOL AND PRIMARY ONE
  • Areas of interest
  • Curriculum / Teaching and learning approaches pre
    school (Te Whariki) and P1 and 2
  • Underpinning research
  • Working with parents (Play centres)
  • Transitions
  • Outdoor play
  • P1 New Entrants Class
  • Expressive arts provision
  • Additional needs provision
  • Reading recovery
  • De cluttering the curriculum

4
The Outward Journey Saturday 7th October fly
Kirkwall to Edinburgh
Day 1
(9 Primary teachers from 5 Orkney schools)
  • Back left to right
  • Jennifer Scott, Nicola McGowan, Kristine
    Clouston, Dorothy Clark
  • Front left to right
  • Anita Slater, May Allan, Marlene Finlayson,
    Margaret Hay, (missing from the picture Bruce
    Pilkington).

5
Days 2-4
Sunday 9th
  • Fly Edinburgh/LondonLondon/Los Angeles (11 hours)

Tuesday 11th 6am Arrive
  • Los Angeles/Auckland (12 hours)

6
DAY 5
Wednesday 12th - Kindergartens
  • We visited 2 kindergartens and then had
    presentations on Te Whaariki Early Childhood
    Curriculum and on outdoor play

DAY 6
Thursday 13th - Play centre am Primary school
pm
  • Play centres are parent run and work towards the
    Te Whaariki curriculum. Funding is dependent on
    leaders being qualified.
  • In the primary schools we learned New Zealand has
    a draft consultation document for their new
    curriculum. There is no formal testing until
    intermediate stages. One school is changing its
    practice/curriculum to provide more freedom,
    choice, depth and challenge.

7
DAY 7
Friday 14th - Hamilton Normal School,
University and campus crèche
  • Margaret Carr hosted our visit to Waikato
    University

8
Saturday and Sunday FREE (well nearly)
DAYS 8/9
  • We wrote up our findings from each day. Everyone
    involved took turns in recording our main
    observations.

DAYS 10/11
Monday and Tuesday
  • Visiting primary schools

9
Tourists flock to witness the wonders of Thermal
Valleys which have not been disturbed for 1000s
of years. They usually are sacred to the Maori.
We had fun experiencing the wet Huka Jet. We
careered up the river to the base of the falls at
high speed doing fast 360 degree turns.
10
School Facts
  • Schools are funded according to their decile
    rating based on socio-economic criteria
  • Schools are funded directly by Min of Ed and have
    far greater autonomy (no education dept)
  • Some schools also charge fees
  • Schools do a lot of fundraising (think swimming
    pool and extra teachers)
  • NZ teachers are less well paid than us
  • There is a big emphasis on literacy
  • ICT well resourced

11
Te Whariki
  • Early Childhood Curriculum

The Principles
Kotahitanga Whakamana Whanau Tangata Nga
Hononga
  • Holistic Development
  • Empowerment
  • Family and community
  • Relationships

12
The Strands
  • Mana Atua
  • Mana Whenua
  • Mana Tangata
  • Mana Reo
  • Mana Aoturoa
  • Well-being
  • Belonging
  • Contribution
  • Communication
  • Exploration

13
Outdoor Play
  • Is very important in all kindergartens and play
    centres.
  • Is an extension of the classroom.

14
Empowerment
  • The children are given real tools and materials
    in their play, eg. saws, spades, hot glue guns,
    hammers etc.

15
Relationships and Contribution
  • Children learn through experience, finding out
    for themselves what is safe. (They come to school
    with a set of clean clothes every day!).

16
Exploration
  • Children are given responsibility at an early
    age. They are encouraged to be independent
    thinkers and to follow through their projects
    till they reach a conclusion.

17
Holistic Development
  • Children have lots of space, inside and out, to
    explore and experience their own interests or to
    learn something new.
  • It is very rare (usually due to adverse weather)
    that the children are not outside playing. The
    ozone layer is very thin over New Zealand, skin
    can burn in 15 minutes, hence the use of a sun
    sail over the sand pit.

18
Empowerment and Exploration
  • Children learn from their mistakes.
  • Parents expect accidents to happen.
  • Risk Assessments are less extensive than in
    Britain
  • It was very refreshing to see - but New Zealand
    is a non litigious society.

19
Assessment
Learning Stories
  • Can be used in progress jotters
  • Can show childrens thinking
  • Tell people about childrens interests
  • Show evidence of learning
  • Identify next steps
  • Provide links between educational setting and
    home.

New Zealand example of learning story.
20
Transition
  • Early Childhood Centres are not connected to
    schools
  • Kindergartens are staffed by teachers and have
    won pay parity with their colleagues
  • Children can start school after their 5th
    birthday (not 4!)
  • Can visit one day a week for up to 10 weeks
  • Schools employ transition teachers
  • Developing new entrants classes more play centred
    (and most are very small)
  • Reading approach is whole language
  • Inquiry learning has always been in kindergarten
    so there is continuity
  • New curriculum document should change what is
    happening in schools

21
New Zealand Curriculum
  • The New Zealand Curriculum replaces and
    de-clutters the previous one which was very
    prescriptive
  • The key competencies link Te Whaariki, The New
    Zealand Curriculum and Tertiary Education
  • Key Competencies are about lifelong learning

22
Writing
  • Writing is celebrated at every stage.
  • Early Childhood centres work with children to
    create print.
  • On entry to school children are encouraged to
    continue writing.

Teacher models the story.
Emergent writing in year one
23
Enquiry Learning - Mountview School
  • Tell me and I forget, show me and I remember,
    involve me and I understand. The last part of
    this statement is enquiry based learning.
  • School wide theme (rich concept) adopted e.g.
    survival, first term planned by teaching staff,
    childrens interests questions generated and
    themes determine next terms planning.
  • Head teacher ensured all staff undertook
    development in the key areas to be taught
    throughout the school.
  • Enquiry learning and the rich concept lends
    itself to a huge range of activities and
    questions.
  • The enquiry learning can be slightly contrived
    initially but childrens questions determine
    future planning.

24
Mountview Learning Model
  • Knowledge wave
  • Scenario essential question
  • Subsidiary questions
  • Research plan
  • FRU finding recording using
  • Stop and check evaluate
  • Answer essential question
  • Create/share
  • Action
  • Look back

25
To have a class based on enquiry learning you
need to -
  • TEACH HIGHER ORDER THINKING SKILLLS E.G.
  • USE INFORMATION LITERACY MODELS E.G.
  • Big 6
  • Sauce
  • 3 Doors
  • Blooms
  • 6 Hats
  • Scamper
  • Thinking Keys

26
De Bonos 6 Thinking Hats
  • Each colour represents a different type of
    thinking
  • Different thinking is required in different
    learning situations
  • Use to discuss topics, solve problems, explore
    alternatives, reach decisions
  • SCHOOL WIDE APPROACH

27
Inclusion
  • Children with special needs are supported by full
    time teacher aides.
  • In Kindergarten a severely disabled child was
    taking part in a music session.
  • Children start school on their fifth birthday.
  • Children with special needs work in class with
    assistants at their level of development with
    individualised programmes of study.
  • In mainstream children with special needs move on
    to the next class when they are ready.
  • Satellite special Unit within one mainstream
    school catering for five children. They attend
    classes as they are able.

28
The Virtues Project
  • Honoured as a model programme for families at the
    World Conference of Cities in association with
    the United Nations and is being applied in over
    eighty countries.
  • The approach uses simple strategies to help
    families live by their highest values.
  • The overriding concern of values education is
    that the programmes should be neutral and not
    favour any particular religious viewpoint.
  • Up to fifty-two virtues ranging from
    Assertiveness to Truth can be studied.

29
Virtues Implementation
  • The virtue to be studied is introduced by
    management staff at weekly assembly.
  • Children work on the virtue in class during the
    week.
  • Children with behaviour issues are taken to a
    special virtues room to reflect upon their
    actions. They then demonstrate the virtue for the
    last five minutes of playtime.
  • In some schools behaviour consultants work with
    children on an individual basis in designated
    areas of the school.

30
NEW ZEALAND (TAUPO)
  • ART IN THE CURRICULUM AND ITS INFLUENCES

31
The New Zealand CurriculumDraft for
consultation2006
  • Arts - One of the eight learning areas considered
    essential for general education.
  • In the arts, students discover how to use their
    senses, imagination, thinking and feelings as the
    stimulus for creative action and response.

32
Influences
  • Natural environment
  • Fern leaf - Koru
  • History Culture
  • Other cultures

33
Traditional Maori weaving.
Traditional Maori wood carving
Pacific Island Tapa Cloths (Motifs based on
natural forms)
Designing using the Koru
34
Evaluation
  • Schools - No specialist teachers, some schools
    appointing staff on basis of their individual
    skills in the expressive arts.
  • Scottish system allows for a development of the
    expressive arts throughout the curriculum (3-18).
    It does not rely on an Intermediate school to
    pick up and input art, design and technology over
    perhaps two intense years.

35
Conclusions
  • Intense and busy 10 days.
  • Thought provoking
  • Culture and heritage driven with emphasis in
    early years.
  • Realisation that the Scottish curriculum and
    experiences offered are limited by legislation
    (particularly outdoor play provision).
  • Enabled us to reflect and appreciate the good
    practice being undertaken by early years
    providers within Orkney.
  • The New Zealand aims for the new curriculum are
    very similar to aims of ACfE (we found enquiry
    learning to be an effective way of meeting these
    aims).
  • Disappointment at lack of Specialist Expressive
    Arts teachers within the primary sector,
    especially within such a creative, cultural
    country.
  • Inclusion is a high priority within the
    mainstream, ranging from profound difficulties to
    behavioural issues.
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