Thursday, 5 June 2014

Using Technology as a curriculum Tool

Religious Education 2014 
Teacher- Anna Sheehy

The Year Six students have been preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation. As a part of their preparation several tasks were set up in order for them to deeper their knowledge about their chosen saints and the Process of Canonisation.

A website was created so that students had access to their tasks, resources and rubrics throughout the whole process. Students have been visiting this website on many occasions to make sure they are up to date with each task and checking off each part of the rubrics to make sure they are submitting everything.

Students have been working on these tasks throughout Term Two and are currently of Task Four. Below you will find a brief outline of the tasks that the students have been working on. 

Task One:

The first task for students was to find out ‘what is a saint?’ Students watched a Flipped Task and prepared some research about what constitutes a saint. 

Once this was completed, they were grouped and asked to share their research. They then presented their information, outlining the main characteristics of a saint.

Each group created a large poster outlining all of their key points.

Task Two:

The second task that the Year Six Students needed to complete was a research stage. They needed to research the Saint whose name they were taking for Confirmation. 

Students needed to include information about their early life, education, and a timeline of the significant events of their saint’s life. 

As a class, we explored 
TimeGlider. This is an online timeline creator tool. Each student set up an account with their school email address and then we did some explicit lessons and some Flipped Tasks related to using the tool.

Students needed to identify examples of how the influence of the Holy Spirit can be seen in the life events and words of their saints and complete an expose of their lives.

They also needed to outline the reasons why they make a good Saint, explain why they chose this Saint, and how they relate to them and their story? 

I encouraged students to be creative with their presentations, letting them choose how they wished to present it to their peers. 

Task Three

During Task Three, students needed to research the process of Canonisation. Canonisation is the act by which the Holy Father declares that a Catholic Christian is in the glory of Heaven, that is they have been declared a Saint. 

There are certain steps that are required to be undertaken in the process of Canonisation and the students needed to display this in the form of a flow chart.

Some of the students decided to use to create an infographic outlining the process. This is a free web based tool that the students are very capable of using. Other students used Comic Life and some opted to create a poster by hand. It was great to see a range of resources being used.

Here is a video briefly showing some of the finished products.

Task Four:

The Year Six students are currently working on Task Four. In this task students needed to define what they think are the ten main qualities of Saints. They needed to create a definition for each of these and then think of someone, whom they know, who displays these Saint-like qualities.

These students needed to interview this person about the ten qualities they had chosen and are now using this information to create a 2-3 minute speech.

All of the Year Six students are confident speakers and will be well prepared for their speeches. I am very much looking forward to the listening to each of them.

There is a final task where students will be researching Australian heroes who they feel may be Saints in the future. Students will be creating a persuasive argument in an online format to complete this task.

Reading and Writing in Year 3 using iPads 2014

This semester the Year 3 class are using the app Kids Journal to record short daily journal entries. The students, filled with motivation and engagement, type their thoughts and recount their activities from the previous or current day.

The app has icons that allow them to depict their mood, the day's weather and take a current photo of themselves.

The Year 3 teacher cleverly integrates this process into the student's English learning program.

RAZ - Kids is now being used widely at Sacred Heart as a supporting reading tool. The variety of text types and the relevant reading levels makes the tool very popular with our students.

As part of their lesson flow the students move to relevant reading on RAZ Kids once they have completed their journal entries. 

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Contemporary Changes in Year 2 2014

Term 2 2014 has seen the Year 2s at Sacred Heart transform into a contemporary space.

The teachers and students are also part of a study through Curtin University in understanding the educational and physiological impact of a contemporary space.

The class was set as a traditional arrangement in Term 1. The teachers and students were then fitted with a movement measuring device over a week that measured their level of movement. Classroom observation also took place during that week.

A follow up observation and study will be conducted in Term 2 to measure and compare the outcomes.

Both Year 2 teachers have made informed and proactive decisions that have enabled a smooth and harmonious transition. They have both adjusted to the environment very quickly. Their expertise and professionalism in educating our students has definitely assisted in this.