Preparing for the Teaching Profession 0190322853, 9780190322854

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Preparing for the Teaching Profession
 0190322853, 9780190322854

Table of contents :
Contents
List of Figures
List of Tables
Links to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST)
Preface
Acknowledgements
1 Becoming a Teacher
Meeting the central aims of the Australian Curriculum
Meeting the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers
School culture
Relationships
Ethics
Becoming a teacher: Being proactive and reflective
Your induction program
2 Building Your Teaching Portfolio and Applying for a Job
Applying for a teaching role
Developing a teaching portfolio
Finding the right school
Types of vacancies
Writing a job application
The interview process
3 Beginning Your Teaching Career
First steps on being appointed
Meeting your mentor
Orientation
Meeting your colleagues
Ongoing induction
Getting to know your students
Planning for your first day
Foundation classes
4 Getting to Know Your Students through Assessment
Getting to know your students
The central place of assessment
Learning intentions and goals
5 Effective Strategies for Lesson Planning
Incorporating research in your practice
Structuring lessons
Questioning
Cooperative learning
Differentiated learning and instruction
Engaging your students in their learning
Putting it all together
6 Learning Diversity in the Classroom
Students with special learning needs
Learning diversity at your school
Communicating with parents
Student Support Groups
Individual Learning Plans
What is the NCCD?
7 Supporting Students with Special Needs
Autism spectrum disorder
Hearing impairments
Visual impairments
Physical disabilities
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
Students with specific learning disorders
Severe language disorders
Gifted and talented students
8 Understanding Behaviour and Student Well-being
Understanding well-being and behaviour
Beginning to understand your students as individuals
Proactive approaches to behaviour management
Dealing with specific types of misbehaviour
9 Working with Colleagues: A Whole-School Behaviour Management Approach
Whole-school behaviour management models
Tier 3 students
Bullying
Parents and cases of chronic misbehaviour
10 Teacher Well-being and Ethical Responsibilities
Teacher well-being
Professional development
Professional ethics
Working in rural and remote schools
Challenges in the lives of students
Appendix
Planning for Day 1
Blank templates
Weblinks
Glossary
Bibliography
Index

Citation preview

Title: KAV_PFTTP_22854_CVR

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• How can I be successful in getting a job? • How can I best prepare for my first few weeks of teaching? • How can I best demonstrate that I have met the AITSL Graduate Standards? • What can I do to ensure my students are engaged in my lessons?

• What strategies can I employ to effectively maintain positive behaviour in my classroom?

Mary Kavanagh | Michael Kavanagh

PREPARING FOR THE TEACHING PROFESSION You will need:

Neat handwriting (It’s still important)

• What steps can I take to be well prepared to teach students with special learning needs?

Empathy

(It goes a long way)

• How can I develop effective working relationships with the parents or carers of my students? • What ethical challenges might I face as a teacher? Mary Kavanagh has extensive primary classroom teaching experience. Mary has been involved in the induction of early career teachers for over 20 years in a variety of school settings. Michael Kavanagh is an Academic Adviser (Primary and Secondary) to the Deakin University Internship Program for the Master of Teaching Degree.

Mary Kavanagh | Michael Kavanagh

Teaching is a multi-faceted, challenging and complex profession. Preparing for the Teaching Profession addresses the uncertainties you might have about assuming a professional role and the responsibilities that come with it. This practical handbook focuses on the key principles you need to know to become a successful and proactive teacher. It answers the following questions and many more, giving you the confidence to thrive in your teaching profession.

PREPARING FOR THE TEACHING PROFESSION

Your guide to becoming a proactive, successful teacher

CMYK

Knowledge

(Never stop learning)

Passion

(Never stop caring)

Stylish shoes (Your students will notice)

Generosity

(Preferably in sticker form) ISBN 978-0-19-032285-4

9 780190 322854 visit us at: oup.com.au or contact customer service: oup.com.au/help

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PREPARING FOR THE TEACHING PROFESSION

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PREPARING FOR THE TEACHING PROFESSION Mary Kavanagh and Michael Kavanagh

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1 Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. It furthers the University’s objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide. Oxford is a registered trademark of Oxford University Press in the UK and in certain other countries. Published in Australia by Oxford University Press Level 8, 737 Bourke Street, Docklands, Victoria 3008, Australia. © Mary Kavanagh and Michael Kavanagh 2021 The moral rights of the authors have been asserted First published 2021 First Edition All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior permission in writing of Oxford University Press, or as expressly permitted by law, by licence, or under terms agreed with the reprographics rights organisation. Enquiries concerning reproduction outside the scope of the above should be sent to the Rights Department, Oxford University Press, at the address above. You must not circulate this work in any other form and you must impose this same condition on any acquirer.

ISBN 978-0-19032-285-4 Reproduction and communication for educational purposes The Australian Copyright Act 1968 (the Act) allows educational institutions that are covered by remuneration arrangements with Copyright Agency to reproduce and communicate certain material for educational purposes. For more information, see copyright.com.au. Edited by Tiffany Bridger Typeset by Newgen KnowledgeWorks Pvt. Ltd., Chennai, India Proofread by Liz Filleul Indexed by Jeanne Rudd Printed in Singapore by Markono Print Media Pte Ltd Links to third party websites are provided by Oxford in good faith and for information only. Oxford disclaims any responsibility for the materials contained in any third party website referenced in this work.

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Contents List of Figures

viii

List of Tables

x

Links to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST)

xi

Preface

xiv

Acknowledgements

xvi

1

Becoming a Teacher Meeting the central aims of the Australian Curriculum Meeting the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers School culture Relationships Ethics Becoming a teacher: Being proactive and reflective Your induction program

3 4 4 10 12 12 14 19

2

Building Your Teaching Portfolio and Applying for a Job Applying for a teaching role Developing a teaching portfolio Finding the right school Types of vacancies Writing a job application The interview process

21 22 22 26 26 27 34

3

Beginning Your Teaching Career First steps on being appointed Meeting your mentor Orientation Meeting your colleagues Ongoing induction Getting to know your students Planning for your first day Foundation classes

41 42 42 44 47 50 51 53 60

4

Getting to Know Your Students through Assessment Getting to know your students The central place of assessment Learning intentions and goals

63 64 64 69

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Contents

5

Effective Strategies for Lesson Planning Incorporating research in your practice Structuring lessons Questioning Cooperative learning Differentiated learning and instruction Engaging your students in their learning Putting it all together

79 80 80 87 88 90 95 98

6

Learning Diversity in the Classroom Students with special learning needs Learning diversity at your school Communicating with parents Student Support Groups Individual Learning Plans What is the NCCD?

103 104 104 105 107 110 118

7

Supporting Students with Special Needs Autism spectrum disorder Hearing impairments Visual impairments Physical disabilities Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder Students with specific learning disorders Severe language disorders Gifted and talented students

127 128 137 139 141 142 144 146 150

8

Understanding Behaviour and Student Well-being Understanding well-being and behaviour Beginning to understand your students as individuals Proactive approaches to behaviour management Dealing with specific types of misbehaviour

163 164 167 168 177

9

Working with Colleagues: A Whole-School Behaviour Management Approach Whole-school behaviour management models Tier 3 students Bullying Parents and cases of chronic misbehaviour

183 184 194 196 197

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Teacher Well-being and Ethical Responsibilities Teacher well-being Professional development Professional ethics Working in rural and remote schools Challenges in the lives of students

201 202 206 210 215 217

Appendix Planning for Day 1 Blank templates Weblinks

227 228 231 247

Glossary

248

Bibliography

252

Index

261

vii

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List of Figures Figure 1.1 Figure 1.2 Figure 2.1 Figure 2.2 Figure 3.1 Figure 3.2 Figure 3.3 Figure 3.4 Figure 3.5 Figure 4.1 Figure 4.2 Figure 4.3 Figure 4.4 Figure 4.5 Figure 5.1 Figure 5.2 Figure 5.3 Figure 5.4 Figure 5.5 Figure 5.6 Figure 5.7 Figure 6.1 Figure 6.2 Figure 6.3 Figure 6.4 Figure 6.5 Figure 6.6 Figure 6.7 Figure 7.1 Figure 7.2

Australian Guidelines: four focus areas of induction Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle Sample cover letter Feedback from panel members after an interview Action plan for anaphylaxis Term program overview Term program planner About Me questionnaire An example ‘getting to know you’ activity Example of a graphic organiser for a Year 4 Writing task Example of a success criteria checklist Setting and achieving goals—example student pro formas Examples of rubrics A teacher’s record of learning intentions and success criteria Reading planner GANAG model Observation notes pro forma for Reading Product choices example Bloom’s building blocks Grid using MI and Bloom’s Taxonomy Example unit of work Example of completed SSG agenda and minutes Example of an ILP format for a primary school student Example of an ILP format for a secondary school student Example of a Student Learning Program Example of a categorised Level of Adjustment table (NCCD) Examples of adjustments for students (individual and group) Example method of adjustment used by specialist teacher Gagne’s model Positive and negative behavioural characteristics of gifted and talented students Figure 8.1 The iceberg diagram Figure 8.2 Tiered misbehaviour intervention model Figure 9.1 George’s ABC chart Figure 9.2 George’s BSP Figure 9.3 Suzie’s ABC chart Figure 9.4 The nature of parent–teacher interactions Figure 10.1 Causes of teacher stress

14 18 33 37 46 48 49 56 59 71 71 72 74 76 82 84 86 92 93 94 99 109 112 114 115 119 121 123 151 153 166 170 187 189 193 199 202

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List of Figures

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Appendix Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 Figure 10 Figure 11 Figure 12

Term program planner Reading planner GANAG and Marzano blended lesson guide Reading observation notes pro forma Menu planner Unit of work Student Support Group agenda and minutes Individual Learning Plan Student Learning Program Adjustment record for an individual student Adjustment record for a group of students Behaviour Support Plan

231 232 233 234 236 237 239 241 243 244 245 248

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List of Tables Table 1.1 Table 3.1 Table 3.2 Table 4.1 Table 5.1 Table 5.2 Table 7.1 Table 7.2 Table 7.3 Table 7.4 Table 7.5 Table 8.1 Table 9.1

Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST) Formal documentation Staff handbook regulations and procedures Example record of Foundation pre-literacy data Choice board example 1 Choice board example 2 Responding to the behavioural changes of ASD students Taxonomy of thinking Example of Bloom’s Taxonomy and MI for minibeast study Example choice board for Year 1 Reading activities Example extension menu for Year 3/4 Maths: length, area and perimeter (LAP) Dealing with different types of misbehaviour The three types of adjustment

5 42 45 68 97 97 135 156 157 158 158 177 191

Areas to consider A checklist for establishing a productive learning environment KWHL table

228 229 235

Appendix Table 1 Table 2 Table 3

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Links to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST) Standard 1: Know students and how they learn

APST descriptor

Page

1.1 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of physical, social and intellectual development and characteristics of students and how these may affect learning.

51–4, 56–7, 60–1, 90–101, 104–10, 128–61, 216–24

1.2 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of research into how students learn and the implications for teaching.

51–61, 90–101, 104–10

1.3 Demonstrate knowledge of teaching strategies that are responsive to the learning strengths and needs of students from diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds.

10–11, 47, 50–61, 90–101, 105

1.4 Demonstrate broad knowledge and understanding of the impact of culture, cultural identity and linguistic background on the education of students from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds.

11–12, 54–61, 90–101, 202–24

1.5 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of strategies for differentiating teaching to meet the specific learning needs of students across the full range of abilities.

52–61, 90–101, 104–24, 128–61

1.6 Demonstrate broad knowledge and understanding of legislative requirements and teaching strategies that support participation and learning of students with disability.

56–61, 90–101, 104–24, 128–61

Standard 2: Know the content and how to teach it

APST descriptor

Page

2.1 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the concepts, substance and structure of the content and teaching strategies of the teaching area.

47–55, 64, 80

2.2 Organise content into an effective learning and teaching sequence.

47–8, 55, 64, 80

2.3 Use curriculum, assessment and reporting knowledge to design learning sequences and lesson plans.

53, 55, 69–75

2.4 Demonstrate broad knowledge of, understanding of and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and languages.

11, 202–24

2.5 Know and understand literacy and numeracy teaching strategies and their application in teaching areas.

67, 73, 85–6

2.6 Implement teaching strategies for using ICT to expand curriculum learning opportunities for students.

95–8, 128–61

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Links to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers

Standard 3: Plan for and implement effective teaching and learning

APST descriptor

Page

3.1 Set learning goals that provide achievable challenges for students of varying abilities and characteristics.

69–76

3.2 Plan lesson sequences using knowledge of student learning, content and effective teaching 47–9, 61, 80–5, 88–9 strategies. 3.3 Include a range of teaching strategies.

61, 80–5, 88–9, 90–101, 164–81

3.4 Demonstrate knowledge of a range of resources, including ICT, that engage students in their learning.

54, 61, 80–5, 90–101

3.5 Demonstrate a range of verbal and non-verbal communication strategies to support student engagement.

61, 80–7, 164–81

3.6 Demonstrate broad knowledge of strategies that can be used to evaluate teaching programs to improve student learning.

80–101, 104–24, 128–61

3.7 Describe a broad range of strategies for involving parents/carers in the educative process. 12, 61, 105–24, 128– 61, 164–81, 184–99 Standard 4: Create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments

APST descriptor

Page

4.1 Identify strategies to support inclusive student participation and engagement in classroom 54, 61, 73, 75, 164–81, activities. 184–99 4.2 Demonstrate the capacity to organise classroom activities and provide clear directions.

54, 61, 73, 75, 164–81, 184–99

4.3 Demonstrate knowledge of practical approaches to manage challenging behaviour.

61, 164–81, 184–99, 203–4

4.4 Describe strategies that support students’ well-being and safety working within school and/or system, curriculum and legislative requirements.

13, 45–6, 52, 61, 157–81, 184–99

4.5 Demonstrate an understanding of the relevant issues and the strategies available to support the safe, responsible and ethical use of ICT in learning and teaching.

12, 196–7

Standard 5: Assess, provide feedback and report on student learning

APST descriptor

Page

5.1 Demonstrate understanding of assessment strategies, including informal and formal, diagnostic, formative and summative approaches to assess student learning.

54, 64–7, 87

5.2 Demonstrate an understanding of the purpose of providing timely and appropriate feedback to students about their learning.

64, 85–6

5.3 Demonstrate understanding of assessment moderation and its application to support consistent and comparable judgements of student learning.

66–7

5.4 Demonstrate the capacity to interpret student assessment data to evaluate student learning and modify teaching practice.

50–3, 66–8, 105–24

5.5 Demonstrate understanding of a range of strategies for reporting to students and parents/carers and the purpose of keeping accurate and reliable records of student achievement.

52–3, 105–24, 164–81, 184–99

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Standard 6: Engage in professional learning

APST descriptor

Page

6.1 Demonstrate an understanding of the role of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers in identifying professional learning needs.

5–9, 14–17, 22–5, 50, 60, 184–99, 202–28

6.2 Understand the relevant and appropriate sources of professional learning for teachers.

17–19, 22, 47, 50–1, 59–60, 202–28

6.3 Seek and apply constructive feedback from supervisors and teachers to improve teaching 10, 12–16, 19, 22, practices. 42–4, 47, 50–1, 59–60, 164–81, 202–28 6.4 Demonstrate an understanding of the rationale for continued professional learning and the implications for improved student learning.

14–15, 17–19, 42–3, 50–1, 59–60, 202–28

Standard 7: Engage professionally with colleagues, parents/carers and the community

APST descriptor

Page

7.1 Understand and apply the key principles described in codes of ethics and conduct for the 12–13, 44, 50–1, 55, teaching profession. 164–81, 184–99, 202–28 7.2 Understand the relevant legislative, administrative and organisational policies and processes required for teachers according to school stage.

13–14, 19, 42, 45–6, 50–1, 118, 128–61, 164–81, 184–99, 202–28

7.3 Understand strategies for working effectively, sensitively and confidentially with parents/carers.

50–1, 61, 104–24, 184–99, 202–28

7.4 Understand the role of external professionals and community representatives in broadening teachers’ professional knowledge and practice.

12–13, 50–1, 104–24, 164–81, 202–28

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Preface Depending on where you are in your studies, you may have a considerable amount of theoretical and practical preparation gained from your university studies and practicum experiences, and you will be in the process of developing your teaching– learning philosophy and your professional teacher identity. The most successful preservice teachers and early career teachers are those who are highly proactive practitioners and take responsibility for their own learning and development. Such people set out to make the most of every opportunity to learn about their profession, and consistently reflect on their own professional practices. This book is focused on helping you become a successful proactive practitioner. We have found that preservice and early career teachers are often concerned that they might not be ready to deal with the day-to-day realities of working in schools. While many are relatively confident about their capacity to teach, they are less certain about their preparedness to deal with the variety of personal and professional demands that come with a teaching position. The nature of this uncertainty, about assuming a professional role and the responsibilities that come with it, can be gleaned from the type of questions asked by preservice teachers when considering applying for vacancies, and early career teachers during the induction phase of their first appointment. The questions most often raised include: • How can I best demonstrate that I have met the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST)? • How can I be successful in getting a job? • How much support will I get as an early career teacher? • How can I best prepare for my first few weeks of teaching? • What can I do to ensure my students are engaged in my lessons? • How can I manage challenging behaviours in my class(es), and will I be supported in this? • What steps can I take to be well prepared to teach students with special learning needs? • How can I develop effective working relationships with the parents or carers of my students? • What will be expected of me in terms of workload in my first year of teaching? • What ethical challenges might I face as a teacher? • What advice can you give me regarding teaching and living in the same community? In providing adequate and realistic answers to questions such as these, we need to consider some of the fundamental aspects that make the work of the teacher so intrinsically complex and demanding, especially for the preservice and early career teacher. In this book, we provide you with guidelines to help you gain insights into the nature of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers as they operate in the school and classroom context. We also include suggestions concerning how you,

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a preservice teacher, can most effectively demonstrate your developing competency in selected Standards as you prepare job applications, respond to interview questions, and develop your professional portfolio. Furthermore, this support should help you, as an early career teacher, to take a more proactive role in the induction program offered in your first year of teaching. The best advice we can give you after preparing this book is to be realistic about what you can and cannot do in your first months. Appreciate that you will need to give yourself time to come to know the curriculum, and how it is taught in your school. Over time, teachers develop their own approaches to what they teach, how they teach, and the strategies they employ. As you get to know your students, their interests and what engages them, you should be able to include many of the strategies in your lessons. We hope this book helps you on your path to becoming a highly successful teacher.

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Acknowledgements We would like to thank all those who have contributed in a variety of ways to this text. We include many preservice and early career teachers and their mentors who we have worked with over the years. A special thank you to the following teachers and academics who have directly assisted us in the development of the text through their ongoing interest, professional advice, and by the provision of practical materials. Ian Trend Justine Saleeba Paul Grover Lyn White Maria Allison

Catherine Bell Leonie Nathan Kelly Fullerton Andrea O’Sullivan Tess Odgers

Bernadette Bowman Sean Kavanagh Liz Rouse Terry Roache Glenda Hills

We would also like to thank Geraldine Corridon (Senior Publisher, Higher Education), at Oxford University Press, for helping us develop this text from an original idea to the finished product. Her enthusiasm, guidance and patience has been greatly appreciated. Special personal thanks to Mary O’Brien, Libby Saleeba and David Kavanagh for their constant support as this book evolved. We would also like to thank academics who reviewed the draft manuscript including Edwina El Hachem, Michelle Parks, and Debbie Showers. Mary Kavanagh and Michael Kavanagh

The author and the publisher wish to thank the following copyright holders for reproduction of their material. ACARA © Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) 2009 to present, unless otherwise indicated. The material is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). ACARA does not endorse any product that uses ACARA material or make any representations as to the quality of such products. Any product that uses material published on this website should not be taken to be affiliated with ACARA or have the sponsorship or approval of ACARA. It is up to each person to make their own assessment of the product; ACT Government Education and Training, © Australian Capital Territory, Figure 7.1; Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA) for the ‘Action Plan for Anaphylaxis’, Figure 3.1; Daniela Falecki and Teacher Wellbeing, www.teacher-wellbeing.com.au for Figure 10.1; Charles Kivunja for glossary terms used from Teaching, Learning and Assessment: Steps Towards Creative Practice, by Charles Kivunja, Oxford University Press, 2015; Person Education Australia for Figure 5.6 from McGrath, H & Noble, T 2001, Seven ways at once: book 1, Pearson Education Australia, Melbourne; ‘Parent-Teacher Interactions: Engaging with Parents and Carers’ by Michelle Ellis, Graeme Lock and Geoff Lummis (Edith Cowan University); Australian Journal of Teacher Education, Figure 9.4. Every effort has been made to trace the original source of copyright material contained in this book. The publisher will be pleased to hear from copyright holders to rectify any errors or omissions. OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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Chapter 1 Becoming a Teacher As a preservice teacher or an early career teacher you have chosen to enter one of the most satisfying, rewarding and important professions. This book has arisen from our experience over many years of helping those new to the profession adjust to the realities of working with students, parents/carers and colleagues in often very diverse contexts.

Key Topics • • • • • • •

Meeting the central aims of the Australian Curriculum Meeting the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers School culture Relationships Ethics Becoming a teacher: Being proactive and reflective Your induction program

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Preparing for the Teaching Profession

Meeting the central aims of the Australian Curriculum All states and territories have their respective objectives that outline how they will provide high-quality outcomes for all students. Underpinning these objectives are two central goals developed in The Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians (MCEETYA 2008): Goal 1: Australian schooling promotes equity and excellence. Goal 2: All young Australians become successful learners, confident and creative individuals and active and informed citizens. The Australian Curriculum, established by Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA), was designed to address these two goals, which are based on propositions that inform Australian Curriculum development. These propositions, outlined in The Shape of the Australian Curriculum: Version 4.0 (ACARA 2012) include: • that each student can learn and that the needs of every student are important • that each student is entitled to knowledge, understanding and skills that provide a foundation for successful and lifelong learning and participation in the Australian community • that high expectations should be set for each student as teachers account for the level of learning of individual students and the different rates at which students develop • that the needs and interests of students will vary, and that schools and teachers will plan from the curriculum in ways that respond to those needs and interests. These propositions highlight the key responsibilities of schools and teachers to the students and their families. In this book there are strategies to assist you to recognise and respond to the rewards and challenges of such responsibilities.

Meeting the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers The Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST), established and promoted by the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL), are: 1. Know students and how they learn. 2. Know the content and how to teach it. 3. Plan for and implement effective teaching and learning. 4. Create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments. 5. Assess, provide feedback and report on student learning. 6. Engage in professional learning. 7. Engage professionally with colleagues, parents/carers and the community.

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As a preservice or early career teacher, you undoubtedly know about each Standard; however, the extent to which you have applied, utilised or practised that knowledge in the actual teaching–learning setting is problematic. It is not easy to gain such knowledge in the respective standard at the graduate level. This is because you have only limited school-based opportunities to experience, grow and be able to demonstrate to more experienced colleagues that you have reached a certain level of competency in a particular standard.

Authentic Teacher Assessment (ATA)/ Teacher Performance Assessment (TPA) An Authentic Teacher Assessment (ATA), sometimes referred to as a Teacher Performance Assessment (TPA), is commonly undertaken towards the end of a Preservice Teacher Education course. Students are expected to demonstrate that they have met the APST at Graduate level. In this book we provide you with guidelines to help you gain insights into the nature of the APST as they operate in the school and classroom context. We also include suggestions concerning how you, a preservice teacher, can most effectively demonstrate your developing competency in selected Standards as you prepare job applications, respond to interview questions and develop your professional portfolio. Throughout the book, you will see links to the APST. Furthermore, this support should help you as an early career teacher to take a more proactive role in an induction program offered in your first year of teaching. Table 1.1 outlines the seven Standards for graduate teachers. It includes a range of strategies, including reflective practices, which are discussed later in the chapter in more detail, to help you come to a deeper understanding of what these Standards look like within a school setting. Table 1.1 Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST)

1 Know students and how Proactive steps to meeting the Standard they learn 1.1 Physical, social and intellectual development and characteristics of students

• What strategies does the school use to come to an understanding of the physical, intellectual and social needs of the students?

1.2 Understand how students learn

• Observe and record what structures or processes are in place in the classroom to cater for the learning styles and needs of students. • Revisit the constructivist notions of learning, as expressed in the work of Vygotsky, Piaget and others. • Describe what Vygotsky meant by the term ‘Zone of Proximal Development’ (ZPD). Use ZPD in describing a recent teaching experience. Note the example in your professional portfolio.

1.3 Students with diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socio-economic backgrounds

• How does the school recognise and celebrate the diverse linguistic, cultural and religious background of students? • How do teachers incorporate the cultural diversity of students within their planning? (continued)

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Table 1.1 Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST) (continued)

1.4 Strategies for teaching Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students

• Discuss with a mentor teacher the challenges teachers face when presenting culturally sensitive issues to students (e.g. celebrating Australia Day). • What teaching practices have been found to successfully engage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students? (See the article by Burgess (2019) referred to in Chapter 5.)

1.5 Differentiate teaching to meet the specific learning needs of students across the full range of abilities

• Collect and describe the nature and value of ongoing monitoring strategies used by teachers.

• Read the Disability Standards for Education (Australian Government 1.6 Strategies to support full participation of students with Department of Education, Skills and Employment 2005), which were disability developed from the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth). • Familiarise yourself with the practical implications that arise for schools from this Act. • Meet with specialist teachers in the school, such as those responsible for Reading Recovery or other intervention programs. What are their roles and how do they work in collaboration with other staff?

2 Know the content and how to teach it

Proactive steps to meeting the Standard

2.1 Content and teaching • Consider the High-Impact Teaching Strategies (HITS) used by teachers across strategies of the teaching area the school in selected curriculum content areas. (Refer to Chapter 5 for more on HITS.) 2.2 Content selection and organisation

• Collect examples of successful teaching–learning strategies you have observed or introduced and provide a short critique of their value. • Revisit your understanding and experiences of teaching a differentiated curriculum. Discuss with your mentor the key advantages and challenges of the approach. • Observe students working in collaborative groups. What skills and attitudes do students need to work successfully in this way?

2.3 Curriculum, assessment and reporting

• Demonstrate the relationships that exist between these five elements of any teaching–learning sequence:  – knowing the curriculum content – knowing the ability of your students (pre-assessment) – choosing appropriate strategies to teach content – ongoing monitoring of both learning and teaching – summative assessment.

2.4 Understand and respect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to promote reconciliation between indigenous and nonindigenous Australians

• Investigate the opportunities given to students of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander background to share aspects of their cultural identity.

2.5 Literacy and numeracy strategies

• Examine the formal and informal modifications made by staff to accommodate the needs of English as an Additional Language or Dialect (EAL/D) students.

2.6 Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

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3 Plan for and implement Proactive steps to meeting the Standard effective teaching and learning 3.1 Establishing challenging learning goals

• When are learning intentions and success criteria established? Who is responsible for doing this? How are these recorded within planning documents and how are they presented to students? (See discussion concerning visible learning, learning intentions and success criteria in Chapter 4.)

3.2 Plan, structure and sequence learning programs

• Take part in a unit planning meeting and note how teachers break down the yearly scope and sequence overview into a term program planner, targeting specific areas of the curriculum.

3.3 Use teaching strategies

• Observe experienced teachers at work and note how they use a variety of questioning techniques to elicit students’ understandings and encourage them to draw on prior learning. Also, note how quieter or disengaged students are encouraged to participate. • Observe and record interesting examples of the non-verbal strategies effective teachers use to capture student interest and maintain engaged learning.

3.4 Select and use resources

• Undertake an online search of relevant interactive resources, both Australian and international, that provide engaging teaching resources.

3.5 Use effective classroom communication

• Become familiar with the role of the teacher during oral language interactions with students. Consider the challenges that come when IRF is the dominant pattern of talk in the classroom; that is, I = Initiation, R = Response, F = Feedback. (Wegerif 2013) • Go online to: Teacher Talk: Whole Class or Small Group Discussions—The role of the teacher. (State Government of Victoria, Department of Education and Training 2019c)

3.6 Evaluate and improve teaching programs

• Use Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (see the next section in this chapter) to reflect on feedback your mentor provided of a recent lesson you taught. • Attend a staff debrief and note how teachers evaluate the success or otherwise of programs recently taught.

3.7 Engage parents/carers in the educative process

• Examine the school’s policy concerning having parents/carers working with students in the school program. How are parents/carers trained to become helpers, and what roles do they play? • What formal and informal programs and activities take place in the school that involve parents/carers? What are some of the legal implications of such involvement?

4 Create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments

Proactive steps to meeting the Standard

4.1 Support student participation • What formal and informal strategies are used in the school to promote a culture of inclusiveness for all members of the school community? • Observe a weekly team planning meeting and become familiar with how teachers provide adjustments for students with particular needs. 4.2 Manage classroom activities

• Carefully consider the approaches used by teachers to organise and manage the movement of students within the learning space, distribute resources, introduce the lesson and supervise the ensuing activities. (continued)

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Table 1.1 Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST) (continued)

4.3 Manage challenging behaviour • Read the school’s well-being and behaviour management policy. Talk to the well-being coordinator—the position title may vary—and discuss the formal and informal processes that are in place to support student well-being. What are the key strengths and challenges facing the implementation of such policies? • Discuss with your mentor the steps that are taken to establish and maintain school-wide and classroom behaviour management expectations. What part do students play in establishing and reviewing classroom management expectations? 4.4 Maintain student safety

• Read the school policies concerning Disaster Planning and critical incident procedures (Displan). Become aware of the implications of such policies for staff and students and the community more generally, if an emergency situation was declared. • Read and note the implications of the Duty of Care expectations for teachers. (Each state and territory has established Duty of Care policy expectations.) Talk to senior staff about the school’s approach to duty of care in the course of a school day, both on and off the school grounds.

4.5 Use ICT safely, responsibly and ethically

• Examine the school’s policy on ICT usage. What are the implications and challenges facing schools and parents/carers in the safe, responsible use of ICT?

5 Assess, provide Proactive steps to meeting the Standard feedback and report on student learning 5.1 Assess student learning

• Discuss with your mentor the steps taken to monitor the progress of individual students. • Examine closely the assessment rubrics that are used by staff. How were these developed, who uses them and for what purposes (e.g. student selfassessment, peer assessment, teacher assessment)? How are such rubrics used in the moderation process? • Observe and note how experienced teachers introduce a variety of formative assessment strategies, during a lesson. What constitutes appropriate formative strategies for junior students, as distinct from senior student cohorts? What forms of summative assessment strategies are used by junior year level and senior year level teachers?

5.2 Provide feedback to students on their learning

• When and how do teachers assess student progress? • Reflect on the types of feedback (verbal or non-verbal) that are used in learning–teaching contexts to encourage student engagement, perseverance and direction in student learning.

5.3 Make consistent and comparable judgements

• Take part in a team moderation session. What are the key advantages and challenges of moderation?

5.4 Interpret student data

• Observe how groups of teachers analyse student data to plan future learning. • Develop a teacher appraisal questionnaire with students, which will provide you with feedback concerning your effectiveness. How might you use data drawn from completed surveys to improve your practice?

5.5 Report on student achievement

• Closely examine the school’s reporting of student achievement procedures and practices. Consider both the systems adopted for reporting student progress and the nature of the information that is reported to parents/carers and the appropriate authorities. • Become informed of the steps the school takes to safely manage confidential and sensitive information regarding students and their families.

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6 Engage in professional learning

Proactive steps to meeting the Standard

6.1 Identify and plan professional learning needs

• Become familiar with the nature and function of the professional portfolio. This can be done by accessing completed portfolios of recent graduates or by searching online for examples of both digital and hard copy portfolio formats. • Consider how your portfolio could be used to demonstrate your development towards the Graduate Level APST.

6.2 Engage in professional • Develop a reflective journal where you record detailed notes of professional learning and improve practice development occasions, outcomes of your reflective practice exercises (see the next point), your reading, and staff or team meetings. 6.3 Engage with colleagues and improve practice

• Use Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle to examine three recent teaching experiences, where you made changes to your practices based on: critical feedback from your mentor, your own reflection in action, and your reflection on action (after the teaching event). There is more information on this later in the chapter.

6.4 Apply professional learning and improve student learning

• Come to know and take advantage of the range of opportunities for professional development inside and outside the school setting, both online and at workshops. These might include subject associations, Teacher Union Professional Development (PD), zone networks, professional well-being courses and staff development days.

7 Engage professionally with colleagues, parents/carers and the community

Proactive steps to meeting the Standard

7.1 Meet professional ethics and responsibilities

• Read your state, territory or school system Code of Conduct or Code of Professional Practice. Reflect on the key ethical responsibilities of all teachers. What are the implications for you?

7.2 Comply with legislative, administrative and organisational requirements

• Read and reflect on all policies relating to child protection, mandatory reporting and duty of care. • Access and read the school’s Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) procedures and expectations. Find out who is responsible for enacting the policy at the school.

7.3 Engage with parents/carers

• What expectations are currently in place to ensure appropriate written and spoken interactions are maintained between students, parents/carers and the community? • What are the implications of such expectations for you?

7.4 Engage with professional teaching networks and broader communities

• What are your expectations about becoming directly involved in community activities outside the school program in your first years of teaching? What personal, professional and ethical obligations will you be expected to meet? • What are the advantages and challenges of working collaboratively with fellow teachers? • Read the online article by Lauren Davis (2020) linked in the following Weblink feature.

Weblink Teacher Collaboration: How to Approach it in 2020: https://bit.ly/KAV_TeacherCollaboration

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Five major themes or domains have been found to support early teacher resilience. These themes relate to: relationships, school culture, teacher identity, teachers’ work, and system policies and practices (Johnson et al. 2010), some of which we introduce briefly in this chapter.

School culture School culture is one of the important aspects that impacts on teacher retention rates (AITSL 2016a). School culture will be strong or weak depending on the interactions between the staff who work in a school: In a strong culture, there are many, overlapping, and cohesive interactions among all members of the organisation. As a result, knowledge about the organisation’s distinctive character—and what it takes to thrive in it—is widely spread and reinforced. In a weak culture, sparse interactions make it difficult for people to learn the organisation’s culture, so its character is barely noticeable and the commitment to it is scarce or sporadic. (Shafer 2018)

We believe that every early career teacher needs to proactively come to understand the cultural elements of their school. We have stressed these elements because we have observed many early career teachers having difficulties adjusting to the culture of their school. Culture, according to Bridwell-Mitchell (The Educator 2018a), is shaped by five interwoven elements: 1. Fundamental beliefs and assumptions: the things that members of a school staff consider to be true. For example, ‘All staff have the right to have a say in how school policies are formed.’ 2. Shared values: the judgements staff make about the beliefs and assumptions, which may be justified or unjustified. For example, ‘All staff should have the chance to have an input into the making of important school-wide decisions.’ 3. Norms of behaviour: the way staff believe they should behave or what they believe is expected of them. For example, ‘We should make every effort to assist preservice teachers and early career teachers to learn the ropes.’ 4. Patterns and behaviours: the way staff actually behave in the course of their day-today work. For example, they promptly chase up questions or concerns raised by preservice or early career teachers. 5. Tangible evidence of the school culture: the physical evidence that even school visitors notice around a school. Such evidence might reveal something of the commitment of the school to all the preceding elements. For example, the visitor might see posters showing the results of a staff brainstorm at a recent professional development workshop, or school photographs, trophies won, school mottos and the hustle and bustle of staff and students interacting warmly and cooperatively near the school office.

Heterogeneous school populations Australia’s population of around 25.5 million is one of the most culturally and linguistically diverse populations on earth (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2017).

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Approximately 29 per cent of the population was born in another country and one person in five speaks a language other than English at home. The 2016 Census revealed that almost 64,800 respondents reported that they spoke an Indigenous language. Overall, Australians come from over 200 birthplaces and collectively speak more than 300 languages. In the 2016 Census, the top ten languages (aside from English) spoken in Australia were: 1. Mandarin 2. Arabic 3. Cantonese 4. Vietnamese 5. Italian 6. Greek 7. Tagalog/Filipino 8. Hindi 9. Spanish 10. Punjabi

Understanding cultural diversity in classrooms and schools There is an important relationship between culture and education since the culture of teachers and students affect education processes in the classroom. Thus, culture includes everything that makes one group or community within a society distinctive from another: language, values, literature, worldview, food, religion, clothing, holidays, beliefs and behaviour that construct a specific group lifestyle. (Alsubaie 2015, p. 86)

In their exploratory study, Gilmour, Klieve and Li (2018) considered how select Queensland State high schools were meeting the unique needs of all students, including those from linguistically diverse backgrounds. The key finding from this study was that staff generally were not well equipped to either recognise or meet the special needs of students from culturally diverse backgrounds. Their study emphasises the importance of teachers appreciating the impact of cultural differences on a student’s engagement in a school program in the first instance, and taking the steps to come to know the particular challenges and expectations that students bring with them to the teaching–learning context. This study and others (Moloney & Saltmarsh 2016) highlight the importance of knowing your students. Such knowledge is vital if teachers are to meet the key aims of the Australian Curriculum.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students Burgess (in Lowe et al. 2019) reports that in a study related to the broader Aboriginal Voices project, she and her colleagues analysed research studies of Aboriginal education between 2006 and 2017. Their aim was to find evidence of teaching

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pedagogies that supported and improved educational outcomes of Aboriginal students. They found twenty-one studies that described effective, innovative pedagogies. These included pedagogies of wonder; generative pedagogies, place-based pedagogies and pedagogies that prioritised local Aboriginal voices. Some of the implications of these findings are considered to help teachers support and improve educational outcomes for all students.

Relationships Bahr and Ferreira (2018) state that ‘while accredited education programs must be designed around thirty-seven competencies as prescribed by AITSL, such competencies do not address the personal attributes or the relationships dimension in a teacher preparation program.’ The capacity to establish and maintain strong and supportive relationships with students, staff and parents/carers is at the very heart of what makes a successful, happy and fulfilled teacher. It is also essential if a teacher is to help the student develop to their full potential. While maintaining the formal relationship between students and teachers, teaching through relationships, when done well, recognizes the human stories of the learners themselves (they are not blank slates), as well as that of the teacher. It is an approach that embraces our complex identities, biographies, and the stories we bring that serve to humanize the subjects we teach. (Goodman 2015)

Significantly, teachers are required to understand the worlds their students live in and are influenced by, if they are to support them. The notion of the school as a living and vital part of the community is alive and well. Hargreaves and Fullan (2000) believe that teachers in the twenty-first century face considerable challenges as they are increasingly required to move beyond the school ground. A change force in teaching in the post-modern age is the way in which increased accountability, school choice, and cultural changes in families and communities are making teachers connect more with people and groups beyond the school— people who increasingly affect the world within it. Connecting with what’s ‘out there’, means teachers’ work and relationships are extending beyond the classroom to help their students within it. It means working more and more with adults as well as children and facing one’s fears to work more closely with those whom teachers might once have seen as their greatest adversaries and critics. (Hargreaves & Fullan 2000, pp. 3–4)

Ethics The values that underpin the work of teachers and those who work in schools include fairness, respect, integrity and responsibility (New South Wales Department of Education and Training 2010). The ethical aspect of the teacher’s work extends to a teacher’s commitment to a duty of care, and to strive to help all students to reach their full potential. When you read a state or territory Code of Conduct designed to guide the work of people such as teachers, certain qualities are always stressed. For example, the Code of Conduct for New South Wales (2010, p. 3) states that teachers:

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• be honest, trustworthy and accountable, courteous and responsive in dealing with others • be committed to social justice by opposing prejudice, injustice and dishonesty • make decisions that are procedurally fair to people and which avoid discrimination on grounds such as gender, race, religion and culture • promote dignity and respect by avoiding behaviour which is, or might be reasonably perceived as, harassing, bullying or intimidating • maintain professional relationships with students, parents and carers, colleagues, and business partners. Both preservice and early career teachers are bound by these mandated guidelines, and for the early career teacher, there are no exemptions; there is no ‘warm-up period’ during which the guidelines don’t apply. Each Code ‘places an obligation on us all to take responsibility for our own conduct and work with colleagues cooperatively to establish consultative and collaborative workplaces where people are happy and proud to work’ (New South Wales Department of Education and Training 2010, p. 5). We also urge you to read the relevant Code of Ethics of your state, territory or school system and become familiar with its expectations regarding the professional and personal behaviour of teachers. In Chapter 10 Teacher Well-being and Ethical Responsibilities, we look at some practical steps you can take to ensure you comply with the professional and personal obligations that come with your entry to the teaching profession. We will use the Queensland College of Teachers Code of Ethics for Teachers in Queensland: Framework, as a basis of this discussion. For the Code of Ethics, Duty of Care and related documents for your state, territory or school system go to the relevant government website. There is a list of these weblinks in the Appendix at the end of the book.

Duty of care An important aspect of the ethical obligations of the teacher is the duty of care that all teachers are expected to exercise when dealing with students. For example, the State Government of Victoria, Department of Education and Training (2020) advises: ‘Wherever a teacher–student relationship exists, teachers have a special duty of care. Generally, teachers are expected to take such measures as are reasonable in the circumstances to protect a student under their charge from reasonably foreseeable risks of injury.’ A high standard of care includes child safety standards: the provision of suitable and safe premises, the maintenance of adequate supervision, and the implementation of strategies to prevent bullying and ensure medical assistance to a sick or injured child. Recent changes have been made to state, territory and school system Duty of Care policies to reflect findings from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. For example, from 1 July 2017, any organisation in Victoria that is responsible for the supervision of children, including schools, will have an additional duty of care. According to the School Policy and Advisory Guide (State Government of Victoria, Department of Education and Training 2019a), ‘This duty

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of care will establish a presumption of liability, such that these organisations will need to prove that they took “reasonable precautions” to prevent child abuse, if they are to successfully defend a legal claim.’ As a preservice or early career teacher, you need to make yourself very familiar with these mandatory Codes and be consistently mindful of the consequences of any inappropriate behaviour or breaches, including your duty of care when employed as a teacher. In the course of this book, you will be alerted to the importance of adhering to such Codes as we look at ethical issues that can arise in the day-to-day work of the teacher both in the school community and the broader community.

Becoming a teacher: Being proactive and reflective This is where we address the importance of two key concepts: first, proactively setting out on your journey with a disciplined commitment to learning all you can about the important work of the teacher, and second, progressively developing your capacity to be a reflective practitioner. Why do we urge you to be both a proactive and a reflective practitioner during the preservice and the early career stages of your teaching career? We believe that when these two important elements come together, significant things can happen for you, the students and their parents/carers, colleagues and the school community. Every chapter of this book is based on the understanding that you will continually engage proactively and reflectively as you come to know your new profession. We encourage you to begin to develop both capacities well before your first appointment, and to continue to do so during the induction stage at your new school, and for the rest of your career. The AITSL’s Graduate to Figure 1.1 Australian Guidelines: four focus areas of induction Proficient: Australian Guidelines for Teacher Induction into the Professional Professional practices identity Profession (AITSL 2016b) identifies four significant FOCUS OF INDUCTION areas: professional practices, professional identity, well-being Well-being Orientation and orientation. All four areas are interrelated and interdependent. Under the focus area ‘professional practices’, you should be provided with ongoing support to enhance your knowledge of the curriculum, both in terms of its content and the most effective means of teaching that content (pedagogical content knowledge). Alongside this deepening of awareness of the curriculum and how to teach it, you will need opportunities to come to know the students, both personally and academically. At this stage, you begin to link content knowledge and teaching practices with individual learners and will be in a better position to teach that curriculum given the needs and capabilities of the students. In the focus area ‘professional identity’, you progressively learn more about the professional duties and obligations including a range of ethical, intellectual, cultural OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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and relational responsibilities, both with the school community, and in society generally. This growth in knowledge of professional identity is also closely linked to what is taught (content) and how it is taught (pedagogy), and how you relate personally and professionally to students, colleagues, parents/carers and the general community. The third focus of the AITSL Induction program concerns well-being. Well-being is possibly the most important area of focus in your induction. The successful induction program should provide nurturing, and timely personal and professional support as a new member of the profession. ‘Well-being is when individuals have the psychological, social and physical resources they need to meet a particular psychological, social and/ or physical challenge.’ (Dodge et al. 2012, p. 222) As explained by AITSL, ‘orientation’ is concerned with ensuring you progressively learn about the formal arrangements that guide and direct what goes on in the school (policies, practices, procedures and compliance obligations), and the less prescriptive but still significant cultural, interpersonal and transactional ways of working that stakeholders come to know and recognise. These informal arrangements make schools unique, and even experienced teachers new to a school take some time to come to know these cultural characteristics. Your understanding and appreciation of both the formal and informal practices operating in a school, and a critical awareness of the interpersonal dynamic existing between colleagues, will impact in a variety of ways on your professional practices, professional identity, and ultimately, your well-being.

Proactively preparing to be a teacher As you undertake your final year of study to be a teacher, you are likely to focus on meeting the APST. This process involves drawing upon coursework understandings and practicum experiences, both to articulate an appreciation of a standard and to provide evidence that the standard has been met. When applying for your first position it can be a real challenge to demonstrate that you understand something of the complex interplay that exists between the four AITSL-promoted focus areas: professional practice, professional identity, well-being and orientation. Quite reasonably, when you apply for your first position you will emphasise your understanding of curricular content, what to teach and how to assess student progress. Also, you will likely stress your understanding of the importance of teaching a differentiated program in order to accommodate the needs and learning styles of students in your classroom. Another area that you might give lots of thought to is student behaviour and how you would establish and maintain a safe and effective learning environment. However, due to limited experiences in schools, many preservice teachers have only some appreciation of other important dimensions of a teacher’s work. What teachers teach and how they teach is closely related to concepts covered in successful induction programs under professional identity and teacher well-being. Also linked intrinsically to the overall work of the teacher are elements concerned with cultural context. Cultural context includes how people in a school community relate to each other and go about their work. It involves shared and diverse expectations that come with roles and responsibilities and common local histories. All

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schools have unique cultural identities, what Caldwell and Spinks (2005) call ‘the way we do things around here’. Under a school’s cultural identity, we also recognise both the formal and informal practices that are maintained and supported by existing stakeholders. Many such practices can be deeply entrenched and durable. While formal school policies are meant to guide the work of teachers and other stakeholders, the implementation of such policies tend to be translated in particular ways, in the course of the day-to-day practices of school staff. The fact that some subtle and not so subtle changes have been made to a school policy in the course of its implementation over time, may not be obvious to a preservice or early career teacher. We believe that the best time for a preservice teacher to observe, personally experience and seek clarification about the interplay that exists between the four AITSL focus areas is during practicum. The preservice teacher needs to be positioned to come to an appreciation of the factors operating at the local school level that can both enhance and inhibit the work of the teacher. Understanding something of the crucial relationship between the diverse roles of the modern teacher and the cultural context of a school, needs to be the focus of an extended induction period and occur before a preservice teacher begins to apply for a position. Hint

During your visits to schools, set out to come to an understanding of the way various stakeholders at the school relate to one another as they fulfil their respective roles and responsibilities. Consider what makes one school different to another in terms of the way stakeholders relate to each other. Look for signs of a school’s unique culture—the ‘way we do things around here.’ (Caldwell & Spinks 2005)

Being proactive during and after practicum Why is it so important for you to be proactive in drawing together theory and practice, both during and after practicum? 1. Teaching involves the making of ongoing decisions about a wide variety of issues within the context of a dynamic and ever-changing cultural environment. While accredited education programs must be designed around thirty-seven competencies as prescribed by the AITSL, such competencies do not address personal attributes—we also need the relationships dimension in the teacher preparation program. (Bahr & Ferreira 2018). 2. It is essential that you actively seek to come to know and recognise how the unique cultural characteristics of a school impacts on the people who work in it. 3. It is your primary responsibility to actively seek to find the links between the implementation of the APST, and the factors at the local school level that can enhance or hinder the successful achievement of these standards. 4. You are a unique learner and no one else can take the responsibility for your professional development. You will have lots of opportunities to grow as a professional educator, but how much effort you put into your self-education ultimately rests with you and is your personal responsibility. To broaden your experience, take every opportunity to work in a voluntary capacity in a variety of schools. OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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5. Being proactive as a preservice teacher will mean that you will purposefully seek answers to questions and reflect deeply on your experiences and those of fellow preservice teachers and experienced colleagues. The insights you will draw from such practices will be reflected in your job applications, your job interviews and eventually how ready you will be to begin your teaching career. 6. When considering the APST, it is not enough to think theoretically about each Standard. Your capacity to demonstrate your understanding will be strengthened when you can contextualise your achievement of a Standard, within a particular learning–teaching context. Furthermore, your application will have more impact if you are able to maturely discuss what you learnt. We urge you to become committed to reflective practice. We introduce Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (1988) in this chapter as an example of a popular reflective strategy you could use. 7. If, as a preservice teacher, you proactively seek to observe, question, experience and reflect upon the procedures and practices introduced in this chapter, you will be better prepared to meet the APST. You will also be in a sound position as an early career teacher to take full advantage of the formal induction program offered by your new school.

The teacher as a reflective practitioner One of the keys to coming to understanding the complex role of the teacher involves the capacity to reflect deeply on what you experience. In the following section, we introduce reflective practices and present Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle as a valuable strategy that can help you develop as a reflective practitioner. In general, reflective practice is understood as the process of learning through and from experience towards gaining new insights of self and/or practice…This often involves examining assumptions of everyday practice. It also tends to involve the individual practitioner being self-aware and critically evaluating their own responses to practice situations. (Finlay 2008, p.1)

In the Preface, we shared some of the questions that preservice and early career teachers ask when talking about their readiness to begin teaching (see page xiv). The questions indicated something of the perceived complexity of the work of the teacher in the minds of those new to the profession. There can be no doubt that being a teacher in an Australian school will involve you working in a multifaceted, challenging and complex profession. Teachers are constantly required to make decisions regarding a wide range of issues and matters concerning who they teach, what they are teaching, and how they are teaching their students. Decision-making challenges facing all teachers cannot be stipulated ahead of time, given the unpredictable nature of what happens in a classroom environment (Cochran-Smith 2003), so you may want to employ one or more easy-to-follow reflective strategies to help you. In the following section we introduce Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (1988) as an example of an effective reflective strategy you can use both as a preservice teacher and as an early career teacher. You can use Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle to examine your own teaching experiences or as a handy reflective tool for thinking about the decisionmaking of mentors or colleagues.

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Reflective practices Reflective practices help you make sense of what you see and experience and lead to improvements in practice. Schön (1991) makes the distinction between reflection in action and reflection on action. Reflection in action is the kind of reflection that happens during a lesson, allowing the teacher to make on-the-spot adjustments to the lesson. For example, a poor response from students to the initial part of a lesson may lead the teacher to take steps to re-engage the students by referring to a recent local experience they are all familiar with. In this way, the teacher has linked the topic being discussed with the lives of the students. Alternatively, reflection on action is reflecting on how the practice could have been improved after the lesson has finished. Schön stresses the importance of looking back on a lesson in order to discover how our ‘knowing in action’ may have impacted on the eventual outcome of the lesson. In the example provided, the teacher reflects after the lesson on the success or otherwise of the steps taken to re-engage the students. In essence: did mentioning their shared experience work?

Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (1988) is related to Schön’s reflective practices and is based on Kolb’s Learning Cycle (1984 model), but incorporates a six-stage step to include the teacher’s thoughts and feelings about the experience. Figure 1.2

Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle 1 DESCRIPTION

What happened?

6

2

ACTION PLAN

FEELINGS

If it arose again what would you do?

What were you thinking and feeling?

3

5

EVALUATION

CONCLUSION

What else could you have done?

4

What was good or bad about the experience?

ANALYSIS

What sense can you make of the situation?

Adapted from Cambridge International Education Teaching and Learning Team (n.d.)

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Using Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle is a key strategy that both preservice teachers and early career teachers can use to better understand the complex nature of their work and the work of colleagues. The Cycle can be used to reflect on every element of your work. It will also help you to see relationships within and across the four focus areas of induction promoted by the AITSL. Hint

Over the final year of your preservice course, continue to evaluate your progress toward achieving the APST. These can be recorded in a reflective journal. Keep examples of the actual experiences you have, how you initially responded and what you, as a reflective practitioner, learnt from these experiences. You will be then be able to draw upon these reflections when preparing your job applications and responding to interview questions.

Your induction program Once employed, you will be involved in an induction program designed to introduce you to the school, its programs, policies and procedures. In the AITSL report Spotlight—Induction of Beginning Teachers in Australia: What do early career teachers say? (2018, p. 6) reference was made to the Hay Group (2014) review of Australian and international induction literature that ‘found evidence that induction provides a critical benefit to the teaching profession. Induction contributes to a culture of professional performance and development by supporting beginning teachers to effectively translate theories into teaching practice.’ During this induction, you will begin to appreciate how school-wide decisions are made, policies developed and reinforced, and how the school is managed on a dayto-day basis. You will also begin to understand the nature of the decision-making processes regarding the subjects you will teach. Not only what is taught, but how it is sequenced, prioritised, delivered and monitored. Normally, this will involve making decisions as a member of a team, activated and monitored by a team leader. At its best, such dynamic processes will require some negotiation, give and take, modifications, debriefing and the sharing of ideas to bring about the best outcomes for students. It will take time for you to come to understand these processes, and to feel comfortable making contributions. However, during the induction program, led by an experienced and supportive mentor, you should better understand the unique nature of these collegial practices, fellow staff, and the school program generally.

Case study Jonathon has recently taken up his first teaching position at Upstairs Primary School. It is week two of the new school year and the administrative staff call for all completed medical forms and permission slips for the upcoming swimming carnival. Jonathon had ‘forgotten’ to send these forms home on the first day. The swimming carnival is tomorrow! What should Jonathon now do?

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Chapter 2 Building Your Teaching Portfolio and Applying for a Job Applying for your first teaching position can be a challenging experience. This chapter considers the steps you can take as soon as you start your workintegrated learning, so that you can later secure a position that is right for you.

Key Topics • • • • • •

Applying for a teaching role Developing a teaching portfolio Finding the right school Types of vacancies Writing a job application The interview process

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Applying for a teaching role In this chapter, we look at the important aspects you need to consider before applying for job vacancies. The first step concerns preparing a successful teaching portfolio well before you begin your job applications. The second important step is ensuring you take measures to find the right school for you; is there likely to be a good fit between what you have to offer and the school you have selected? Given the diversity of our schools and school systems it is important to understand how and when vacancies are advertised, and the nature of these vacancies. You will also need to know the precise application processes required by the schools you are interested in.

Developing a teaching portfolio A teaching portfolio can serve at least two purposes. First, it is a collection of documents that provides evidence of your teaching experiences and practice, and your emerging teaching philosophy. The portfolio provides a record of the ideas that inform your teaching, which, in turn, form the basis of your unique teacher identity. (Chapter 1 Becoming a Teacher also includes discussion on this.) This may include your commitment to developing strong interpersonal relationships with students, colleagues and parents/carers; your developing interest in the utilisation of information technology to enhance the learning–teaching context and student outcomes; or a desire to implement engaging, appropriate and differentiated strategies to accommodate the learning needs of all students. The most professionally useful portfolio is one that provides you with an ongoing record of your development as a teacher. It helps you monitor your growth against significant personal and professional goals and to plan your next steps towards improved practice, so you can also refer to it when meeting with mentors or other colleagues. Second, while the teaching portfolio can be a helpful tool when applying for a job and during the induction period of your first appointment, it will also serve you well for the balance of your career. By its very nature, the teaching portfolio will continue to evolve as your professional knowledge and experiences grow. It is important to begin to develop and refine your teaching portfolio during your preservice course, as you will find that an abridged version can then be prepared prior to your first interview. This abbreviated version of the portfolio is often called the interview portfolio.

What to include As a starting point, we recommend using the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST)—see Chapter 1, page 4—to begin developing your teaching portfolio. You can decide exactly what to include in your portfolio, but as a preservice or early career teacher we suggest the following structure be considered.

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Introduction This should be a brief autobiographical introduction that captures the ‘essence’ of you, including your current interests, skills, travel experiences and family life. This section will likely consist of annotated photographs and short passages of text.

Experiences Typically a two-page summary of your experiences as a preservice teacher, this should give the reader some understanding of the diversity you have had in working with students and the community. Photographs, and perhaps a letter of thanks from grateful students or parents, can help illustrate your involvement.

Teaching philosophy The key features of your teaching philosophy should be addressed in this section of your teaching portfolio, in approximately two pages. This may include a reference of one or two key theorists, but ensure you emphasise your understanding of the role of the teacher. For example, the importance of engaging students in meaningful work, relationship building, ongoing assessment to guide planning and collegial partnerships. An example of when and where you have experienced each aspect will help the reader appreciate the significance of what you are introducing. Also, it is a good idea to briefly explain some of the key experiences that have helped shape your understanding. For example, ‘Through working with before- and after-school care programs, I have become aware of the importance of showing students that I am interested in them. I do this by encouraging each child to share their unique abilities and interests.’

Curriculum content and pedagogy This section should provide a focused summary of significant teaching experience related to the curriculum programs you expect to teach. You may relate specific aspects to the APST. As a primary school teacher, you should focus on literacy and numeracy, but also include other subjects from the primary school curriculum you see as important, such as Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Studies of Society and the Environment (SOSE) or Health and Physical Education (HPE) As a secondary school teacher, you should focus on the subjects and year level you are prepared to take, but it is similarly important to note the significance of literacy across the curriculum. You could also provide some of the successful teaching strategies you have used in your teaching; this displays your pedagogical content knowledge. For example, a primary school teacher might provide an overview of an interesting inquirybased unit of work, including some of the High-Impact Teaching Strategies (HITS) used. A secondary school teacher might refer to the use of Bloom’s Taxonomy to accommodate the range of skills that students have in a science class. In this section, both primary and secondary school teachers could provide examples of formative and summative assessment strategies they have used.

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Exemplars of practice Taking up approximately two pages, this part of your teaching portfolio should detail evidence of your teaching practices, and the examples given should support the comments made in the ‘Curriculum content and pedagogy’ section. The examples might include a range of artefacts, such as exemplary lesson plans, record-keeping approaches, samples of students’ work, and feedback from students or mentors. All samples should be accompanied by brief annotations explaining what the sample is, its use and what it demonstrates. For example, ‘Student-constructed Pioneer Hut: provides evidence of what this student had learnt (summative assessment) at the end of a unit of work on the first settlers in Australia. Demonstrates understanding of the harsh conditions early pioneers faced in colonial Australia.’

Student behaviour and well-being This section should provide an overview of your understanding of the importance of adhering to the school’s behaviour management and well-being policies. You could also briefly explain some of the principles underpinning effective classroom approaches to student behaviour management to help ensure the safety and engagement of students.

Ethical responsibilities Here you should introduce what you believe to be the key ethical responsibilities of a teacher. You could mention duty of care, the maintenance of accurate records, working with parents/carers, the importance of confidentiality, flexibility and fairness, and the use of social media.

Professional development Include in this section a brief summary of the main professional development activities or events you have participated in. Include the date, title of the event, name of the presenter, a brief account of what was covered, and indicate why this professional development was significant to you. Note: if you helped organise, led or took some part in the professional development activity, then make that clear. List some of the known professional development activities you propose to attend and provide the details if available. If you are not yet planning on attending any events, indicate the general nature of future professional development activities you would like to take part in. You could also mention subject associations, zone/district networks you are currently associated with and those you intend to join.

Certificates, awards and testimonials This final section provides you with the opportunity to present (with annotated introductions) any personal or professional artefacts you have collected that signpost your personal and professional identity. Include quality copies of degrees or diplomas, first-aid or Bronze Medallion certificates, details of trophies won, proof of professional

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association memberships, letters of appreciation, award ceremonies you have attended, newspaper articles that may mention you or your achievements, university transcripts, articles, books or papers published and the like. Hint

Make sure that everything in your teaching portfolio is a copy of the original. Never include any original material in a document like this. Some documents, such as your academic transcripts, may need to be certified.

The layout The basic elements of an effective teaching portfolio are as follows: • it is easy to read – includes a balanced mix of text, photos, illustrations, tables and figures – includes a Contents page to make it easy for readers to navigate the document • it is easy to update – uses a ring-bound folder so that outdated pages can be replaced with updated versions (remember: you will be regularly updating your teaching portfolio) • it is presented professionally – printed on high-quality paper – content is set in paragraph format, separated by consistent use of bold text for headings and subheadings – only high-resolution photographs are used. (Do not include photographs in which students can be identified. If you are including photographs of yourself teaching a class/group, ensure that the focus is on you.) • it signposts the APST.

Updating your teaching portfolio As you have new experiences, you will often reflect on and revise your understandings, teaching strategies and overall practice. Use your teaching portfolio to record these ideas, realisations and actual incidents, with comments, and include challenges and rewards that come along. You may simply make notes under certain headings, such as ‘Student behaviour’ or ‘Pat on the back’ as a record of such things. You can set aside a few blank pages at the end of your teaching portfolio for these notes so that you will remember them when you next update your portfolio. Use your teaching portfolio when discussing your progress with your mentor, especially in the course of your induction. You will then be mindful of the breadth of your development and not focus on only one or two aspects. Your teaching portfolio will become a significant source of evidence when you are applying for full registration. Weblink Building a Professional Portfolio: http://bit.ly/KAV_professionalportfolio

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Finding the right school It would be unwise to apply for a position simply because of its geographical location. Always do your homework to see if it is the right school for you. What does this mean? Astute applicants spend time taking personal and professional considerations into account before applying for a school. These include: • your current experience and expectations, and those of the school • the level of staff and community satisfaction with the school • your capacity to meet the school’s expectations regarding staff involvement in weekend sport, school functions and related school commitments • your appreciation of the challenges professionals can face living in a local community (if the vacancy is at a local school) • asking yourself if this is the job you really want and feel well prepared to take up. We suggest you use your networks and talk to people who know the school, such as fellow preservice teachers who have worked at the school, former and current teachers you may know, and parents whose children attend the school. Visit the school and ask yourself, ‘Does this appear to be a happy and engaged place for me to work?’ Arrange to meet senior staff, if possible. Read school newsletters available online. Don’t hesitate to ring the school and ask for clarification of any matter related to your prospective application. Sometimes we can learn about what is important to the school when visiting or asking such questions over the phone. For example, ‘How are queries dealt with by the school staff ?’

Types of vacancies Vacancies may be casual, part-time or full-time, and include relief, substitute and specialist teaching positions. Such vacancies may be short-term or permanent positions. It is essential to become familiar with the nature of a position’s tenure and the associated employment conditions, including salaries and leave entitlements (sick leave, holiday leave and long service leave). Given that many secondary school teaching positions require the successful applicant to teach across two or more subject areas, it is important to establish with the school authorities the percentage of time you would be expected to teach in the respective areas. Consider if you are qualified to teach these subjects across all levels if required. Most primary school vacancies advertised for graduates are generalist positions, though some may have a limited specialist role attached to the position, such as IT coordination or physical education. Many contract positions involve replacing a staff member for a few weeks or months, and up to two or more years in the case of a maternity leave replacement. Again, it is important to establish the employment conditions that exist for any such contracts.

How and when are vacancies advertised? All states, territories and school systems advertise vacancies on online recruitment sites and in print. In many instances, central authorities advertise lists of current

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vacancies that include details of the position, job title, job reference number and contact details so the applicant can apply directly to the school. In most state and territory advertisements of this kind, the selection criteria for the position is also included. Many private schools and colleges advertise vacancies on the respective school’s website and in the mid-week and weekend newspapers, though these advertised vacancies may or may not include key selection criteria. Many schools advertise vacancies for the following year from October. Replacement positions and temporary full- and part-time positions are generally advertised one month before the position is available, and this can be at any time of the year. If you are interested in this type of vacancy it is a good idea to let schools know, and provide them with your curriculum vitae (CV) in case such a position becomes available. For further detailed information regarding employment in your state or territory, go to the relevant government website. There is a list of these weblinks in the Appendix at the end of this book. Hint

For a variety of reasons not all vacancies advertised are ‘real’ vacancies—sometimes, schools are required to notify a vacancy when, in actual fact, the current incumbent has been actually offered the position. It is always wise to check with the school and ensure this is not the case before preparing a detailed application.

Writing a job application It is important for you to spend some time gathering and sorting relevant information about a school or school system’s application expectations, as schools will expect you to adhere closely to their guidelines. Common elements of an application include submitting a CV, cover letter, and responding to key selection criteria.

The curriculum vitae The term ‘curriculum vitae’, now commonly referred to as ‘CV’, derives from the Latin phrase meaning ‘course of life’. Hence, your CV should provide an overview of your professional and academic history. It is also helpful to list soft skills, personal attributes, interests and experiences you may bring to a prospective job, and which might increase your chance of getting the job, and include significant aspects of your teaching philosophy. Common characteristics of a CV include: • contact information. Include your full name, address, phone number and email address • academic history. List your current and prior study and qualifications, with the most recent at the top, including the name of each course, institution and the year you graduated. For example, ‘Master of Teaching, Deakin University, 2022’ • professional experience. Include your history of employment; organisations where you have worked (or currently work), job titles and the length of employment

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• • •

• •

Hint

of each appointment. Briefly add key responsibilities you had and any special achievements. For example, ‘In 2019, I was awarded Employee of the Year at Cadbury Australia’ awards, honours, grants and scholarships. Indicate details of the recognition and the year it was presented to you soft skills. What are your unique people skills? Mention some of the attributes that would be highly relevant for the position you are applying for publications and presentations. Provide details of any publications or presentations, including names of co-author/co-presenter, date and a brief summary. Don’t forget significant contributions to school or university life. For example, ‘Member of the successful Monash Debating Team in 2020’ professional associations. Provide organisation name(s) and membership period licences and certifications. Include both mandatory certification such as criminal history check or National Police Check, first aid or Bronze Medallion.

‘Soft skills’ are character traits that affect your ability to work and interact with others, and are sometimes referred to as ‘people skills’. Soft skills include communication skills, teamwork, flexibility, problem solving, creativity, forward thinking and reliability. By contrast, ‘hard skills’ are usually job-specific skills that are learnt through education and training. Think carefully about your soft skills and what they might mean to a future employer.

Curriculum vitae presentation While the content of your CV is important, the presentation and layout of your CV can impact on a potential employer’s first impression of you. The following tips might be helpful to refer to:  • Avoid using a standard CV for multiple job applications. It should reflect the unique nature of each vacancy you apply for. • Do not include marital status, date of birth, gender or ethnicity. • It must be easy to navigate and pleasing on the eye, so ensure it is correctly formatted. We suggest you use Arial, Helvetica or Tahoma typeface at 12-pt font size. For subheadings, use 14- to 16-pt font. Single spacing looks professional. • It must be well written. Always check your spelling. Have a trusted colleague proofread your draft for content and presentation. If your colleague finds it difficult to follow your CV then make the necessary changes. • Avoid underlining text. • Less is more, so space out sections. • Avoid overuse of complex graphics and colours as copies will be made in black and white for interview panel members. • There is no need to include your photo unless it is asked for. • Be selective about what you say about your personal life. • Ensure your contact email address is professional in nature. • Emphasise your measurable, relevant achievements.

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• Usually three referees are included in a CV. Choose a person who can vouch for you personally, and will speak well of you. This first person will likely be someone who has known you and your family for some time. The second person should be someone who is very familiar with you as a prospective teacher. The third might be a former employer or mentor who can attest to your workplace skills, attributes and commitment. Provide the name and title of each referee and include email and mobile phone details. Ensure you check with any referees before including them in your application, and confirm their contact details. It is also useful to send them a copy of your application.

Key selection criteria Many schools and school systems require job applicants to respond to selection criteria. Completed selection criteria are sent with a cover letter and CV to the respective school or college. Key selection criteria represent the key qualifications, experiences, attributes and skills an applicant needs to have to meet the expectations of the employer. All government schools use selection criteria, usually based on five core elements related to the work of the teacher. Examples of each are listed below these following core elements: 1. Content of teaching and learning Demonstrated knowledge of the relevant curriculum, including the ability to incorporate the teaching of literacy and numeracy. Demonstrated experience with respect to students’ learning needs. 2. Teaching practice Demonstrated experience in planning for and implementing High-Impact Teaching Strategies (HITS), guided by how students learn and evaluate the impact of learning and teaching programs on students’ learning growth. 3. Assessment and reporting of student learning Demonstrated experience in monitoring and assessing student learning. Demonstrated experience in using data to inform teaching practice and providing feedback on student learning growth and achievement to students and parents. 4. Interaction with the school community Demonstrated interpersonal and communication skills. Demonstrated experience in establishing and maintaining collaborative relationships with students, parents, colleagues and the broader school community to support student learning, agency, well-being and engagement. 5. Professional requirements Demonstrated behaviours and attitudes consistent with department and system values. Demonstrated experience in reflecting on practice and engaging in professional learning to continually improve the quality of teaching.

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How to answer key selection criteria Read each criterion carefully and note the keywords, such as ‘demonstrated ability’. Ask yourself when and how you have demonstrated the skills or capabilities that are called for. Hint

Try to keep your responses to key selection criteria between sixty and 120 words. Be factual and honest—without bragging—but don’t downplay your achievements, either.

Appreciate that the selection criteria often seek evidence of more than one skill or capability. In the earlier example for ‘Content of teaching and learning’, you are being called upon to demonstrate your ‘ability to incorporate the teaching of literacy and numeracy into your curriculum program’ and also your ‘experience in responding to students’ learning needs.’ When developing your response, ensure you cover both aspects. Hint

When describing what you did, use the active voice. For example, write ‘I developed’ or ‘I evaluated’, rather than ‘I was asked to develop’ or ‘I wanted to evaluate’.

Always provide clear evidence with any claim you make. It will be pointless to say, ‘I have a strong commitment to developing an inclusive curriculum,’ if this cannot be verified with evidence. Provide examples of what you have done that clearly demonstrate your commitment to inclusion. Hint

When developing your evidence, keep asking ‘So what?’ This will lead you to go beyond just saying what you did. It will also show why it was significant.

A number of approaches have been promoted to help applicants effectively address selection criteria. One is called ‘CAR’. C = Context. Describe the situation you were in. A = Action. Explain what you did. R = Results. Detail the outcome of the action.

An example of the CAR approach The following example shows how Erica, a Primary School Classroom Teacher: Generalist applicant, addresses one of the key selection criteria outlined in the school’s application. Demonstrated experience in planning for and implementing HITS, guided by how students learn and evaluate the impact of learning and teaching programs on students’ learning growth.

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First, Erica responds to the context of the criterion: ‘In the course of my final practicum at Highlight Primary School, I was required to modify a program to accommodate the learning needs of a Year 1 student. The student had been diagnosed with a receptive language disorder and was often unable to complete tasks when the teacher presented instructions orally.’ Second, Erica describes the action, or what she has done, in order to show evidence of her understanding: ‘I created a sequenced (numbered) set of visual prompts for each step of the teacher’s instructions to assist the student to sequentially follow these directions.’ Finally, she outlines the result: ‘I incorporated visual prompts into my program for this student and the student continued to use them effectively. This has led him to being able to participate in the classroom program more independently.’ Note that Erica also provides evidence that supports what was achieved, by including a brief comment from her supervising class teacher: Erica’s strategy of using simple visual prompts demonstrated initiative. Her use of this strategy indicates she understood this child’s learning needs and how to adjust the program to help him. I have continued this strategy with him to great effect. He is now much more confident when attempting reading activities. (Mary Smith, Class Teacher)

Hint

Another approach is known as ‘SAO’:  S = Situation. Where and when you did something. A = Action. What you did and how you did it. O = Outcome. What was the result of your actions? And another is known as ‘STAR’: S = Situation T = Task A = Actions R = Results

Weblink Addressing Selection Criteria for Education Students: http://bit.ly/KAV_SelectionCriteria

The cover letter A cover letter, usually no longer than one page, is a letter that accompanies your formal job application. The purpose of the cover letter is to introduce yourself to a possible employer and indicate the position you are applying for. It is also your opportunity to demonstrate that you have the experience and skills that match the position’s requirements, and to encourage the employer to read your accompanying resume.

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How to write a cover letter • Each cover letter should be unique. It is also important to use a different cover letter for every vacancy you apply for, as you will need to adjust it in order to demonstrate that you are especially suitable for each position. • Address the recipient by name, followed by the position held at the school. When preparing to write a cover letter, find out the name and the position of the person responsible for reviewing the applications and address the letter to them directly. That is, do not begin the cover letter with ‘To whom it may concern,’ or ‘To the principal,’—use the appropriate personal name and formal job title. For example, ‘To Dr Fatemeh Amin, Head of Department,’ or ‘To Mr Patrick Smith, Recruitment Officer’. • Provide your name and contact details at the top. Note that your email address should reflect a professional attitude. • Clearly state the name of the position you are applying for, and any reference number attached to the position. For example, ‘Classroom Teacher: Mathematics/ Science, reference no. 57324,’ or ‘Graduate Teacher Program: Generalist Primary Teacher, reference no. 98680’. • Provide a brief summary (bullet points are fine) of your skills and experience that best match the job description. In the sample cover letter provided (see Figure 2.1), you can see how selectively and economically Erica has presented her industrial experience that relates to her management skills. She has mentioned volunteer work in schools over the past four years, her experience coaching young people and her success as a debater. She has also referred to some of her soft skills. Finally, Erica indicates that she is familiar with the school and some of its special programs, suggesting that she could make a ‘significant contribution’ to the school. This final section of Erica’s cover letter is especially convincing; she indicates how her experience and competencies link with an emerging teaching philosophy formed over the course of her teaching degree. Erica has made a strong case for her application to be considered. • At the end of your cover letter, direct the reader to your application. You could write, ‘I enclose my application for this position for your consideration.’ To conclude, indicate that you look forward to hearing from the school and that you would be happy to provide more information if required.

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Figure 2.1 Sample cover letter

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The interview process The interview is the most common way prospective employers seek out the best candidate for a position. The majority of schools will timetable one interview per candidate; however, some may arrange a second interview to ensure the right person is selected. They may also ask those on a shortlist to take part in some on-site team teaching where members of the interview panel can observe the applicant at work. In the following discussion, we have assumed that there will be one interview conducted.

How the interview is organised Written applications are read and those applicants on the shortlist are notified of the interview time. The members of the interview panel are briefed about the skills and qualities they are to look for in the candidates selected for interview, and each member of the interview panel will be allotted certain questions to ask. If key selection criteria were listed in the advertised vacancy you will find that their questions will be based upon that criteria. When notified of your interview time and place, establish what supporting information the panel may expect you to bring with you. You may be given the opportunity to present your professional portfolio (the truncated version of your teaching portfolio). In the days leading up to the interview ensure you read over your application. Also reread any information you have gathered on the school’s programs. Think carefully about the most appropriate attire to wear. Also double-check both the location of the school and the time it will take you to get there; we suggest you arrive at the school about half an hour before the scheduled time. Report to the office, where you may be given a file containing information about the position and the questions that the panel will ask. Use the time available to read the questions and consider how you might answer each one.

The interview begins… The chairperson will introduce themselves, welcome you, and introduce you to each panel member. The first question is usually a quite general ‘warm-up’ question, designed to help you relax. Often this question will give you a chance to explain why you have chosen to be a teacher, or why you have applied for a position at this school. Use this introductory question to help establish something of your background. Also remember that the interview is not just about promoting your professional or academic credibility, it is equally about the panel coming to realise what you could contribute personally, as a member of staff. Panel members need to see the real you.

During the interview After the initial question, individual panel members will proceed to ask you the questions they have prepared. It is likely that some of these questions will require you to respond to a scenario. For example, ‘How would you deal with a student who

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regularly refuses to complete written assessment tasks?’ (Note that all applicants should be asked the same questions given the importance of following merit selection policies established by state and territory employment guidelines.) This phase of an interview can be daunting, but there are steps you can take to help you control the process: • See the interview as a professional exchange of ideas. Appreciate that no one intends to trick you during the interview. Panel members want you to do well. • Feel that you are well prepared for the interview. You have ‘done your homework’ preparing for this day and the panel has chosen to interview you because you have submitted an excellent application. • Listen carefully to each question and respond in a focused way, drawing on your experiences for examples of practice. Don’t lose yourself in theory and never waffle! • Maintain eye-to-eye contact with the person asking the question. • Use your voice to advantage. Watch volume and vary tone to maintain interest— remember, you are telling your story in an engaging way. • When responding to scenario type questions first try to ascertain why the student is behaving in this way. In the scenario question example given earlier, the student’s refusal to write may be due to any one or more of the following reasons: – He is embarrassed to write because he does not want to misspell words. – The student may have a diagnosis of autism and this may be impacting on his language and fine motor skills. – He may be anxious about some personal matter. • Once you have shown the panel that you are aware of some possible reasons for the behaviour, you can then suggest how you might proceed to help the student. For example, provide the student with a variety of ways he can use to demonstrate what he has learnt. • Use supporting documents to enhance and not detract from what you are saying. • Quietly seek clarification when unsure of a question posed. • Avoid the use of jargon, colloquial expressions, clichés and emotionally laden terms. • Try not to say ‘Um’ and ‘Ah’! • Admit limited experiences but acknowledge the importance to you of ongoing learning. • Demonstrate that you know about the school and show interest in programs or projects mentioned by the panel. • Never criticise other schools and teachers. • Be mindful of what you wrote in your application, as panel members have read your submission and may be seeking clarification of some of the points you made. • Realise that your personal attributes (soft skills) are just as important to panel members as your professional and academic capacities. Show excitement, express some enthusiasm for the job and don’t forget to smile and show something of your sense of humour.

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At the end of the interview Many interviews end with the chairperson asking the applicant if there are any further questions. We suggest you use this opportunity to find out more about an aspect of the school’s program that interests you. Such an enquiry indicates that you have made the effort to get to know more about the school. It may also provide you with the opportunity to express your interest in becoming involved in that program or initiative, should you be appointed. The chairperson will then thank you for attending the interview and indicate when a decision will be made. You should then thank the panel members (by name if you can) and depart.

How the panel comes to a decision The process of coming to a decision about who to offer the position to varies across organisations. However, the following common procedures are generally followed by schools and other organisations. The panel has a short debrief after each interview. At this debrief the members of the panel give their impressions of the applicant’s answers and overall suitability for the position. The focus here will be on the extent to which the applicant has satisfied the selection criteria. It is not unusual for panel members to have some difference of opinion on the quality of the responses given by the applicant. Further discussion might ensue to help the panel come to some consensus. When the panel has interviewed two or more applicants the panel begins to prioritise the completed interviews. After all interviews are concluded the panel comes together to make a final decision.

What happens next? The successful candidate is often advised by phone and then in writing and given a set amount of time to accept the position. Once the position has been filled, unsuccessful applicants are usually notified in writing.

Comments from the selection panel Wouldn’t it be valuable to be a ‘fly on the wall’ and hear what panel members say about you after an interview has finished? Figure 2.2 highlights a range of such comments. We ask you to think about the significance of each comment and what it suggests about the applicant’s response and what the panel member was looking for during the interview.

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Figure 2.2

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Feedback from panel members after an interview

Zanthia was an enthusiastic person, and I could see her fitting in with our Middle School team. She admitted to no experience in certain areas, but was willing and eager to learn about some of the programs we're doing. Zanthia took the initiative to find out we were using success criteria strategies in our classes. Wade was very enthusiastic about IT, and tried to sell that side of things rather than responding directly to our questions about his personal teaching philosophy. I felt Wade thought we were ignorant about IT.

Yes, Zanthia does appear to be a well-rounded, sociable person and she also plays competitive sport at the weekend. She has some solid coaching experience and would be able to contribute to our extracurricular sporting programs. Madeline revealed a sound appreciation of how to handle a behaviour management crisis and I appreciated the way she responded to the scenario we introduced. Madeline was certainly aware of the need to be well prepared for such behaviour and stressed the positive approaches that would minimise the behaviour issue.

Heidi showed a mature understanding of how to relate positively to parents who can be quite demanding at times and actually said that although parents or carers sometimes advocate strongly for their children, she would not take such a response personally, and would always immediately follow up any issues. Roshen impressed me with the obvious efforts he made to get to know our school before applying for this position. He even knew about our charter goals for the next three years and that was quite unusual. Julia was hesitant when asked if she would be interested in taking a junior year level. Clearly, not prepared to be flexible at the moment.

I agree, I could see Heidi talking to her mentor if she was unsure of how to respond in a difficult situation.

Yes, I agree, at the end of the interview we asked Roshen if there were any questions—he asked us about the way we emphasise student voice in our planning.

Linden was not sure if it was possible to attend a staff pre-planning session over the holidays, if offered the position, and had already made other arrangements to travel.

I felt that Glen was very Parker was extremely nervous and casual in both dress and attitude spoke very quietly during the interview. It was during the interview. Glen needs to hard to elicit any significant detail about what Parker work on the professional aspects of might bring to our school, despite a very impressive the job and really demonstrate academic transcript, and I can’t see Parker managing readiness to take up the the students here. I think could advise Parker to gain responsibility of a teacher. more experience in a variety of schools doing casual relief teaching work before committing to a full-time position. Kadin worried me because his answers to some of the key selection questions seemed to be different from what was written in the application. Kadin was quite vague at times about the significance of the experiences he had had during practicum. He seemed to be describing the experiences rather than demonstrating what he had learnt about the work of the teacher.

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How to respond if you are unsuccessful The best advice we can give is don’t give up. Most people apply for numerous positions before they are successful. You may find that you initially don’t get to the interview stage. If this is happening, get some help from experienced colleagues or seek professional advice from people who work in the employment and recruitment industry. If you are reaching the interview stage but going no further, it may be time to seek feedback from the local interview panel as to why you were unsuccessful. Debriefing with experienced colleagues soon after an interview is held is also wise. This process may help you recognise some steps you can take to improve the personal or professional side of your presentation at interviews. Hint

If you are unsuccessful in your job hunting, it may be time to work with trusted colleagues and take part in a mock interview. A mock interview provides you with the opportunity to think on your feet as questions are posed against selected criteria, and you will receive immediate feedback on your efforts. Experienced colleagues can also give you advice regarding both the adequacy of your answers and your presentation style.

Notes

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Chapter 3 Beginning Your Teaching Career This chapter provides guidelines to help you take the initiative and navigate the early stages of your induction with confidence.

Key Topics • • • • • • • •

First steps on being appointed Meeting your mentor Orientation Meeting your colleagues Ongoing induction Getting to know your students Planning for your first day Foundation classes

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First steps on being appointed Your initial introduction to your school may be through the relevant senior office staff. As soon as possible after your appointment, contact the school to organise to meet your mentor and deliver your formal documentation. Table 3.1

Formal documentation

Documents you will need to bring to the school

Documents the school will give you*

Certified copies of your academic records and first-aid training certificate

Your letter of appointment including your role description

Teacher registration documentation

Your contract of employment—check that all documentation is accurate, especially the contract start and end dates

Working with Children Check

The relevant state or school statement of the Child Safety Code of Conduct

Your personal details (name, residential An Information and Communications address, phone number) and a chosen contact Technology (ICT) Staff Agreement form person’s details (spouse, parent, partner, friend) and any relevant medical information Your bank account details

The Fair Work Information Statement

Tax File Number (TFN)

Tax File Number (TFN) Declaration form

Current superannuation fund details (if appropriate)

Australian Taxation Office (ATO) Super Choice Fund form (if this is your first place of employment)

*These may vary according to the system or state of your employment

Meeting your mentor The earlier you can meet with your mentor, the better. There is a lot to learn about the professional requirements of your teaching position and the unique requirements and organisation of your school. In this section, we refer to the teacher you may work with in partnership at your level, or in your faculty, as your ‘buddy’, while the senior staff member who manages your formal induction is known as your ‘mentor’. In smaller schools, your buddy may also be your mentor. The relationships you develop with your buddy and your mentor will be especially important during the induction phase. You will have many professional discussions with these colleagues during your first months of teaching and they will provide you with an understanding of your school’s philosophy, curriculum structures, overall job requirements, and your school’s unique culture and organisation. While your mentor will initially ensure that you receive as much practical information as possible,

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your induction will develop over time to include coaching you, challenging you and providing you with support when needed. Some of the following strategies may be implemented: • Inviting you to observe teaching practices of more expert colleagues in the school. • Having ongoing professional conversations with you, observing you teach, providing you with relevant feedback, helping you reflect on your practice and prompting you to set personal teaching goals. • Providing you with the necessary emotional support to maintain and enhance your sense of well-being. • Organising opportunities for you to attend professional development programs provided by regulatory authorities, which are required in order to complete the full registration process. It is vital that you remain an active participant in this process—to ask questions and be open to learning—as this formal relationship will continue over the first two years of your appointment. New South Wales schools have a model of induction that they call the 5C Model (New South Wales Department of Education 2019a), though similar induction programs are provided in other states and territories. We quote key points of the 5C Model in the following section, as it provides a useful and easy-to-remember overview of the key elements of teacher induction: 1. Customised—your induction will be tailored by your mentor to accommodate your expressed needs. The needs of beginning teachers are diverse and dependent on context. A beginning teacher’s personal dispositions and skills can vary, as can their concerns about teaching and their career aspirations. Added to this are the particular challenges that each school, student cohort or class can pose. (New South Wales Department of Education 2019a)

2. Context—this will be the major emphasis in your first weeks. This involves the ‘where to go’, ‘who to ask’ and ‘how to get things done’ aspects: ‘Context is grounded in the school’s distinctive blend of people, practices and policies, resources, routines and relationships, norms, narratives and knowledges, needs and networks.’ (New South Wales Department of Education 2019a) Under ‘context’, you will be provided with information and insights into the school and its policies, procedures and personnel; the students and their backgrounds, achievements and assessment; and the community with its distinctive composition, complexities, key stakeholders and resources. 3. Connections—these will involve linking you to more experienced teachers who can help you settle in. ‘‘Connections’ recognises induction as a whole-school responsibility. Instead of putting responsibility onto a single teacher mentor, quality induction programs direct beginning teachers to different teachers as needed.’ (New South Wales Department of Education 2019a)

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4. Curriculum—this concerns your introduction to the teaching–learning program. New teachers need considerable time and support to acquire the sophisticated knowledge and skills to make competent decisions about curriculum. Quality induction supports them to do this by building beginning teachers’ understanding of pedagogy and practices. Expectations and processes can be clarified, resources provided and capacity is enhanced through co-planning, co-teaching, professional learning, observation and constructive feedback. (New South Wales Department of Education 2019a)

5. Classroom—this covers establishing a safe and orderly environment, establishing routines and a classroom where productive habits are nurtured. Source: New South Wales Department of Education (2019a)

Weblinks AITSL Graduate to Proficient: Australian Guidelines to Teacher Induction into the Profession: http://bit.ly/KAV_AITSL AITSL The First Few Weeks: http://bit.ly/KAV_AITSLvideo

Orientation Guided by your mentor, the following professional orientation opportunities should be made available to you well before you begin teaching classes. Ideally you will: • take part in a school tour to familiarise yourself with the school environment • receive a copy of the staff handbook, and, if available, an outline of your induction plan • meet the staff in charge of the resource centre, library or computer lab; and learn about access, search and borrowing procedures • be directed to all school policies on the school network or in hard copy, especially the Child Safety Policy and Behaviour Management Policy • receive a copy of the whole-school timetable for the current term that shows major events, staff meeting dates and the topics these meetings will cover. Topics may include things like first-aid training or literacy pre-assessment. Hint

Make sure you are thoroughly familiar with the staff handbook before you begin the school year. Keep this handbook within easy reach.

The staff handbook Most schools have a staff handbook that covers the main regulations and procedures that staff members are expected to comply with. See Table 3.2.

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Table 3.2

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Staff handbook regulations and procedures

Policy area

Handbook coverage

Legal liabilities

• specific rules of your school with emphasis on the constant supervision of your class(es) while on the school premises • areas that students can access in the school, rules regarding leaving the school during the day, school bus supervision and other safety rules at arrival and dismissal time • rules concerning students visiting toilets during class time • expectations regarding the orderly transitioning of students from one class or room to another • regulations regarding mandatory reporting • supervision of students when they are off campus

Health and safety issues

• first-aid requirements and facilities in the school • first-aid duty roster—note requirements/methods of recording any sick or injured student, and when you must contact parents • students with serious chronic health issues—familiarise yourself with these students and their needs, even if the children are not in your class(es) • documentation your school has on record for students who are anaphylactic, asthmatic or epileptic. It is also important that you are aware of the place where spare EpiPens and asthma puffers are kept in the school

Behaviour Management/ Well-being and Anti-bullying policies

• school policies in your classroom, including the use of proactive and reactive measures (e.g. restorative practices, anti-bullying programs, exclusion/detention)—it is essential that you adhere to these

Yard/playground duty • areas of the yard where students will be, and the areas where teachers are posted • areas of the school grounds that may be ‘out of bounds’ to students Wet/hot day procedures

• how staff are notified that wet/hot day program will be enacted, and what is expected of staff on such days

Requirement of the daily attendance roll

• your school’s specific regulations concerning when the attendance roll is to be taken

Disaster Plan (Displan) drills and evacuation areas

• the procedures and locations of your school’s evacuation drills— check the procedures and locations personally as you will most likely have an evacuation drill very early in the school year (so be prepared for this!)

Being absent

• who you should contact if you are going to be absent from school, and when is it appropriate to notify this person. Be mindful that a replacement teacher will need access to your teaching program.

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Figure 3.1 Action plan for anaphylaxis

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Figure 3.1 (page 46) is the standard medical form used for a student’s anaphylaxis Action Plan. You will also find that your school has medical Action Plans for students who suffer from asthma, epilepsy and diabetes. Weblinks Maintaining Accurate Records: http://bit.ly/KAV_AccurateRecords Attendance School Policy: http://bit.ly/KAV_AttendanceRecords

Meeting your colleagues It is important to meet your colleagues and begin the process of building professional relationships with them. Once you begin collaborating, try to experience the processes used in these professional curriculum planning meetings, such as who leads the discussion and how team members contribute. Reflect on how you can contribute when you get the opportunity.

Curriculum planning with your level or faculty Note how overviews of the term’s curriculum are recorded (for example, on Google Docs, or school-based planners), and remember to take note of who is responsible for each curriculum area, and when such documents are to be finalised. It is also a good idea to become aware of the pre-assessment schedules in each curriculum area you are teaching; keep a record of when these are to be completed and where data is to be recorded. This is also a good time to become familiar with the school timetable. Primary teachers: note when your students will be taught by specialist teachers; you may be responsible for taking your class to these specialists. Similarly, note any special times or dates that involve your class or year level during first term. For example, school assemblies or special presentations, beginning-of-school events, initial parent–teacher interviews, sports days, camps or excursions. Figure 3.2 is an example of a Foundation teacher’s term program overview and Figure 3.3 is an example of a specialist teacher’s term program planner for Health and Physical Education (HPE). (A blank program planner template has also been included in the Appendix at the end of this book.)

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Figure 3.2 Term program overview Week + special events

Circle time

Week 1: Friday, 8 February Clapping-in Ceremony 9am

Week 2: Tuesday, 12 February Parent information evening

Week 3: Tuesday, 19 February Special guest night Friday, 22 February School photos

Week 4: Friday, 1 March — School Closure Day (PD off-site)

Reading/ Comprehension Letters: s, m Phonological awareness: syllables

Writing

Pre-writing activities Multisensory activities Letter formations: s, m Pre-writing activities

Emotional literacy: Lesson 1 Recognise and identify their own emotions

Letters: a, t, p

Describe situations that may evoke these emotions

Words: a, I Punctuation: upper- and lower-case letters

Introduce diary writing: writing of name

What do emotions look like?

Letters: i, n, d

Multisensory activities Letter formations: i, n, d

Lesson 2 Students recognise and name some commonly experienced emotions

Phonological awareness: syllables, CAP: 1:1 matching

Phonological awareness: syllables, CAP: letters, words, and sentences 1: 1 matching Initial sounds

Letter formations: a, t, p

Diary writing: writing of name

Words: the, it, in

Students identify what the emotions look like through facial expressions and body movements

Punctuation: upper- and lower-case letters

Mirror Mirror on the wall ...

Letters: g, o, c

Lesson 3 Students name emotions

Multisensory activities

Phonological awareness: Rhyme, CAP: letters, words

Maths

Counting songs and numbers

Integrated

Fairy-tale Friday

School rules/class expectations

Numbers 1–5 recognition and sequence Counting songs and numbers Subitising dots

Reading and Writing Goldilocks and the Three Bears

Linking dots to digits to pictures Length

Introduce 6—double 3 Hands-on ways to make 6— recognise the word, dots on the dice for 6

Reading and Writing The Gingerbread Man

Number formation Revise 1–6

Multisensory activities Letter formations: i, n, d

Introduce 7—number, word and counting

Student free day

Note how the term overview also lists special events for both students and staff. Some sections of this are not filled out given these are working documents that are progressively completed during the course of a term.

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Figure 3.3 Term program planner

Foundation: Term 4 program planner LEARNING AREA

Health and Physical Education (HPE)

STRAND

Movement and Physical Activity

YEAR LEVEL

Foundation

CURRICULUM CONTENT DESCRIPTORS

Moving the body Practise fundamental movement skills and movement sequences using different body parts and in response to stimuli in indoor, outdoor and aquatic settings (VCHPEM064) Participate in games with and without equipment (VCHPEM065) Understanding movement Identify and describe how their body moves in relation to effort, space, time, objects and people (VCHPEM067) Learning through movement Cooperate with others when participating in physical activities (VCHPEM068) Follow rules when participating in physical activities (VCHPEM070)

Achievement Standards By the end of Foundation Level, students recognise how they are growing

and changing. They identify and describe the different emotions people experience. They identify actions that help them be healthy, safe and physically active. They identify different settings where they can be active and how to move and play safely. They describe how their body responds to movement. Students use personal and social skills when working with others in a range of activities. They demonstrate, with guidance, practices to keep themselves safe and healthy in different situations and activities. They perform fundamental movement skills and solve movement challenges.

Learning Intentions

We are learning to throw and catch.

Success Criteria

I can use my eyes to follow the object. I can catch with my elbows bent and my hands in front of my body. (Track, reach, grab.) I can move my hands to meet the ball.

Weblinks Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority’s Examples of Whole School Curriculum Plans:  http://bit.ly/KAV_WholeSchoolCurriculumPlans NSW Education Standards Authority’s Recording Evidence: http://bit.ly/KAV_RecordingEvidence

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Ongoing induction During the first few weeks and months of your career, you will need to be proactive in sorting out many issues. Make sure that you continue to have close links with the colleagues who can assist you during these early days.

Meeting with your buddy Try to have daily contact with your buddy to discuss any issues with students or parents/carers during your first week. Hopefully, you will now have some regular time to meet with your buddy to plan your next week’s program. Also check the school’s organisational procedures for: • assembly—specifically, where your class will be located • resource borrowing for students and teachers • specialist lessons, timetables and handover • wet/hot days • excursions—permission forms, etc. • staff birthday celebrations • staffroom duty.

Issues to discuss with your mentor Your mentor will be responsible for providing you with the continuing professional and personal support you will need during your first year of teaching. Your formal induction will develop your knowledge of the professional processes of teaching and the development of your own professional identity as a teacher. They are your first point of contact for the following issues: • Discuss with your mentor any queries you may have about ICT staff agreements (including use of social media), and use of the school’s intranet. • Clarify attendance roll requirements—it is essential that you have this correct, as it is a legal requirement. • Locate your yard duty areas and discuss first-aid duty requirements. • Discuss Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) and Disaster Plan (Displan) training. The induction process will provide you with opportunities for formal professional learning experiences, and the chance to join teacher networks. Your mentor will organise time for you to work in collaborative ways with other teachers in the school, including your buddy. You will be given opportunities to observe good practice, innovation and creativity in the teaching of leading teachers in your school. Examples of experiences you may have during the year in your professional induction process are: • meeting with curriculum leaders and discussion of the school policies and planning documents for major curriculum areas

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• provision of ICT and assessment and reporting training—introduction of the reporting guide and assessment requirements • arrangement of opportunities to observe other teachers’ lessons and debrief afterwards • arrangement for team-teaching opportunities with buddy or leading teachers • attendance at government-required information sessions for provisionally registered teachers • celebrations of successes along the way and opportunities to reflect.

Getting to know your students Your mentor will arrange opportunities for you to take part in professional practices such as the following example for the start of the school year: • Arrange to meet and work with your teaching team or faculty. • Attend end- or beginning-of-year curriculum planning sessions and, if possible, assist or co-teach in a class of similar level. • Attend orientation days for next year’s classes and meet your new class. • Receive a copy of your class list. • Take part in handover discussions using transition profiles of students. • Be made aware of any students with special learning needs in your class.

The benefits of meeting your students at orientation It is of huge benefit to all stakeholders if you can attend orientation days when students meet their new classmates and their new teacher. Many students become very anxious when they are changing teachers and moving up a level at school. This is particularly the case with Foundation students and Year 7 students, who are moving from primary school to larger secondary schools. Orientation days provide you with the opportunity to allay that anxiety to a degree. You may also have a chance to speak to some of the parents/carers of your prospective students. During orientation sessions, most schools provide non-challenging activities for students. It is an excellent time for you to move about your classroom, while students are engaged in a task, to take note of: • students who appear reluctant to attempt your task—those who say, ‘I can’t do this!’ • students with poor fine motor skills • students who don’t engage socially with their classmates • any Foundation students who are clingy or teary and want their parent/carer to stay • any loud or boisterous students • students who appear to have ‘attitude’

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• students who engage in discussing a topic and those who don’t engage • secondary students who show enthusiasm for certain activities, subjects or pastimes such as the science laboratory, ICT, sport or classroom games. You should record your observations and add them to each relevant student’s personal file. Keep these in a secure place for ongoing reference. You will use these to assist in your lesson preparation, and progressively refine your knowledge of students’ needs and interests.

Formal handover sessions These are meetings with your students’ previous teacher(s). They will give you information about the learning and social or emotional needs of your new students. If your first class is a Foundation class, it would be very helpful if you were able to visit the kindergarten or pre-school that your students attended. Discuss the children’s needs with the early childhood teacher and note the child’s capacity to play appropriately with others; the level of development and clarity of the child’s language; how long the child can concentrate on more formal learning tasks, such as jigsaws and listening to stories; and the child’s fine and gross motor skill development.

Students with special learning needs It is important that you learn as much as possible about any students with special learning needs in your new class. At your handover session, you may be given access to the confidential files on these students. Check through these and note any formal assessment reports, students working on an Individual Learning Plan (ILP), and minutes of Student Support Group (SSG) meetings where applicable.

Hint

For those students who have been assessed by psychologists, speech pathologists or occupational therapists, read the recommendation sections of their reports and take notes for later reference. Remember that this information is highly confidential.

As a formal part of your induction, you may meet with the member of staff responsible for students’ diverse learning needs. Use this opportunity to become more fully informed of the intervention programs that are in place. Some schools use pro formas at these meetings to record the transfer of important information. They may be referred to as a Learner Profile or more detailed Student Profile and History. (See Chapter 7 Supporting Students with Special Needs for more information on diverse learning needs.)

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Pre-assessment If you are teaching in a primary school, you will be involved in a process of preassessment of your students in literacy and numeracy. Most schools provide teachers with release-time from their class while they are carrying out these assessments. As an early career teacher you will naturally take longer to complete these tests. Ask your mentor if you are unsure of the correct processes of any testing, as there may be some assessment tools that you have not seen during your preservice training. Your buddy teacher or your mentor can model the testing procedures for you, and then observe while you perform the test with your students. Make sure you also know how and where to record student data. In secondary schools, most pre-testing is done during the transition program with Year 7 students. This is often an online process, and if you are teaching Year 7 students, you will receive the results of this testing when you take up your teaching position. The data for older students would be available from the school database.

Reflective Exercise Using Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (see Chapter 1, page 18), reflect on the information you have gathered over the last few days. How has this information shaped your understanding of the work ahead? Are there still gaps in your knowledge? What further steps can you take to ensure you are ready to take your first class(es)?

Hint

Create a personal ‘survival kit’ Include the following: Band-Aids, Panadol (for yourself only, of course) sunscreen, a hat/cap (for yard duty), tea-bags, coffee, a water bottle, hand sanitiser, a whistle, sneakers and socks (if you take a Physical Education (PE) class or play games in class).

Planning for your first day Prior to your first day, it is very important that you have thought about the classroom environment you want to develop, and the kind of relationships you wish to have with your students. These aspects are significant components of your developing professional identity: • Check the school stationery supplies. They will ideally include a diary, Texta pens, whiteboard markers, multiple pens (blue, red and black), highlighters of various colours, a multitude of different packs of stickers that are age appropriate for your class, Post-it note packs, scissors (with your name on them), glue sticks, Blu-tac packets, stapler and staples, a staple gun (label this) and staples.

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• See if you can access extra supplies like a timer, a bell, and a collection of music and movies that are age appropriate for your class. • Reread the curriculum for your teaching area(s) in secondary school or, in the case of primary school teachers, the curriculum areas to be covered in Term 1. Familiarise yourself with possible areas of revision from the previous year’s curriculum, but only plan for the first two weeks. • Design your classroom management plan. It is essential with students of all ages that you are clear from the beginning about the rules and expectations of behaviour in your classroom and across the school. Psychologists such as Michael CarrGregg (2018), tell us that all young people require boundaries to their behaviour. If students understand your rules and expectations, you will have a much happier and more productive classroom. Always keep a focus on rewarding and encouraging positive social attitudes and learning behaviour, and set up some incentives or rewards for your students. See Chapter 8 Understanding Behaviour and Student Well-being for guidelines on establishing rules and expectations in your classroom. • Organise your classroom procedures so that you are ready to teach on the first day. The strategies you introduce will depend on the age of your students, but even older primary school and Year 7 students sometimes need to be told the rules of how the classroom is organised. See the following section for suggestions. These rules will need to be explained and modelled by you many times over the first few weeks/months. • Organise paper distribution, collection and material storage systems: – labelled trays and boxes for spare maths and English worksheets, extension work for quick finishers – school administration—school notes, newsletters and permission slips – work to be corrected including homework, work to be conferenced and project work – corrected work returned to students – spare pencils, pens, glue sticks and scissors – a specific place where students keep their lunch boxes and drink bottles and where they hang their bags. • Create some data documentation systems for student assessment. Ask your buddy or mentor about the prescribed data documentation processes that are used in the school. Find out: – where and how to record the data from any pre-assessments – if you need to enter data on Excel spreadsheets or in the school’s data system – about informal observation notes and students’ sample pieces of work, and what type of filing/portfolio system you should have in your classroom. • Keep up to date with data collection, both formal and informal, as this will be essential when you meet with parents/carers at the first and subsequent parent–teacher interviews.

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• Plan at least one formal learning task for your students on the first day. This is especially important for your senior students, as they will hopefully be keen to get started. Even your Foundation students will expect to take something home on their first day to show their parents/carers, ‘What I learnt at school today’. These tasks would generally be ones that your students will complete without difficulty, and the students may like to work with a partner or in a small group. Secondary teachers may consider the following: – Provide senior students with a syllabus or course outline for the term, semester or year. Inform them about the topics they will study in your teaching area, and any special activities, such as excursions and guest speakers, that will be introduced over the course of the program. – Have your students produce a self-portrait that may be written or drawn while you complete yours. – Teachers can introduce their curriculum area using a Guessing Game. This involves giving a series of true/false statements about your area of study and having students guess whether these statements are true or false. – English teachers can show students an exciting clip from a novel to be read in the first term. Students are left ‘hanging’, and are therefore encouraged to read their novel to see what happens next. – Teachers of biology or maths can start with a challenging problem or begin by reading a novel about their area of study, or a biography of a famous scientist or mathematician. • Plan some ‘getting to know you’/icebreaker activities for the class. Also, be aware that some of your students will be anxious starting the new school year. Include activities that will support these students. Weblinks Icebreakers that Rock: http://bit.ly/KAV_Icebreakers Student Voice Kit: http://bit.ly/KAV_StudentVoice Anxiety: http://bit.ly/KAV_Anxiety Strategies to Support Anxious Children in the Classroom: http://bit.ly/KAV_UnderstandingAnxiety

An ‘About Me’ activity may help you to get to know your students and possibly their learning style. (See Figure 3.4 on page 56.)

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Figure 3.4 About Me questionnaire

About Me My interests are:

The ways I like to learn are: Favourite school subjects and subjects I dislike:

What I'd like to do after I leave school:

Clubs I’m involved in are:

Activities we do as a family or group include:

My gifts and talents are:

Challenges—what I could do better:

Goals—what I would like to be able to do:

Who I like to work with: Favourite music, movies, books, computer games or sports:

Interest in IT and my capacity to use it:

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Primary teachers often use some of the following activities: – Ask students to write or draw about their holidays. – Read stories to the students that are suitable for the first days of the school year. – Have students play crosswords and letter puzzles, or maths games, like Sudoku. – Have them play board games such as Chess, Scrabble and Boggle. – Fill in Interest and Multiple Intelligence inventories as above. – Begin to record on an ‘I Wonder Wall’ a brainstorm about the 1st Term Inquiry Unit. – Foundation teachers take photos of students as they arrive for school and these are printed on coloured paper frames. The child may attempt to write their own name under the frame or the teacher can do this. – Set up 'buddy’ activities between older students and the Foundation and Year 1 students. Weblinks 36 Tips and Resources for the Ultimate Classroom Set Up: http://bit.ly/KAV_36Ideas Summer To-Do List for First Year Teachers: http://bit.ly/KAV_BeforeFirstDay

What should I do on the first day? Reflect on the areas mentioned above, and you will be as prepared as you can be for your first day. Some reminders and additional tips are addressed in the following section.

Your professional dress Be aware of how you present yourself to your students and their parents/carers. You may need to dress a little more formally than normal until you sense what dress standard is acceptable or expected at your school. You will find that all staff will look much more professional than they did during student-free planning days.

Your phone Remember to turn off your phone or put it on silent well before students and parents arrive. It is very unprofessional to be checking your phone while you are in class or when you are greeting parents. Leave your phone until your students have all exited the classroom. This is a practice you should get used to throughout your teaching career.

Your schedule Your program on day one could look like this: • Get to school early and make sure your classroom is as inviting as possible. Make sure your computers and interactive whiteboards are working. • Welcome your students and parents. Introduce yourself and invite students to come in.

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• Ask the students to find and attach their name tag and take a seat where they can begin a prepared activity or game. Older primary students may design their own name tag. • Tell the students something about yourself, your family, your interests and how excited you are to be teaching them this year. A fun way to engage students in this is to have a paper bag, from which you draw various items, and students try to guess how these items tell something about you. • Take the attendance roll and encourage students to tell the class and you something about themselves. Remind students that we listen to each other and we take turns to speak. • Play a ‘getting to know you’/icebreaker activity. You could start with an easy one such as: ‘Find Someone Who …’ This activity can be used with a variety of age groups. • Discuss the organisation processes that you have set up for your classroom. These may be different from last year’s routines for students, so go slowly with this, especially for younger students. • Complete one of the learning activities you have prepared. • Have students write you a brief description of their holidays. Collect these and use them as an early example of your students’ writing skills. • Revisit the general school rules with students of all ages. Talk about rules in the playground, safety rules, uniform requirements and ways we show respect for all teachers and students. • Discuss your expectations for behaviour in your classroom and the consequences of not complying with these. Focus on the positive and tell students about your rewards for good behaviour. Try to ‘catch’ some of your students exhibiting the rules of the class and give praise or stickers as rewards to younger children. Hint

Always speak to your mentor and check your school Behaviour Management Policy before you include these consequences in your classroom.

Intersperse your day with several icebreaker activities, songs, games, ‘show and tell’, and reading picture books to the younger children. Have senior children read to the class or give them time for silent reading and board games. It is a good idea to go for a walk around the school and visit the school library. During this walk, you can discuss areas of the playground where students can play and appropriate ways to move around the playground while other classes are working. You may also decide to have an outside game as a reward.

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Figure 3.5 An example ‘getting to know you’ activity Find Someone Who … * Barracks for the Tigers

Went interstate or overseas for the holidays

Saw a movie during the holidays

Has blue eyes

Is the eldest child in their family

Plays basketball

Has a pet

Plays an instrument

Likes spaghetti

*Students can only enter the name of a student once

Hint

During the first few weeks you will need to regularly revisit organisation, routines, classroom rules and expectations. Try to include a ‘getting to know you’ activity every day. This will help your students to feel safe and welcomed in the classroom and will support any new students to the school and especially students who have difficulty making friends. Gradually introduce more formal learning structures, such as small group learning tasks, to your class. These will be based on your expanding knowledge of your students’ abilities, gained from your pre-assessments and ongoing observations.

Reflective Exercise Use Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (see Chapter 1, page 18) and consider the strategies you employed to introduce your behavioural expectations. Consider what worked well and what you could improve on in the days ahead.

Weblinks First Day Teaching Toolkit Study Guide: http://bit.ly/KAV_FirstDayTeaching Tips for New Teachers: The First Day of School: http://bit.ly/KAV_FirstDayTips Critical First Week of High School: http://bit.ly/KAV_FirstWeekHighSchool

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Foundation classes In most schools, Foundation students will be introduced to school in a gradual way. While essentially, your focus is the same as those for more senior classes, it is necessary to understand that your students, and sometimes their parents, are experiencing the formal school environment for the first time. While most children in Australia attend early childcare education centres, there will be differences in the experiences they have had in preparation for school. Consequently, it is important to be aware that some of your students may not be ready to: • learn the routines of your classroom • apply the rules of the classroom • begin formal learning. You will also have increased involvement with the parents/carers of your Foundation students, especially those with a first child starting school. Hint

Check your school’s policy regarding having parents in your classroom with their child on the first day. We would suggest that you encourage parents/carers to say a quick goodbye, even if the child is distressed. Reassure parents/carers that the school will contact them if need be. Some excellent readings that you can share with parents of Foundation students are: How to Cope with your Child’s First Day at School: http://bit.ly/KAV_ChildFirstDay Starting School: http://bit.ly/KAV_StartingSchool

You should have support from teacher aides and other staff to help you settle your Foundation class on the first morning. Make sure you speak to all parents/carers at pick-up time and mention how their child settled in. Show the parent/carer any task(s) that the child completed during the session. Weblinks The First Week of Prep: http://bit.ly/KAV_FirstWeekPrep Early Years Curriculum Materials: http://bit.ly/KAV_PrepMaterials

Reflective Exercise At the conclusion of your first day (after a relaxing coffee and chat with your colleagues), consider using Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle to analyse any concerns that may have arisen. (See Chapter 1, page 18.)

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Case study 1 Samantha has had quite a successful first couple of days with her Foundation class. However, she is very concerned about Robert, who refuses to enter the classroom each morning. He cries and clings to his mother and cannot be coaxed into the room to join the other children. His mother is very distressed about this. Samantha is noticing that other Foundation students are becoming unsettled. Given your experience and the information shared in this chapter, what advice would you give Samantha?

Case study 2 Jin had prepared an engaging lesson utilising YouTube clips as a fun way of introducing a new Year 10 unit of work. Everything was going well until the internet dropped out. The class quickly became unsettled as Jin attempted to fix the problem. After five minutes, he sent a student to the office to see if anything could be done. The student returned saying the office staff were currently busy with new parents. From your experience, what advice would you give to this teacher?

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Chapter 4 Getting to Know Your Students through Assessment Early career teachers may find it difficult to know where to start when planning to teach. You may feel overwhelmed with the amount of work required, and the variety of decisions you need to make. In many instances, more experienced staff will have made decisions for you. You may find in these circumstances that teaching strategies and activities, and approaches to assessment will have been discussed in some detail before you take up your appointment. However, you may find that there is still significant planning to be done by the teaching team and individual teachers in your area. Either way, the same kind of understandings or principles apply regarding your decision-making.

Key Topics • Getting to know your students • The central place of assessment • Learning intentions and goals

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Getting to know your students We anticipate that you come from your university studies with a sound understanding of curriculum content. Therefore, this book is not trying to teach you any particular curriculum content, but to focus on the key principles and strategies you can use to come to know your students, and so be in a better position to teach them. We present assessment as a central means by which teachers identify the learning and social or emotional needs of their students in order to plan differentiated learning programs.

Your initial briefing Before you make decisions on your teaching practices it is essential that you are briefed by your mentor and other colleagues about the students you are about to teach. Hopefully, you will have the opportunity to access students’ academic files, previous reports and recorded information about their broader social, sporting, cultural interests and achievements. While such information may be quite general at this stage, it does provide a basis for some early decision-making regarding planning for your first weeks. Danielson (2007) includes this as an important feature in her Four Domains of the Framework of Teaching. Danielson highlights the importance of teachers being aware of any students who have previously been on Individual Learning Plans or Behaviour Support Plans. Part of this information sharing should include noting the specific social, emotional or learning goals written for the students, and the strategies that have been found to be successful. This is especially important at the start of a new school year when students are adjusting to you, their new teacher. The information you gather at briefings with your mentor, other staff members and perhaps specialists should provide you with valuable background concerning selected students. However, it is equally important to think more broadly about information gathering you will need to be involved in as you begin to plan a relevant, rich and individualised teaching program. We suggest that you reacquaint yourself with the key attributes of quality assessment and how these impact on the work of the teacher and school.

The central place of assessment Assessment is central to the work of the teacher. Being an early career teacher, assessment will be intrinsic to your decision-making as you come to know your students and how best to teach each one of them. Teachers should start by developing a clear understanding of where each student is at in his/her learning. Through assessment, teachers identify gaps in knowledge, set learning goals and gauge the level of support needed to ensure all students achieve. (Australian Capital Territory Government Education 2016)

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Why is quality assessment so crucial? The Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority’s (QCAA) Understanding K–12 Assessment (2018) guidelines offer some valuable insights into the nature and use of quality assessment practices, which serve multiple purposes, including: • provision of feedback to teachers. This includes diagnostic evidence of students’ strengths, ways of learning, areas of development, the depth of their knowledge, and their conceptual understandings. This informs the teacher what students can do and what subsequent teaching is required to progress student learning • provision of feedback to students and parents/carers that gives clear, specific, meaningful and timely feedback, allowing reflection on the learning process and collaboration to support future learning and development • development of lifelong learners by enabling students to identify and reflect on the progress they are making, which is crucial to building self-evaluation, self-efficacy and self-responsibility for in-depth and long-term learning • refinement of quality teaching by supporting teacher reflection and professional learning • provision of information for certification • measurement and evaluation of policies, programs, interventions and teaching strategies to provide better understanding of student achievement and growth. QCAA’s Understanding K–12 Assessment guidelines also include a section on the principles of quality assessment which introduce significant ways teachers and schools can strengthen their assessment practices. We urge you to consider these assessment principles in some depth, as you progressively develop your teaching program. Many of the activities and suggestions introduced later in this chapter are based on these understandings. QCAA remind us that quality assessment be aligned with curriculum, pedagogy and reporting; equitable; evidence-based; ongoing; transparent; and informative. Visit the website (see the following Weblinks feature with the link ‘KAV_ UnderstandingAssessment’) to see these principles discussed in detail. Weblinks QCAA Understanding K–12 Assessment Guidelines: http://bit.ly/KAV_UnderstandingAssessment QCAA Planning for Teaching, Learning and Assessment Prep–Year 10: http://bit.ly/KAV_PlanningForAssessment

On the final principle, QCAA asserts that quality assessment should provide teachers, students, and parents/carers with information ‘about the depth of students’ conceptual understandings, problem solving, analysis, synthesis and critical thinking.’ (QCAA 2018)

Formative assessment Formative assessment is an integral part of the teaching and learning process. It is important because it: • provides you with knowledge of whether a student’s learning is on track, and what you might need to change in your lessons. For example, modifying the way you have designed the lesson using an oral presentation without visual prompts, and the pace you are introducing new material OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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• provides feedback to your students about what is to be learnt, what achievement of standards looks like, and how their learning is progressing. Chappuis and Stiggins (2002) indicate that formative feedback provides your students with the answers to the following questions: – Where am I trying to go? – Where am I now? – How do I close the gap? Formative assessment can consist of: • observations of students’ verbal and non-verbal feedback during class activities (e.g. ‘thumbs up, thumbs down’) • question and answer sessions (planned and spontaneous) • individual learning conferences between student and teacher (writing, guided reading, mathematics) • students informally presenting their work (share time) • reflection journals—where students self-evaluate their performance and progress • rubrics to assess each other’s work (peer assessment).

Summative assessment Summative assessment is largely used to help identify what students have learnt in the course of a unit or sequence. Examples include: • final year exams • term tests • prescribed standardised tests (NAPLAN) • projects • portfolios. Hint

Consider a variety of ways your students can show what they have learnt in your summative assessment tasks. This is what is called ‘differentiation’. Be aware that when you undertake summative assessment tasks at the end of a unit, students may also be demonstrating significant understandings that you may not have expected at the outset.

Getting to know your school’s assessment program While the attributes of quality assessment covered here are expected to be in place in Australian schools, you will certainly find variations in their implementation. Part of your orientation time will include coming to know the school’s assessment schedule, including details of the actual assessments undertaken, when and how they are administered, and how the information gleaned from these assessments is utilised and stored. In the following pages, we will consider some of the features of such assessment programs, and selected strategies used by schools to gather information.

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In particular, see Chapter 5 Effective Strategies for Lesson Planning for more detailed discussion on High-Impact Teaching Strategies (HITS), which include the use of success criteria and learning intentions.

Literacy and numeracy Your school will have an assessment schedule in literacy and numeracy. It will be important to note any obligations you may have regarding these assessments and the dates set for the pre-assessments for your class. As an early career teacher, this can be a stressful time as you will be slower at completing these tests with your students (particularly Foundation to Year 2 students). More senior students may be tested by paper assessments, and your responsibility might be to assess the papers and record the results.

Pre-assessment Pre-assessment is undertaken at the beginning of the school year and before new units of work are taught. The aim of pre-assessment is to find out what students know and do not know. (Sometimes what they have forgotten over the holiday break!) Here are some of the pre-assessment strategies used by schools: • Mandated pre-assessment in literacy and numeracy. These may include the Observation Survey, Burt Word test, Levelled Reading, Torch, Probe, Progressive Achievement Tests (PAT-R and PATMaths), and the Early Numeracy Interview. • Moderated student work samples (e.g. a running record of a child’s reading, pieces of writing, a mathematics test) with colleagues, using directly observable evidence of skill/knowledge or students’ specific learning needs. • Use of rubrics or checklists to assess work samples against learning criteria (from either school or national or state curriculum standards).

Should all students be included in data collection? You should investigate whether your school permits you to provide a range of differentiated tasks for students with special learning needs, before including the results of their assessment in your data. This is especially appropriate if standardised test formats are the basis of the school’s pre-testing schedule. During the year, you will likely introduce your own differentiated formative assessment tasks that will enable you to come to know more about the academic progress, the different learning styles and the personal and social capabilities of your students. Hint

You will probably have a great deal of early assessment to be completed during the first weeks. Be aware that you will take more time to complete this than your more experienced colleagues. Be ready to ask your mentor for more time if you are under stress during this time.

What is pre-assessment data used for? Pre-assessment data can be used to: • give you up-to-date information concerning the skills and understandings your students possess • identify any gaps in student learning in a curriculum area OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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• assist you to plan what to teach, and how to teach it • closely link and focus future teaching and learning of the students of a particular level to the state or Australian achievement standards • group your students according to their learning needs • assist you to create the first appropriate class or group, or individual learning intentions or goals for your own class. This data gives you a benchmark from where you begin to plan for your students • write success criteria for learning intentions • assist in the development of Individual Learning Plans (ILPs) when required • encourage all students to embrace their learning challenges by developing a growth mindset in your classes. You will do this by encouraging students to develop their own learning intentions and success criteria • modify your teaching program for individuals or groups of students when needed • enable all teachers in the school to create Data Walls (virtual and actual), and to analyse the learning development of students in different levels of the school. This is a valuable professional activity that teachers do together to enhance learning across the school. Remember to be mindful of student confidentiality when using Data Walls or similar displays of achievement in your teaching or learning spaces.

How might your school record this data? Your school will require pre-assessment data to be added to the school server or designated spreadsheet. You may also like to record your data on simple charts that become your own personal record-keeping process for your class(es). Table 4.1 displays a simple way to record Foundation pre-literacy data. This Foundation teacher has highlighted two students whose scores show they may be ‘at risk’. As the year progresses, the teacher is then able to focus closely on the progress of these students. You could use a plan like this for any curriculum area and for students of all levels. Table 4.1

Name

Example record of Foundation pre-literacy data

Concepts about print /24

Reading text level:

Letter identification /54

Word reading score /15

Writing vocabulary

Hearing and recording sounds in words /37

Isabelle

16

3

50

5

10

15

Jamie

8

0

4

0

0

0

Mizuki

14

2

12

5

1

0

Jack

18

5

52

8

8

13

Amir

4

0

2

0

0

0

Charlie

15

2

15

3

2

12

Flynn

22

28+*

54

15

25

35

*The + sign indicates that the student is reading beyond the tested range, which only goes to Level 28.

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Weblinks NSW Education Standards Authority—Differentiated Programming: http://bit.ly/KAV_ DifferentiatedProgramming 7 Smart Ways to do Formative Assessment: http://bit.ly/KAV_FormativeAssessment The Impact of Formative Assessment and Learning Intentions on Student Achievement:  http://bit.ly/KAV_ImpactAssessment

Learning intentions and goals Once you have completed your pre-assessment, you should have a reasonable understanding of the needs of your students. The next step involves setting learning intentions or goals. Learning intentions and goals are what you, the teacher, want your students to be able to do at the end of a lesson/unit of work. The Victorian Department of Education and Training (2018) notes: ‘Individual learning goals and targets motivate students to: become more active participants in the learning process; become independent learners; identify what is important to their own learning; [and] achieve their full potential.’ (State Government of Victoria, Department of Education and Training 2018) The Room 241 Team, in their article Overview of Robert Marzano’s Model of Teaching Effectiveness, provide a valuable introduction to Marzano’s teaching and how you can employ many of his strategies. Marzano (2007) provides some useful advice concerning establishing learning goals. He explains that knowledge falls into two categories: declarative knowledge such as facts, vocabulary, principles and concepts; and procedural knowledge, which refers to skills, strategies and processes. We can write two different types of goals. A goal showing declarative knowledge might be: ‘Students will understand the climatic conditions that led to the formation of the cyclone.’ However, a goal exhibiting procedural knowledge might be: ‘Students will be able to use a calculator to determine the answer to a multiplication algorithm.’ Hattie (2009) stresses how important learning goals are for effective teaching. He encourages teachers to develop what he calls a visible learning classroom by: • displaying clear learning intentions and goals, which are referred to at the beginning, middle and end of lessons • jointly constructing challenging success criteria with students • using a range of learning strategies during lessons • knowing when students are not progressing and assisting them • providing immediate and relevant feedback on success criteria • actively modelling how to be a visible learner. There are some logical steps you can take when developing a learning intention or goal:  • Begin with the national and state curriculum documents, and the term and unit overviews for your school. Your goals need to be clearly linked to the curriculum.

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• Use the data gathered from pre-assessment that identifies the students’ needs in your class, and write goals that address the students’ next learning steps. • Start by writing whole-class learning intentions or goals, and as you become more confident, refine your approach to writing goals for small groups or individual students. • Try to write goals and success criteria that are challenging, but achievable for students. • Write ‘SMART’ goals. This means they are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and include a time frame. Remember to use language that is suitable for the age group of your students. • Display your learning intentions where students can see them, and refer to them at the beginning, middle and end of your lesson. This will help your students stay on track during their learning. You may decide to write the learning intention and success criteria on your interactive whiteboard or have individual copies on the tables of younger students. Learning goals and success criteria should be written so that the different learning abilities and learning styles of your students are catered for. An example of a wholeclass learning intention for Year 4 Writing might be: By the end of Term 2, we will create a piece of text that is focused on its main idea, and has sentences that contain appropriate language, correct grammar and spelling. The success criteria for this goal might include: Our writing will stay focused on the topic and have a beginning, middle and end. We will use interesting words that will make our ideas clear and we will include sentences of different length. Our writing will have very few spelling, grammatical or punctuation errors, and show that we have edited the writing. (Note that here we are catering for different ability levels.) We will type our story or video ourselves presenting it orally. (Here we are catering for different learning styles.)

Ensure your learning goals guide your teaching and assessment Sometimes in a busy classroom we can be distracted from where our teaching focus needs to be and not implement timely and appropriate assessment tasks. It is most important therefore, that you:  • link your class activities and practice specifically to the learning intention being addressed. This will help ensure students see the relevance of what they are learning, and also means there is no time for ‘busy work’ • explicitly demonstrate to your students the links between the learning intentions and any assessment tasks. You may use graphic organisers to help with this. For example: ‘Minnie, I’d like to see if you can write a story that has a title and shows a beginning, middle and end, with interesting words to describe what is happening. Use this model or graphic organiser.’ (See Figure 4.1.)

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Figure 4.1

71

Example of a graphic organiser for a Year 4 Writing task

Name: ______________

Year 4 Writing Task

Title: Beginning:

Middle:

End:

• Encourage your students to self-monitor their progress. Teach them how they can present evidence to show that they have achieved their goal(s). You might use checklists of the success criteria Figure 4.2 Example of a success criteria checklist or rubrics to do this, such as the SUCCESS CRITERIA CHECKLIST example shown in Figure 4.2. • You will also need to explain or Tick when complete display any differentiated learning intentions and success criteria to My writing has a beginning, middle and end. I have used interesting words. individual students or small groups My sentences are different lengths. when you are focusing on explicit I have checked my spelling. teaching of specific skills. If you I have checked my full stops and commas. have an integration aide working My writing is ready for my reader. with a student or a group, make sure they have a copy of the learning intentions and the success criteria for the student or group. There are many ways you can write and display your learning intentions and success criteria. Some teachers use the WALT and WILF acronyms, meaning: WALT = We Are Learning To … WILF = What I’m Looking For … Some teachers use rubrics to assist students to write their own success criteria. The rubric can then be used by students to assess their own work or that of their peers. Even young students can create simple rubrics with your help—they can write their own learning intentions and how they can achieve them (i.e. success criteria). Others can write their goals on simple proformas. Some are shown in the examples in Figure 4.3.

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Figure 4.3

Setting and achieving goals—example student pro formas

Personal learning goals pro forma Name: ______________

Goal—area for improvement or future learning: ___________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________

What strategies will I use to achieve my goal? ____________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________

How can I show that I have achieved my goal? ___________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________

Did I achieve my goal? Yes / No

Why / Why not? ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________

Adapted from State Government of Victoria, Department of Education and Early Childhood Development 2007, p. 45; acknowledgement: Glen Katherine Primary School

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Goal-Setting Action Plan—Term 1 Name: ______________ Writing goal for Term 1: _________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ Strategies I can use to improve my writing goal I could: Practise my goal Learn more about my goal Talk through my goal with others Get assistance from others Other specific actions ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ Strategies I can use to improve my individual goal ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ People who can assist me to achieve my goals and what they could do Myself: ________________________________________________________________________________ Teacher: ______________________________________________________________________________ Parent/carer: __________________________________________________________________________ Peer: __________________________________________________________________________________

Adapted from State Government of Victoria, Department of Education and Early Childhood Development 2007, p. 47; acknowledgement: Wheelers Hill Primary School

We have also included two rubrics written by the teacher for a Year 5/6 class. Teachers use rubrics to encourage students to self-assess and reflect on their level of achievement of success criteria. The first rubric addresses students’ level of engagement and application during a Literature Circle activity.

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Figure 4.4

Examples of rubrics

Success Criteria Rubric for Literature Circle Activity Filled in by__________about___________

Date:

Level One

Level Two

Discussion

Does not participate in group discussions. Offers few opinions and makes no personal connections to the text. Does not ask questions.

Participates reluctantly in group discussions. Offers few opinions and makes limited connections to the text. Asks simple questions.

Participates competently in group discussions. Offers some insightful opinions and makes connections to the text. Will occasionally ask thoughtful questions.

Level Three

Participates enthusiastically in group discussions. Offers insightful and thoughtful opinions and makes pertinent connections to the text. Asks pertinent, thoughtful questions that extend beyond the text.

Level Four

Role fulfilment

Does not complete role task.

Task is done with minimal effort.

Role task completed independently and on time. Task is thoughtfully done with genuine effort.

Completes role tasks independently and on time. Tasks are thoughtfully done, demonstrating extension of the activity.

Reading

No reading completed.

Has some of the assigned reading completed.

Has most of the assigned reading completed.

Completes assigned reading on schedule.

Following Directions

Off task the majority of the time and disruptive to the group.

Sometimes follows the group discussion but is off task some of the time.

Follows the group discussion and is only off task occasionally.

Follows the discussion consistently and is never off task.

Listening

Has difficulty paying attention to the speaker.

Listens occasionally but does not interact with the information.

Listens carefully for information and comments occasionally.

Listens to other people’s ideas. ‘Piggy-backs’ or builds off others’ ideas.

Persuading

Rarely exchanges, defends, or rethinks ideas.

On occasion, exchanges, defends and rethinks ideas.

Usually exchanges, defends and rethinks ideas.

Is always prepared to exchange, defend and rethink ideas.

Respecting

Usually chooses to argue or ignore the group in an uncooperative manner.

Interrupts when others are contributing in an attempt to share their ideas.

Usually respects the opinions of others and demonstrates a willingness to participate cooperatively.

Respects the opinions of others. Encourages and supports the ideas and efforts of others in a cooperative manner.

Sharing

Does not contribute to the group.

Will share only occasionally or only with selected group members.

Will offer ideas when asked.

Offers ideas and reports finding enthusiastically.

The second rubric presents the level of student achievement on the success criteria of a Reading assignment.

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Success Criteria Rubric for Reading Assignment 4 Timeline

Legible timeline showing more than 6 events in the text Descriptive details given

3

2

Legible timeline showing 5–6 events in the text

Legible timeline showing 3–4 events

Details given

Some details given

1 Fewer than 3 events listed in timeline

Illustrations included

Illustrations included Character profile

A–Z list

Includes 10 or more questions answered

Includes 7 or more questions answered

Includes 4 or more questions answered

Fewer than 4 questions answered

Full-size image of chosen character

Full-size image of chosen character

Full-size image of chosen character

Image of chosen character not full-size

Includes 4 extra details relating to character

Includes 3 extra details relating to character

Some details relating to character

No other details of character

A–Z included

A–Z included

Some A–Z letters missing

More than half A–Z missing

Complex words/phrases included

Some complex words/ phrases included

Single words

Single words for each letter

Use of description

No graphics

Use of description

Attempt at description

Detailed presentation

Some detailed presentation

No graphics

No description

Includes 2 text elements

Includes 1 text element

Includes 0 text elements

Graphics and illustrations

Some illustrations

Attempt at illustrations

Visually appealing

Attempts to make it visually appealing

Attempts to make it visually appealing

Promotes reading extensively using research

Promotes reading extensively

Some promotion of reading

No promotion of reading

Mentions the text as a good book for students to read

Mentions the text as a good book for students to read

Briefly mentions text as a good book for students to read

Writer uses vivid words and phrases that paint a picture in the reader’s mind

Writer uses great words and phrases that sometimes paint a picture in the reader’s mind

Writer uses words that lack variety

Graphics included Bookmark

Includes 3 text elements— title, author, short blurb, detailed graphics and illustrations Visually appealing

Pamphlet

Poem

Every word is in the perfect place No spelling or grammar mistakes

Includes 1–2 mistakes in spelling and grammar

Writer makes 3–4 mistakes in spelling or grammar Is 10–12 lines

Is 14–16 lines

Writer uses limited vocabulary, writing appears rushed Includes 5 or more mistakes in spelling or grammar and/or the project is presented in pencil Fewer than 10 lines

Is 18 or more lines New cover

No mention of the text as a good book for students to read

Front and back

Front and back

Visually appealing

Visually appealing

Includes title, author, illustrator

Title, author, illustrator visible

Attempts to make cover visually appealing

Not completed

Title, author, illustrator visible

Illustrations/graphics Blurb on back Letter

Includes all 5 parts (date/ heading, greeting/ salutation, body, closing, signature) Includes 3 or more developed ideas

Missing one part

Missing 2 parts

Missing 3 or more parts

Includes 3 ideas organised into paragraphs, shows awareness of audience

More than one idea organised into a body paragraph

No details included Missing a beginning or ending Ideas organised into simple sentences, no paragraphs

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Teachers also record learning intentions and success criteria in different ways in their planning documents. An example is shown in Figure 4.5. Figure 4.5 A teacher’s record of learning intentions and success criteria

Writing Overview 3/4 Class Week / Term

MINI-LESSON

MONDAY

WHOLE CLASS FOCUS

TEACHER FOCUS GROUP

LEARNING INTENTION: We are learning to edit and publish our work. SUCCESS CRITERIA: I will be able to complete any unfinished work.

TUESDAY

WEDNESDAY

THURSDAY

Hint

LEARNING INTENTION: We are learning to correctly follow the structure of a narrative text.

LEARNING INTENTION: We are learning to write a sizzling start to a narrative so that we hook in our reader.

SUCCESS CRITERIA: I will be able to orally complete a sentence starter card.

SUCCESS CRITERIA: I will be able to use adjectives and adverbs to enhance my writing.

LEARNING INTENTION: We are learning to use adverb groups to make our writing more interesting for the reader.

LEARNING INTENTION: We are learning to use a range of grammar tools to make our writing more interesting.

SUCCESS CRITERIA: I will be able to use two or more adverbs to describe the actions in my narrative.

SUCCESS CRITERIA: I will be able to expand on my introduction to include at least two adjectives and adverbs to enhance my writing.

LEARNING INTENTION: We are learning to use consistent tense in a narrative.

LEARNING INTENTION: We are learning to use quotation marks to show when someone is speaking

SUCCESS CRITERIA: I will be able to write my narrative in the past tense.

SUCCESS CRITERIA: I will be able to identify spoken parts in my narrative and use quotation marks to show these.

LEARNING INTENTION: We are learning to write consistently for 25 minutes, without stopping for more than a minute at a time. SUCCESS CRITERIA: I will be able to complete my rocket writing task in the allotted time. ROVING CONFERENCES TO CHECK WHERE STUDENTS ARE WITH THEIR WRITING.

Get into the habit of looking over the information you have in your student files and update it on a regular basis.

Weblinks Designing and Teaching Learning Goals and Objectives: https://bit.ly/KAV_MarzanoResources Learning Intentions and Success Criteria: https://bit.ly/KAV_LearningIntentions Goal Setting with Elementary Students: https://bit.ly/KAV_GoalSetting

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Case study An early career teacher is preparing to write mid-year reports for her class. The teacher is finding this task especially challenging, as she is unsure of the students’ benchmark levels and the progress they have made over the first half of the year. What recommendations would you make to this teacher so that she is better prepared for this situation?

Notes

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Chapter 5 Effective Strategies for Lesson Planning What makes a successful lesson? In this chapter we look at what research has revealed about teacher best practice. We examine some high-impact teaching strategies (HITS) and other essential elements that enhance student learning outcomes.

Key Topics • • • • • • •

Incorporating research in your practice Structuring lessons Questioning Cooperative learning Differentiated learning and instruction Engaging your students in their learning Putting it all together

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Incorporating research in your practice You may have heard the mantra ‘research-informed practice in education’ (RICE). This term means using quality research that has identified effective classroom interventions and strategies that are consistent with successful classroom teachers’ experience. A second, powerful form of evidence for promoting student learning is evidence from research into effective teaching strategies and interventions. Knowing where students are in their learning provides a starting point; however, the crucial next question is how to promote further learning. Which interventions are likely to improve students’ levels of understanding and skill? What teaching strategies have been shown to work in practice? For which learners? Under what conditions? Answers to questions of this kind are derived from rigorous, systematic research and professional teaching experience. (Masters 2018)

Some of the strategies that we will discuss in this chapter are drawn from the document High Impact Teaching Strategies: Excellence in Teaching and Learning, published by the Victorian Department of Education and Training (2017). These strategies have become known among teachers as ‘HITS’. The identification of the impact of these strategies largely comes from John Hattie’s research: Hattie examined hundreds of research studies in his attempt to identify the elements that most consistently lead to improvements in learning. We will also refer to Rosenshine’s seminal Principles of Instruction (2012) and the research of Marzano (2007). While examining these strategies we will include some practical samples of work from teachers that show you how they incorporate the strategies into their lessons. Hint

You may find it useful to include the key HITS— such as ‘learning intentions’ and ‘success criteria’—as permanent headings or prompts in your lesson planning documents. Refer to Chapter 4 for additional discussion on HITS.

Structuring lessons An important consideration in planning your teaching is how you will structure your lessons. Rosenshine (2012) provides us with useful guidelines to lesson preparation. He stresses that consistency in lesson delivery both for the teacher and students is important because it: • reinforces the routines students are used to • prompts you to include learning intentions and success criteria in your lessons • reminds you to include explicit teaching and scaffolding of student learning as an integral part of your lesson (explicit teaching is discussed later in this chapter in more detail) • indicates the need to change the direction of your lesson if necessary • reminds you to consider the learning needs of all your students and the different ways your students learn

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• reinforces the orderly movement of students in the room, thereby assisting in behaviour management • supports the use of ongoing formative assessment. Some curriculum areas where you would be strongly advised to use structured lesson formats are: mathematics, writing workshops, guided reading sessions, and individual spelling programs. A common lesson structure in the teaching of literacy and numeracy in junior and middle classrooms is the Whole-Group-Whole structure. In the following examples of this model we will discuss how it would be utilised in the teaching of junior literacy.

The Whole-Group-Whole model Whole class The lesson begins with the whole class together. The usual steps include: 1. the introduction of an activity or game to engage the students 2. a review of any previous learning that is relevant to this lesson 3. an introduction of the new learning intentions for this lesson 4. explicit teaching of new content or concepts in small steps that is accessible to all your students 5. the modelling of any new skills and presentation or worked examples 6. the constant checking for student understanding.

Getting ready for focused teaching Before students move to their assigned group, the teacher explains the activities to be completed by each group of students, and why they are doing these activities. Note, these groups of students may be of ‘like’ or ‘mixed’ ability. Sometimes you may have parent helpers or teacher aides to support your students. Their role is to monitor and guide students with their learning. As activities have been prepared to suit each group, students should be able to complete the tasks successfully. Hint

When using pull-out groups in your class, it is essential that the other students are engaged in appropriate, meaningful and engaging tasks. It is not a time for ‘busy work’, but for practising and extending recently introduced learning.

Your focus group This is the group of students who work with you. You will have grouped these students from your assessments and will have appropriate learning intentions and success criteria for them. It is important to think about the steps you will take to scaffold or modify any new explicit learning for this group.

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Figure 5.1 shows an example planner a junior school teacher uses when teaching a focus reading group. It provides a record of the strategy she has used, the learning intention(s) for the group, the reading behaviour of her students, and what she needs to focus on next time with each student. Figure 5.1

Reading planner Focus Reading Group

Date:

September

Text: Strategy:

Term:

3

Level:

15

Language Experience, Read to, Shared Reading, Interactive Reading, Reciprocal Reading, Guided Reading

WALT Learning Intention Letter/word work

to notice syllables and segment words

Reading behaviour

to stop and reread when it doesn't make sense

Comprehension (Within, Beyond, About the Text)

to make links to other books like this

Name

What they can do...

Where to next...

Noah

Does not segment words. Looks only at initial sound.

Charlie

Stops when meaning is lost. Rereads can make links.

Break up words he knows. Show how to segment longer words. Move up to next level text. Consider move to next group.

Tash

Not fluent although accurate.

Maria

Still makes up story sometimes.

Phrase words—line under group of words. Encourage—read as we talk. Check letter identification (LID) & sound/symbol knowledge.

Whole class The class then comes back together to review the learning and revisit learning intentions and success criteria. As an early career teacher, you may like to record in your program any formative assessment ideas and questioning techniques you will include at this point of your lesson. These questions need to encourage deep learning. A good example of a

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formative assessment strategy is the exit strategy, when the teacher reminds students of the learning intentions of the lesson. The teacher asks students what they have learnt in the lesson. Try to check as many students as you can. Remember to include a question or two concerning how students cooperated in their groups.

The GANAG model A very popular lesson structure used with senior students is the GANAG model, created by Pollock (2007). The five-stage GANAG lesson plan cues teachers into planning to teach students to use high-yield strategies every day. You will notice many of the strategies in this model are the same as those we have gathered from the HITS documents, and other research. The lesson plan consists of: Goal or objective stage – set objectives and provide feedback – recognise effort and provide recognition Access prior knowledge – identify similarities and differences – use non-linguistic representations – use cooperative learning – use questions, cues and advance organisers New information stage – summarise and take notes – provide practice – use cooperative learning – use questions, cues and advance organisers Apply stage – identify similarities and differences – provide practice – generate and test hypotheses – use questions, cues and advance organisers Goal review or summarise stage – set objectives and provide feedback. Recognise effort and provide recognition.

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Figure 5.2

GANAG model

Grade:

Unit:

Lesson title: Lesson component

Plan

Reflection

Beginning of lesson

G Goal setting for the learners Setting objectives Reinforcing effort and providing feedback

A Access Prior Knowledge (APK) Non-linguistic representations Cooperative learning Cues, questions, advance organisers Middle of lesson

N New information declarative, procedural or both Summarising and note-taking Homework and practice

A Apply knowledge A thinking skill or practice Identifying similarities and differences, generating and testing hypotheses, cues, questions, advance organisers, teaching specific types of knowledge End of lesson

G Generalise the goal Setting objectives Reinforcing effort and providing feedback Source: Arkansas Public School Resource Center (2018)

Marzano has also developed a very useful blended lesson guide for teachers who use the GANAG model. He provides many practical strategies you can use with your students at each stage of the GANAG lesson. Visit the link to this downloadable guide in the following Weblinks feature. (We have also included a copy of the guide in the Appendix at the end of this book—see Figure 3, page 233.) Weblinks Samples of Daily Routines and Planning Formats: http://bit.ly/KAV_QCAAsamples GANAG and Marzano Blended Lesson Guide: http://bit.ly/KAV_GanagMarzano

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Explicit teaching If you have your lesson structure in place, you should be able to explicitly teach your students at their point of need. A high level of teacher–student interaction takes place in explicit teaching. The teacher focuses on the needs of the individual student, gathered from pre-assessment and ongoing formative assessment. Many of Rosenshine’s Principles of Instruction (2012) and the HITS are evident when you work this way. According to Gauthier, Bissonnette and Richard (2013, as cited in Alphonse, JR & Leblanc, R 2014), explicit instruction should consist of three steps: modelling, guided or directed practice, and independent practice. In explicit teaching, the teacher usually works with small groups of students who have similar learning needs. The teacher explains to students what they are learning and why. For example: • What: ‘Today, we will be using letter sounds and our sight-words when we read.’ • Why: ‘We will know we are doing this when we stop and look closely at the hard words in the book.’ The teacher then models the skills or knowledge to be learnt. Teachers tend to manage the pace of the lesson by breaking down the skills into smaller steps, so that students can focus on the learning process. You will need to monitor your students with continual questioning and observe their responses. Students are then provided with multiple opportunities to independently practise the new skill. This needs to be given in different situations and with different content over time, so that the new learning is embedded and generalised. For example, in the earlier example lesson working with letter sounds, students might return to their tables to practise the new skill of using sounds and sight-words in reading their book. Students will need to continue to practise this new reading strategy when they read different books, in different curriculum areas and with different teachers. If chosen appropriately, repeated practice does not bore students, but rather students gain confidence in practising and mastering their skills. Guided reading and reciprocal teaching are both excellent examples of explicit teaching. In these approaches, the teacher identifies and models a specific reading strategy, either decoding or comprehension, that they want the students to use more regularly. In both strategies, modelling, scaffolded practice and independent practice take place. We have included a pro forma used by a teacher of a Foundation class. This teacher highlights the reading strategy she is explicitly teaching a focus group in a guided reading session. On this planner, she notes the early attempts of each student at using a newly introduced skill. (Note: we have included a blank version of this template at the end of the book.)

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Figure 5.3

Observation notes pro forma for Reading Reading observation notes

Group: Six

(Tigers)

1 Phonological awareness: a Notices and discriminates rhyme b Understands syllabification and can segment words c Blends sounds associated with letters when reading CVC words

Date: 6th 2 Alphabet knowledge: a Identifies and names letters b Uses letter–sound knowledge

Goal: Interacts

with the text to indicate meaning is gained from reading

Text title: At

June

3 Comprehension: a Interacts during read-alouds and book conversations b Identifies events and characters from a text c Retells stories. d Identifies fiction and non-fiction

4 Concepts about print: a 1:1 when reading— points to words b Front cover, back cover c Left to right, d Upper- and lower-case letters e Identifies letters, words, sentences

Action: Shows

links to own experience, discusses characters, can retell the story

the Beach

Focus questions: Does

this story remind you of your trips to the beach? What did you think John will do next in this story?

Amy: Could retell the story and link to her own experience.

Jack: Retold part of the story but left out some important features. Did not show any link to own experiences.

Charlotte: Talked about her beach holiday. Said that John might remember to bring his towel next time.

Georgia: Constantly commented about the story as she read. Noticed funny things the children did.

Matthew: Read accurately but was limited in ability to discuss or respond to the story.

Patrick: Read fluently & with expressions. Made appropriate comments throughout.

The importance of feedback in explicit teaching Feedback improves student learning and informs both teacher and student about the student’s performance against learning goals or intentions. Feedback is also an essential part of the explicit teaching process. It is most effective if it: • is explicit and focuses on the task, not the person. For example: – ‘I liked how you reread that sentence so that it made sense in the story.’ – ‘I liked the way you used approximation to check that your addition algorithm was correct.’ • provides specific guidance on how to improve, not just marking of work as being wrong or giving graded marks such as ‘C+’, ‘D–’ or ‘4/10’

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• is given sparingly so that it is meaningful to the student • doesn’t try to fix everything at once, and is focused on one skill at a time • encourages students to self-monitor their learning. Hint

The best possible feedback teachers can give to students occurs as soon as possible after the student’s response. This is sometimes not possible, given the business of the school day, and the many tasks that students are asked to complete, but it remains important to provide feedback as soon as possible (e.g. after a weekend).

Questioning Questioning is a most effective teaching tool because it engages students by stimulating their interest in new learning. Questioning also encourages students to talk to each other, discuss ideas, and develop insights about themselves as learners. It is important when planning your units of work in any curriculum to carefully consider the questions you will ask your students during the lesson. We suggest you prepare your questions well in advance of taking a class to ensure the questions do elicit the kind of information you want from the students. Remember that you have students with different learning needs in your class, so prepare some questions for this group. An excellent resource to help you generate a range of questions is Bloom’s Taxonomy question stems. (See the following Weblinks feature.) Good questioning techniques will be evident in your class when: • you model and discuss the respectful behaviour that is expected from all your students when answering questions in class • all your students feel confident to respond to questions and ask questions in class • your questions have been prepared beforehand to provide ongoing formative assessment of student understanding • questions are targeted to student needs • you give students ‘think time’ when necessary • you challenge students to go deeper in their thinking about an issue, but the discussion remains on track • students are engaged in ‘dialogue’ with you and other students, which serves to enhance teacher–student and student–student relationships, while deepening understandings and skills • you provide students with appropriate, timely and focused feedback on their responses • you give your students explicit modelling in good questioning, and time to practise these skills.

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Hint

Some students will rarely volunteer to answer a question in class. Develop strategies that support such students. One example might be to pre-warn the student that you will be coming back to them to answer a posed question.This approach gives reticent students ‘think-time’ and will offset likely embarrassment. Alternatively, some students want to answer all questions posed in class. A technique successfully used by many teachers involves distributing two counters to all students. A student spends a counter when they answer a question. At the end of a lesson, you expect all students to have spent at least one of their counters.

Weblinks: The Question Matrix: http://bit.ly/KAV_DownloadableMatrix SOLO Taxonomy: https://bit.ly/KAVPeakPerformance

Cooperative learning Research tells us that collaborative learning teams attain higher-level thinking and retain information for longer than students who work alone. Dalton and Watson (1997) found that groups provide students with the opportunity to discuss, clarify and evaluate the ideas of others, and this is possibly what helps in the retention of knowledge. Killen (2009) found that working in cooperative groups improved students’ self-esteem, management skills and positive relationships with their peers. Cooperative group learning can lead students to become less reliant on teacher guidance, and allow all students, regardless of their ability, to achieve success. As you become familiar with using collaborative learning activities, you can incorporate them into all areas of the curriculum. By using collaborative learning tasks, students will support each other as they practise the skills you have introduced in the lesson. Collaborative strategies also constitute a major part of inquiry-based learning units, which we look at later in this chapter.

Using cooperative learning groups in your class Johnson and Johnson (1989) and Marsh (2010) noted that students must be taught how to work in cooperative learning groups. Aspects of this style of learning include: • reminding students that their contribution is important to the group tasks • ensuring each group member supports the other members’ efforts to learn • assessing each member’s performance regularly • teaching social skills to students, such as taking turns to speak; listening techniques; asking clarifying questions; and speaking quietly, politely and positively to one another. Assessment must be a formal part of working with students in cooperative learning groups: • What did each member do in the group? • How could each member make the group even better?

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Clifford (2018) advises that groups of three students or fewer will often lack diversity and may not allow divergent thinking to occur. Groups that are too large can create freeloading where not all members participate. She suggests that a moderate size group of four to five students is ideal. You will also need to move around your class while your students are working in this way. This is the time you will be taking note of students’ understanding of the tasks they have been set, and the ways they interact with each other. Some collaborative learning activities that you might choose to use in your teaching include: • Conch discussions—this is a useful method of encouraging very young students to give others a chance to speak. Only the holder of the conch shell is permitted to speak. The shell is then passed to the next student. • Goldfish bowl discussions—this strategy involves an outer circle of students observing the discussion behaviour of their peers in an inner circle and reporting on it. It is also a good way to teach the roles of different strategies such as those in literature circles. • Think-Pair-Share (TPS)—this activity gives students time to think about a question alone and then discuss their ideas with a partner. The process can then lead to sharing the pair’s ideas to a small group or to the whole class. • Jigsaw—here students are given part of the information on a particular subject, for example, a page or paragraph of an article. They then come together to share the information they have gained with members of their group. The group then presents the overall understanding of the information to the class. This is an excellent strategy when students are researching during Inquiry Units. (We discuss Inquiry Units and inquiry-based learning later in this chapter.) • Sorting and classifying—this works with objects, mathematical shapes and letters. This is an excellent activity for students of all ages and across the curriculum. • Venn diagrams—a further development on the sorting and classifying strategy that is mathematical in origin. It is used to sort items that share characteristics with one or two other categories. • Concept maps—where students ‘map out’ their ideas visually. This can help illustrate the parts of a concept or event and the interconnections between these parts. • KWL charts (also KWHL)—individual or groups brainstorming what is Known, what a student or group Want(s) to know and later what has been Learnt about a particular topic. • Consequence wheel—this is also called a ‘cause and effect’ wheel and is an excellent strategy to explore the consequences of an event on people and places. • T-charts—these provide a simple way to present two sides of an issue. • Graffiti walls—a method by which students can build up the vocabulary that is relevant to their growing knowledge of a topic. • Pictographs—the pictorial representations of information that is suitable for all ages.

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Reflective Exercise This task involves you working with a teacher who is experienced in implementing cooperative learning groups. Use Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (see Chapter 1, page 18) to draw out an experience this teacher has had in using cooperative groups. Ask the teacher to reflect on a recent experience they have had setting up and implementing cooperative groups. Begin at the top, and work through the cyclical model. As you do, jot down the teacher’s responses.

Differentiated learning and instruction As an early career teacher, it is important that you understand what is meant by differentiated learning or differentiated instruction. While it will take you some time to manage a truly differentiated classroom, you can begin to introduce some elements of differentiation in your first weeks of teaching. Essentially, differentiating instruction may mean teaching the same material to all students, using a variety of instructional strategies, or it may require the teacher to deliver lessons at varying levels of difficulty, based on the ability of each student. In How to Differentiate Instruction in Mixed-Ability Classrooms, Tomlinson (2001), explains that teachers can differentiate their teaching in four ways: through content, process, product and learning environment.

Content When teachers differentiate curriculum content in their instruction, all students are pretested and more able students skip the introductory steps to learning tasks and move on to apply their skills or knowledge with more challenging tasks. Students are grouped according to what they know or can do and are taught what is appropriate for them. With older students, the range of skills can be quite broad, and the process for most able students is sometimes referred to as ‘compacting the curriculum’, which means moving quite quickly onto more advanced learning. Content can be differentiated by designing activities for students using the levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy. Students who are less familiar with a lesson’s content can be required to complete tasks at the lower levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy; that is, remembering and understanding. Students with some mastery could be asked to apply and analyse the lesson content, and students with high levels of mastery could be asked to complete tasks involving evaluating or creating. Examples of differentiating the content include: • matching vocabulary words to definitions (remembering) • writing a newspaper article about an issue in your neighbourhood (application) • reviewing a book (evaluation).

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Process This aspect of differentiating learning involves knowing your students’ learning styles. It means varying the learning activities or strategies you present to your class in order to provide students with optional ways to come to understand the concepts being studied. This aspect of differentiation is based on the work of Howard Gardner’s theory of Multiple Intelligences. Examples of differentiating the process include: • providing textbooks for visual or word learners • allowing auditory learners to use audio books • giving kinaesthetic learners the opportunity to complete interactive assignments online.

Product Differentiation of product means varying the complexity of the presentation, product, work sample, or worksheet that students are asked to complete to demonstrate their understandings of the concepts taught. All students work towards the same standard, but teachers assign different activities to show mastery of the concept, such as a report, song or 3D object. The product is an integral part of the differentiated model, as the teacher is giving students optional ways to demonstrate what they know. Bloom’s Taxonomy provides a teacher at any class level with a framework of tasks that can be used that require increased complexity of thinking. Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences model is also useful as it identifies different learning styles. In a differentiated learning context, students are given the opportunity to use their preferred learning style to demonstrate what they have learnt (the ‘product’). Students are therefore given more ‘choice’ in the teaching–learning context (an aspect of student ‘voice’, which generally leads to more engagement). We will discuss these concepts later in the chapter. Examples of differentiating the end-product of a lesson may include: • reading a book and writing a book report (Verbal/Comprehension) • creating a story map to illustrate the developing plot of a story (Visual/ Application) • presenting a critique of a recent school excursion to a Shakespearean performance (Verbal/Evaluation) • choreographing and performing a dance to represent the extinction of species caused by climate change (Kinaesthetic/Evaluation) • debating an issue arising from Australia’s performance at a recent international sporting event (Verbal/Evaluation). A product choices board, by Winebrenner and Brulles (2012, p. 87) is included to give your students a variety of ways they can present what they have learnt, depending on their preferred method of learning.

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Figure 5.4

Product choices example

The Product Choices Chart Auditory*

Visual

Audio recording Autobiography Book Classifying Commentary Crossword puzzle Debate or panel talk Dialogue Documentary Editorial Essay Experiment Family tree Finding patterns Glossary Interview Journal or diary Learning Centre task Letter to editor/author Limerick or riddle Mystery Newspaper Oral report Pattern and instructions Petition Position paper Press conference Reading Scavenger hunt Simulation game Song lyrics Speech Story or poem Survey Teaching a lesson Trip itinerary Written report

Advertisement Art gallery Brochure Coat of arms Collage Colouring page Comic book or strip Costume Decoration Design Diagram Diorama Drawing or painting Flow chart Graphic organiser Greeting card Hidden pictures Multimedia presentation program Illustrated manual Illustrations Learning Centre visuals Magazine Map Mural Pamphlet with pictures or icons Photo album Photo essay Picture dictionary Political cartoon Portfolio Poster Rebus story Scrapbook Slide show Travelogue TV program Video Website

(*Auditory because people write thoughts they ‘hear’ in their minds)

Tactile/Kinaesthetic Acting things out Activity plan for trip Collection Composing music Dance Demonstration Diorama Dramatisation Exhibit Experiment Field experience Flip book or chart Game Game show How-to book Invention Jigsaw puzzle Learning Center— hands-on tasks Manipulatives Mobile Model Museum exhibit Patter creation/ demonstration Papier-mâché Photograph Play or skit Pop-up book Project cube Puppet show Rap or rhyme Reader’s theatre Rhythmic pattern Role-play Scale drawing Sculpture Simulation game Survey

Technology Animation App Blog Broadcast over TV, radio, or the internet Competition Cyberhunt Digital game Forum iMovie Multidimensional video (e.g. 3D) Online quiz Podcast Presentation Research Song or jingle Virtual site visit Webquest

Adapted from Winebrenner, S & Brulles, D (2012)

Figure 5.5 is a helpful graphic from Teaching Gifted Kids in Today’s Classroom: Strategies and Techniques Every Teacher Can Use (Winebrenner & Brulles 2012, p. 162), which should assist you to include appropriate ‘thinking’ activities using the building blocks of Bloom’s Taxonomy in differentiating tasks for your students.

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Figure 5.5

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Bloom’s building blocks BUILD BLOCKS TO THINK

• • • • • • • •

Hig

h

Create en if... uld happ What wo Compose Design Invent al Be origin ise s e th o yp H ral from seve e in b m Co sources

• • • • • •

Hig

h

• • • • • • •

Hig

h

se Categori t irrelevan Relevant/ ntrast o /c Compare s cie Find falla nt re Alike/diffe ion Fact/opin ect Cause/eff

rnt in at you lea • Use wh nother place a school in on. or situati

Mid

dle

Lo w

pinion Give an o e g d u J etc. st, worst, Rate—be Choose end Recomm tly... o differen d to t a h W

• Tell • Find ur arise in yo • Summ s rd o w own • Locate • Name

Create

Evaluate

Analyse

Apply

Recall, Understand

Adapted from Winebrenner, S & Brulles, D (2012)

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Also included is a grid of Bloom’s Taxonomy and Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences (MI) from the work of McGrath and Noble (2001, pp. 25–6). In using a grid like this you are differentiating for different learning styles and different ability levels. Figure 5.6

Grid using MI and Bloom’s Taxonomy

Multiple Intelligences & Bloom’s Taxonomy Unit of Study: ____________ Year Level: _____________ Seven ways to be smart

Bloom’s Taxonomy: Six Thinking Levels Knowing

Understanding

Applying

Analysing

Creating

Evaluating

Verbal I enjoy reading, writing and speaking Mathematical I enjoy working with numbers and science Visual/Spatial I enjoy painting, drawing and visualising Kinaesthetic I enjoy doing hands-on activities, sports and dance Musical I enjoy making and listening to music Interpersonal I enjoy working with others Intrapersonal I enjoy working by myself

Source: McGrath, H & Noble, T (2001)

Learning environment—one size does not fit all! This area of the differentiation process involves managing the physical nature of your classroom to cater for the learning needs of your students. We need to provide spaces where students can work alone, in partnerships, and in small groups. These structures are the basis of differentiated learning, where students are often working alone or with each other in like- or mixed-ability groupings. Many schools have introduced a variety of strategies that give students options as to where they sit in the classroom. Flexible seating arrangements allow students to move away from traditional desks

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by introducing stools, rugs, beanbags, balance balls and standing desks. These are becoming increasingly popular in modern classrooms. Flexibility with configurability and diversity in furniture, such as varied heights of tables and chairs, stools, café nooks, beanbag lounge areas, reading coves and soft modular furniture, is also seen to heighten the potential for task variety by creating a multitude of different pockets that accommodate a wide range of learning groups (individual, small group, large groups, whole-class instruction) with different learning styles. (Mahat et. al. 2018)

If your classroom gives you scope, think about ways you could enhance student participation and engagement by providing flexible meeting spaces, quiet corners and access to resources that will give students some choice as they undertake classroom activities. Hint

Be patient in introducing differentiated learning tasks into your classroom. We suggest that you start small and build up over time. The most important feature to address is to differentiate the difficulty of the tasks you set your students and deciding what tasks are suitable for which students.

In summary, what would your differentiated classroom look like? It will be a place where: • students’ different voices, interests and skills are valued • content taught shows respect for students’ interests, abilities and cultures • processes utilised cater for students’ talents and learning styles • products of learning are adapted to meet the learning style or ability and interests of the students • students are engaged as they have more choice in the ways they learn and the products they produce • differentiated assessment provides all students with personalised opportunities to exhibit what they have come to understand. Weblinks Examples of How to Differentiate Instruction in the Classroom: https://bit.ly/KAVDifferentiatedInstruction The Most Helpful Differentiated Learning Strategies for Busy Teachers 2019:  https://bit.ly/KAVDifferentiatedLearning

Engaging your students in their learning As you come to know the particular needs of your students, it is essential that you develop relationships with them and provide learning experiences that are intrinsically engaging, developmentally appropriate, and acknowledge their particular needs and

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interests. Gonzalez (2016) notes: ‘The relationship between student and teacher plays a large role in the trajectory of a child’s academic success and social development. Establishing a positive relationship with their teacher helps a student feel more comfortable and safe in their classroom environments.’ Subban (2016) reported that the Behaviour at School Study (Sullivan et al. 2012) showed that only 60 per cent of South Australian secondary students found school engaging, and over two thirds of teachers reported disengaged behaviour almost daily in their classes. In recommending ways to improve this situation Subban found that ‘Positive interactions between teachers and students can help create classroom stability, feelings of security and overall gratification with the learning process. Forming positive relationships at school can also contribute towards a student’s emotional and social well-being.’ (Subban 2016) Similarly, Marzano (2007) states that fostering well-being with positive relationships between teachers and students is essential for creating feelings of security in the classroom. He encourages teachers to have students talk about themselves and to notice when students are not engaged. Marzano also believes that students should be physically active in their learning and suggests that games and simulations be included in most lessons. Having high expectations of our students and helping them to set their personal learning goals also leads to increased engagement. Burgess (in Lowe et al. 2019) addresses the serious problem of engaging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in Australian schools. There have been many attempts to close the gap in the educational outcomes for these students. Burgess reports on a review of 2000 different approaches that were shown to engage, support and improve educational outcomes of indigenous students. The most effective pedagogies included: • Pedagogies of wonder—adults listening to the wonder of children about their own history, culture and context and trusting children to research this. • Generative pedagogies—creating culturally safe places for indigenous girls to express the oppression they experienced in their everyday lives. • Place-based pedagogies—taking students out of the classroom and onto Country, involving rangers, teachers and community members working together with students. • Pedagogies prioritising local Aboriginal voices—listening to voices in the community that informed students of the values of the educational process. Weblink Australian students are becoming increasingly disengaged at school—here’s why:  http://bit.ly/KAV_TheConversation

Student voice and the place of choice With concerns about the disengagement among many of our students, there has been much research on the importance of including students’ voices in how schools are run, what students learn at school and how they learn it. The Gonski report, Through Growth to Achievement: Report of the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence

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in Australian Schools (2018), found that providing students with ‘voice’ builds their engagement with schooling and is associated with positive outcomes later in life. Schools are attempting to give students voice by having them actively contribute to decision-making at all levels of the school. As an early career teacher, you can provide students in your class(es) with various opportunities to express their voices by way of the degree of choice you make available to them.

Giving students choice Kiebel (2017) offers useful advice about giving students choice in your classroom, including the following. • When providing students with choice, explicitly teach your expectations of behaviour. • Students need to be taught how to make wise or appropriate choices—not just choosing easy work or working with friends. • Pick choices that feel right for you as the teacher and the age and skills of your students. • You should remain in control of the curriculum; the students choose the ways they learn and present their learning. • If you are just beginning to offer choices, limit the number of choices to two options at first. Some simple choice boards you might use with young children are shown in Table 5.1 and Table 5.2. Table 5.1

Choice board example 1

Teacher’s choice Do this first: Write a sentence about the story we have just read.

Table 5.2

Student’s choice Then choose from this list: Draw a picture of the story. OR Choose a picture book to read in the book corner.

Choice board example 2

Teacher’s choice Do this first: Do ‘Look, Say, Cover, Write and Check’ with ten words from your personal spelling list.

Student’s choice Then choose from this list: Make a Wordsearch from your ten spelling words and swap it with a friend. OR Draw the shape of the longest word in your list and colour it with crayon. OR Write your words in alphabetical order. OR Work with a friend to find words within words in your longest words.

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In both examples, students are given some ownership and yet the teacher makes sure that all activities students choose are valuable for their learning. A menu planner template has been included in the Appendix. It shows how you could write different tasks in each section, then tell your students which ones they must do, and which they can choose to do. Weblinks: 4 Ways to Build a Student Choice-based Classroom: http://bit.ly/KAV_LearnersEdge Student Voice Resource Kit: bit.ly/KAV_ResourceKit

Putting it all together In this chapter, we have examined some of the research of strategies that work in achieving the best learning outcomes for our students. We would like to finish by examining a currently well-accepted model of teaching: inquiry learning. Inquiry learning is different in some ways to traditional teaching practices, but if done properly, should still contain all the HITS that we have examined in the chapter. There is still a place for explicit teaching: structure, assessment; setting of goals and success criteria; questioning and feedback; and differentiation in inquiry learning. The most positive aspect of the method is that it engages students in their learning as it focuses on real-life issues, student choice, research skills, the use of technology and the option for students to present their finding in the ways they prefer. Inquiry learning also encourages students to relate what they have learnt to their own lives, and to take action in their communities, when appropriate to do so. There are several models of inquiry learning that are used in Australian schools. The most popular is the Integrating Socially model developed by Hamston and Murdoch (1996). These and other valuable online Inquiry models are available to teachers. We have included in Figure 5.7 an example of a unit that uses the Hamston and Murdoch model. Even though students have some choice in the approaches they use in these units, the teacher has still maintained strong links to the curriculum and has required that students use resources she believes will give them the knowledge they need to answer the big questions posed by the inquiry. She has included many of the HITS approaches, including: • learning intentions and success criteria • thinking and questioning skills and strategies • curriculum links • cooperative learning activities • differentiation • explicit or guided teaching • visible learning • reflection and action • engagement—making the learning real and meaningful to the student • assessment—formative and summative—and yet we can see that this has been differentiated so that students are given choice in the ways they will present their learning.

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Figure 5.7

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Example unit of work

Unit title: Change Detectives: Chemical Science

Term 1 2019 Level: 5 and 6

General Capabilities: Critical and Creative Thinking; ethical, personal and social

Teachers:

Essential question: What is a change in state?

Contributing questions: What are the states of matter? Why and how do substances change? What are the factors that influence chemical and physical change?

Understandings: • Solids, liquids and gases change under different situations • That gases have mass and take up space • Recognise that not all substances can be easily classified as solids, liquids or gases on the basis of their observable properties • Water has three changes of state • There are irreversible changes, for example, rusting, burning and cooking • There are reversible changes that can be used to recycle materials

RESOURCES CASEL—Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning PETAA—Primary English Teaching Association Australia Assets for Life—Developing Learning Assets in the Inquiry Classroom, Chapter 6, p. 98

Key concepts: Students will learn to (processes) • Identify the difference between a solid, liquid and gas • Explore the way solids, liquids and gases change under different situations (e.g. heating and cooling) • Make observations • Make hypotheses • Conduct experiments to either prove or disprove their predictions • Follow a given procedure to design an experiment/investigation • Discuss the difference between data and evidence • Refer to evidence when explaining the outcomes of an investigation • Work collaboratively to identify where testing was not fair and suggest how fairness could be improved • Identify improvements to investigation methods and discuss how these improvements would affect the quality of the data obtained • Use a variety of communication modes (reports, explanations and procedural accounts) to communicate science ideas • Use labelled diagrams, including crosssectional representations, to communicate ideas and processes

Critical and Creative Thinking Capabilities • Identify the characteristics of an effective team and develop descriptions for particular roles including leadership, and describe both their own and their team’s performance when undertaking various roles • Identify characteristics of respectful relationships • Describe the various causes of conflict and evaluate possible strategies to address conflict

(continued)

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Example unit of work (continued) Examples of Thinking routines See-Think-Wonder What do you see? What is going on? What does it make you wonder? The 5 Ws Who would have drawn this? What were they for or against? Where did this take place? When did this happen—what was going on? Why was this drawn?

Claim-Support-Question Make a claim about the topic Identify support for your claim Ask a question related to your claim Seeing Themes What is the main subject or action shown? What things in the image are important? What are stereotypes shown? What are the main feelings the cartoon is targeting?

Additional Thinking routines—interpretation with justification routine What Makes You Say That?—a routine that sets the stage for deeper inquiry Tuning in and reflection: To establish students’ prior knowledge about Chemical Science: Present ‘Fizz Rocket’ and ‘Foaming Monsters’ demonstrations Questions to ask the students: • What did you see? What happened? • Were these demonstrations or experiments? • What questions do you have? What are you wondering about? Finding out: experiences/resources to assist students to gather information about the topic

Sorting out: activities to assist students to process (analyse, organise, classify, explore values, express feelings) the information they have gathered about the topic (including values).

The difference between a solid, liquid and a gas Learning intention: I can make claims about solids, liquids and gases. Success criteria: I can sort objects based on what I know about the properties of solids, liquids and gases.

The difference between a solid, liquid and a gas Learning intention: I can make claims about solids, liquids and gases. Success criteria: Collaboratively create a mind map to recall previous learning of the 3 common states of matter. Recall matter and their characteristics. Then in teams, sort a range of objects into solids, liquids and gases based on their properties, justifying their decisions. Create a poster showing the different states of matter and their properties.

Experiments during the unit: • Hanging crystals • Jello (boiling, warm and cold water) • Film canister rockets Going further: activities to further challenge and extend their thinking about the unit (may be in the form of further shared experiences, individual or group projects). Largely dependent upon the students’ interests and focus. Students create a simple chemical change and physical change experiment—film using iPads, explaining what happened and the science behind it. Create a written explanation about their experiments. Reflecting and acting: assist students to demonstrate what they have learnt and reflect on their learning. Take a moment and reflect. These lessons will be used to explicitly teach a thinking and reflection strategy/ routine. The idea is to reflect on the whole inquiry so far. For the students going further, incorporate goal-setting and explicit instruction around interpersonal learning. Students will reflect on themselves as a group member, as a personal learner and again their understandings and skills developed.

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Assessment Assessment for learning—undertaken to ascertain students’ prior knowledge, perceptions and misconceptions. The evidence gathered through this assessment is used to inform teaching and planning (formative). Writing a diary—formative assessment task Students will create a personal multimodal diary. While this diary may contain diarised accounts of personal events, it should have as its main focus what the student is learning about, as well as their responses to the texts being studied. The diary may contain photographs and captions, video clips, written texts or photographs of annotated work samples, diagrams, symbols, drawings and comic strips. Assessment as learning—focuses on ongoing constructive feedback and on developing the student’s capacity to self-assess and reflect on their learning to improve their future learning and understanding (ongoing). Assessment of learning—makes judgements about what the student has learnt in relation to the teaching and learning goals. It should be comprehensive and reflect the learning growth over the period assessed (summative). Portfolio piece(s)

Case study Joshua is a new member of a Year 6 teaching team. An inquiry-based unit of work on the impact of climate change has already been prepared by his colleagues. At the school, students have been working in groups and are used to working in a differentiated model. Joshua asked his class to decide how they would like to gather information for their unit. A number of students decided that they would interview staff members during class time. After a week of some confusion, Joshua realised he needed to become more familiar with the nature of a differentiated program and how it could be effectively implemented. In this example, what aspects of a differentiated program did Joshua need to address before introducing the unit?

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Chapter 6 Learning Diversity in the Classroom One of the most challenging aspects of the role of teachers today is catering for the wide range of students’ learning needs in our classrooms. It is important in terms of your professional practice that you have some knowledge of the characteristics of the physical, cognitive, social and emotional needs of your students. The adjustments you make to your teaching approaches, strategies and resources to cater for these students are also essential aspects of your development as a teacher. In accommodating students with special learning needs, you will face ethical considerations. The way you respond to these challenges and the way you support your students, their parents/carers and your colleagues, will enhance the growth of your own professional identity as a teacher. Teaching students with different learning needs within a mainstream classroom can be very tiring, time-consuming and stressful, particularly for an early career teacher. It is important that your own well-being is considered, and that you know when and where to get support.

Key Topics • • • • • •

Students with special learning needs Learning diversity at your school Communicating with parents Student Support Groups Individual Learning Plans What is the NCCD?

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Students with special learning needs The Commonwealth Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (DDA) made it against the law to treat people differently because of disability. The Australian Government supports the right of all children to have the same educational opportunities. In 2005, the Disability Standards for Education came into effect. These Standards were based on the DDA and state the rights and responsibilities of educators, and include the following expectations: • Consultation with all stakeholders—schools are mandated to ongoing communication with parents/carers and students, regarding the setting of ongoing learning goals for students, and their review over time. • Reasonable adjustments—education institutions are expected to draw upon a range of resources to provide adjustments for students, including staffing, physical resources, funding through disability and other programs, ongoing school funding, support through student services, allied health staff, and specialists. • Eliminating discrimination—schools must develop and implement strategies to prevent any victimisation of people with disability and therefore develop a culture of inclusion, where all students are welcome and valued. The DDA and the Disability Standards would have been used to frame the enrolment, well-being, teaching and learning, and behaviour management policies of your school. When these policies are consistently enacted in the school, you will likely find that:  • Staff support the notion of inclusion and all students are accepted and valued. • Students with special learning needs are accepted and cared for by other students. • Teachers differentiate their teaching, so that all students can learn. • There is an acceptance among all staff that everyone is responsible for the wellbeing of every student in the school. Weblink Five Barriers Associated with Inclusion Education: https://bit.ly/KAVInclusionEdBarriers

Learning diversity at your school As schools must comply with government mandated requirements for all their students, they will have their own systems in place to do this. For example, the way they record personalised programs, intervention, support or extension programs; integration-aide timetables; and the arrangements for parent/carer meetings for students. Torreno (2012) discusses the challenges schools face in implementing an inclusive program. These challenges concern: expense, misinformation, accessibility, educational modifications and cooperation.

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Coordinator of special learning needs In most schools, you will find that there is a staff member who monitors the differentiation of programs for students with special learning needs (usually called the ‘Learning Diversity leader’ or ‘special learning needs coordinator’). Sometimes, the deputy principal takes on this role. In your first years of teaching, you should seek assistance from this person with planning, monitoring and reporting programs for all your students, but particularly those with special learning needs. We need to remember to include students who are gifted and talented in this planning. The coordinator or leader will help you access any background information about the student. This will help you to avoid mistakes as you build a positive relationship with the parents/carers of these students and the students themselves. During your induction you will be shown where confidential student files are kept in the school, and how to go about accessing these. You should ask if you can read the files of any students in your class. The school may not allow these files to be taken from their designated area, so give yourself time, preferably before the school year begins, to read and take notes on all your students. Look for any formal assessments that have been carried out, such as the Wechsler Intelligence Scales for Children (WISC-V), the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence (WPPSI ), the Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (CELF 4 or 5), or the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5). Note the recommendations for teachers that the assessor has made in the report. These can usually be found at the end of the report. Hint

Remember that anything you write or copy about your students is highly confidential and should never be left on your desk or in an accessible place where parents, other staff or students can read it. You should have a lockable filing cabinet for these documents.

Communicating with parents One of the most important aspects of your role as a teacher is the relationship that you will develop with the parents/carers of your students. Your school will have some expectations about how you should communicate with parents/carers. It is important that you introduce yourself to the parents of students with special learning needs, or special health or physical needs, before the school year begins, as they may be highly concerned whether you will accept and care for their child. Ask your mentor to attend any informal or formal parent meetings with you, at least until you feel confident that you have established the trust of the parents, and can present your professional programs and observations to the parents.

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You may meet with parents of students with chronic health issues, very young students, and students with socio-emotional issues such as chronic anxiety disorders, attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or autism, on several occasions early in the first term. This is not unusual, given parents/ carers are often concerned about how well the student has settled into the routine of the school.

Keeping the lines of communication open Sometimes it is useful to establish ways to keep the lines of communication open between yourself and parents/carers. A number of approaches might be considered, especially when parents have particular concerns about how their child is going. Discuss such options with your mentor or special needs coordinator. Teachers sometimes set up a daily diary; first, to alleviate parental concerns, and second, to pass on any information you think parents should have about their child. These methods may not last for long, but they may limit the times you have unnecessary visits, emails and phone calls. With some parents, it is a way of helping them ‘hand over’ the care of their child to you.

Dealing with parents who make unrealistic demands Despite you setting up methods of communication, and having formal meetings in place, some parents will still try to talk to you at inappropriate times. While you need to be sensitive to the anxiety faced by parents of very sick students, and those with chronic health issues, it is most important that the parents/carers and you appreciate that you are responsible for all the other students currently in your class. If you explain the school procedures early, this will alleviate your stress in this area, and parents will generally be cooperative. Parents of all students should be confident that if there were any serious incidents with their child, that they would be contacted by the school immediately, and by you when you are out of class. If this continues to be an issue, calmly tell parents to speak to the assistant principal or the office administration staff, or make an appointment with you after school. If you are consistent with this, parents will realise those are the rules for communicating with you during teaching hours.

Reflective Exercise Consider a recent occasion when you or your mentor teacher met with parents/carers to discuss a challenging matter concerning their child. Reflect on how that discussion developed, and consider whether or not the outcomes were satisfactory for both parents and the teacher. Use Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (refer to Chapter 1, page 18) to unpack the interaction. What optional steps could have been taken to bring about a more successful resolution?

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Formal communication with parents There are two major components of a school’s formal communication with parents/ carers of students with special learning needs: the Student Support Group (SSG) and the student’s Individual Learning Plan (ILP). Weblink Downloadable Parental Engagement Factsheet: https://bit.ly/KAV_ParentalEngagement

Student Support Groups The Student Support Group (SSG) represents a partnership in the educational planning process between the parents/carers of students with special learning needs and the school. Charman and colleagues (2011) in their research, What is Good Practice in Autism Education?, found that the following characteristics were commonly present in schools that successfully supported their students with special learning needs: • Staff had high ambitions and aspirations for their students. • Staff worked jointly with specialist health professionals. • The school leaders saw the training of all staff as a priority. • The school maintained high levels of reciprocal communication with parents and carers. • The school worked in partnership with families. These characteristics should be seen in all SSGs.

Who makes up the SSG? This group usually includes: • the student’s parents/carers • the teacher(s) who have responsibility for the student • the school principal or a nominee, such as the assistant principal, student support services member or the Learning Diversity leader • other professional people who work with the student, for example a social worker, medical professional, speech pathologist or school specialists • an advocate for the parent (optional) • the student, if appropriate • an interpreter, if necessary. SSG meetings focus on identifying the learning, social or behavioural needs of the student, setting goals for the student and identifying the most appropriate strategies to assist in achieving those goals. The SSG meeting is also concerned with monitoring the success or otherwise of the strategies used with the student. This group guides the development of the student’s ILP and monitors its implementation. What will vary from school to school is the way SSG meetings are held, who organises them, if agendas are prepared for these meetings, and who is responsible

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for the minutes. Schools also vary in the ways they accommodate students whose parents are divorced or separated. Occasionally, schools need to provide two meetings, as both parents have rights to discuss the learning goals and plans for their child. You will also find your school will decide on whether teacher aides are to be part of the SSG group. As the SSG meeting is the guiding force in planning and monitoring the inclusion process for students with additional learning needs, you may initially need support in understanding your role in these meetings. Hint

If you are unsure of your role in an upcoming SSG meeting, and especially if you need help in writing ILP goals and strategies for your student, make time with your mentor or special needs coordinator to see if you are on the right track with your record-keeping and planning.

Make sure that you are clear about: • the agenda of the meeting, and who will be chairing the meeting • whether it is your responsibility to introduce the parents/carers to the rest of the group • whether there will be an interpreter at the meeting, and how to address what you say to parents, rather than to the interpreter • what documentation or data you need to bring to the meeting • what you will be expected to talk about • how you might demonstrate the progress and current needs of your student (e.g. work samples, tests, particular challenges you have identified) • what you have planned as the next short term goal(s) for the student as per the draft ILP • what strategies you are intending to use with the student to achieve these goals.

Homeschool partnerships and how the SSG supports this communication At times, some difficulties will arise during the SSG as parents may have unrealistic goals for their child, and may place great expectations on teachers and schools. It is important from the beginning that both parents and schools are clear in expressing their views on what are realistic goals for the student, and what reasonable adjustments the school can make to support the student to reach those goals. Some issues that can arise include: • the amount of time a teacher can spend one-on-one with a student • what adjustments can be made to the curriculum, classroom or school environment for the student • how many hours the student will be assisted by their aide.

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To minimise these challenges: • ILPs must be clearly expressed, agreed to, and signed by all parties of the SSG • minutes should be taken at all formal meetings, signed, and a copy given to all attendees as they leave the meeting • review meetings must be held on time and parents informed if there are any changes to ILPs • parents must also be informed in advance if the school considers further assessment by outside specialists (speech pathologists, psychologists) are warranted. Parents always have a right to refuse any testing of their child, but this must be recorded in the minutes of the SSG meeting and signed by all members. We have included a sample of the way one school prepares for SSG meetings and records the discussion of agenda items. Agreed actions and those responsible are recorded. Dates when actions are to be completed are also recorded. The next SSG date is also set at this time and all members of the SSG sign the document. Note: a blank SSG agenda and minutes template is included in the Appendix of this book. Figure 6.1

Example of completed SSG agenda and minutes

SSG Minutes Student:

Peter S.

Year level:

5

Date:

5th June

Present:

Mr & Mrs S (Parents) Miss T (Class teacher) Mrs K (Teacher aide) Mrs G (Student Diversity Leader) Apology:

Purpose of meeting: Social

X

Language

General Academic Organisation skills

X

Homework

X

Behaviour support

Other

Agenda items:

1 Peter has been noticed playing alone at lunch.

Aide needs to encourage Peter to play. Is then happy to try for a while with group.

2 Issues with organisation of books.

Teacher & aide—Peter takes time finding pens & books. Losing learning time.

3 Not doing homework.

Rarely does homework. Parents report difficulty in getting him to do this—Peter gets very angry & it can sometimes cause meltdowns. (continued)

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Figure 6.1

Example of completed SSG agenda and minutes (continued)

Agreed actions

Person responsible

Date

Peter will occasionally go to the library for social games

Aide & teacher

Peter needs book colourcoded

Aide to cover books

Next Monday 10th June

* Homework to be modified in amount

* Parents/teacher

10th June

Try Choice Board. Parents to supervise and reward if it’s done.

Parents

From 10th June

Lunchtimes Mon, Wed & Fri

Signatures:

Next SSG meeting date: 30th

June

Weblink Student Support Group Guidelines: https://bit.ly/KAV_SSGguidelines

Individual Learning Plans An Individual Learning Plan (ILP) is necessary when a student has a diagnosis of a disability that restricts that student’s capacity to take part in the normal curriculum of the classroom, without modifying the program itself, or with an aide to assist the student access the normal curriculum. Students who are not diagnosed and yet need substantial adjustments in their learning should also be monitored on an ILP. All students who receive government funding to support their inclusion in mainstream schools must have an ILP. It is a document that records what the student can do, say and write now; what their long-term and immediate learning or social goals are; and what strategies will be used to enable the student to achieve those goals. The name of the person responsible for these specific strategies should be shown on the plan and how and when the plan will be assessed. ILPs should be dated and signed by all members of the student’s Support Group, which includes teachers, parents/carers, teacher aides, specialists and the school’s principal or a delegate. A date for the review of the plan should be recorded and a copy given

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to all members of the SSG. ILPs are legal documents and as such, need to be kept with other school archived documents for the required length of time, as stipulated by government authorities. See Chapter 4 Getting to Know Your Students through Assessment, and Chapter 5 Effective Strategies for Lesson Planning for more detailed discussion on learning intentions and success criteria.

Teaching strategies for the ILP The most important section of the ILP contains the methods and strategies that will be used by the teacher, the teacher aide and the parents to assist the student achieve their goals. These responsibilities should be noted on the plan. Exemplary teaching practices need to be used for all students, but particularly for students with special learning needs. The HITS often seen on ILPs include methods to engage the student, clearly articulated learning goals, explicit teaching, worked examples (modelling), practice and revision, repetition, hands-on activities, visual learning, differentiated learning tasks, choice, the use of technology and collaborative learning. Again, see Chapter 4 and Chapter 5 for further advice on teaching strategies.

Assessing short-term goals for the ILP The methods to be used to assess the achievement of the student’s goals are also listed on the ILP. Some schools use a rating system (as shown on the ILPs that follow), while other schools include a written description of the student’s progress. This is done prior to the next SSG meeting, when the next short-term goals are written and signed off by the team. You can use the ILP format to address both the academic and the social or emotional needs of your students. We have also included another ILP format, entitled ‘Student Learning Program’, which presents the student’s goals in a different way. Figure 6.4 on pages 115–16 is an example of an ILP that addresses the interpersonal development and social goals of a student with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Hint

It is most important that all documentation of ILPs, modified programs, and differentiated learning practices are kept on file in the school archives. It is your responsibility to take and maintain accurate records and ensure these are made available to staff in charge of this area.

Weblinks Individual Learning Goals and Targets: https://bit.ly/KAV_ILPgoals Sue Larkey’s Individual Education Plans: https://bit.ly/KAV_ILPplans Individual Education Plan (IEP): https://bit.ly/KAV_IEP AITSL Individual Learning Plans: https://bit.ly/KAV_AITSL_ILP

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Figure 6.2

Example of an ILP format for a primary school student

Primrose Primary School Individual Learning Plan ILP: 1

of 1

Review date:

Date written: 12/2/2020 Student: Grace

14/4/2020

M.

Year: 1

D.O.B. 09/12/2013

Age: 6

years 2 months

Student Support Group members consulted in writing this plan Class teacher: Tracey P. Parents: Mr and Mrs M. Principal Rep (SSG Chair) Mrs K. (Student Services Consultants to the SSG: Miss P. (speech pathologist) Additional reports: Diagnosis of ASD

Leader)

Entry skills (what the student has achieved in pre-testing)

Grace is reading at an instructional Level 1 (RR text) Observation Survey Scores

Letter ID: 54/54 Concepts about print: 19/24 Clay Word Reading Test: 6/15 Writing vocabulary: 19 words Hearing and recording sounds in words: 31/37 BURT Word Reading Test: 10/120 Record of Oral Language (ROL) 16/42 Challenges (areas for improvement)

Social interaction with peers Keeping on task to complete work Issues with pragmatic language General oral language skills Does not cope well with changes in routine Learning priorities

Development of oral language—particularly pragmatic, social language Continuing development of reading strategies Semester goals (long-term)

Grace will independently follow familiar classroom instructions and routines.

Short-term goals (What)

Grace will follow the classroom routines and instructions (unpacking her bag) 80% of the time without being prompted.

Strategies (How)

Use visual prompts for whole class and talk about the plan of the day. Have Grace follow the visual prompts and remove cards as she does each task.

Responsibility (Who/When)

Teacher and aide

Mode of post-assessment

Observe Grace over a week and note how many times she can use her visual prompts without reminders.

Assessment rating

1 2 3

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Grace’s Record of Oral Language (ROL) skills will improve.

Grace’s ROL score will improve from 16 to 20.

Provide small group activities with oral language focus. Play games: • Guess Who • Conversation Cubes—use of Who, When, Why • Use of Colourful Semantics cards to create sentences orally

Teacher

Administer ROL—record her score over time of the plan

1 2 3

Grace will maintain concentration on set tasks.

Grace will complete a set task in the allocated time of approx. 20 minutes, 80% of the time with assistance.

Provide praise and rewards e.g. stickers when Grace is on task and when she completes tasks. Use personal timer to assist Grace.

Teacher and aide

Monitor Grace to keep her on task. Keep records of how often she completes work with or without support.

1 2 3

Key: 1 = Minimal achievement

2 = Some progress

3 = Achieved

Signatures Parent(s)/carer(s): SSG Chair: Teacher: Other SSG Members:

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Figure 6.3

Example of an ILP format for a secondary school student

Highscene Secondary College Individual Learning Plan ILP: 2 of 3 Date written: 3/5/2021 Student: John

H.

Review date: 3/6/2021 Year: 10K

D.O.B. 5/6/2005

Age: 16

years

Student Support Group members consulted in writing this plan Parent: Father—Mr H. Student Services Leader: Mrs Teacher: Mrs F.B. (English teacher) Teacher aide: Mrs L.R. SSG Chair: Mrs M.K.

T.S.

Entry skills

John is able to write some simple texts, however he does not use the correct structure or language features of a persuasive text. He tends to write a series of ideas that he believes to be ‘true’ but does not structure his argument in the correct form. He does not justify his arguments in any way as he rarely uses appropriate words or techniques to persuade his reader. Challenges

John’s general literacy skills are delayed, as his reading decoding and comprehension levels are at Level 4/5 standard. He has difficulty with spelling, does not engage in English classes and is easily distracted. His work is often untidy and difficult to read. Learning priorities

Correct structure of persuasive text. Use of some persuasive language in John’s writing (and spelling these words correctly). John will persevere and complete his task independently without distraction. Long-term goals:

Short-term goals:

John will be able to compose a series of written texts, using their correct structure and features.

After four weeks of support from his teacher and aide, John will independently write a persuasive text using a structure that includes an introduction, arguments in order of priority with examples and a conclusion. He will use words to persuade, such as ‘therefore’, ‘reasons’, or ‘believe’, in his writing. He will do this 75% of the time.

Strategies:

• • •

• •

Brainstorm some arguments John may be interested in writing about and make a list of these in his writing book. TA Discuss the ways we try to persuade people about things. What are some of the words we use? Make a list of these. Look at sample texts of persuasion (e.g. letters in the Herald Sun), and see how people try to change our minds. T or TA Present a Visual Graphic organiser for John to use to break up the parts of his persuasive text. Model a sample for him and then have him write a simple argument with you. Talk about the strongest/best arguments he has in this piece and place them first. If this is done on computer, cut and paste these in order of strength. T or TA Investigate apps that will engage John and assist him to remember the structure of texts. Talk about how the use of examples would strengthen his arguments to his reader (e.g. secondary students are too old to wear uniforms, example: teenagers always wear what they like at home). T or TA

Responsible staff:

T = Teacher TA = Teacher aide Mode(s) of assessment:

After four weeks, present John with an argument he has already discussed during this learning plan. Have him write a persuasive text that will change the mind of his audience. Standard achieved: Signatures Parent(s)/carer(s): Teacher(s):

SSG Chair: Others:

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Working in Teams

He will say hello, sorry, and thank you

Michael will independently pack his own bag at the end of the day with minimal assistance

He will play with others 75% of recess time

Michael will complete his work within the required time with assistance

Goals: To sit with other students 70% of the time

Michael picks up things and puts them in his mouth

At times makes unusual facial expressions when being corrected

Finds it hard to express his feelings

Very slow to follow instructions, especially packing his bag at the end of the day

Michael struggles to concentrate on set tasks for 15 minute periods and does not always complete tasks

Michael struggles to participate in whole-class activities. He sometimes sits at his desk (about 50% of the time) or on the floor separate from other children— better in the morning

Term 4, 2016

Building Social Relationships

Include level of performance in accordance with AusVels/ABLES/ EAL Continuum

Use specific terms such as: • to compare • to write • to explain • to list • to compute • to evaluate

Warn Michael when he has 5 minutes to leave the sand-pit and 10 minutes until end of the day

Establish routines and structures, which may include pictures pasted on Michael’s desk— VISUAL prompts

(continued)

Note how many times Michael moves independently to his ‘writing space’

Keep note of what rewards work best in modifying his behaviour

Note how often he needs to have a movement break and if this is diminishing

Note improvements in behaviours and what situations/ environments assist him to remain focused

Records of work completed in set time by Michael with and without support

Requires short breaks and changes in activity across the day to maximise concentration Use technology to engage Michael to extend work time

Anecdotal notes kept by Michael’s LSO

Provide instructions, reminders and assistance of the time by teacher or LSO

Supports and scaffolding for the adjustment

Degree of adjustment

Type of adjustment

Evidence of progress Provide evidence (e.g. data) of achievement and state the degree of improvement in performance (i.e. summative and formative assessment information, work samples presented by teacher, standardised assessments).

Short-term goals What behaviour did/do you want the student to demonstrate? Use SMART goals.

Dimension

Adjustments, supports and learning activities for program implementation What adjustments were/will be implemented to support the student to achieve these goals?

Entry skills What skills has this student demonstrated in relation to this goal?

Annual Goals: 2016

Interpersonal Development To work in a team on an assigned role, stay on task and complete structured activities within a set time frame To continue to fully take part in all aspects of the curriculum To develop Michael’s ability to interact with others appropriately in a range of social situations

AusVELS/ABLES/EAL Continuum Domain

Example of a Student Learning Program

Student Learning Program

Figure 6.4

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Date:

Signed:

School representative name:

Date:

Signed:

Parent/carer name:

SIGNATURES

Example of a Student Learning Program (continued)

Student Learning Program

Figure 6.4

Ensure that Michael can take part in all activities in the curriculum, particularly specialist classes, excursions and swimming, by providing adequate supervision

Have Michael repeat a question or instruction given by the teacher

Give him more time to prepare his answers

Provide Michael with a working space that minimises distraction (away from computers)

An LSO should help Michael with starting, planning and finishing his tasks

Michael needs as few choices as possible in his learning activities

Use timers

Develop reward charts to encourage Michael to pack up on time

Use social stories

As Michael may not ask for help if he is ill or hurt, he needs closer monitoring in the playground and in class

Michael must always go to the toilet with a partner and preferably with his LSO

Close supervision and care by LSO during unusual situations like excursions, camps, sport days, concert days

Monitor Michael’s behaviour in the playground

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Using expert assistance for ILPs and SSG meetings It is important to use the expertise of qualified external practitioners with students who have special learning needs. These specialists help teachers in the diagnostic process and in devising goals for the student and identifying the best strategies to use. They also provide an expert ‘eye’ on the progress made by the student over the period of the ILP. Charman and colleagues (2011) noted that working with specialist health professionals and prioritising the training of all staff (including integration aides) was an important feature of supportive schools in this area. Psychologists assist schools in planning for students with challenging behaviours. They help teachers identify the social or emotional needs of the student and how to satisfy those needs in socially acceptable ways. Psychologists will also be of great assistance to you if you have students on the autism spectrum. They will suggest ways you can adjust your classroom or teaching style to minimise any anxiety these students experience and deal with potentially difficult behaviour. Occupational therapists not only assist with students’ fine and gross motor skills difficulties, but can also advise teachers who are working with students who have chronic health issues, physical disabilities and autism. These specialists are invited to SSG meetings by the school when appropriate; however, their involvement with students must always be agreed to by parents. They are in fact ‘ex officio’ members of the SSG, and are there as advisors, unless they are involved in direct assessment and monitoring of a student’s progress.

Concerns about students in your class who have not been assessed If you have concerns about any student in your class, and they have not had any formal assessments in the past, you will need to discuss this issue with your mentor and the special needs leader. You will be expected to collect data to support your concern and share this with your special needs coordinator. You will then meet with the student’s parents/carers to discuss the student’s behaviour or learning challenges. A parent agreement will be required before you refer any student to a specialist for assessment. This process will be different in each school; therefore your mentor or coordinator will assist you in the paperwork that is necessary to apply for an assessment. Speech pathologists and educational psychologists are able to carry out assessments within the school, while more specialist assessments, such as diagnostic testing for ASD, or mental health assessments, are completed by paediatricians and child psychiatrists in their clinics. Each Australian state and territory has a funded diagnostic services program for children with ASD and other special needs. Some speech pathology and occupational pathology visits are refundable under Medicare, and some student therapy will be funded under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). It is crucial that parents check with their GP regarding their eligibility to attend private therapy.

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What is the NCCD? The NCCD is the Nationally Consistent Collection of Data on school students with disability. If any student in your class requires adjustments to their learning program, even if the student is not eligible for government funding, they are counted in the NCCD. The NCCD is mandatory for schools across Australia. The inclusion of students in this data collection is based on the professional judgement of teachers. Levels of support or adjustment to programs are classified as: • support provided that would fall within quality differentiated teaching practice • supplementary adjustments • substantial adjustments • extensive adjustments. The NCCD guidelines define each of these levels to assist the teacher in identifying the appropriate adjustment level needed by a student. The NCCD also separates student disabilities into four categories: 1. physical—including loss or malfunction of body part; disease 2. cognitive—including a disorder or malfunction that makes the person learn differently 3. sensory—total or partial loss of body or mental function 4. social or emotional—disorder, illness or disease that affects a person’s thought processes, emotions, judgement and results in disturbed behaviour. There are also some disabilities such as ADHD, ADD and dyslexia that are identified as a disability in the NCCD, although these disabilities have not been eligible for government funding assistance in the past.

Recording the adjustments made for students with special learning needs for the NCCD You should always keep a record of the adjustments you make to your program when you are teaching a student with special learning needs. This may consist of a record on your work program where you record the modifications made to tasks, the one-on-one or small group teaching of the student, or the time and tasks the student completes with their integration aide. It is a good idea to attach a copy of the student’s ILP to your program and mark off goals achieved or activities completed. This keeps your data up to date for the student’s next SSG meeting. You will need assistance in identifying and classifying the students in your class within the different disability categories when completing the NCCD form. The following table, developed by the NCCD, will help you identify the level of adjustment you are making for your students.

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• Explicit but minor adjustments to teaching and school practice that enable students to access learning on the same basis as their peers • General adjustments made in a school as part of developing a culture of inclusion • Personalised learning that is implemented without drawing on additional resources • Targeted and differentiated teaching (e.g. accounting for different learning styles in teaching delivery; presenting information in a variety of ways) • Targeted and differentiated assessment (e.g. providing multiple opportunities for students to demonstrate what they know; providing a range of assessment methods)

• Modified or tailored programs in some or many learning areas • Modified instruction using a structured task—analysis approach • Separate supervision or extra time to complete assessment tasks • Provision of intermittent specialist teacher support • Provision of course materials in accessible forms • Support or close supervision to participate in out-of-school activities or the playground • The provision of a support service that is provided by the education authority or sector, or that the school has sourced from an external agency

Examples of supplementary adjustments

Cognitive Disability

Sensory Disability • General adjustments made in a school as part of developing a culture of inclusion • Simple classroom modifications and adjustments; optimal seating arrangement: facing student when speaking; checking wearing aids; prompting to ensure aids working properly; class quiet before instructions given

• Modified or tailored programs in some or many learning areas • Separate supervision or extra time to complete assessment tasks • Provision of course materials in accessible forms • Support or close supervision to participate in out-of-school activities or the playground • Provision of a support service that is provided by the education authority or sector, or that the school has sourced from an external agency

Physical Disability • General adjustments made in a school as part of developing a culture of inclusion • A student with a health condition that has a functional impact on their schooling and requires ongoing monitoring but who does not require a higher level of support • Whole-school professional learning for the management of health conditions such as asthma or diabetes. This forms part of a school’s general, ongoing practice to equip teachers and education staff with the skills and knowledge to support students’ health needs • A facility such as building modifications that already exist in the school and cater for a student’s physical disability, where no additional action is required to support the student’s learning • Modified or tailored programs In some or many learning areas • Separate supervision or extra time to complete assessment tasks • Provision of course materials in accessible forms • Modifications to ensure full access to buildings and facilities • Support or close supervision to participate in out-of-school activities or the playground • Provision of a support service that is provided by the education authority or sector, or that the school has sourced from an external agency

Example of a categorised Level of Adjustment table (NCCD)

Examples of quality differentiated teaching practice (QDTP) adjustments

Figure 6.5

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(continued)

• Modified or tailored programs in some or many learning areas • Modified instruction using a structured task-analysis approach • Separate supervision or extra time to complete assessment tasks • Specialised technology, programs or interventions to address the student’s social/emotional needs • Support or close supervision to participate in out-of-school activities or the playground • Provision of a support service that is provided by the education authority or sector, or that the school has sourced from an external agency

• General adjustments made in a school as part of developing a culture of inclusion • A student with a mental health condition that has a functional impact on their schooling and requires ongoing monitoring but who does not require a higher level of support

Social/Emotional Disability

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• These adjustments are generally considerable in extent and may include frequent (teacherdirected) individual instruction and regular direct support or close supervision in highly structured situations to enable the students to participate in school activities • Adjustments to delivery modes, significantly modified study materials, access to bridging programs, or adapted assessment procedures (e.g. assessment tasks that significantly adjust content, mode of presentation or the outcomes being assessed) • Regular visiting teacher or external agency support • Alternative formats for assessment tasks, to enable these students to demonstrate the achievement of their intended learning outcomes • Essential specialised support services for technical aids • Access to a specialised support setting

• These adjustments will generally include personalised modifications to all courses and programs, school activities and assessment procedures • Intensive individual instruction to ensure that these students can demonstrate the development of skills and competencies and the achievement of learning outcomes • Provision of much more accessible and relevant curriculum options or learning activities specifically designed for the student • Alternative communication modes • Provision of highly structured approaches or technical aids to meet their particular learning needs • They may involve the use of highly specialised assistive technology • Some students may receive their education in highly specialised facilities

Examples of extensive adjustments

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• These adjustments will generally include personalised modifications to all courses and programs, school activities and assessment procedures • They may involve the use of highly specialised assistive technology • Some students may receive their education in highly specialised facilities

• Provision on a regular basis of additional supervision • Regular visiting teacher or external agency support • Alternative formats for assessment tasks, to enable these students to demonstrate the achievement of their intended learning outcomes • Essential specialised support services for technical aids • Access to a specialised support setting • Close playground supervision may be required at all times • Frequent assistance with mobility and personal hygiene

Example of a categorised Level of Adjustment table (NCCD) (continued)

Examples of substantial adjustments

Figure 6.5

• These adjustments will generally include personalised modifications to all courses and programs, school activities and assessment procedures • Provision of much more accessible and relevant curriculum options or learning activities specifically designed for the student • Alternative communication modes

• Provision on a regular basis of additional supervision • Regular visiting teacher or external agency support • Alternative formats for assessment tasks, to enable these students to demonstrate the achievement of their intended learning outcomes • Essential specialised support services for technical aids • Access to a specialised support setting • Close playground supervision may be required at all times • Frequent assistance with mobility and personal hygiene

N/A

• Provision on a regular basis of additional supervision • Regular visiting teacher or external agency support • Alternative formats for assessment tasks, to enable these students to demonstrate the achievement of their intended learning outcomes • Close playground supervision may be required at all times

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Keeping track of your adjustments for students Figure 6.6 includes one example of the way a classroom teacher recorded her supplementary or substantial adjustments for one student, and one example of the quality differentiated teaching practice (QDTP) adjustments made for a small group of students in her class. Figure 6.6

Examples of adjustments for students (individual and group)

Individual Student Record of Adjustments—NCCD Record of Adjustments—Term 2 ongoing Student: Jacob Year: 4 Activity

Frequency

Intensity

Visual timetable and daily plan

All domains

Whole class

Chunk instructions—one instruction at a time

All instructions in all domains

1:1

Support to repeat instructions

All instructions in all domains

1:1

Prompting to redirect attention to whole-class activity

All domains x 2 per session

1:1

Levelled Literacy Intervention (LLI)—Reading and Reading Comprehension support

Once a week with Lit. Leader Touching base with teacher x 2 per week

Small focus group

Support to scaffold written tasks

All domains

Whole class 1:1

Sensory tactile cushion for sitting on the floor and desk

All domains—throughout the day when applicable

1:1 NB Jacob chose not to use this after a week, as he didn’t feel he needed it.

Tensile band for chair and personal use

All domains—used as required

1:1 NB Jacob chose not to use these after two days, as he didn’t like them.

Sensory gym ball as an alternative to chair

All domains—used as required

1:1 Only lasted one session, as Jacob was rolling over the floor and leaning right back on the ball. Removed, and chair reinstated.

Behaviour tracking chart

All domains—used as required

Checked throughout the day. Ticks given for being on task and work being completed. Dojo point awarded if all boxes are ticked.

Fidget toy

All domains—use as required when on floor

Jacob chooses his own toy. Usage is monitored to make sure he is not distracting others or being too distracted by the toy.

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Record of Adjustments for a Group of Students—NCCD Students supported: Keiko, Riley and Lucas Term 2 Week 3 Year 3/4 MONDAY Keiko, Riley and Lucas: LLI program with teacher (first 30 mins of Literacy block) Go through homework sheet Modified times tables task: write out first six 2x tables in book for Keiko to answer independently.

TUESDAY

WEDNESDAY

THURSDAY

FRIDAY

MATHS: Modified times tables task: write out first six 2x tables in Riley’s book for him to answer independently.

Keiko, Riley and Lucas: LLI program with LSO (first hour of Literacy block)

LITERACY: Homophones— teacher to provide support to Keiko and Lucas as they construct their homophone poster. Include the homophones in sentences, first orally and then in writing.

MATHS: Multiples Focus Group 4 Work together with teacher utilising tables chart in room to find the multiples of specific numbers.

WRITING: Repeated activity from last week, to reinforce understanding of prepositional phrases. Scaffold Riley— give him a simple sentence starter: ‘I looked out my window and saw...’ Prompt for a full stop with a question: ‘Have you finished that sentence?’

MATHS: Modified times tables task: Write out first six 2x tables in Lucas’s book for him to answer independently. LITERACY: Three students work with LSO on syllabification of words. Tap out syllables. Riley to work then with LSO on Bingo sound cards—short vowel sounds.

Riley—pair him with a capable student. Touch base to ensure he is understanding the task. MATHS: Multiplication using the Distributive Property Lucas—modify task so that he is only multiplying low teen numbers (11, 12, 13) by a single digit. Keiko—work with two-digit numbers in teens and low twenties. Touch base to ensure correct steps are followed.

Also included is a 3/4 HPE program which records the ‘safety adjustments’ to the program that are required to cater for some students. The students who require these adjustments are identified on the planner. Note the gradation of adjustments on the planner moves from QDTP, Supplementary, Substantial to Extensive. These adjustments were based on the degree of disability of the students. This is important data to keep in school records.

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Figure 6.7

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Example method of adjustment used by specialist teacher

3/4 Program (Term 4) LEARNING AREA

Health and Physical Education (HPE)

STRAND

Movement and Physical Activity

YEAR LEVEL

3/4

CURRICULUM CONTENT DESCRIPTORS

Moving the body Practise and refine fundamental movement skills in different movement situations in indoor, outdoor and aquatic settings (VCHPEM097) Perform movement sequences which link fundamental movement skills (VCHPEM098) Practise and apply movement concepts and strategies (VCHPEM099) Understanding movement Combine the elements of effort, space, time, objects and people| when performing movement sequences (VCHPEM101) Learning through movement Adopt inclusive practices when participating in physical activities (VCHPEM102) Apply basic rules and scoring systems, and demonstrate fair play when participating (VCHPEM104)

NCCD

Verbal safety prompts. Defined work areas—marked with varying necessary equipment like cones, flexi-domes, Poly Spot markers, arrows, etc. Modified equipment options—large or small bat/racquet. Visual examples modelled by teacher and displays available. Verbal prompts and cues—‘copycat’ the teacher or another student.

NCCD Students

Class names

QDTP

HPE 3M

Jack

Supplementary

HPE 4B

Substantial

Extensive

Isla Arlen

Weblink The NCCD collection of data: https://bit.ly/KAV_NCCDguidelines

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Reflective Exercise Having read this chapter and some of the associated readings, consider what you’ve learnt about the teaching of students with special learning needs. Utilise Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (see Chapter 1, page 18) and add your significant reflections to your reflective journal. Where possible, link your reflections to particular students you have worked with.

Case study Lily’s recent behaviour has puzzled her teacher. Lily seems to be losing confidence in class and with her friends. She is often seen alone in the playground and is also reluctant to join in small group discussions. Lily rarely responds to questions posed by the teacher and appears to be confused when asked directly what she thinks about an issue. Lily works more confidently from written material and greatly enjoys reading. Her teacher has made an attempt to discuss his concerns with Lily’s parents. Unfortunately two most recent appointments have been cancelled at late notice. Given these concerns: 1. What steps should the teacher take to help resolve Lily’s situation? 2. What could happen if this issue is not pursued and Lily’s issues are not correctly diagnosed?

Notes

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Chapter 7 Supporting Students with Special Needs Every student in your class is unique. Some will have physical or intellectual impairments or challenges, some may be gifted learners, and others may experience social or emotional disabilities—for some, perhaps a combination of all of these. This chapter examines the characteristics of different students that you may have in your class, and the challenges some of these students face in accessing the curriculum and participating fully in school life, including staying engaged in their learning. We also present strategies recommended in the research literature that can assist you with these areas.

Key Topics • • • • • • • •

Autism spectrum disorder Hearing impairments Visual impairments Physical disabilities Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder Students with specific learning disorders Severe language disorders Gifted and talented students

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Autism spectrum disorder If you have a student in your class who has been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), there should be a copy of their formal assessment on file for your reference. The student will have been assessed against the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (known as the DSM-5). A simple description of the DSM-5 can be found in the Glossary for this book and it is worth reading, in order to understand what components of the student’s thinking and behaviour are assessed. Older assessments may include the term Asperger syndrome (also Asperger’s syndrome or Asperger’s disorder), however this diagnostic category was removed from the DSM-5 in May 2013. The DSM-5 presents two major categories of diagnosis. They are: 1. persistent deficits in social communication and social interaction across contexts 2. restricted repetitive patterns of behaviours, interests or activities. For a diagnosis to be made, these symptoms must be present in early childhood, although they may not manifest until social demands on the child exceed their capacity, such as when they begin preschool. Symptoms both limit and impair the individual’s everyday functioning, and the characteristics cannot be explained by another diagnosis—for example, an intellectual disability—some students can be affected severely, and others hardly at all. The cognitive abilities of students with an ASD can range from intellectual disability to gifted; each ASD student is unique in profile. Most students with autism can learn and make friendships if they are supported by their teachers and classmates.

The ways ASD students think This section acknowledges some of the more common characteristics of autism, and how they can affect your students with ASD.

Theory of mind Most of us understand that other people may think differently about things and have different ideas from our own, but for an autistic child this ability is impaired. This is sometimes referred to as ‘theory of mind’ or ‘mind blindness’. As a result, the autistic student may become frustrated with routine classroom activities, show lack of empathy for others, want to be in control or find it difficult to take turns. While most of us can dream up an imaginary or make-believe world, students with ASD cannot do this. However, imagination is often required to complete tasks at school and it is also a very important component of developmental play in young children. Hence the play of children with ASD is often characterised by being isolated and ‘real’ rather than imaginary, and this can further impact on the development of the autistic child’s social relationships with other children.

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Central coherence This cognitive ability refers to the way we make sense of information, situations and events according to their context; it’s all about getting the ‘gist’ of things and making the world a meaningful place. Most students generally start with the whole and move on to the parts to make sense of their world. They are able to gather and integrate a lot of sensory information, and then make connections with this information, but ASD students have trouble drawing details together. They are more attuned to small things, rather than the overall picture. The following scenario details one example of weak central coherence: children enter a room where there are balloons, a birthday cake and candles, and children dressed up and playing games. An ASD child may focus on the balloons or the cake, whereas a child who is not diagnosed with ASD would immediately recognise it as what we conventionally consider to be a birthday party.

Executive function ‘Executive function’ is our ability to shift easily between taking part in activities and thinking about different ideas. Poor executive function impacts on a child’s behaviour and learning. When ASD children are young, they are likely to have difficulties with being impulsive, working from memory and using new learning strategies (Attwood 2008). As the child gets older, poor executive function leads to difficulties with organisation, time management, prioritisation of tasks, understanding abstract concepts and self-monitoring (Attwood 2008; Cumine et. al. 2001).

Impairment of pragmatic language Even ASD students, who can have quite sophisticated oral language skills, are significantly limited in their social and communicative use of language (Attwood 2008; Kasari & Rotheram-Fuller 2005). These children often interpret language literally, and miss the non-verbal communication skills and cues we use every day. This can lead to confusion in social situations and misinterpretation of the teacher’s instructions in the classroom. For example, idioms such as ‘Dad is in the dog-house’, would be difficult to understand. An ASD child may become anxious and appear quite obstinate in trying to process the meaning behind phrases like these. Social language is largely a monologue rather than a dialogue for an ASD child, and the child may ask many questions during a conversation as this is their way of understanding. Unfortunately, this can be annoying for their peers and add to issues of social isolation (Noens & Van Berckelaer-Onnes 2002; Laurent & Gorman 2018). Some specific examples of pragmatic language skills that ASD students struggle with in the classroom include: • introducing topics, and staying focused on a topic during a conversation • asking relevant questions • avoiding repetition or irrelevant information • asking for and offering clarification or help appropriately

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• adjusting language, including speaking volume, to fit the situation or to be suitable for the person listening • using and understanding humour • using appropriate strategies to gain attention (instead of interrupting) • offering or responding to expressions of affection appropriately • using and interpreting non-verbal communication (facial expressions, body language and tone of voice).

Managing social situations The difficulties many ASD students have in interacting with other children and making friends at school is of considerable concern to parents and teachers. If you have an ASD student in your class, this will be the most important focus of your work with them. You will notice that your student may exhibit the following behaviours: • difficulty taking turns • minimal eye contact. Even when ASD students look at a person’s eyes, research has shown they are less able to ‘read’ the message of the speaker (Baron-Cohen & Jolliffe 1997) • reduced understanding of personal space • inappropriate language use when showing affection (e.g. students can be uninhibited with others) • difficulty understanding the subtlety of the language of others (e.g. non-verbal forms of communication) • difficulty using language to initiate and maintain conversations. If the student speaks repetitively of their subject of interest, or if they talk ‘at you’ and not ‘with you’, other children will soon reject the ASD student • difficulty understanding deception. Typically, children learn to distinguish ‘white lies’ and when to use them, but ASD students do not develop this skill. This makes students with ASD more vulnerable to bullying. The ASD student is always straightforward—sometimes considered blunt—with their opinions. For example, they may say something like, ‘I think that new dress makes you look fat.’ Clearly, this can lead to social difficulties.

Repetitive behaviour, hypersensitivity and motor difficulties Students with ASD often display repetitive patterns of behaviour, interests or activities, and may become very anxious if you change their routine. The student may have very restricted interests and may be fixated on these interests. As an example, common interests might include dinosaurs, trains or birds, though this will vary for each ASD student. Students can also be hypersensitive to sensory inputs and you may find they become anxious during loud class activities, school assemblies, watching TV, or anything that involves flashing lights. Again, displays of repetitive movement in class

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such as flapping their hands, rocking and making unusual verbalisations could be a sign that your autistic student is highly anxious. This means you may need to remove them from the classroom or from the situation during these times. Children with ASD often have difficulties with fine motor skills (e.g. handwriting and cutting) and gross motor skills (e.g. running and hopping). These students may have low muscle tone, and this often causes difficulty in planning, coordinating and executing physical movements. Preschool and primary school teachers of students with ASD need to incorporate strength-building activities in fine and gross motor skills for these students as an essential part of their Individual Learning Plans (ILPs). (See Chapter 6 Learning Diversity in the Classroom for more information on ILPs.) Occupational therapy is highly recommended in early intervention programs for young children with diagnoses of ASD.

Strategies to assist students with ASD In the classroom, your ASD students may have difficulty grasping the whole picture of the concepts you are teaching. They will need your assistance in deciding what is, or is not relevant. This weak central coherence will cause your ASD students to having difficulties in reading comprehension and writing. If words are read and remembered as if in a list, it is understandable that it will be more difficult for the student to extract meaning from the text. (Frith & Happe 2004)

Strategies to assist with weak central coherence can include any reading comprehension strategies such as note-taking, summarising, finding the ‘main idea’ and sorting fact from opinion. John Munro’s work, The High Reliability Literacy Teaching Procedures to Building Students’ Literacy Knowledge, provides some valuable strategies. ASD students in secondary school struggle to use their background knowledge to problem-solve in new or open-ended situations. They have difficulty breaking down more complex tasks, identifying patterns or previous learning/knowledge, prioritising and planning tasks. Essentially, ASD students have trouble generalising from other experiences, in both learning and social situations. (Wong et al. 2015)

Strategies to support students who have difficulty with problem-solving tasks and retrieving prior knowledge include: • using visual prompts wherever possible in new learning • providing explicit one-on-one teaching when necessary • modifying the task to ensure success • reminding the student of previous learning that is relevant to the new task • presenting the new learning in small parts and checking that the student understands • using graphic organisers to break down steps, for example, ‘First do this, then do this’ • giving frequent breaks to reduce chance of fatigue • watching out for signs of anxiety. We know that ASD students have difficulty organising their thoughts, prioritising tasks, managing time efficiently, controlling their behaviour, and making decisions; this is the ‘how’ of learning. Impairment of executive function is a common characteristic

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of ASD. Students with ASD have difficulty remembering sequences and they often get stuck and can’t remember what the next step is in their learning. Younger students with these difficulties need support and scaffolding, such as: • assistance with controlling impulsivity in the early years of school (Attwood 2008) • help with planning how to approach a task, getting started and maintaining attention, and even stopping the task when it’s appropriate (Attwood 2008; Cumine et al. 2001) • help with knowing where to focus their attention, organisation and self-monitoring. Strategies that may help older students include: • when the student is calm, discussing the ways they can cope when things change— deep breathing, asking for help and sitting in a place where they won’t be distracted • colour-coding books to help with organisation • providing the student with a buddy and encouraging modelled behaviour • using visual timetables of various kinds • using graphic organisers • introducing timers to help with time management • providing fiddle toys to minimise sensory issues. Strategies that will support students with pragmatic language issues include: • visual supports/reminders • good role models • role playing to practise appropriate language • social stories to remind students of appropriate language (Gray 2020).

Social stories Social stories are individual short stories that depict a social situation that your student with autism may be struggling with. They were first introduced by Gray (2020), and comprise seven sentences. Each social story should include: • a descriptive sentence—the who, what, when, where and why details of the situation so that the child can recognise it (e.g. ‘When we go into assembly, I get scared because it is noisy.’) • a directive sentence—here you include instructions as to how the child should respond to the situation (e.g. ‘I can ask my integration aide if I can sit near the door, so that I can leave if I am feeling really upset and I’ll be okay.’) • a perspective sentence—this sentence should describe one of the child’s possible responses or feelings in the situation (e.g. ‘If I start to feel anxious about assembly, I can bring my headphones and it won’t be so noisy.’) • an affirmative sentence—this should state a rule that the child should understand (e.g. ‘I know that all the children come to assembly and that we are all safe.’) • a cooperative sentence—this sentence will describe the actions or help of people around the child (e.g. ‘I can use my headphones if the noise is too loud, or I can sit next to my aide and they will keep me safe. I will be okay.’)

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• a control sentence—including actions or responses that will help the child remember the strategies that work for them (e.g. ‘Sometimes the assembly is noisy so I will always remember to bring my headphones, and sit near the door with my aide. Then I won’t be frightened of the noise at assembly. I will be okay.’) • a partial sentence—this sentence should encourage the child to guess about the next step (e.g. ‘I will be proud of myself if I stay for the whole assembly.’) It is important to remember that social stories should always be written from the child’s point of view (first person). You will need to read the story to and with the child several times. In the example shown earlier, possibly before each assembly.

Hint

You are strongly urged to become familiar with the range of technological tools that are available that can assist students with Autism. Two assistive technology sites we recommend are: • Digital Resources for Students with Autism: https://bit.ly/KAV_DigitalResources • Assistive Technology Tools: Organization and Memory: https://bit.ly/KAV_AssistiveTechnology

In summary • Take turns in conversation. Practise listening, sharing and taking turns through roleplay games. • Practise social skills in a range of situations. Refer to the ‘Sue Larkey’s Individual Education Plans’ weblink listed later in this section; this site has a range of excellent resources to use in developing social skills. • Manage emotions—try ‘Putting yourself in another person’s shoes’ games. Consider using the Zones of Regulation program to help your student identify and manage their own emotions. The program is a framework that uses four colours to help students identify their feelings and alertness level. It provides strategies to support students to regulate their emotions (Kuypers 2011). • Prepare a clear timetable of the day’s or week’s lessons, either on the student’s phone or school diary. • Always use simple graphic organisers to help students plan the structure of writing and other problem-solving tasks. • Practise fine motor skills with young students to develop strength and flexibility, particularly in handwriting. • Set up situations that involve a social problem and address the appropriate ways to ‘say what you feel’. For example, not liking what you are asked to do by a teacher or asking someone to play. • Film the modelling of good social skills, and include examples of appropriate conversation skills, use of eye contact and personal space. • Use visual prompts to assist the student to remember appropriate behaviour, including when speaking. These can be laminated cards attached to a keyring that the student carries to remind themselves when needed.

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• Colour-code the student’s books and make sure senior students with ASD always have a clear copy of their class timetable to minimise being confused or arriving late to class. • Incorporate topics in class units that deal specifically with tolerance, acceptance and positive behaviour towards people who are different. This will assist all students to accept and support their peers. • Develop a buddy system to support students, particularly in the social situation of the playground. • Explain the needs of the ASD student to other staff, so that the student will be monitored and supported throughout the school day. Charman and colleagues (2011) recommend the following understandings and strategies to support students with ASD. They note that successful schools were found to: • access external experts such as speech pathologists, occupational therapists to help with emotional behaviour and sensory difficulties, while maintaining close links with parents • have high expectations and aspirations for ASD students • listen to the voices of ASD students • develop strong relationships with ASD students • personalise and adapt the curriculum when needed, while still following the mainstream curriculum • use multiple forms of assessment. Read Smith-Myles, Trautman and Schelvan (2013) for further suggestions for older students with autism. (See the Bibliography at the end of this textbook for details.)

Understanding escalating behaviour in students with ASD We often hear the term ‘meltdown’ when discussing the tantrum-like behaviour of an ASD student. It is important to realise that there is a difference between a tantrum and a meltdown. Tantrums are commonly seen in young children. They are driven by the goal to satisfy a desire or ‘want’. For example, the child may want the parent/carer to buy them a lolly, but the parent/carer declines. The child often checks for reaction from their ‘audience’ (the parent/carer) but they would rarely self-harm during their tantrum. This is very different to a meltdown. Meltdowns are reactive mechanisms; that is, how a child responds when they lose control. A meltdown can occur when a student with ASD feels overwhelmed by the cognitive demands of a situation, or the sensory overload of noise, touch, or visual input. They continue without attention to others, and the child’s own safety may be at risk.

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In the course of a typical day, it is essential that the teacher knows when the ASD student is receptive to learning and when they may have reached their threshold. Parents/carers are most often your best source of information regarding what the key stressors are for the child. Therefore, it is important to regularly communicate with parents/carers to help you gain insights about how the student might uniquely react to stressful situations. Teachers need to be sensitive to the onset of behaviour that suggests that the student has reached their threshold. Hint

If you have a student in your class with a diagnosis of ASD, you should make yourself aware of what may trigger anxiety in the student. Make sure you are thoroughly familiar with the school’s safety plan to support the student and yourself if a meltdown should occur.

The model shown in Table 7.1 indicates the different stages students can move through and how their behaviour can change and escalate when they are at an increased level of anxiety. The student’s behaviour is described on the left side of the table and the recommended response of the teacher is listed on the right. Table 7.1

Responding to the behavioural changes of ASD students

The ‘teachable moments’ The student: • • • • •

is calm is able to learn with other students has good eye contact can sit still is responding to humour and conversation.

The teacher: • puts the time in here with the student—early intervention always gives the best results • teaches the child to recognise their rumbling behaviour • teaches break cards, thinking strategies, breathing techniques; uses calm spaces, tents and bean bags.

The rumbling stage—signs of growing anxiety The student: The teacher: • displays early signs of not coping (note that behaviour will vary) • may be chewing, flapping arms, roaming around the room, making odd noises or pulling faces • may have changed voice and volume • may become more rigid • may use cop-outs such as, ‘I don’t know’ when asked a direct question.

• understands this is the best time to intervene as the child doesn’t realise they are under stress • remains calm • uses a quiet voice • prevents power struggles • re-evaluates what they are asking the student to do • is flexible because the student cannot be • warns other staff of a possible meltdown. (continued)

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Table 7.1

Responding to the behavioural changes of ASD students (continued)

The meltdown stage The student: • • • •

The teacher: • • • •

shows aggression expresses extreme emotion may act impulsively may show total loss of control

• • • • • •

may express intense fear and try to run away may hide may show extreme strength may kick and scream may injure themselves by headbanging, etc. may throw things at others or around the room at random • will be irrational.

focuses on keeping everybody safe protects the student removes the audience or class (if appropriate) never leaves the student alone

• has an aide stay in the class (where possible) but asks the aide not to interact with the student and to maintain distance • uses minimal words and communication with the student • remains calm and quiet if possible • tries not to take behaviour personally • avoids physical contact—uses a card system or intercom to get assistance • avoids any power struggle (as the student may not be able to ‘hear’ the teacher) • follows any pre-determined safety plan.

The recovery stage The student: • • • • • •

will be very fragile may deny meltdown may be physically exhausted may need to sleep can insist on regular routine and sameness may demonstrate typical motor repetitive mannerisms, such as rocking or flapping arms.

The teacher: • • • • • • • •

gives student time to calm down provides space suggests and supports use of relaxation techniques allows the student to sleep does not refer to meltdown behaviour does not make excessive demands does not ask for apologies follows the school’s policy and contacts the parent/carer.

Adapted from Smith-Myles and Hubbard (2005), and the work of Colvin and Sugai (1989)

Note that when the ASD student’s anger becomes intense they ‘may be in a blind rage and unable to see the signals indicating that it would be appropriate to stop. Feelings of anger can also be in response in situations where we would expect other emotions. I have noticed sadness can be expressed as anger.’ (Attwood 2008)

Dealing with meltdowns and the everyday behaviour of students with ASD Students with ASD are far more likely to respond negatively to anxiety, so the following suggestions are important to remember: • Provide a predictable environment. • Prepare the student for any changes well in advance. • Use visual aids to aid comprehension of timetables.

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• Use calm, ‘teachable moments’ to teach appropriate behaviour (refer to Table 7.1). • Use interests as rewards, and as content in learning tasks. For example, read books and create maths tasks or projects about dinosaurs or trains, if these are the student’s passions. • Differentiate between behaviour such as flapping arms or hands, and behaviour that interrupts the learning of the student or others (i.e. pick your battles). • Remain consistent, persistent and calm (yelling never works!). • Allow the autistic student more downtime than other students. • Don’t get involved with an argument with the student, as you won’t win! • Try to work out the best time of day to have the student fully engaged in learning tasks. • Use the Antecedent-Behaviour-Consequence (ABC) chart strategy to find the situations that are more likely to raise anxiety in the student and lead to rumbling or meltdown behaviour (see Chapter 9 Working with Colleagues: A Whole-School Behaviour Management Approach). • Ensure that all staff working with the student are aware of any new expectations and strategies in place on the student’s ILP (see Chapter 6 Learning Diversity in the Classroom for information on ILPs). Suggestions by Smith-Myles and Southwick (1999) will be of great assistance in dealing with difficult behaviour. (See the Bibliography for the full reference.) Generally, when it is appropriate you should use the same behaviour management strategies that you use with other students with your ASD student. Hint

The Positive Partnerships website provides comprehensive information on autism for parents and schools. It also provides online professional development modules: https://www.positivepartnerships.com.au/.

Weblink Cognitive Theories of Autism Spectrum Disorders: https://bit.ly/KAV__CognitiveTheoriesASD Sue Larkey’s Individual Education Plans: https://bit.ly/KAV_ILPplans

Hearing impairments It is not uncommon for students with even considerable hearing impairment to be identified only when they start school. Often parents get used to the behaviour of their child and moderate hearing loss can go undetected. Hearing is the first area to check if you have concerns about a student’s behaviour, or lack of progress in the early years at school. It is also important to note that hearing loss is more widespread among Indigenous children than in the broader Australian population (The Australian Indigenous Health Infonet 2020). Indications of hearing loss include: • inability to follow long oral instructions, especially if these involve new ideas • articulation errors that are not age-appropriate • the student looking lost or puzzled, and seen watching other students and copying their behaviour OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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• the student finding it hard to maintain focus and attention • inability to sound out words and remember which sounds go with which letter. These students can often be seen on the outer edge of groups, both in the classroom and in the playground, as they struggle to hear the details of conversation in noisy environments and consequently, disengage (Burrow, Galloway & Weissofner 2009).

Strategies to assist students with hearing loss Some schools are now using an amplification system in the classroom, which can increase children’s attention span. If a hearing impairment is diagnosed early, teachers can minimise the learning delays of students by: • minimising noise in the classroom • organising classroom seating arrangements for optimal hearing and listening (e.g. seating children with hearing loss close to the teacher, or at the front of the class where they have good vision of the whiteboard and of their teacher) • using a variety of teaching methods that include one-on-one and small group teaching • summarising and repeating the main instructions, and explaining what is happening-in more detail • having other students take turns writing notes for the hearing-impaired student • teachers of senior students providing written or pictorial directions whenever possible • pre-teaching new words and concepts to facilitate the student’s participation • physically acting out or modelling the instructions for an activity with younger students • using routines to enable students to predict what will happen next • enunciating words clearly (without overdoing it) and looking directly at the hearing-impaired student so that they can lip-read • waiting longer for a response • including a variety of multisensory experiences in the learning environment to allow students to capitalise on their other modalities (e.g. using lots of tangible materials like 3D models, diagrams and real samples) • focusing on the intellectual and cognitive aspects of the learning so that the student can use their problem-solving and thinking skills in an activity. Remember: your student is not delayed intellectually just because they have a hearing impairment. These strategies have been adapted from Lowell (1993), and Burrow, Galloway and Weissofner (2009). Weblink Do You Hear What I Hear? Living and Learning with Conductive Hearing Loss—Otitis Media Resource Book:  https://bit.ly/KAV_ConductiveHearingLoss

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Visual impairments You may not be aware that one or more of your students has a visual impairment until you read their files. People with low-vision are not legally blind; they have reduced vision at, or lower than, 20/70, which may not be corrected or improved by wearing glasses. These students are often eligible for the Visiting Teacher Service, which provides the student and their teacher with support in modification of programs. Vision Australia also provide ongoing support for visually impaired students and their families. You may have a student who has considerable loss of vision, but is not eligible for government funding and does not have access to the Visiting Teacher Service, so it is important that you understand the needs of such students. To help teachers with this, Vision Australia has produced an excellent resource that advises teachers when they should consider referring a student for a vision assessment. You can access this information via the URL in the following Weblink feature (see Supporting Students Who Have Vision Loss). While these behaviours may have many causes, a vision assessment is one consideration you might recommend to the student’s parents/carers.

Strategies to assist students with vision loss The following strategies may be helpful to refer to if you have a student with a vision impairment in your class: • Always encourage the student to use prescribed visual aids such as glasses, big-print materials. • Give clear instructions, as visually impaired students can misinterpret your gestures and facial expressions. • Encourage the student to sit at the front of your classroom (possibly in the middle), with a straight-on view of you and the interactive whiteboard, away from glare and shadows. Try to ensure light is coming from behind or to the side of the student. • When writing on interactive or normal whiteboards, use black and bold lines and writing and diagrams that are larger than normal. • Talk about or read what you are writing on the board, and if necessary, partner the student with a helper to copy notes. • Provide verbal explanations when you use any audiovisual presentations. • Allow the student to handle materials that you are describing. • Make any printed materials clear and dark—black and white is the best contrast to use. • Avoid italic or ornate scripts on written material. (Refer to the site My Eight Favourite Free Fonts for Print Disabilities shown in the Weblinks feature later in this section.) • Dense reading and written work should be limited to 15 minutes. This will assist the student to refocus and avoid fatigue. • Encourage the student to practise their typing skills.

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• Try to remember to use clear, specific oral instructions and be aware of the terminology you use. Visually impaired students may not be as adept at using the environment of the room to follow what you are saying, for example, ‘Put your finished work in the red box.’ • Use recorded sections of textbooks with senior students, so that they can listen with headphones to oral presentations. • Expect your visually impaired student to complete the same assignments as others, but you may need to give the student extra time, or reduce the number of examples required to show they have understood a concept. • Avoid leaving doors ajar and chairs out from under tables. • Encourage good posture and eye contact wherever possible. • Always focus on the intellectual investment of activities, so the student can use their problem-solving and thinking skills in an activity. • Treat the visually impaired student the same as everyone else including behaviour expectations, special privileges and involvement in extracurricular activities. This will encourage other students to do the same. • Encourage the student’s participation in all activities, including outdoor activities like PE, school camps and excursions. This latter task may be challenging for you, but it is an important part of providing a fully inclusive, yet safe, experience for the student. • Independence is of primary importance for your student, so wait until they ask for help and provide minimal assistance. This will help to build self-confidence and independence. Note: the recommendations for practice in this list have been adapted from Piscitello (2015) and the Australian Disability Clearinghouse on Education and Training (ADCET n.d.(b)). Students who qualify for government funding because of the extent of their vision impairment can access the expert services of physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech pathologists. They are also able to access technology specialists who can advise schools about special technology available to help visually impaired students with reading and writing, and seeing the whiteboard. These specialists may also be able to assess students individually and recommend the best technology for them. This includes loaning equipment and demonstrating the use of it to students and teachers. Such equipment might include: large-print keyboards, and Talking Typer. The latter is an accessible typing and computer keyboard tutorial app. It has a keyboard game that helps increase speed and accuracy. The app is designed for blind and visually impaired students but can also be used by other students. Other equipment includes support benches and slope boards, and handheld and standalone video magnifiers. Some of these can also connect to interactive whiteboards. Weblinks Supporting Students Who Have Vision Loss: https://bit.ly/KAV_VisionAustralia Classroom Strategies for Regular Education Teachers Who Have Students with Visual Impairments:  https://bit.ly/KAV_ClassroomStrategies My Eight Favourite Free Fonts for Print Disabilities: https://bit.ly/KAV_FreeFonts

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Physical disabilities You may teach students with physical disabilities such as cerebral palsy, spina bifida, muscular dystrophy and amputations or loss of limbs. Students with temporary disability, such as broken arms or legs, are also included in this group. Berry and Domene (2015) reported that senior students with physical disabilities said that being given support in accessing their school’s physical environment and the school’s materials were the most important reasons for them achieving academic success.

Strategies to assist students with physical disabilities One of the first things to consider when assisting students with physical disabilities is arranging learning spaces so that everyone can move around easily. Students with either temporary or permanent physical disabilities, who are using wheelchairs, canes, walkers, braces or crutches, need more room to safely access all parts of the classroom, including exit doors in case of emergency; there should be enough space for wheelchairs to turn and crutches to be stored. Aisles need to be kept clear, with space around demonstration tables and other apparatus, in secondary science laboratories, art rooms, studios, gymnasiums and wherever else students work in the school. Computer stations can be arranged on tables that allow easy access for a wheelchair, and extra space should be considered for students that need to use ergonomic chairs or sloped writing tables. It is worth considering facilitating standing desks if necessary. The following strategies are also recommended in your day-to-day teaching practice: • Keep all materials within reach of the student. • Create student supply boxes for the student with physical disability. These boxes contain basic supplies such as pens, paper, tape, a stapler and glue. (To make your class inclusive, create these boxes for all your students.) Make sure the student can easily reach their box. • Sit beside a student in a wheelchair or lean down during a conversation with them, to avoid the strain of them looking up at you. • Make allowance for the occasional late arrival to class, due to difficulties in accessing the school or classroom. On such occasions, be ready to review any teaching material the student has missed. • Provide additional technology supports for students with permanent physical disabilities. These can include Talk-to-Text programs and QWERTY keyboards. • Encourage students to participate in all activities, including outdoor activities like PE, school camps, excursions and work experience. On occasion, modified games and PE skills lessons can be run by an integration aide under the supervision of the PE teacher. You can assist the PE teacher to adapt their program to accommodate particular needs of the student.

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• Check that any off-site experiences are accessible for the students. For example, is there wheelchair access? • Give these students some time extensions on deadlines for work, but keep the same expectations of work for all students. • All staff need to be aware of the possible frustration or embarrassment experienced especially by older students, when they cannot take part in activities with their peers. It is important that you talk to your class about this, so that they are sensitive and supportive of their classmates. • Establish a rotation of helpers for the student, particularly when accessing difficult parts of the school buildings and grounds, transitioning to different classrooms, and accessing areas where friends congregate at recess. Weblinks A Guide to Inclusion and Teaching Strategies for Students with Physical Disabilities:  https://bit.ly/KAV_InclusionStrategies How to Arrange a Classroom for Physical Disabilities: https://bit.ly/KAV_ArrangeClassroom

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder Approximately three to five per cent of your school population will exhibit some of the characteristics that are usually common to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (known as ADD or ADHD). More boys than girls are diagnosed. Students with a diagnosis of ADHD or ADD will have difficulty maintaining attention in class. They can be overly active—that is, hyperactive, impulsive and emotionally unstable. Such students may have difficulty following directions, be very fidgety and squirm constantly while sitting for any length of time. They tend to overreact emotionally when things go wrong and as a consequence, can upset others. ADHD students may forget to write down homework tasks and deadlines for assignments. They will have difficulty working on long-term projects without close supervision. They may also disrupt cooperative group learning. These students often have difficulty playing quietly, alone or with other children and sometimes engage in dangerous play without thinking about the consequences. They may talk incessantly and blurt out things, interrupt and intrude on the conversation of others.

Strategies to assist students with ADHD Segal and Smith (2019) suggest the following strategies to assist in your teaching of a student with ADHD: • Always try to have a positive attitude when teaching. • Place the student close to you when you are teaching the whole class. • Avoid seating the student at large tables with other students and keep them away from windows and doors. • At times, let the student stand, as this may alleviate fidgeting in a chair. OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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• Create a quiet area in the room where the student can elect to work. • Try using a poster with the traffic light system to remind the student of times when students are to work quietly. Red means no talking, orange means low-level or quiet talking, and green means it’s ‘free time’ (i.e. acceptable to talk at a normal volume). Personal reminders of this system can be placed on the student’s desk. • Keep teaching instructions brief and clear. Teach one step at a time, and combine both visual and auditory information when giving instructions. Break assignments for secondary school students into manageable segments, preferably using visuals and diagrams. • Ask questions often to actively engage the student. • Work on more difficult tasks early in the day. • Introduce graphic organisers that will help the student plan work. • Create worksheets with fewer items and reduce timed tasks for this student. • Accept late work and make allowances for partially completed work. • On occasion, have the student work as a ‘teacher’s assistant’ to keep them engaged in the lesson. • Place a daily outline of the class routine on the students’ desk. • For secondary school students with ADHD, colour-code books and set up folders with separate sections for each subject. • Set up a system to ensure parents receive all important school correspondence. • Make your behavioural expectations very clear every day, with frequent eye contact and the use of ‘secret signals’ when the student is off task. For example, use physical contact, such as a hand on the student’s shoulder, to focus attention; and discreetly point to visual reminders of the rules of your classroom. When the student is on task, give positive feedback. Use a Behaviour Support Plan for the student (these support plans are discussed in detail in Chapter 9 Working with Colleagues: A Whole-School Behaviour Management Approach). • Adjust the work time to match the student’s attention span that day, and provide frequent breaks. Consider the age of the student, and how much you know they can manage without becoming distracted. Whenever possible, engage the student in enjoyable topics and tasks. Limit the amount of homework for this student. • Provide forewarning before transitions within the classroom and especially when the student moves to another part of the school. These are the times your ADHD student could experience difficulty, so carefully monitor behaviour in these situations. These students and those on the autism spectrum may be challenging for you. However, if you proactively plan what you will do if the student becomes challenging in the classroom you will be in a better position to successfully deal with any situation that arises. For example, set up processes such as intercoms or a card system, by which you can call for assistance when needed. One of our primary roles as teachers is to keep our students and ourselves safe. Weblink ADHD in Children: https://bit.ly/KAV_ADHD

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Students with specific learning disorders It is considered that approximately 10 per cent of students in a typical class will have a specific learning disorder such as dyslexia (reading), dysgraphia (writing) and dyscalculia (mathematics). It is important to remember that some students may have learning delays in all areas, but some students can be quite advanced in one area, and struggle in another. Learning disorders are not necessarily linked to intelligence, although they can be (Barnes 2014). You may have several students in your class who have never had a formal assessment so it is also important that you identify these students and their special learning needs.

Characteristics of students with specific learning disorders Students with specific learning disorders may display persistent difficulties and delays in learning to read, write, spell or manage mathematical reasoning. For example, the student may be slow to read or inaccurate when reading (i.e. lack fluency in reading) and have a low level of comprehension of what they can read. Written expression will lack clarity, and spelling and grammar may be poor. Regarding mathematics, the student may have difficulty remembering number facts, and lack understanding of mathematical reasoning. Another common characteristic is poor short- and long-term auditory memory, resulting in students scoring poorly on class tests and formal assessments, such as the Record of Oral Language or Sutherland Phonological Awareness Test at the Foundation level. These students often have difficulty following or remembering directions that their peers can manage. As these students often have a poor concept of time, they can also have difficulties completing homework tasks and exams on time. These students may exhibit a low tolerance and high frustration level because of the difficulty they experience in their learning. Consequently, they may exhibit signs of poor self-esteem. They may say things like: ‘I can’t do this, it’s too hard’ or ‘I hate school!’ Consequently, they may also have difficulty avoiding distraction in the classroom and staying on task for extended periods of time. They may have issues controlling emotions and find it challenging working with others in small and large groups. If their learning needs are not being met, these are the students that can be behaviourally challenging.

Strategies to assist students with specific learning disorders These students can learn, but they often require instruction that is tailored to their learning abilities. Recent findings suggest that the most effective strategies for these students are those that:

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• are flexible • work on the strengths of the student • build on (improve) their areas of weakness (Fry 2015; Rath & Royer 2002; Taylor et al. 2010; & Van Swet et al. 2011, as cited in the Australian Disability Clearinghouse on Education and Training n.d.(a)). With this in mind, we have listed the following tips to try with your student(s) who have a specific learning disorder: • Seat the student towards the front of the room and have quiet spaces for individual learning at times. This will reduce distraction. • Use a mix of formal age-appropriate assessment tools and analyse mathematics, writing and reading skills to find out what level of work your student can complete. It is important that you focus on the positives. • Attempt to identify the Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD) for the student. The ZPD is defined as the difference between what learners can do independently, and what they can only do with a teacher’s direct support. The teacher’s task is to identify the next step in the student’s learning. • If your student has specific gaps or delays in learning, you will need to write an ILP for this student. This may cover one or more curriculum areas. • Although some students will have individual learning needs and will need to work one-on-one with you or an integration aide, also give these students the opportunity to work in small mixed-ability groups. Even young children are aware of their personal learning challenges and it is most important to remember that a child’s self-esteem is a vital component of academic learning. • Always set the stage for learning by clarifying with these students both their learning goals and your expectations. Tell them explicitly what you are looking for in their work. For example, ‘I want to see you using capital letters and full stops in your writing.’ • Students with substantial communication disorders often require specially designed instruction in their individualised learning plans (Logsdon 2018). • Break down learning tasks into manageable chunks. Students with learning disorders will also have difficulty with abstract terms and concepts, so where possible, provide solid objects they can examine and handle and illustrations or pictures that they can refer to. • Keep eye contact with student when giving instructions. Repeat your instructions and then have the student explain what is required, until you feel the student is confident to do the tasks alone. Make specific links with what students have learnt or practised before, as they may not make these connections. For example, remind secondary students how their learning is applicable across curriculum areas, that is, writing a report in their English class is similar to writing one in their science class. • Make tasks and activities concise and short. Drawn out projects can be very frustrating for students with learning disorders. • For those students who have reading difficulties, introduce assessment tasks orally and, if appropriate, provide technological assistance. For example, allow taping of answers rather than writing them. Make sure you are testing what you mean to test (e.g. mathematics knowledge, not reading proficiency).

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• Provide students with additional time to complete tasks and show leniency with spelling and grammatical errors in tests or exams. • Provide opportunities for older students to submit work for feedback and guidance. • Provide frequent progress checks to avoid cognitive overload and regularly let these students know how well they are progressing. Give immediate feedback where possible, as these students need to quickly see the link between what was taught, and what has been learnt. • In a sensitive, tactful way, point out to other students the skills that the student with special learning needs can bring to a group task. For example, drawing diagrams, rather than doing the written task. Weblinks Effective Strategies for Implementing Differentiated Instruction: https://bit.ly/KAV_EffectiveStrategies ABLES—Abilities Based Learning and Education Support at: https://bit.ly/KAV_ABLES Teaching Strategies for Students with a Specific Learning Disability (SLD): https://bit.ly/KAV_SLD

For teachers of junior year levels, we strongly recommend the use of the Abilities Based Learning and Support (ABLES) online assessment tools.

Hint

ABLES is an online ‘assessment for learning’ tool to help teachers create and provide a more focused learning program for children aged between two and five years, who have intellectual disabilities or developmental delays in multiple areas. The program generates reports that assist teachers to develop personalised learning plans, and provide guidance material and strategies linked to the child’s appropriate curriculum level. The program also tracks the progress of the student. The tool (ABLES) will allow educators to focus on students’ ability rather than their disability, determine where their learning strengths lie and what they can do to encourage growth in other areas of the curriculum.

Severe language disorders The students we are looking at in this section will often appear to have similar learning difficulties to those students with specific learning disorders.

The difference between language delay and language disorder The difficulties these students exhibit however, may be based on a language delay that is caused by hearing loss, or environmental deprivation, or they may have a language disorder. Children with a true language disorder do not develop language in the normal way, irrespective of their environment or intellectual ability. Students who come from a language background other than English, known as English as an Additional Language (EAL), may initially appear as though they have a language disorder. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students can also be in this group. However, these children are more likely to be delayed in their development OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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of the English language. Young EAL students learn spoken English quite quickly by mixing with English-speaking children at school, but if a child is not doing this after considerable exposure to English, it is often advisable to have an assessment done by a speech-language pathologist. Older EAL students at secondary school may take longer to adjust to their new language, and will benefit from additional support from their teachers. It is important that secondary teachers acquaint themselves with professional support available from speech pathologists or EAL specialists, if they are to assist their students. Hint

You are reminded that it is always important to seek the advice of senior colleagues, including your mentor and members of staff with specialist roles in the school, if you have any concerns about the physical, social, emotional, or intellectual needs of students. School policies and procedures need to be conscientiously followed at all times.

When we discuss language disorders in this section, it is important to distinguish between speech and both receptive and expressive language. Speech consists of three components: articulation, appropriate volume and fluency. Speech is often confused with language when we are discussing children and how they present to us in the classroom. We know that learning to articulate sounds is a developmental process and that many children starting school will still be mastering many consonants and blends. Adult pronunciation of all sounds is generally reached by the time the child is 9 to 11 years of age. Later developing sounds include l, r, th, s and the blends sk, pl, tr, mp and st. We have included a simple screening test that you can use with any student if you have concerns about their articulation. The last page of the Screener (see Figure 12 in the Appendix, page 251) consists of a graph of the age ranges that children achieve mastery over sounds. It is evident that there is a wide range in which students are still considered to be developing normally in their articulation. If you have concerns about any student, you should speak first to your mentor about the matter. Depending on the school’s approach, you may then be in a position to share your concerns with the student’s parents and suggest that the child be assessed by a speech pathologist. Issues of fluency, that is stuttering and appropriate volume of the voice, should also be investigated early.

Receptive language disorder A receptive language disorder exists when people have problems understanding and processing what others say to them, despite having no problems with hearing. This disorder can be hard to pick up in young children, but by the time they begin school the child may have difficulty following directions, have wandering attention during stories or lessons, frequently interrupt lessons with unrelated topics or have unrelated answers to questions (showing they don’t understand the questions). These disorders are very hard for teachers to notice in the classroom, but if you are concerned about any of your students, seek the advice of the appropriate colleagues on staff. After following the established school procedures, the student may then be assessed by a speech pathologist. The earlier these issues are identified the better.

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Staake (2019) suggests the following strategies will support children with language disorders in the classroom: • Be patient—the child will need more time than other students to process your questions. • Give warnings if the student is going to be called on to speak in class. • Encourage use of complete sentences and model this for the student. • Give one-on-one directions to the student after you have instructed the whole class. Break down tasks into small chunks, encourage the child to write down the steps of the task or draw pictures to help with memory. • Don’t use the open-ended questions you generally use with the rest of your class. Give simple choices to these students, for example, ‘Do you want to do option A or option B?’ • Accept silence sometimes and find other ways to find out what your child has learnt.

Expressive language disorder According to Better Health Victoria (2016), ‘Children with expressive language disorder have difficulty conveying or expressing information in speech, writing, sign language or gesture.’ A student with an expressive language disorder will: • often appear to lose track of the discussion in the classroom and have difficulty following and retelling a simple narrative or making any comments on a story • will not have an age-appropriate level of vocabulary, such as the names of common objects or actions • have difficulty classifying objects according to their use (e.g. jumper, pencil, Texta, jacket, top, crayon, windcheater, biro) • have articulation difficulties with sounds and blends, that are below what is ageappropriate • frequently use filler words like ‘um’ and ‘stuff ’ • have great difficulty learning new vocabulary • use only basic short sentences • often leave out pronouns or verbs when talking or writing • get frustrated by their inability to express themselves • simply give up and remain quiet in class and with friends.

Mixed receptive–expressive language disorder Those with this disorder have trouble with both expressing their thoughts in words and understanding what others say. For the most part there is no known cause of a language disorder and most are developmental. Sometimes children with language disorders will have other related disorders like ASD or ADHD, but most are of average intelligence. Both language-delayed students and those with a language disorder may exhibit difficulty playing with other children, understanding the rules of games, and have problems compromising when things don’t go their way. They may also have difficulties with pragmatic language (using language in everyday social life). Some of OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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these students may have some EAL issues that exaggerate their language issues, but these are not the prime source of their language difficulties. It is very important if you are noticing any signs of language disorder in your students that you discuss this with colleagues, and if appropriate, with the student’s parents.

Strategies to assist students with language disorders Many of the general intervention teaching strategies introduced in this chapter are also applicable when teaching children with language disorders. However, given the challenges faced by these students, there are some specific teaching strategies that are highly recommended. Baumann and colleagues (2007) suggest improving vocabulary development by developing a rich and varied language environment in the classroom, explicitly teaching individual words and teaching word-learning strategies. Teachers are further encouraged to use the following strategies: • Use visual prompts like pictures and diagrams to link words to objects and concepts whenever possible. Vocabulary, particularly of everyday objects and actions, needs to be developed. For example, focus on categories such as ‘Items at home’, ‘Foods we eat’, and ‘Games we play’. • Use hands-on manipulative materials, rather than verbal instructions in mathematics, science and learning about the world. Expose students to the world by way of excursions and real-life experiences. • Encourage older students to view videos or listen to taped books to assist their understanding of texts being studied. Emphasise the teaching of note-taking and summarising. Introduce the technical vocabulary of units of work and assist students to use research skills when using the internet. • Adapt and utilise assistive technology such as Dragon Speech Recognition software, available at https://www.nuance.com/en-au/dragon/industry/ education-solutions.html. In addition to these strategies and tips, we highly recommend the resources in the following Weblinks feature. Weblinks What Teachers Need to Know about Language Disorders: https://bit.ly/KAV_LanguageDisorders This is a valuable guide that can help teachers identify students with language disorders. This material also includes an extensive list of strategies you could use to support students. The NEPS Good Practice Guide: https://bit.ly/KAV_NEPSguide The National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS)—this particular link looks at in-class strategies and support for children with language difficulties in primary school. Working with Students with Language Impairment—Vocabulary: https://bit.ly/KAV_ LanguageImpairmentsVocabulary Colourful Semantics: https://bit.ly/KAV_ColourfulSemantics Investigate the Colourful Semantics program—this is an excellent resource to use when practising sentence building with children of all ages. Language Disorders—Recommendations for Teachers: https://bit.ly/KAV_RecommendationsForTeachers This resource also contains links to sites that will give you support with students who are presenting with a stutter.

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Gifted and talented students In understanding giftedness and talent, it is valuable to consider Francois Gagne’s Differentiated Model of Giftedness and Talent (DMGT). Gagne’s model is frequently utilised in Australian Curriculum documents (see the ACARA (n.d.) reference in the Bibliography). Gagne differentiates between those gifts that could be considered natural abilities, and talents that are systematically developed from such gifts. Gagne believes that all talents are developed through learning and influenced by inner and outer factors or catalysts. Gagne lists four domains of natural ability (gifts), believing these are mostly determined genetically: • intellectual abilities—reasoning, memory, sense of observation, judgement and meta-cognition • creative abilities—imagination, inventiveness, originality and fluency • socio-affective abilities—perceptiveness and communication skills • sensory motor skills—the senses, strength, and endurance. Gagne believes that without the learning process and practice, gifts will not turn into talents. The catalysts are factors that influence the development either positively or negatively of those talents. Two types of catalysts are recognised in Gagne’s work, interpersonal and environmental. The interpersonal catalysts Gagne introduces are physical characteristics such as health, motivation and volition, self-management and personality. Gagne also considers four groups of environmental influences on the development of talents. These are culture and family, people who influence, provisions (school programs) and events. Interestingly, Gagne identifies one factor which influences the catalysts and gifts and that factor is chance. Chance determines, through the combination of parental genes, the type of giftedness the child possesses and to what extent. Gagne’s findings highlight the important role the school plays in the development of the talents of students. In this chapter, we will give you some practical ideas you might use to provide a stimulating learning environment for all your students, but with particular emphasis on your students who are gifted and talented.

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Gagne’s model

TALENT FIELDS S = Social; E = Enterprising; C = Conventional. The other three complement the World-of-Work system: Academic (K-12) subjects; Games; Sports & Athletics (Gagné 2008).

There are nine talent fields. Six of them are sourced from John Holland’s work-related classification of personality types: R = Realistic; I = Investigative; A = Artistic;

Figure 7.1

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Identifying gifted and talented students in your class Identifying and supporting gifted and talented students in your class can be challenging. Some of your students may be working at tasks above their year level, while others who have gifts or talents may not stand out. They may in fact be those students who you find difficult to engage in your lessons and those who are disinterested in working with other students in the class. We would assume that we would have as many gifted and talented students in our classes as we have students with learning challenges, but often we don’t identify them. Hint

To identify students who are possibly gifted and talented in your class, look for those who show a high level of curiosity; have a well-developed imagination; give uncommon responses to common questions; can retain a lot of information; and can pose original solutions to problems. Gifted students often concentrate for long periods and understand complex concepts.

Schools can inadvertently stifle the creativity and drive of these students, as they grow older; where they are restricted by an overloaded curriculum and the exam or testing regimes of senior secondary school. Unfortunately, many gifted and talented students can be ‘bored’ with normal classroom work, and become behaviourally challenging for the teacher and other students. We know that parents are often the best identifiers of gifts and talents in their children and you should always listen to parents when they think their child may need to be extended at school. We have included a checklist that you may use to gather data on a student you suspect is gifted. This data would be useful to discuss with parents and to give to an educational psychologist, who may assess the student and assist you in modifying your program for the student if it is necessary.

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Figure 7.2

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Positive and negative behavioural characteristics of gifted and talented students

Positive and Negative Behavioural Characteristics of Gifted and Talented Student Name ____________________________________________________ Date ________

Characteristic

Positive

Negative

Highly curious

Asks lots of questions Inquisitive Remembers details

Asks inappropriate questions Poor group participant Easily diverted from task

Abstract thinker

Makes generalisations Tests out ideas

Questions others Questions authority

Flexible thinker

Employs a variety of strategies to work something out

Manipulates people and situations by using a variety of strategies

Clever use of humour

Enjoys ‘adult’ humour Gets teacher’s jokes

Uses humour at the expense of others

Superior vocabulary

Heightened involvement in discussions Enjoys adult-like discussions

May be bossy or overbearing when working with others

Advanced reading

Reads widely Advanced vocabulary and comprehension

Reads constantly Neglects peer interaction and work—prefers to read

Retention of knowledge; fast learner

Moves beyond core content and skills quickly Detailed recall of facts

Rushes work, then disrupts others Monopolises class discussions

Long attention span

Concentrates and focuses on an area of interest for a long period of time

Easily distracted unless the task is an area of passion or interest

Independent

Self-directed Focused on task in research or study

Reduced involvement in discussion or group work Uncooperative in a group

High level of responsibility and commitment

Sets attainable goals Learns to accept own limitations Tolerant of peers in a group

Self-critical Perfectionist when completing tasks Sets unrealistic expectations for other group members

Strong feelings and opinions

Listens to others Shows concern and interest Considers others’ points of view Aware of others’ feelings

Speaks out and lacks tact Overreacts to other’s comments and reactions Confrontational

Strong sense of justice

Empathises with those less fortunate Wants to ‘save the world’ Stands up for other children thought to have been poorly treated

Argues the rules in games Frustration when others don’t play exactly by the rules Asks older children or adults to solve issues seen as ‘unfair’

Original and creative

Comes up with ideas ‘out of the box’ Sees problems as a whole Connects thoughts and feelings

Unaccepting of status quo Absent-minded or daydreamer Asks unrelated questions Disorganised

High energy levels

Wide variety of interests Organises time well High level of individualised learning

Often difficult to live with May appear hyperactive Easily bored so seeks out new things to explore

Immersion learner

Wants to know everything about a topic Becomes an expert on a topic by reading widely or talking to people

Focuses on topics of interest to them, at the expense of classroom work Shows off knowledge to prove others wrong

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Scoring checklist How many positive behaviours are displayed? How many negative behaviours are displayed? Have you highlighted in more than five different behaviour boxes? YES or NO Of which behaviours are you observing more? POSITIVE or NEGATIVE Conclusions Adapted from Merrick, C & Targett R (2004)

Strategies to assist gifted and talented students There are many ways that schools support their gifted and talented students. These can range from add-on experiences, such as competitions like the Maths Olympiad, the Premier’s Reading Challenge, Gateways Programs, International Competitions and Assessments for Schools (ICAS) exams, Tournament of Minds, school leadership programs, school choirs or school bands and vocal ensembles, and regional and state sport competitions. In this chapter, we focus on the ways you can best support and enrich your teaching of gifted and talented students in your classroom. Research tells us that a differentiated classroom is the best environment for these students. Like all students, gifted learners need learning experiences that are rich. That is, they need learning experiences that are organized by key concepts and principles of a discipline rather than facts. They need content that is relevant to their lives, activities that cause them to process important ideas at a high level, and products that cause them to grapple with meaningful problems and pose defensible solutions. They need classrooms that are respectful to them, provide both structure and choice, and help them achieve more than they thought they could. (Tomlinson 2017)

Differentiation in the classroom Differentiated classrooms provide opportunity for students to work on the same ideas as their peers, but often in individual ways. According to Gunn (2018), ‘Differentiation is not a sorting method, nor does it mean scaffolding assignments to death. Differentiation is a pathway toward equity, because it tasks teachers with truly understanding the needs—the evolving needs—of their students and providing modalities for learning and challenges that fit those needs.’ This approach has been recommended in this book as it covers both the needs of students with learning challenges and those of gifted and talented students.

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The key differences between a differentiated teaching–learning program and a standard teaching–learning approach are fourfold: 1. Content—students learn the content they need to learn, not what they know already 2. Process—students use their own preferred learning style to explore and learn content 3. Product—students present their learning in the method or form that they prefer 4. Learning environment—the classroom is flexible, allowing students to learn in their preferred way

Learning must be data-driven It is most important in a differentiated classroom, as it is with any teaching approach, that your teaching is data-driven. The focus is always on the learning needs of the student. In this way, differentiated teaching is based on the known skills and abilities of each student. At times, students may work with students of a similar learning need and at other times with students in mixed-ability groups. You can use a differentiated approach with both types of groups, as the focus is always on the learning need, the learning style and interests of the individual student. If these conditions are met, students are more likely to be engaged in their learning—‘A high “degree of difficulty” for gifted learners in their talent areas implies that their content, processes and products should be more complex, more abstract, more open-ended, more multifaceted than would be appropriate for many peers.’ (Tomlinson 2017) General teaching strategies that support all your students, but will especially extend gifted and talented students are: • the use of Bloom’s Taxonomy • activities with the emphasis on divergent thinking, engagement and choice • Edward de Bono’s Thinking Hats • Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences. See Chapter 5 Effective Strategies for Lesson Planning for other ideas on student choice, cooperative learning and inquiry-based units of work, and additional discussion on Bloom’s Taxonomy and Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences.

Using Bloom’s Taxonomy Display the poster of Bloom’s Six Levels of Thinking (the revised version) in your classroom, as this will assist you in becoming aware of your questioning skills and help you to lead students to think more deeply about the concepts they are discussing. Refer to the poster when you teach big ideas and encourage students to use the ‘trigger words’ when they are discussing texts, concepts and ideas (see Table 7.2). Your gifted and talented students will benefit greatly and using these prompts will promote deeper thinking, whether they are discussing texts in literature circle groups, or developing research questions for Inquiry units of work in the arts or sciences.

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You can also encourage your students to produce ‘products’ from the taxonomy. Note that as students of any age or ability can produce different products from Bloom’s list, this is a method of differentiating your teaching (explored in detail in Chapter 5). Table 7.2 Taxonomy of thinking

Category CREATE

Definition

Trigger words

Products

Re-form parts to make a new whole

Compose, design, Song, poem, story, invent, create, forecast, advertisement, movie imagine

EVALUATE

Judge value of; support judgement

Judge, evaluate, give opinion, prioritise, recommend, critique, rate: best to worst

Decision, editorial, debate, defend, verdict, judgement, rubrics

ANALYSE

Understand how parts relate to a whole; understand structure and motive, note fallacies

Investigate, classify, categorise, compare, contrast, solve, check facts versus opinions

Survey, questionnaire, plan, solution to a problem, report

APPLY

Transfer knowledge learnt in one situation to another

Demonstrate—use guides, maps, charts; build, cook

Recipe, model, demonstration, artwork, craft, playing a game by the rules

UNDERSTAND

Demonstrate basic understanding of concepts and curriculum; translate into other words

Restate in own words, give example, explain, summarise, translate, show symbols, edit

Drawing, diagram, graphic organiser, response to question, revision, translation

RECALL

Ability to remember something previously learnt

Tell, recite, list, memorise, remember, define, locate

Quiz or test skill work, vocabulary, isolated facts

Adapted from Bloom’s Taxonomy by Susan Winebrenner (2001)

Edward de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats is a similarly effective thinking tool that can be used in all curriculum areas, and with students of all ages.

Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences The theory of Multiple Intelligences (MI) separates human intelligence into specific modalities. This theory suggests that the traditional notion of intelligence that is based on IQ testing is limited. Gardner proposes eight different intelligences to describe a wider range of human potential in children and adults. You can combine Bloom’s Taxonomy with Gardner’s different intelligences in providing engaging, independent work for your gifted and talented students. The

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grid presented in Table 7.3, which is partially completed, shows an example of such a combination in a unit of study on minibeasts for younger students. Students have choice in this model and have the opportunity to use their preferred learning style to present their learning. Another example can also be found in Chapter 5 Effective Strategies for Lesson Planning. Table 7.3

Example of Bloom’s Taxonomy and MI for minibeast study

Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences Verbal/linguistic

Recall

Unit of Study: Minibeasts Bloom’s Taxonomy Understand Apply Analyse

Evaluate

Create

Make a list of true and false statements about minibeasts.

Logical/ mathematical

Conduct your own audit of the minibeasts in the playground.

Visual/spatial

Design a line of clothing for a minibeast that needs protection.

Kinaesthetic

Musical

Intrapersonal

Interpersonal

Create a play about a day in the life of a minibeast. Record some of the sounds minibeasts make during the day. Set a goal as a class to attract minibeasts to the school Frog Bog (pond). Make a logo for yourself promoting the care of minibeasts.

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Activities with emphasis on divergent thinking, engagement and choice Choice boards Choice boards allow students to choose how they will learn. They focus on students’ specific learning needs and abilities. Students can start with the activity they are most interested in and then move on to other activities. (See Chapter 5 Effective Strategies for Lesson Planning for more examples of choice boards.) Table 7.4

Example choice board for Year 1 Reading activities

Book review Complete a book review of your favourite book. Game Play Word Journey with a friend. Sequencing Use pictures and words to sequence the story of The Rainbow Fish.

Table 7.5

Comprehension Read the passage titled ‘Snails’ and answer the questions. STUDENT CHOICE Cloze activity Complete the Rainbow Fish cloze activity and fill in the correct words.

Sounds Write a list of ten words with the short ‘L’ sound. Doing Follow the instructions to colour in the picture of The Rainbow Fish. Computers Research a question about your favourite sea creature using our ‘Under the Sea’ My Classes page.

Example extension menu for Year 3/4 Maths: length, area and perimeter (LAP)

Verbal/linguistic Make a list of words related to length, area and perimeter (LAP)

Logical/mathematical Write in words or numbers how you find the LAP of three objects in the room.

Interpersonal Demonstrate to the class how you solved a problem with LAP. STUDENT CHOICE

Write a rap song about LAP.

Body kinaesthetic Hold a scavenger hunt and find something 20 cm long, and something with an area of 10cm square. Mould a 2D shape (using PlayDoh) that is 12 cm long and has a perimeter of 26 cm and find its area.

Peer tutor: Devise a way to teach a LAP problem to a class member. Musical/rhythmic Find songs about LAP.

Visual/spatial Draw a map on grid paper of your bedroom and label its dimensions.

Naturalist Find the LAP of one of the playground areas. Search the playground and find objects that have a perimeter of 20 cm.

Intrapersonal How well do you understand LAP? Give yourself a rating from 1 to 10. In a scrapbook, cut and paste images relating to LAP.

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Spelling and vocabulary extension work—super sentences It is possible to modify all areas of the curriculum to engage your gifted and talented students. ‘Super sentences’ is a Spelling activity which involves students working with a partner to pronounce and define each ‘mystery word’. The following task shows an example of this.

Example of a super sentence Read the following sentence and translate it into simpler words using the table below. Ensure you include the meaning of each word. One is listed for you as an example: The truculent, oppidan lickspittle sequestered himself from the brouhaha caused by the pusillanimous mountebank, and machinated a Machiavellian prevarication to mete to himself some of the mountebank’s lucre. Word truculent

Pronunciation truc’ ul/ent

Meaning showing aggressive behaviour

Translation: 

Bell, Power and Rich (2019), in their online article A Teacher’s Guide to Visible Thinking Activities, provide an interesting and useful guide to thinking routines that are linked to Inquiry units. You could use these ideas with all your students, but they would be especially useful ideas to include in the program for your more talented students.

Additional open-ended activities for senior students It is a good idea to encourage students to take part in additional competitions, events and clubs within, and outside of, the school. These could include: • author study and arranging author visits and book signings • animal research and other science projects • robotics challenges • chess club • a publishing class or the school newspaper • running school radio and news programs

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• • • •

• •

• •

organising school fundraising events community social justice programs mentoring of students from local primary schools units of work planned around Big Questions, such as ‘Discrimination: what can we do about it?’, ‘Climate change: is it real?’ or ‘Recycling: how do we clean up our oceans?’ artistic and debating events with students from other schools the use of peer teaching by resident experts, sometimes recorded in a classroom ‘Yellow Pages’, and the use of learning buddies in the classroom or with older students in the school having students complete Interest Surveys, where they brainstorm subtopics to be explored in Inquiry units the provision of anchoring activities, such as a list of activities that students can be engaged in when they have completed the required class tasks.

Weblinks What It Means to Teach Gifted Learners Well: https://bit.ly/KAV_TeachGiftedLearners The Most Helpful Differentiated Learning Strategies for Busy Teachers: https://bit.ly/KAV_BusyTeachers The Education of Gifted Students Resource Book: https://bit.ly/KAV_EducationVic

Reflective Exercise Having read this chapter and some of the associated readings, consider what you’ve learnt about the teaching of students with special learning needs. Utilise Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (refer to Chapter 1, page 18) and add your significant reflections to your reflective journal. Where possible, link your reflections to particular students you have worked with.

Case study 1 Kaleah is moving to a large secondary school next year. She has a diagnosis of autism and has been supported by an integration aide throughout her primary school days. At her ‘handover’ meeting with the Year 7 coordinator from the secondary school, her Year 6 teacher discussed Kaleah’s special learning needs, particularly her hypersensitivity to noise and touch. The secondary school could not commit to the number of hours of aide support Kaleah would require in Year 7. Given what the secondary school have been told about Kaleah’s needs: 1. What processes can be put in place to support her in her transition to her new school? 2. How can Kaleah be supported during ‘loud’ occasions such as school assemblies and sports days?

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Case study 2 Justin is always late to line up after recess when the class is about to enter the library. The librarian complains to his teacher about his poor attitude. Justin has a diagnosis of ASD and his aide accompanies him in the yard and in class. As Justin’s teacher, how would you address this issue with the librarian?

Notes

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Chapter 8 Understanding Behaviour and Student Well-being Why is student well-being, welfare and behaviour management so important? Research has shown that student well-being is paramount to academic success and that lack of feeling safe at school, sometimes caused by the misbehaviour of others, leads to a decline in students’ achievement overall. Buchanan and colleagues (2013) found that one of the primary reasons early career teachers become dissatisfied with the job, and many actually leave the profession, is because of the challenges they face trying to manage student behaviour and cater effectively for the well-being of all their students.

Key Topics • • • •

Understanding well-being and behaviour Beginning to understand your students as individuals Proactive approaches to behaviour management Dealing with specific types of misbehaviour

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Understanding well-being and behaviour The terms ‘behaviour’, ‘well-being’ and ‘welfare’ are sometimes used interchangeably in a range of documents developed by states, territories and school systems. Whichever term is used, all of these policies are concerned with developing happy, safe, positive learning environments for students, staff and the school communities. You should become familiar with the key well-being or behaviour management policy documents from the system you are working in; these will be based on your state or territory government policies. Your whole-school behaviour management or student well-being policy will likely include: • a school Code of Conduct. This Code will state the behaviour that students are required to exhibit as members of the school community (i.e. the school rules and expectations of behaviour, and a clear set of consequences that follow when these expectations are not met) • explicit roles and responsibilities of staff in implementing the Code • details of the key strategies and programs that will support positive student behaviour across the school • methods of ongoing communication between all parties involved in any issue, including the school, parents/carers and external agencies • details of measures to address all forms of bullying • a detailed crisis management plan to deal with the presence of weapons on school grounds, the risk of suicidal behaviour or non-suicidal self-injury • a detailed statement of the school’s procedures for dealing with suspected child maltreatment (mandatory reporting) • a strategy of record-keeping and enabling access to such information. As you take up a teaching position in your school, it is essential that you make yourself familiar with your school’s policy and how it is implemented. All schools take a slightly different approach to supporting positive student behaviour and may follow different procedures when dealing with misbehaviour. We will examine some of the more common approaches in this chapter. Before we do so, it is necessary to revisit the nature of behaviour itself. The way you respond to student behaviour, or misbehaviour, needs to be informed by this understanding. According to Alberto and Troutman (2003) behaviour is any action by a person that can be observed and measured. All teachers need to appreciate these key principles concerning behaviour: • All behaviour is directed towards meeting an individual’s specific goals and needs. • Behaviour is anything we say or do. It is often learnt and therefore can be changed. • Behaviour is observable and measurable. • Behaviour tends to be triggered by an event around or within us, and can be influenced by other factors such as the environment (e.g. home life or family), biology (e.g. illness, disability), individual characteristics (e.g. personality, maturity) and mode of instruction (e.g. teaching style, teacher expectations). OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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Function and form All behaviour is functional; to meet specific needs, to get something or to avoid something. The form of the behaviour—what the person actually says or does—may be influenced by the context the person is in (e.g. the classroom, at home), or the person’s skill set (e.g. the language skills of the person). McClellan (2017) describes the four functions of behaviour as providing the individual with: • sensory stimulation—when a person’s actions or movements feel satisfying to that individual, then the action or movement is more likely to continue. McClellan (2017) demonstrates this well with the following example: ‘a child twirls his or her hair as they sit for an extended amount of time. If twirling hair gives that individual the sensory input they are seeking, then hair twirling will continue.’ • escape—when an individual experiences an undesirable situation they will run away from it • access to attention—the desire for social interaction. For example, if screaming gets attention for a child, they will continue to scream • access to tangible things that we want—if a certain behaviour, such as a child grabbing a toy that is offered achieves success, the child will continue to grab at things. Psychologists also use the diagram of an iceberg to help explain the many underlying reasons we behave as we do. This concept originated in the work of Freud (1915). For more information see McLeod (2015). This model is especially useful when trying to explain some of the challenging behaviours that we are exploring in this chapter. The iceberg represents the total individual, and the behaviour we can see and hear—that is, the form of the behaviour—is represented by the tip of the iceberg, which we can see above the water. What lies below the waterline—what cannot be seen—represents a myriad of influences that could be the cause of the behaviour. The only way a teacher can come to understand why certain student behaviours occur is through close observation and consideration of those underlying factors. We do know that if a behaviour gets us what we want, we tend to use it again. In our schools and classrooms, teachers often focus on the form (the ‘what’) of a student’s behaviour (what the student is doing or saying), rather than considering the function (the ‘why’) of the behaviour (what need is this behaviour satisfying for the student, and therefore, why they feel they need to act this way). It is important that teachers address both form and function. Teachers also need to understand that they can never directly change the behaviour of another person. All we can do is to guide and teach our students to adopt more socially acceptable behaviour that will satisfy their needs.

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Figure 8.1 The iceberg diagram

Occasional misbehaviour

Truancy

Lack of engagement Aggression with peers

Unhappiness

What we see and hear:

Isolation from peers

What we don’t know about: Personality traits

Home issues Depression Anxiety Language background Low self-esteem Home responsibilities Alcohol and drug abuse in the home Poverty Bullying Peer rejection

Neglect Family illness

Refugee status

Prior school experience

Death in family Domestic violence

Malnutrition

Racial issues

Puberty Moving house

Weblinks All at Sea with Children’s Behaviour: https://bit.ly/KAV_IcebergModel Toddlers and Teens: https://bit.ly/KAV_ToddlersTeens

Reflective Exercise Applying the iceberg model Read the Australian Childhood Foundation articles All at Sea with Children’s Behaviour (2015), and Toddlers and Teens, by Jeanette Miller (2017). You can access both articles online via the URLs found in the previous Weblinks feature in this section. Attempt to identify influences under the surface of the iceberg that may be causing the challenging behaviour of a student you know.

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Hint

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Make sure you interact with your students in the playground as this will help your building of relationships with them.

Beginning to understand your students as individuals As discussed earlier, it is important that you get to know your students before a teaching placement and definitely before taking up a permanent teaching position. You need to discuss with your mentor any behavioural challenges you may face when taking your class(es). Find out any relevant background information on your students, for example, any diagnosed social or emotional disorders. Discuss some of the strategies that the school has used successfully in the past with these students. If you have been appointed as a teacher to a particular class, you are entitled to have access to your students’ confidential files. In these files you should find information regarding any assessments by psychologists, paediatricians, occupational therapists and other special services. Take note of the recommendations in these reports, and the records taken of meetings, such as any Student Support Group (SSG) meetings that have been held previously with parents/carers of the student, teachers and other specialist school staff. It is also wise to talk to staff who have already worked with these students to gain an up-to-date understanding of the student’s needs. Check whether a student has been on a behaviour support plan, and what reinforcements and schedules have been successful in modifying challenging behaviour. It is important that approaches that have been successful are maintained in a consistent way. Enquire if the student’s parents/carers have a close relationship with the school. If not ask your mentor about the best way to contact the parents. See Chapter 7 Supporting Students with Special Needs for more information on different diagnoses, and behaviour support. Hint

Keep notes on all this information, but ensure that you work within the school’s policy regarding access to personal information and consent when considering what you can utilise, for example, use of student photographs and confidential reports.

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Proactive approaches to behaviour management Egeberg and colleagues (2016) give two reasons why there has recently been a move away from the notion of disciplining students to more positive practices of behaviour management in schools. The first reason is that discipline-based approaches were generally not successful and placed a good deal of stress on teachers. The second reason arises from our more informed knowledge concerning the social and emotional development of young people. The focus in Australian schools is now on: • creating positive learning environments for students • promoting students’ social skills and self-regulation • using both intrinsic and extrinsic reinforcement of positive behaviour • implementing appropriate interventions to assist students with more challenging behaviours. All Australian schools use comprehensive approaches to developing the social skills, particularly the conflict resolution skills, of their students. In this way, schools are being proactive in their management of students’ behaviour. The programs used will vary according to the age, culture, social and emotional needs of students.

Restorative practice Restorative practice is one approach commonly used in many schools, in which students learn to repair relationships that have been damaged through inappropriate behaviour. The strategy seeks to initiate a sense of remorse and restorative action from the offending student, and seek forgiveness from the victim. Schools who use this approach enable those students who have been harmed to convey the impact of that experience to those responsible. Those who have caused harm are taught to acknowledge the impact of their actions and to take steps to amend the situation. It is a proactive attempt to improve behaviour choices of students without resorting to punishment. There is an emphasis on general discussions of any current negative behaviours in the classroom, and students play a valued role in the dialogue. Strategies in the program include Talking Circles or Peace-making Circles, where conflicts are addressed, and relationships rebuilt. Mantras are developed such as ‘At our school we are safe, respectful learners who build, repair and maintain healthy relationships’ and these are displayed on the classroom walls. Schools also implement other social skills programs that focus on proactive ways to support positive social behaviour in their younger students. Such programs address areas including: • taking turns and sharing • respecting the views of others • managing emotions

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• • • •

ways to make friends and keep them ways to identify bullying and who to go to for help developing resilience in students developing a circle of support for students. You may find that one or several of the following support programs are used in your school: • Circle of Friends • The Best of Friends • Circle Time • Zone of Regulation • Bounce Back • The Friends Program • The Resilience Project Even in schools where there are well-established behaviour management policies and proactive social skills programs, you will still have to respond to a wide range of ‘misbehaviour’. So how can you prepare for the challenges you will face? The Behaviour at School Study teacher survey, undertaken by the University of South Australia School of Education in 2014, investigated the views of teachers concerning student behaviour in South Australian schools. Goss and colleagues (2017) report that teachers grouped negative behaviours into three types: low-level disruptive behaviour, disengaged behaviour and aggressive and anti-social behaviour. Low-level disruptive student behaviour occurred frequently, as did passive disengagement, and teachers generally found this difficult to manage. The aggressive and anti-social behaviours were less frequent. Hint

Use group reinforcement in your class. This works well because of the power of peers.

In this chapter, we will address these three types of misbehaviour using the Three-Tier Model that has been adapted for Australian schools from the work of the Positive Behaviour Support Project in Florida (1992). The low-level disruptive behaviours are seen as Tier 1 of this model, and cover around 80 per cent of student misbehaviour. Tier 2, covering approximately 15 per cent of each class, include those students who require more formal interventions to develop positive behaviour. Tier 3 represents 5 per cent of the school cohort. These students present with serious, sometimes dangerous, and often chronic behavioural issues. The School-wide Positive Behaviour Support strategy (State Government of Victoria, Department of Education and Training 2019b) also uses this three-tiered intervention framework.

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Figure 8.2 Tiered misbehaviour intervention model

Tier 3

Tier 2

Tertiary prevention (5% of students)

Secondary prevention (15% of students)

Primary prevention (80% of students) Tier 1

Adapted from the State Government of Victoria, Department of Education (2019b)

Ways to minimise Tier 1 misbehaviour in your classroom Research of student behaviour by people like Hattie (2009), Martin and Collie (2019), Wachtel (1999), Simonsen (2008), and O’Connor (2011), all mentioned in Egeberg et al. (2016) shows us that the most important elements for teachers to be aware of in promoting positive student behaviour are: • developing strong relationships with students • providing an appropriate and safe physical learning space • using appropriate teaching strategies, and providing an engaging, supportive and differentiated curriculum • knowing ways to gain students’ attention and the best methods to keep it • responding appropriately to low key student misbehaviour.

Developing strong relationships with your students Hattie (2009) believes that while most teachers have impact on their students’ learning, some teachers have a greater impact than others; that teachers who have the most influence are those who developed strong relationships with their students. As you will want to minimise learning distractions in your classes, aim to develop strong teacher– student relationships with all students. Martin and Collie (2019) surveyed over two thousand students across Australia regarding the quality of the student relationships with teachers and the impact this had on the level of their academic engagement. Engagement was measured by the number of students who participated in class

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and reported enjoyment of school. Every positive relationship between students and teachers was found to be associated with greater engagement. Negative relationships were found to be associated with lower academic engagement. Effective ways for you to develop strong relationships with your students include the following: • Be a good listener to the stories your students tell. Show with your body language and the questions you ask that you are interested in the student and want to get to know them. • Show warmth. This means accepting your students for who they are and caring for them as a good parent would care for their child. Students need to see that they are important to you. • Treat all students with respect. If teachers do this, there will be less raised voices in class, and hopefully sarcasm will not be tolerated. • Show empathy to students by trying to understand how they think and feel. At times your students will need your emotional support and for you to make allowance for their particular situation. • Use students’ interests in your teaching and show an interest in their lives and achievements outside of school. • Give your students your time. Teachers are very busy, but they need to make the time to be physically and mentally present when talking to their students. Try to acknowledge each of your students each day, even if it is just to greet and say hi. • Develop a sense of trust between yourself and your students. It is essential that you earn your students’ trust. This may take time with some students who have had negative experiences at school. • Adjust your teaching to meet the individual learning needs of your students and provide them with the support they need to achieve success. Some teachers are more natural at building relationships than others, but if you are aware of the importance of your relationships with your students, both their behaviour and learning will be enhanced. This doesn’t mean you are permissive. Students like structure and order (research the work of Michael Carr-Gregg), it makes them feel safe. Teachers who lack structure often lose valuable teaching time but also lose the respect of their students. Wachtel (1999) and Hattie (2009) describe the types of teachers we see in schools, and refer to the level of pressure, or as Hattie calls it ‘press’, that they put on students to work hard. These are the teachers who have high expectations of their students and value the relationships they develop with them. Hattie (2009) sees the two essential elements of high performance teacher–student relationships as care and expectation. While these terms might be seen as opposites, Hattie believes that effective teachers both care about their students and also have high expectations that if they work hard they will do well academically. Both Hattie (2009) and Wachtel (1999) distinguish the following teaching styles: The authoritarian teacher shows a high amount of press but low amount of care. These teachers are rigid and value rules for rules’ sake. They often overreact to small infringements and sometimes make sarcastic, cynical remarks to their students.

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Wachtel notes that these teachers often rely solely on the use of rewards and punishments in their classrooms, as they do not have strong relationships with the students. The friendly teacher shows a high degree of care but a low amount of press. They care for their students, but sometimes accept minimal effort and mediocre work. Some of these teachers can overdo the idea of student self-directed learning and fail to provide the explicit instruction and guidance that all students need. There is often very little limit setting or boundaries and this often leads to a chaotic classroom with students working on tasks they don’t fully understand. Wachtel refers to these teachers as permissive. The aloof style—these teachers show low amounts of care and low amounts of press. Often apathetic and indifferent, these are the ‘bad teachers’. Even though these teachers avoid conflict with their students, often students will misbehave in their classrooms. High-performance style—these teachers are also referred to as restorative or authoritative teachers by Wachtel, as they care for their students and encourage them to excel. Hattie notes that these teachers have a passionate desire to help their students learn, which leads them to demand high standards of work. Highperformance teachers also value their students as people and take an interest in their lives. They provide strong guidance both academically and behaviourally, while also nurturing personal responsibility and self-regulation. While these teachers confront and disapprove of any misbehaviour, they still support the intrinsic worth of the student. This is the type of teacher you should be aiming to be. O’Connor (2011) reported that students with teachers like these, show a greater level of school adjustment and academic success, even years after. Weblink Strategies for Teachers to Develop Positive Relationships with Students: https://bit.ly/KAV_PositiveRelationships

Providing appropriate and safe physical learning spaces Research on successful classroom behaviour management also invariably mentions the physical environment of classrooms (Barrett, Barret & Zhang 2015). Studies show that the physical arrangement of the classroom can affect both student and teacher behaviour and that a well-structured classroom design has the ability to improve learning and behaviour. Barrett (2015) found that this improvement can be as much as 25 per cent. Primary school teachers usually work in their own classrooms or spaces, whereas secondary school teachers may find they share spaces with other teachers. For all levels of the school however, well-organised rooms and teaching resources can lead to higher levels of engagement in students and more positive learning and behavioural outcomes. See chapters 4, 6 and 7 for more detailed discussion on organising classroom learning spaces.

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The following practical suggestions may help ensure that your actual teaching environment enhances, rather than negates, your ability to manage the behaviour of your students. Several are recommendations drawn from Guardino and Fullerton (2010). • Visit your prospective learning spaces or classrooms as early as possible and become fully aware of the facilities and resources available (e.g. ICT equipment, furniture). • Check the environment in terms of the safety of students and staff. For example, are exit doors accessible and what are the evacuation options? Is it possible for students to move safely around the room? Is there suitable wheelchair access if needed? • Is the learning environment appropriate for your teaching program? For example, is there sufficient space for movement activities so that each student has adequate room? • Will you be able to have group work and cater for students with different learning needs in this space? Make a clear distinction between individual versus group activity areas. • Is the furniture of appropriate size for the age and physical attributes of your students? • Consider where students will be seated. Each student needs their own space, and a place where they can keep their possessions. This gives the student feelings of ownership and security, and supports appropriate behaviour. • Are all material storage tubs clearly labelled to assist students to be independent in quickly finding materials they need and minimising interruptions to learning? • Consider where you have placed stimulating visuals and where doors and windows may distract some of your students. Arrange seating facing away from these distractions. • Consider the seating arrangement for any student who you know has a particular medical needs. For example, provide easy access to exits for students with epilepsy, asthma and other chronic health issues. • Establish a quiet working space in a corner of your classroom for students diagnosed with ASD or ADHD. This should have no colour or visual stimuli on the walls, and be as far from other students’ ‘noise’ as possible. • How will you communicate with the office or senior staff in case of an emergency? Check if there is an intercom in the classroom. • Check that you have a ‘teacher only’ space for your desk and chair and locate your desk so that you can maintain eye contact with all students.

Hint

All dividers and hanging posters or student work should be located at a height that enables you to see all students at all times.

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Secondary school teachers are sometimes hampered by the physical environment of their classrooms and how they can promote enhanced learning conditions. Given learning–teaching contexts in secondary schools are so diverse, innovative, and sometimes challenging, it is especially important for you as an early career teacher to do some pre-planning in this regard. Lynch (2016) advises early career secondary school teachers to take time to draw up a seating plan based on how you expect to conduct your lessons. When giving whole-class instructions, its ideal to seat any students who have difficulties closer to you so that they have greater access to the lesson. You may also need to keep students who are likely to be disruptive closer to you and reward them by allowing them to move if they learn to conduct themselves more appropriately. Weblinks Teachers’ Views of their Primary School Classrooms: https://bit.ly/KAV_PrimaryClassrooms Changing Behavior by Changing the Classroom Environment: https://bit.ly/ChangingBehaviour

Hint

Nip small problems in the bud—correct minor infringements on the spot and move on with your lesson.

Appropriate teaching strategies and an engaging, supportive and differentiated curriculum Research tells us that many of the minor behavioural difficulties that teachers face in their classrooms daily can be overcome by considering the teaching approaches being used. The recommendations in Table 1 (see the Appendix) will help you establish a more manageable classroom environment. The suggestions are drawn from the findings of Lewis and colleagues (2005), Jennings and Greenberg (2009), Marzano and Marzano (2003) and Simonsen and colleagues (2008). Weblinks Positive Learning Environments in a Northern Territory Classroom: https://bit.ly/KAV_PositiveLearning

Gaining and keeping students’ attention All teachers have had the experience of walking into a very noisy group of students or have been confronted by their students speaking excitedly and loudly during a lesson. This can be one of the most challenging tasks an early career teacher can face. There are a number of ways you can gain students’ attention without raising your voice. Remember that your voice is one of your most important tools in teaching and you need to look after it. Some of the following suggestions are drawn from the work of Heick (2015). Try these ideas with younger students: • Use hand and voice strategies, and praise students for understanding and doing the signal or response correctly. Make it fun by saying or doing the signal fast, slow, loud or soft. For example:

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– – – – • •

• •

• • • • • • •

• • •

• •

• • •

Teacher says, ‘One, two.’ Students say, ‘Eyes on you.’ Teacher says, ‘Give me five.’ (Students raise one hand.) Teacher says, ‘Hocus-pocus.’ Students say, ‘Everybody, focus!’ Teacher says, ‘Hands on top’ (while placing their hands on their head). Students say, ‘Everybody, stop!’ Clap once, then clap twice. You can add to this by saying, ‘Clap once if you hear me, clap twice if you hear me.’ Get down low so that you are at eye level with your students if you need to address their behaviour. Try these ideas with older students: Use a timer or a clock that is a visual countdown to the end of work or talk time. These are available to download for your interactive whiteboard. Stand in a designated spot and raise your hand. You can use your fingers as a countdown or an indication of the noise level you want during an activity. You will need to explain and practise this method with students. Count backwards from the number four. You may have to slow down as you approach zero, but don’t give students too much flexibility. Praise students who are quiet and who notice your signals. Use the traffic light volume system. Red = silent work; orange = quiet talking; green = normal ‘inside’ voices. Have students stand, stretch or have another type of movement break. (Often excessive talk is due to pent-up energy and having students seated for too long.) Use proximity—stand near chatty students before you start to speak to the class. Ignore some minor misbehaviours, such as a student’s joke that causes a short disruption. Let it go and move on. Resist the temptation to get emotional and raise your voice. You should do this only as a last resort. When you do eventually raise your voice students will notice and usually fall quiet. Use a student’s name before correcting behaviour. Give closed requests such as, ‘Thank you for sitting down quietly.’ Strategies to help maintain your students’ attention: Use the ‘10:2’ method—allow students 2 minutes to process and respond to every 10 minutes of your oral instruction. Try the Think-Pair-Share strategy to do this. (Also discussed in Chapter 6.) Incorporate movement into your lessons. At times, pick up the pace of your lessons. Today’s students are used to the fastpaced digital world and even older students don’t respond well to slow instruction and more traditional chalk and talk teaching methods. Remember that the enthusiasm you show for your subject matter will be infectious. Give frequent and effective feedback to students, as this keeps them motivated to progress and succeed. Allow students 5 to 7 seconds of thinking time when you ask a question. At the end of a lesson, use the ‘3-2-1’ method of summarising. Have students write down three things they have learnt; two interesting things they have found and one

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question they still have about the topic. Students can share this information with the class at the end of the lesson. • Periodically pause mid-sentence in your instructions. This gives students time to absorb and process what you’ve said. It also shows disengaged students that you are aware of them. Hint

Use non-verbal approaches, such as a look or a hand gesture, to let a student know that you are noticing their inattentive behaviour.

Responding appropriately to low-level disruptive behaviour The Sullivan study (2014) provides an interesting overview of some of the intervention strategies teachers use to curb unproductive behaviour, such as rewards and sanctions, including ‘stepped systems’ or a set of consequences that increase in severity if the misbehaviour continues. Stepped systems sometimes begin with a warning; an in-class or out-of-class ‘time out’, or being sent to the principal, the school office or detention. However, as Sullivan and colleagues (2014) warn, research has shown that punitive measures such as taking time out are usually not effective and can even exacerbate certain behaviours over time. It is important that teachers have a variety of effective strategies to use with low-key misbehaviour in their classrooms. In this section, we will examine some of these misbehaviours and some of the possible strategies you can use to manage them effectively: • Stage and Quiroz (1997) and Alberto and Troutman (2012) found that providing tangible recognition (rewards) such as tokens or stickers for appropriate behaviour, with the use of praise, helped teachers manage their classroom environment. You may decide to use some reinforcers or rewards with your class—there are three types to consider: – Material reinforcers usually consist of small affordable items such as stickers, pencils, bookmarks, erasers or plastic toys. They are generally more effective for young students and those who require immediate reinforcement. You should always pair the reinforcer with praise so the student understands why they are receiving the reward. For example, ‘New Foundation student, Jack, was very excited when he came home from school. He had been awarded a gold star sticker for finding the magic crumb at tidy-up time. Hopefully, Jack will pick up rubbish on his own accord in the future because it is the right thing to do.’ – Generalised reinforcers are any item that can be exchanged for something of value. Examples are raffle tickets, points and certificates. This is an excellent way of teaching older students to delay gratification. – Social reinforcers can include a smile, a wink, thumbs up, or a compliment. These reinforcers can be effective when used alone, but they are often paired with tangible rewards. Gradually the student becomes motivated by the social reinforcer alone.

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• When praising a student, use the following rule to make it an effective method of encouraging positive behaviour. The rule is known as the I-FEED-V rule: I = praise the student Immediately F = praise the behaviour Frequently E = praise Enthusiastically E = use Eye contact with your student D = Describe the target behaviour V = use a Variety of praise statements Weblink Punish Them or Engage Them? Teachers’ Views of Unproductive Student Behaviours in the Classroom:  https://bit.ly/KAV_UnproductiveBehaviours

Dealing with specific types of misbehaviour We have outlined an approach similar to that used by Marzano (2003) and others to give you snapshot of suggestions to deal with some types of common misbehaviour in your class. Table 8.1

Dealing with different types of misbehaviour

Category

Characteristics

Argumentative behaviour

This student becomes argumentative when confronted about a particular misbehaviour.

• Give yourself time to evaluate any conflict situation and allow yourself time to cool off before meeting with the student. Talk to the student in private and avoid using an accusatory tone. • Don’t back the student into a corner and never make threats or promises that cannot be carried out. • Maintain a sense of control. Use a firm clear voice and give the student an opportunity to explain the reasons for the confrontation. • If you made an error, admit it. • Block secondary arguments by the student by coming to a partial agreement. Use the words ‘Maybe’ and ‘But’. For example, ‘Maybe you were not the first person who started the fight, but you could have stepped away.’ (Rogers 2015)

Suggestions for teachers

Bullying behaviour

This student may constantly pick on a particular student in the class by laughing at them, or excluding them at recess/play.

• Talk to the student about why they are not including the bullied student. • Use restorative practices and Bullying. No Way! strategies with the student and the rest of the class. (See the Weblink listing for this site later in this section.) • Provide support for the bullied student. Develop resilience in this student. NOTE: If the behaviour continues, move to a Tier 2 intervention model. (continued)

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Table 8.1

Dealing with different types of misbehaviour (continued)

Category

Characteristics

Suggestions for teachers

Attentionseeking behaviour

This student may: • often call out in class • be loud and push in to be first in the line, or to receive materials • be boastful of possessions and achievements • be constantly at the teacher’s elbow, asking questions, showing what they have completed so far.

• Move closer to the student if you know they are about to call out, and use a physical cue such as placing a finger to your lips. • Give the student a job or responsibility and encourage them to set a good example for others. • Refer to the rules posted in the room (e.g. ‘Hands up if you have a question.’) • Tell the student you will only look at their work when they have completed one, then two and later all examples on their worksheet. • Let the student choose a project of interest that they can later report to the class. • Ignore annoying behaviours and comments, including calling out, but praise the times the student talks about real achievements. Promise something special at the end of the week if calling out is minimal. (Remember to keep your promise!) • Assign the student to a group where their role is to follow, not to lead. • Model and talk about appropriate behaviour regularly so that the student sees what you want. • If the issue continues, speak to parents and investigate further why the student has the need to get your attention this way. • With older students, divide the class into two teams and make a game of questions and answers. Each team scores a point for a right answer but loses a point if a member calls out an answer out of turn.

Disengaged behaviour

This student chats to others • Give this student a quick reminder to get back to work. If when they are supposed to this doesn’t work, ask questions that focus directly on their be working, or wastes time behaviour. by looking in their desks, • Stand near the student and ask them, ‘What are you doing? sharpening their pencils, and What should you be doing? Do that, please!’ (Rogers 2015). wandering around the room, distracting others.

Disruptive This student exhibits many behaviour— of the same behaviours ‘clowning around’ as the attention-seeking student. However, their behaviour largely centres around getting reactions or laughs from their peers by joking and responding inappropriately to authority figures and other students.

• Move closer to this student and use a physical cue, such as placing a finger to the lips, to point out inappropriate behaviour. • Explain to this student in private why their behaviour is not appropriate and how it is impacting on others. • Try to channel the student’s talent for humour into something more productive. • Use restorative practice techniques to show the student how this behaviour impacts on others, including you, the teacher. • Find projects that will engage the student. • Give the student opportunities to gain attention from their peers in positive ways.

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Characteristics

Suggestions for teachers

Hostile and negative behaviour

This student often shows antagonism to anyone in authority and are likely to say, ‘No, I don’t want to.’ They are rarely cooperative, unless they have chosen the activity or game to be engaged in.

• Praise the student whenever they are being cooperative. • Provide some basic choice for the student (e.g. a choice out of three learning tasks). • Talk to the student in private about any reasons they are hostile to instructions. (You may find the student is anxious about failing in class.) • Encourage the student by providing models of appropriate problem-solving behaviour and let them know you will help them if they need it. • For younger students, read stories with the whole class and discuss how characters react to conflict in positive ways. • Take part in social skills and restorative practice programs to target the specific social needs of the student. • Keep a record of the student’s behaviour.

Hyperactive behaviour

Such a student may have difficulty with motor control—physically and verbally. Often seen fidgeting, frequently leaving their seats and interrupting others at work, they may find it hard to stay focused and complete projects. They may also have difficulty listening to directions or information and organising their work. The student’s symptoms may be exacerbated by family or social stressors, which can cause anxiety.

• • • • • •

Perfectionist behaviour

This student tends to focus too much on the small details of work and projects. Common characteristics include:  • spending a lot of time rubbing out work and starting again • focusing on results, not on relationships • being highly self-critical • avoiding tasks if unsure of the outcome. For example, will not write extended texts if unsure of how to spell a word.

• Encourage and reward when risks are taken. • Have this student tutor their peers. • Develop expert groups in the class and assign this student to be an expert speller, illustrator etc. • Model risk-taking when writing or reading so as to demonstrate the importance of having a go. • Give the student opportunities to work with others on an extended text to experience the satisfaction that comes with developing an interesting, and more detailed, final text.

Provide movement breaks during lessons. Break learning tasks into smaller parts Use visual aids to assist memory. Use graphic organisers to help organisation of learning tasks. Colour-code books to assist organisation Supervise the student when recording tasks to be done (e.g. homework). • Allow the student to work in a quiet space to assist with concentration. • Reward successes often (See Chapter 7 Supporting Students with Special Needs for more information on this type of behaviour and how to address it in your class.)

(continued)

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Table 8.1

Dealing with different types of misbehaviour (continued)

Category

Characteristics

Suggestions for teachers

Physically aggressive behaviour (minor)

This student may: • be hostile, yell, threaten, or intimidate other students when the student doesn’t get their own way. • can be verbally abusive to other students and staff, and damage school resources.

• Remain calm when dealing with this student’s behaviour. Remember to focus on the student, not the behaviour. • Be aware of your safety and that of your students. • Do not touch or speak to the student while they are angry. • When the student is calm, discuss the behaviour with the student and explain the behaviour you want to see in the future. Include the positive benefits to be gained from this improved behaviour and the consequences if it is repeated. • Be consistent and provide immediate appropriate feedback. • Try to develop a close relationship with the student and parents/carers. • Encourage and acknowledge active extracurricular activities out of school. • Give the student responsibilities that will help foster successful relationships with others. • Record the student’s behaviour. If necessary, refer to Tier 2 interventions (see Figure 8.2 and information about Tier 2 and Tier 3 students earlier in this chapter).

School refusal behaviour

This student will often be teary and show high levels of anxiety and resistance regarding coming to school. This may be especially evident at the start of a school day, when saying goodbye to their parent/ carer.

Work closely with the parent/carer of this student. Try to find the reason for the school refusal. For example, perhaps the child: • is unsure when the parent is coming back • fears that something will happen to the parent/carer while they are not with the child • is being bullied by another student • is frightened of a teacher, area or program in the school (e.g. swimming, computer lab, toilet). Work out a plan that will support the student in overcoming their anxieties.

Uncooperative behaviour/ selectively ignoring instructions

Generally, this student doesn’t appear to listen to their teacher when whole-class instructions are given. An uncooperative student does not line up appropriately, take their seat, get out their books or start work—this student needs a personal invitation to become involved in the classroom program.

Provide positive correction approaches with these students, so that you avoid using more formal consequences. In this strategy: • state the name of the student • pause • once the student is looking at you say, ‘Line up sensibly, please!’ (Rogers 2015)

Verbally aggressive behaviour

This student will often swear at teachers and other students when they are angry.

• Face the student, but keep enough distance so as not to appear threatening. • Use an appropriate tone of voice, speaking clearly and calmly. • Do not be diverted by a student denying, arguing, or blaming others, but listen to legitimate explanations.

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For minor interruptions to your lessons: • Pause in the middle of a whole-class instruction to show a disruptive student you are aware of their behaviour. • Gently touch an object that a student may be using to disrupt the lesson, for example, a tapping pen or a swinging chair.

Weblink Bullying. No Way!: https://bit.ly/KAV_NoBullying My 5 Favourite On-the-Spot Behaviour Management Strategies from Bill Rogers:  https://bit.ly/KAV_OnTheSpotStrategies

Notes

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Chapter 9 Working with Colleagues: A Whole-School Behaviour Management Approach In this chapter, we build on the understandings explored in Chapter 8, and emphasise the importance of all staff members consistently implementing their school’s student well-being and behaviour management policies. Your understanding of, and adherence to, your school’s policies will help ensure you are in a position to successfully manage challenging behaviours when they occur. Such policies include preventative components that encourage positive student behaviour school-wide, and encourage close links between parents/ carers and staff of at-risk students.

Key Topics • • • •

Whole-school behaviour management models Tier 3 students Bullying Parents and cases of chronic misbehaviour

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Whole-school behaviour management models Although you may have implemented many of the recommended approaches to good behaviour management in your classroom, you will usually need a whole-school approach that supports students who exhibit more challenging behaviour. These are the students we have referred to as being in Tier 2 of the tiered misbehaviour intervention model (see Chapter 8, Figure 8.2, page 170) published by the Schoolwide Positive Behaviour Support Unit (State Government of Victoria, Department of Education and Training 2019b). In this model (Sugai & Horner 2014), all prevention and intervention strategies focus on: • identifying socially appropriate replacement behaviours to satisfy the needs exhibited in the student’s behaviour • explicitly teaching socially appropriate replacement behaviours • minimising reinforcement of problem behaviours • continually using data to assess students’ progress. Bradshaw and colleagues (2012) report that this method has shown promising results, including positive effects on the academic achievement of the students involved. If you have already implemented many of the recommended approaches to good behaviour management in your classroom but still have a student who exhibits challenging behaviour, this is the time to implement the more focused, specialised approach of Tier 2 of the misbehaviour model. The steps in the approach are: 1. Record observations on an ABC Chart. 2. Write down the possible reasons for the behaviour (this is called the working hypothesis—we cover this in more detail later in the chapter). 3. Prepare a Behaviour Support Plan (BSP). 4. Implement the Support Plan.

Preparing to write ABC charts and implementing Behaviour Support Plans We often jump to conclusions about student behaviour. We can label students as ‘lazy’, ‘disinterested’, ‘rude’ or even ‘aggressive’, but such labelling of the student does not help us understand why such behaviour is occurring and how to change it. It is recommended that parents/carers are involved as early as possible when schools have concerns about any serious behaviour of students. Communication is an essential part of this process.

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When we notice ongoing misbehaviour that we don’t understand and can’t resolve, we need to gather some objective data on the student’s behaviour over a period of time. We can then use these observations as a basis for attempting to find the reasons or function behind the behaviour (see Chapter 8, page 165 for information on function and form related to student behaviour). Clearly, this approach will take time, but it is well worth the effort since it will likely lead to employing more effective strategies when dealing with the student, both in and out of class. The first essential step is to document the challenging or target behaviour. This should be done by the class or subject teacher, teacher or integration aides, and other staff involved. Keeping accurate records of student behaviour is necessary in order to: • develop a confidential file of the student’s behaviour on which professional decisions can be made by school staff and outside experts • provide opportunities for parents to have a voice in the interventions made with their child • identify possible reasons for the inappropriate behaviour • record a replacement behaviour that is to be taught and rewarded • provide evidence to determine appropriate interventions • record the ongoing evaluation of the strategies used with the student and measuring their success • provide risk assessment or duty of care, and references for other agencies involved with the student.

ABC charts ABC charts provide a simple way to record these observations and later analyse the function and not just the form of the student’s behaviour. This acronym stands for: A = Antecedent, B = Behaviour and C = Consequence. This method enables the teacher to provide an objective record of a student’s behaviour over time and in different settings. The antecedent specifically directs the teacher to record what happened just prior to the problem behaviour—that is—what interaction or events occurred immediately before the behaviour occurred? If the student was asked to do something, what were they asked to do? Did the environment change? If so, how did it change? On an ABC chart, the observer next describes the exact behaviour that occurred. What did the student do or say? For how long or how many times? For example, a teacher may write: ‘Dion threw his book onto the floor on three occasions.’ And to address the intensity of this behaviour, they may follow this with: ‘He was quietly crying,’ or, ‘He swore loudly.’ We are therefore emphasising what is observable and

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measurable behaviour. Behaviour should not be attributed to emotive terms such as anger or boredom. ABC data entries should be written so that others reading them get a clear understanding of the behaviour being recorded. In many behaviour management policies, the term consequences equates with disciplinary measures. In the ABC chart approach, consequences refer to what happened after or as a result of the behaviour. For example, how did others (e.g. peers or teacher) react to the behaviour? What did they say or do? What did the student do then? The simplest ABC chart consists of five columns: date/time, setting, antecedent, behaviour and consequence. You may also like to include a section to record the working hypothesis of the student’s behaviour. We will discuss this later in the chapter. You may need to collect several ABC charts of behavioural data on your student, covering various times of day, in a variety of situations, such as the playground, classes, and while in the presence of different teachers. While this can be a challenge for secondary school teachers, it is worth asking your mentor, or the school’s staff member responsible for student well-being, to help you with this. If the student has an integration aide in class, the aide can assist in taking observations.

Examples of ABC charts In this section we provide both a primary school and secondary school example of an ABC chart for students with problem behaviours, then take a look at developing a working hypothesis, and how to create programs to support these students.

Primary school example: George—Year 4 The problem behaviour exhibited: during Reading lessons, George tells inappropriate jokes that disturb the class, throws his book, crouches down, puts his head on the desk, slams his books shut, and sometimes leaves the room when asked to read by his teacher. This has happened on a number of occasions and George does not respond positively to his teacher’s direction not to behave in this way. George’s teacher became concerned about this behaviour and prepared the following ABC chart as a record of his behaviour.

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George’s ABC chart

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Shared reading of text from the floor Moving from floor to tables Teacher moves towards George.

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Classroom Literacy block

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Teacher sends George to the school office.

Peers laugh. Class disrupted.

Consequence The working hypothesis What happened after or what happens as a To get/obtain… consequence of this To get away/ behaviour? avoid How did others (e.g. teacher, LSO, peers) react? What did they say or do? What did the student do then?

Teacher says to George, ‘please go to your group’.

George does not read George throws his book and walks out of the class in his group. towards the school office.

Teacher instructs class to move into reading groups. Teacher asks George George slams his book Teacher warns him not to throw his book. to move to his group. shut.

George crouches down. George can’t read from the interactive whiteboard. George sighs and puts George doesn’t join his group. his head on the desk.

George tells an Teacher announces it’s time for reading. inappropriate joke in a loud voice. George throws book. Teacher calls on George to read first.

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Teacher asks George to pay attention.

Antecedent What happened just before the behaviour? What was the student asked to do? How did the environment change?

Setting What were the setting conditions? For example: External—staff change Environmental—wet day program Internal—unwell, hungry

Behaviour Describe the behaviour in observable and measureable terms. What did the student say or do? For how long and how many times? At what intensity?

ABC Behaviour Chart

Date/time Time of day Before lunch Beginning of lesson End of day Pack-up time

Year level: 4

Student name: George

Figure 9.1

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Weblink Understanding the Antecedent, Behaviour, Consequence Model: http://bit.ly/KAV_UnderstandingABC

Working with your colleagues to develop a plan to support the student Often a group of teachers is established to consider the behaviour of challenging students. This collegiate group is called by different titles in different schools, but often is known as a Student Support Group (SSG). The group will vary in composition depending on how the school deals with the incident, however the teacher or teachers who experienced the behaviour will always be involved. (See Chapter 6 Learning Diversity in the Classroom for more information on SSGs.)

Developing a working hypothesis Once the SSG has examined all the data available on the student and taken into account all the behaviour recorded on the ABC Chart, the group is then in a position to develop a working hypothesis to help explain George’s behaviour. A working hypothesis consists of the following three elements: 1. When the behaviour occurred, including what happened and the antecedent or event that happened just before the behaviour was demonstrated. Using George’s ABC chart as an example, this part of the hypothesis might read like this: ‘When George was in the Reading lesson and asked to read to the class or work in a reading group …’ 2. What the student actually did: ‘George told inappropriate jokes, threw his book, crouched down and put his head on the desk. Sometimes he left the room.’ 3. The likely reasons or functions for the behaviour: ‘As a result of this behaviour, George gets some kudos from his peers, but he avoids completing the reading tasks set by the teacher.’ At this stage, the group is hopefully coming to a better understanding of George’s behaviour. The SSG may conclude that George’s behaviour is essentially concerned with him trying to avoid reading in class or even in small reading groups. This working hypothesis may be supported when the team accesses any diagnostic or other assessments in George’s file that indicate a history of reading challenges.

Writing a Behaviour Support Plan (BSP) When the SSG believes they have an understanding of the function of the student’s behaviour, they are in a position to write a Behaviour Support Plan (BSP) for the student. A BSP is a documented approach written by school staff in conjunction with the parents/carers of the student and sometimes other specialists who may be required (e.g. speech pathologist, literacy coordinator). Your school may not use the term ‘Behaviour Support Plan’ but may target the student’s behaviour on an Individual Learning Plan (ILP), which focuses its goals on interpersonal relationships. (See Chapter 6 Learning Diversity in the Classroom for more detailed information on ILPs.)

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Signatures:

G will engage in reading activities and ask for help when needed.

Replacement behaviour:

G appears to be avoiding reading tasks.

When G was in the reading lesson and asked to read to the class or work in a reading group… G tells inappropriate jokes, throws his book and puts his head on the desk. He sometimes leaves the room.

Target behaviour of concern and possible function of the behaviour:

Year 4

Find out what interests G (e.g. football) and make a collection of high-interest, low-level difficulty texts for G, to use in class and for take-home reading—CT

Modify difficulty of texts if necessary—CT

Reread same books often—CT

Develop a daily routine of reading with CT or aide.

Read to or with G until he is confident to read by himself.

Review date:

Gradually increase the time G is expected to stay on task in reading—CT Discuss G’s progress with parents/carers and make new plan—CT

If G continues to behave negatively in Reading, consider an assessment of Language. Discuss G with Literacy Coordinator and have them observe him in class.

Find out what motivates G and reinforce any signs of him staying on task in the reading block—CT and aide

Consider moving chairs to allow G to work with a friend who may assist him to read slightly more difficult texts—CT

Don’t ask G to read aloud in front of class.

Do Neale Analysis or Running Record on G’s reading— classroom teacher (CT) Give G a choice of reading tasks—CT

Plan of responses at school and classroom level if target behaviour continues WHO will do this?

Reinforcement What will motivate this student? WHO will do this?

Setting adaptations How is the classroom environment arranged? WHO will do this?

Reactive strategies:

Date:

Curriculum adaptations What teaching/ instructional style (e.g. modelling of replacement behaviour) is used? WHO will do this?

Behaviour Support Plan

Curriculum adaptations What is taught? Is it meaningful? Are interests of the student taken into account? Is the difficulty appropriate? WHO will do this?

Proactive strategies:

Developed by:

George’s BSP

Student: George (G),

Figure 9.2

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• • •

• •

The components of the sample behaviour planner include the: target behaviour—that is, the specific behaviour that is of concern replacement behaviour—this is the behaviour we want to see more often in the student. proactive strategies—these are the positive changes that teachers may make to accommodate the discovered needs of the student. In George’s case the teacher might provide other options for him to read, other than reading aloud in class. reactive strategies—those responses that will take place if the original challenging behaviour persists. These can be at the classroom or whole school level. positive reinforcement—these are rewards and schedules of rewards that are given to the student when the replacement behaviour is noted. For example, every time George behaves appropriately during reading he receives positive feedback from the teacher. This reward may be gradually withdrawn once his behaviour is seen to improve.

Aspects to consider when writing the BSP An important section of a BSP is the proactive strategies needed to assist the student to change a behaviour. It is important that you focus on the function or reason for the student’s behaviour. The only way you can address a student’s needs is for you to change your practice. Three types of teaching adjustments that may assist in behaviour management involve curriculum adjustments, instructional adjustments and environmental adjustments.

Implementing the BSP There are some important steps to take to successfully implement a Behaviour Support Plan for your student. It is most important that the plan be faithfully adhered to by all staff who are involved with the student. You will need to: • Hold an SSG meeting to consult with the student’s parents/carers if they haven’t been part of the team that designed the BSP. • Select the reinforcers or rewards, and reinforcement schedules, you plan to use with the student. • Prepare the environment of your classroom and make any changes that the team considered necessary for this student (e.g. quiet areas in the classroom or playground to cool off). • Choose the BSP materials for proactive and reactive strategies and have these in a suitable place for yourself and any replacement teacher. Utilise visual prompts for target behaviour, flow charts for reactive strategies, and a card communication system for students to have a break. Set up a communication system with colleagues in case of an emergency.

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Table 9.1 The three types of adjustment

CURRICULUM

INSTRUCTIONAL

ENVIRONMENTAL

Adapt what is taught.

Adapt how it is taught.

Adapt the classroom setting— the where, when and with whom.

• Students’ interests and preferences are taken into account in the delivery of curriculum.

• Instruction/teaching style is adjusted. • Presentation of lessons is made age- and abilityappropriate. • Materials and formats are adjusted.

• Make classroom settings less rigid. • Students may sit where they wish at times. • Configure furniture to suit the tasks. • Students have choice of where and with whom they work at times. • Alter the way you distribute materials and where you have screen distractions such as computers.

• Learning is meaningful to the student and a choice of tasks is given.

• Student responses to tasks • Motivate and reinforce can be altered. students who are learning new behaviour—find out • Formats and materials to what motivates your target present work can involve student and reinforce any personal choice. signs of the replacement • Students are given behaviour. opportunities to work • Discourage problem alone, with a partner or in behaviour and promote a group. the expected replacement behaviour. • Actually teach/model replacement behaviours (e.g. putting up hand, asking for a break).

• Difficulty of tasks is modified and amount of work/time on task is adjusted for some students.

• Change antecedents of behaviour (e.g. by having the target student come into class before others, use visual schedules, give responsibilities/tasks to the student).

Adapted from The Florida Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support in School (PBIS) project

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All material related to a student’s BSP is highly confidential and should always be secured in a safe place. There needs to be a system in place to ensure casual relief teachers (CRTs) are briefed concerning those students on a Plan.

Remember, this process of changing behaviour is often a slow one, as some students come to you with many years of practising and being rewarded for their inappropriate behaviour. Change is hard, and the student will have good and bad days. It is important to keep a record of any observable change that you can refer to at SSG meetings, when the impact of the Support Plan is considered.

After the Plan has been implemented, the focus changes Regular meetings should be held (weekly or fortnightly) with parents/carers and other relevant staff. Consider the ongoing fidelity to the implementation of the Plan. Discuss if there is incremental improvement in behaviour as seen in your data—if there is no measurable improvement, discuss if the strategies on the plan have been implemented with fidelity by all teachers who work with this student. Discuss other possible behaviour support strategies, but it is recommended that you persevere working on the major behaviour you wanted to target. This will help you create a bank of experiences, strategies and resources that you can draw on with this student. Plan for any transitions such as changes in staff, timetable, beginning a new school year and meeting a new classroom teacher that may impact on the implementation of the BSP. Be mindful that any transition is likely to trigger a deterioration in behaviour.

Secondary school example: Suzie—Year 9 Suzie is becoming increasingly unresponsive in class, scowling at the teacher, failing to complete work and giving little response to work being discussed. Suzie’s ABC chart has been started.

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Suzie’s ABC chart

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Teacher asks Suzie if she has handed in her homework . The class are discussing a persuasive text in a small group.

Maths class

English class

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Teacher asks the class to write a short summary of first chapter of their novel.

English class

Suzie puts her head down on the table and says nothing to other students.

Suzie says she didn’t have time to do it and turns her back as she speaks.

Suzie plays with her pen and writes nothing.

Suzie turns her back on Teacher asks her to turn the teacher and swings around. Girls snigger. back on her chair.

Teacher begins to explain a new concept in Maths.

Teacher asks her what’s wrong. Suzie says she isn’t feeling well.

Teacher tells her she will need to make up unfinished work.

Teacher asks Suzie what’s wrong. Suzie says she hasn’t read the novel.

Teacher repeats the question.

Suzie scowls at the teacher and walks to her desk.

Consequence What happened after or what happens as a consequence of this behaviour? How did others (e.g. teacher, LSO, peers) react? What did they say or do? What did the student do then?

Teacher asks Suzie if she has handed in her homework.

Behaviour Describe the behaviour in observable and measureable terms. What did the student say or do? For how long and how many times? At what intensity?

What happened just before the behaviour What was the student asked to do? How did the environment change?

Antecedent

ABC Behaviour Chart

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6/3/18 9:30AM

Maths class

5/3/18 9:30AM

Setting What were the setting conditions? For example: External—staff change Environmental—wet day program Internal—unwell, hungry

Time of day Before lunch Beginning of lesson End of day Pack-up time

Date/time

Year level: 9

Student name: Suzie

Figure 9.3

To get/obtain… To get away/ avoid

The working hypothesis

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Reflective Exercise Here you have an opportunity to apply some of the understandings introduced in the overview of the earlier approach, adopted by teachers and team for George’s BSP (Figure 9.2). Remember to use the following steps after the chronic behaviour occurs: 1. Record observations on an ABC chart. 2. Write down the possible reasons for this behaviour (the working hypothesis). 3. Prepare a Behaviour Support Plan. 4. Implement the Support Plan. In Suzie’s ABC chart (Figure 9.3) you will see that Step 1 has already been taken. 1. Examine the detailed observations on Suzie’s ABC chart and prepare a working hypothesis for the behaviour exhibited. For example, consider: a relationship problems with teacher b the teaching style c Suzie’s need for a modified learning program d emotional issues of a personal nature e her need to be accepted by her peers (consider possible bullying occurring here). Have another look at the iceberg diagram (Figure 8.1, page 166) to assist in developing a working hypothesis. 2. Consider what other information you might need to access about Suzie to help validate your hypothesis. Prepare a BSP that will identify the most appropriate proactive strategies to use with Suzie. You will find Figure 9.2 useful when completing this step.

Weblink School-wide Positive Behaviour Support: https://bit.ly/KAV_SchoolWideSupport

Tier 3 students Tier 3 behaviour is behaviour that requires intensive intervention. This group of students is small in number, making up about 5% of your class (see Chapter 8, Figure 8.1), however they can present with chronic management issues for teachers, and schools in general. Often outside special support such as psychologists, paediatricians, psychiatrists, occupational therapists and central office authorities will be needed to assist in the management and safety of these students. Parents/ carers must be included in the school’s planning for these special support approaches. Schools may also need to consider de-escalation techniques or a specific Safety Management Plan necessary to keep the student and others safe in the school. Tier 3 students may have been targeted with BSP plans without success. Issues with these students may include: • chronic truancy • issues with constant breaking of school rules, including fighting and breaking school equipment • ongoing disruption of classes and the learning of other students • ongoing and serious lack of respect of staff • issues that threaten the safety of the student, staff, other students and community members. OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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Although these behaviours are often beyond your role as a classroom teacher, there are some strategies that are helpful in de-escalating difficult behaviour with students who exhibit dangerous behaviours in particular. Your school will have a plan in place if there were serious concerns about the safety of a student or others in the school.

Proactive approaches to use with Tier 3 students When Tier 3 students are calm, the following strategies can be used • Teach coping skills that will help when the student is feeling angry, such as deep breathing, moving away to a calming space, using cards to express feelings, cards to show if the student needs a break. • Teach, model and practise how to make good choices, how to use visual schedules to know what is coming next and how to talk about emotions. • Use social skill programs or restorative practice activities with the student. Hint

If a student’s behaviour indicates that they are losing control and not coping emotionally: • Remain calm and speak quietly to the student (always be aware of your own safety and that of others). • Say what to do, rather than what not to do. • Give the student some physical space and move other students away from the student. • Take steps to prevent the onset of a power struggle between yourself and the student.

If the student becomes out of control and you are worried that they or others may be injured, you need to follow the school policy of dealing with such incidents, especially in seeking assistance. You may see students sent out of class, but you need to talk to your mentor about this practice, as it is essential that you continue to have clear view of your students at all times. Most state and territory policies provide detailed guidelines that establish that restraint or seclusion of a student can only be used when certain conditions are met. We urge you to read the relevant policies of your state or territory and ensure you closely follow the procedures. Weblink Respond to Challenging Behaviour: http://bit.ly/KAV_ChallengingBehaviour

After a serious incident with a student If you have an incident of serious behaviour with a student, it is most important that you have support from your mentor and other teachers. These incidents cause great stress for teachers and after such an event all staff involved in the incident need to debrief. Don’t be reluctant to express that you are upset by the experience, as that is a normal response even for experienced teachers. We all need emotional support from our colleagues and friends after such incidents. OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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You should meet with your mentor and other relevant staff as soon as possible. These meetings provide everyone involved with the opportunity to discuss any concerns and consider how the school’s safety plan was implemented. Questions that may be addressed include: • Did the evacuation plan (one component of a Safety Management Plan) work smoothly? • Was there enough staff support for you and anyone else working in the teaching– learning space, including the other students? • If there were problems in the implementation of the support strategies, what can be done to ensure improvement? • How will parents/carers and other stakeholders be informed of the incident and who will do this? Hint

Any injuries to staff or students arising from physical incidents need to be recorded, as they may involve later WorkCover claims or have other legal implications. Become familiar with the processes involved in recording such instances.

Bullying Bullying is the repeated and intentional use of words or actions against an individual or a group that causes distress and impacts their well-being. These actions are often carried out by people who have influence or power over someone, or want to make someone else feel less powerful. Bullying behaviour in schools includes: • excluding someone from the group (remember: bullying may occur online or offline, inside or outside of the school grounds) • constantly being rude, unpleasant, teasing or embarrassing someone • spreading rumours or lies using social media • harassing someone because of their race, religion, gender or disability • intentionally and repeatedly hurting someone physically • stalking • taking advantage of any power over another e.g. School Prefect, older, bigger student. All schools need to be very vigilant about bullying behaviour. Anti-Bullying or Bullying Prevention policies are now mandated in all states and territories.

Warning signs that may indicate one of your students is being bullied There are warning behaviours to look out for if you suspect a student in your class(es) is being bullied. They might: • become aggressive or unreasonable • start to get into fights

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have unexplained bruises and scratches begin to fail at school work arrive late without a reasonable excuse be seen to be alone more than usual become reticent to offer their views in class appear insecure or unduly aggravated be a frequent target of teasing, ridicule appear to be tired or unkempt be lacking in enthusiasm for activities, sports, and activities they would normally enjoy.

Some warning signs at home Parents/carers can also consider the warnings within the home environment. Their child might: • not want to go to school • make excuses for not participating in social/sporting activities • change their eating or sleeping patterns • be frequently quick to anger and mood swings • have unexplained bruises or scratches • arrive home hungry or ask for extra pocket money for food • be especially secretive with their online devices and constantly checking these • come home with torn clothing and without personal possessions • spend more time alone than usual. Hint

The above indicators may have nothing to do with bullying. They are included here as examples of signal behaviours that teachers and parents might notice.

Weblinks Bullying. No Way!: https://bit.ly/KAV_NoBullying Bullying: No Way! Video Tips and Strategies: http://bit.ly/KAV_NoBullyingVideos eSafety Toolkit for Schools: http://bit.ly/KAV_eSafetyToolkit

Parents and cases of chronic misbehaviour It is essential for all concerned in the educational experiences of the student that teachers, school staff in general, and parents/carers develop significant meaningful and cooperative relationships, based on mutual respect and trust. As teachers, we can help to ensure such interactions work by the way we value parents, when we involve parents, and how we attend to the concerns of parents. Likewise, parents and carers can respond either positively or negatively when interacting with the teacher and other staff. OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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Think before you jump! When unsure about contacting a parent/carer, you should discuss the student’s behaviour issues with your mentor. Be sure about the facts of the situation and why you believe you should talk directly to the parent/carer. What are you expecting from such a meeting or discussion? Is there something in the school records that might help you get a clearer picture of what you are going to say? It always helps to know if this behaviour has occurred before and what was done about it by other teachers. Consider if these particular parents/carers have been involved in similar discussions before, and what happened. What was their reaction then? Is it likely they will be amenable to meeting with you on this occasion? If you are comfortable to do so, arrange a meeting that will suit all parties. All meetings with parents held to discuss serious issues should be recorded and filed in a confidential student file.

Some considerations about conversations with parents When meeting parents/carers for the first time, and especially if the issue is quite serious, we recommend that you have your mentor attend the meeting with you. Always introduce your mentor to the parents/carers and if you are confident to do so, briefly reiterate why you thought it was important to have the meeting. Your mentor can do this for you if you would prefer. If you have already contacted parents/carers by phone about the issue, remind them of that and what was decided during that call. Some parents will be unwilling to accept that their child is misbehaving, so you will need to quietly but firmly provide details of what happened and what you did or said to the student. It is essential that teachers try to gain the support of parents when dealing with challenging behaviour. Hint

Remember, meetings with parents should never become a blame game or a power struggle. Both parties should remain cool and objective. If you find the discussion does become unproductive, it is best that you or your mentor draws the meeting to a close, and tries to reschedule another meeting.

In a productive meeting, all parties should be working together to support the student. Parents or carers should be given a chance to have their say. Remember, they are advocates for their child and it is natural that they may feel somewhat emotional if their child has been exhibiting challenging behaviour. Minutes should be kept of all such parent meetings and signed off by all those in attendance. A positive meeting will end with some agreed strategies that both parties will adopt. There should be an agreement to keep in touch to see how things are going. It is a good idea to ring parents occasionally, especially when the student has had a good day. When you meet next, refer to your minutes, review the student’s progress and if needed, try some additional strategies. See Chapter 6 for more discussion on communicating with parents.

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Weblink Parent-Teacher Interactions: Engaging with Parents and Carers: http://bit.ly/KAV_ParentsTeachers

Figure 9.4 The nature of parent–teacher interactions The nature of parent– teacher interactions Positive parent–teacher interactions

Less than satisfactory parent–teacher interactions

Collaborative practices:

Non-collaborative practices:

• • • •

• • • •

Approachability • Honesty Listening • Relationships Sharing information • Support and resources Working together

Emotive behaviour • Lack of confidence Lack of information • Lack of support Not listening • Not working together Unapproachability

Positive outcomes for students:

Less than satisfactory outcomes for students:

• Student support • Pastoral care

• Limited exchange of information • Low levels of student support

Source: Ellis et al. (2015)

Case study 1 Lorry is a Year 5 teacher who is absent for two weeks due to ill health. His classes are being taught by a casual relief teacher (CRT). Unfortunately, Lorry did not leave his work program, nor any instructions concerning students’ needs. Without any briefing, the CRT begins work with the class on Monday morning. By Wednesday, the CRT advises the principal that she cannot manage the class. From your reading and experience, what has possibly gone wrong and how could this situation have been avoided?

Case study 2 Steve was involved in a fight in the playground and hit another student with a cricket bat. Steve was instructed to put down the bat, but proceeded to threaten the teacher on duty by holding the bat above his head, swinging it in the direction of the teacher. After Steve was safely removed from the playground, his mother was called. Unfortunately, she was working in the city and it was not possible for her to leave work to come to the school. She advised the teacher to contact her partner, who worked locally. She added, however, that he might not take this news well. The teacher was worried by this remark. With information drawn from Figure 9.4 and other ideas discussed in this chapter, consider how you would respond if you were directly involved in this scenario.

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Chapter 10 Teacher Well-being and Ethical Responsibilities In this chapter, we introduce some key elements relating to teacher well-being and the ethical responsibilities associated with the work of the teacher.

Key Topics • • • • •

Teacher well-being Professional development Professional ethics Working in rural and remote schools Challenges in the lives of students

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Teacher well-being It is well acknowledged by all teachers, even those who are very experienced, that teaching is a complex, stressful and often exhausting job. Unfortunately, as many as one out of four early career teachers suffer from emotional exhaustion after starting their careers. While Mason and Poyatos Matas (2015) found reasons for the high attrition rates among young teachers in Australia were complex, Buchanan and colleagues (2013) reported that teachers who are given high levels of guidance and support by their colleagues and mentors showed much lower levels of burnout than those who receive minimal support. This illustrates the importance of making your induction a success. As well as your school support, you need to be a proactive, questioning and reflective early career teacher during your induction process. Significant causes of stress among early career teachers are: • the sheer quantity of work and the lack of time to focus on planning, teaching and learning (Curry 2012)—you may be familiar with the term ‘the crowded curriculum’. • poor student behaviour, especially by older students who show lack of engagement, motivation and disrespect for authority (Buchanan et al. 2013). Further, McCallum and Price (2010) note: ‘There are many other factors that also impact on teacher well-being. Changes in Australian society have increased the expectations being placed on schools. In addition to their traditional roles, schools are now expected to build resilience in students, address social justice issues and keep abreast of the influences of social media on young people.’ Figure 10.1

Causes of teacher stress

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Weblinks Teacher Wellbeing and Workload: Why a Work-Life Balance is Essential for the Teaching Profession:  http://bit.ly/KAV_WorkLifeBalance Teacher Wellbeing: A Review of the Literature: http://bit.ly/KAV_LiteratureReview

Focusing on your own well-being As an early career teacher, it is very important that you are aware of any feelings of stress or burnout you may be experiencing. While it is normal that you will be extremely tired, you must speak to your buddy or mentor if you have any of the following concerns: • managing student behaviour—finding that the behaviour of your class is not allowing you to teach as you would like • issues with time management—feeling that you are getting behind in planning, assessments and other commitments • maintaining a work-life balance—finding the pressures of the job are much tougher than what you expected and spending many hours at home preparing to teach • feeling that you have some difficulty relating professionally and personally to some colleagues. It is important that you take direct action and attempt to eliminate the sources of your stress. Regularly debrief with your mentor and buddy about any of the stressors you are experiencing. Try to focus your discussions on positive solutions, not on the problems you are facing, and remember that you are not alone in finding it challenging to adjust to the very complex profession of teaching. From this perspective—changing the way you think about stress and what you focus on—the article ‘Why Changing How You Think about Stress Could Help You be Less Affected by It’ in the following Weblink feature is published by ABC Life, and is very helpful. Weblink Why Changing How You Think about Stress Could Help You be Less Affected by It:  https://www.abc.net.au/life/changing-how-you-think-about-stress-to-be-less-affected-by-it/10824484 Tips for Teacher Well-Being: https://bit.ly/KAV_TipsForTeachers

Reducing the risks of stress This section explores the common concerns, listed earlier in this chapter, which teachers should try to address when focusing on their well-being.

Managing student behaviour If your issue is the constant misbehaviour of a student in your class, first consider the following: • Are my teaching approaches helping or hindering the engagement, and consequently the positive behaviour of the student? (See Chapter 6 for more information about teaching in a diverse learning environment, and Chapter 8 for behaviour management techniques.)

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• Have I noticed any possible learning difficulties this student may have? (See Chapter 7 Supporting Students with Special Needs.) Ask your Learning Diversity leader or mentor to assist you with this student. It would be helpful for someone else to observe the student in class and the ways that you are dealing with any challenging behaviour. Debrief after this observation and take on board any suggestions about your teaching style that your leader or mentor provides. If it is thought necessary, the whole-school behaviour management process will be initiated to support you and the student. (See Chapter 9 Working with Colleagues: A Whole-School Behaviour Management Approach.) Use your colleagues as supports when things get tough. Access the reading The Importance of Effective Communication Between Teachers in the following Weblink feature; it discusses the importance of developing supportive relationships with your colleagues. Weblinks The Causes of Teacher Burnout: What Everyone Needs to Know: https://bit.ly/KAV_TeacherBurnout The Importance of Effective Communication Between Teachers: https://bit.ly/KAV_EffectiveCommunication

Issues with time management If you are experiencing stress because you constantly feel behind in planning your lessons, assessing your students, recording data, keeping your classroom in order, getting to staff meetings on time—let alone having time to have a coffee during the school day—then you are not alone! Even experienced teachers feel this way at times. The following suggestions may help you manage your time effectively during your first months of teaching: • Have your Term Program Overview, or Term Program Planner, completed early. Highlight them and keep them on a display board where you can see any important events that are coming up, well ahead of time. For example, you should have all important school dates recorded for the term. Also highlight when formal assessments are due and when you should begin these assessments. Be sure to include the date your results are to be entered on school databases. Hint

Always give yourself more time than you expect, because in schools there are always interruptions to your plans!

• Learn to prioritise. Make a list of tasks to be done and consider if it is feasible to complete all of these jobs in your day. Hint

Learn to say ‘No’ to any additional school commitments, especially in your first year. Don’t overcommit!

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• Is your classroom or learning space tidy and well organised? Have you explicitly taught your students how the systems work? If you have, you should spend less time telling students where to put things, where to find things, and tidying up their belongings—this is precious time. At the end of the day, your room should look as tidy as possible. (You may even have time to make a coffee before the staff meeting!) (See chapters 3 and 7 for more information on organisational strategies.) • Make the most of your team planning meetings. Hint

Keep the teacher resources you regularly refer to in a box near your teacher’s desk. Take the box with you to planning meetings.

Many schools now use Google Docs for their planning so that teams can continue and finish planning units of work or lessons after the planning meeting is over. Delegate tasks to team members so that all lesson planning is completed, even if it is after hours. Collect the required teaching resources (for example, guided reading texts) when you are planning a lesson. It can be very stressful trying to find such resources just prior to teaching a class. Weblinks Ten Time Management Secrets from Teachers Who are Living Their Best Lives:  https://bit.ly/KAV_10TimeManagementSecrets Top Ten Time Management Tips for Teachers: https://bit.ly/KAV_TimeManagementTips

Maintaining a work-life balance Many teachers struggle with keeping a balance between their home life and school life. As in any profession, your mental health depends on developing ways to turn off and relax with your loved ones or friends. Both aspects of your life are equally important, and when you are an early career teacher, it is vital that you set in place the practices that will help you manage your busy career and also have a healthy and enjoyable private life. Develop clear boundaries between home and school by: • deciding on a reasonable time to leave school on non-meeting days (and sticking to it) • developing end-of-day rituals. For example, change out of your school clothes and go for a walk or to the gym • spending quality time with your family or friends • limiting the amount of work you bring home—plan to spend no more than an hour on this work. Hint

Only respond to urgent school emails and avoid developing the practice of responding to parent emails after hours.

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• establishing good sleeping habits (keeping a regular bedtime during the week) • building on your emotional resilience: – learn proactive ways to relieve stress – meet your friends or family members regularly – keep up or develop sports or hobbies or go to exercise classes – become involved in yoga, meditation or mindfulness We recommend that you become familiar with emotional intelligence programs and what they offer. (See the following Weblinks feature.) Weblink How to Achieve Work Life Balance: https://bit.ly/KAV_HowToAchieveBalance

Feeling that you are a valued member of the team In complex organisations such as schools, it is not uncommon to find some staff members who have established close working relationships and social arrangements with other staff members. These ‘cliques’ can be quite difficult to deal with when you are an early career teacher and new to a school. It is important that you learn to recognise these groups and respond appropriately. We recommend that you read the article in the following Weblink feature, which may help if you experience cliques in your school. Weblink When Teachers Bully One Another: https://bit.ly/KAV_TeacherBullying

Hint

Avoid getting involved in groups of staff who engage in negative talk. Spend your time with teachers who have positive relationships with their students and colleagues.

Professional development Learning Forward, the association established by the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL 2014, p. 2), believes that: • effective professional learning is fundamental to student learning • all educators have an obligation to improve their practice • more students achieve when educators assume collective responsibility for student learning • successful leaders create and maintain a culture of learning • Improving student learning and professional practice requires ongoing systemic and organisational change.

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And The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) similarly summarises professional development for a teacher as ‘activities that develop an individual’s skills, knowledge, expertise and other characteristics as a teacher.’ (OECD 2009) The OECD’s definition indicates that any activity that leads to improvement as a teacher can be referred to as professional development (commonly referred to as ‘PD’). However, this activity also needs to be associated with an improvement in student outcomes. Here we list the different types of PD opportunities available to teachers: • conferences and seminars, including subject association meetings • reflective exercises alone or with a colleague • courses or workshops at school and elsewhere • observational visits to other schools • professional reading of teacher texts, journal articles • school-based research • developing school policies and programs • networking by phone, email or school visits • inductions—mentoring, co-planning, peer observation and feedback • debriefing after meetings, incidents and experiences • post-graduate studies • upgrading certification such as first aid, anaphylaxis and asthma training, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

What are the characteristics of effective PD? Teacher Quality and Accreditation, a teacher support resource provided by the New South Wales Government, lists six characteristics that help ensure effective PD and ‘positively impact on a range of student outcomes.’ We have summarised these characteristics in the following section: • Relevant—the PD needs to be matched to the individual, school-wide or school system goals, that are clearly understood to be related to the needs and requirements of teachers’ work. • Collaborative—PD should connect teachers and leaders to their colleagues within and across schools and to external experts. Development should actively involve staff directly in its design, participation and evaluation, and ‘facilitate support through coaching and mentoring, observation and feedback.’ • Practice based—‘When PD focuses on both teachers’ practice and students’ learning, it can lead to significant, sustained positive impacts on student outcomes.’ • Future-focused—this characteristic of PD attempts to develop the teachers’ capacity to adapt to the many changes occurring in our world. It encourages innovation and adaptability to cope with these challenges.

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• Challenging—challenging PD helps the teacher come to know and utilise new knowledge deriving from quality research related to the work teachers do. This type of PD ‘involves negotiating the meaning of new and sometimes challenging learning, and then supporting its deep integration into practice.’ • Sustained—‘No matter how well-conceived or well-intentioned PD is, without focused and sustained implementation, it can fail to change or impact on practice and student outcomes.’ Source: New South Wales Department of Education and Training (2019b)

Some considerations when planning your PD Think about the characteristics of successful PD summarised in the previous section. These characteristics should be considered when planning your professional development, along with the following: • Appreciate that school budgets for PD are carefully limited and monitored. • Become familiar with the school, department or faculty policy, and the application procedures for allocating PD. You will find that most support will be given to PD events based on the current school or department charter priorities. • Also appreciate that your induction program is a professional development program. You will have ongoing commitments within that program, some of which may involve activities such as those listed above. • When considering what other more formal PD you might apply for, give serious thought to how relevant it will be for an early career teacher. Ask yourself: ‘Would this professional development experience enhance my skills, knowledge, expertise and other characteristics as a teacher to bring about improved student outcomes?’ If the answer is, ‘Only marginally,’ then don’t bother applying. Wait for something that will really help you. Hint

It is always wise to be forward-looking when considering professional development programs like conferences and workshops. Use your subject association newsletters and sites to see what is coming up in the future. Visit your relevant state or territory government education website at the end of this textbook for more information.

Getting the most out of PD opportunities Here are some suggestions that could help ensure you benefit from PD events you attend. In these examples, we are referring to your participation in a conference or seminar: 1. Attend all sessions and secure the handouts. Try to engage with what is being said. Does it relate to your teaching experiences? At the appropriate time, don’t hesitate to ask the presenter a question if there is something you want to clarify. This can be a real confidence booster for a novice conference goer.

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2. Actively participate in breakout group sessions when key ideas related to the earlier presentation are exchanged. If the group is to provide some feedback to the presenter or the main body, don’t hesitate to accept a role in the group, such as scribe. 3. Use the conference as an opportunity to gather resources, handouts from publishers, and begin to develop your network of interesting teachers from other schools and school systems. 4. When you get back to school make sure you present some feedback on the key ideas raised at the PD to colleagues, and indicate how significant the information was for you. 5. Most importantly, progressively begin to implement the best ideas into your teaching practice. Don’t forget to record the details of the PD in your teaching portfolio.

Self-Assessment Tool If you are looking for help planning your PD try the Teacher Self-Assessment Tool (SAT) available on the AITSL website. It is a free interactive assessment resource that will help you review your teaching practice and plan your development, and allows you to assess yourself against the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST). You can access the tool online via the URL in the following Weblink feature. Weblinks Discover the Teacher Self-Assessment Tool: https://bit.ly/KAV_TeacherSAT Subject Associations: https://bit.ly/KAV_SubjectAssociationContactLists

Subject associations Teachers can gain significant professional development for the rest of their careers when they join relevant subject associations. Membership will give you the opportunity to avail yourself of many benefits including access to networks of teachers from across the various sectors, career advice, conferences, online resources, access to journals, focus groups, research opportunities and job vacancy information. You can visit the online list of contact details at the link provided in the previous Weblink feature.

Teacher unions Teacher unions also provide significant professional development opportunities. We urge you to become an active member of a teacher union.

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Professional ethics Teachers and all those who work in schools are expected to adhere closely to established Codes of Conduct. State and territory Codes of Conduct frame the high ethical standards teachers are required to uphold in the course of their daily interactions with students, parents/carers, colleagues and with the community in general. The common purpose found in all state and territory professional ethical Codes concerns the maintenance of high professional standards of conduct by teachers as members of the profession. As the Code of Ethics for Northern Territory Teachers states: ‘Teaching is a profession in which practitioners have to make ethical decisions daily. The development and maintenance of a code of ethics by the profession provides a means of clearly identifying and communicating the core values that underpin the professional standards for teaching.’ Similarly, the Code of Professional Ethics for the Teaching Profession in Tasmania notes: ‘This Code of Professional Ethics is a statement of the ethical commitments, practices and aspirations that underpin the identity of the teaching profession in Tasmania and that reflect the ongoing articulation of the identity of the profession.’

Key values Typically, ethical Codes of practice highlight specific values related to the professional obligations of teachers. For example, the Code of Ethics for Teachers in Queensland Framework stresses the values that underpin the core obligations of integrity, dignity, responsibility, respect, justice and care. We demonstrate Integrity by: • creating and maintaining appropriate professional relationships • acting with impartiality, truthfulness and honesty. We demonstrate Dignity by: • valuing diversity and treating students equitably and with care and compassion while respecting the uniqueness of family backgrounds • valuing the effort and potential and acknowledging the uniqueness of each student. We demonstrate Responsibility by: • giving priority to the education and welfare of all students in our care • engaging in ongoing professional development and improving teaching and learning strategies • working collaboratively and cooperatively with colleagues in the best interests of the education and welfare of our students. We demonstrate Respect by: • acknowledging that relationships with students and their families must be based on mutual respect, trust and, where necessary, confidentiality and acknowledging the contribution these qualities make to students’ well-being and learning • acting with educational colleagues and the wider community in ways which enhance the profession.

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We demonstrate Justice by: • being fair and reasonable • being committed to the well-being of individuals and the community and the common good • resolving competing claims of different ethical principles and different interest groups through reflective professional discussion. We demonstrate Care by: • having empathy for and rapport with students and their families and caregivers, colleagues and communities • committing to students’ well-being and learning through the practice of positive influence, professional judgement and empathy in practice. Source: Queensland College of Teachers (n.d.)

Ethical guidelines Many state and territory Codes provide detailed guidelines for schools and teachers to consider. It is in this detail that we can see how careful and sensitive teachers need to be in their day-to-day interactions with students, colleagues, parents/carers and the community. In the following section, we quote relevant sections of the Victorian Teaching Profession Code of Conduct to illustrate what state and territory ethical Codes expect of a teacher’s relationship with learners, colleagues and parents/carers.

Relationships with learners We have summarised aspects of relationships with learners from The Victorian Teaching Profession Code of Conduct (2016, p. 2–3): • Teachers should provide opportunities for all learners to learn. These include: – maintaining a safe and challenging learning environment – having high expectations of every learner and recognising and developing individuals’ abilities, skills, and talents – communicating well and appropriately with their learners. • Teachers should treat learners with courtesy and dignity. This means teachers must: – work to create an environment which promotes mutual respect – model and engage in respectful and impartial language – protect learners from intimidation, embarrassment, humiliation or harm – respect a learner’s privacy in sensitive matters, such as health or family problems, and only reveal confidential matters when appropriate – use consequences commensurate with the offence when disciplining learners. • Teachers should work within their limits of professional expertise. This means that teachers should: – seek to ensure they have the physical, mental and emotional capacity to carry out their professional responsibilities – be aware of the role of other professionals and agencies as well as when learners are be referred to them for assistance

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• Teachers should maintain objectivity in their relationships with learners. This means: – in their professional role, teachers do not behave as a friend or parent/carer – teachers should interact with learners without displaying bias or preference – teachers do not draw learners into their personal agenda. • Teachers are always in a professional relationship with their learners whether at the education setting where they teach or not, and a professional relationship may be compromised if a teacher: – attends parties or socialises with learners – invites a learner or learners back to their home, particularly if no-one else is present. • A professional relationship will be violated if a teacher: – has a sexual relationship with a learner – uses sexual innuendo or inappropriate language and/or material with learners – touches a learner without a valid reason – holds conversations of a personal nature or has contact with a learner via written/electronic means (including email, letters, telephone, text messages or chat lines) without a valid context – accepts gifts which could be reasonably perceived as being used to influence them, from learners or their parents/carers. Adapted from the Victorian Institute of Teaching (2016)

Reflective Exercise When was the last time you felt uneasy about a student or colleague’s behaviour towards you or other staff or students? Use Gibbs’s Reflective Cycle (see Chapter 1, page 18) and consider how you responded. On reflection, was your response appropriate given the ethical responsibilities of a teacher?

Relationships with parents/carers Teachers should maintain professional relationships with parents/carers. The Victorian Teaching Profession Code of Conduct (2016, p. 3) states that teachers should: • consider parents’/carers’ perspectives when making decisions which have an impact on the education or well-being of a learner • communicate and consult with parents/carers in a timely, understandable and sensitive manner • take appropriate action when responding to parental concerns.

Relationships with colleagues The quality of relationships you develop with your colleagues will be very important in carrying out your duties and responsibilities as a teacher and for your well-being.

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The Victorian Teaching Profession Code of Conduct (2016, p. 3) advises that teachers develop and maintain quality relationships with colleagues by: • • • •

treating each other with courtesy and respect valuing the input of their colleagues using appropriate forums for constructive debate on professional matters sharing information relating to the well-being of learners.

The Victorian Code also focuses on two further aspects: personal conduct and professional competence.

Personal conduct ‘The personal conduct of a teacher will have an impact on the professional standing of that teacher and on the profession as a whole.’ (Victorian Institute of Teaching 2016, p. 4) The Victorian code of conduct includes the following expectations: Teachers will: • be positive role models in education settings and in the community • respect the rule of law and provide a positive example in the performance of civil obligations • not exploit their position for personal or financial gain • ensure their personal or financial interests do not interfere with the performance of their duties • act with discretion and maintain confidentiality when discussing workplace issues.

Professional competence ‘Teachers value their professionalism, and set and maintain high standards of competence … Teachers are aware of the legal requirements that pertain to their profession.’ (The Victorian Institute of Teaching 2016, p. 4) To achieve high standards in each respect, teachers: • are knowledgeable in their area of expertise • are committed to pursuing their own professional learning • complete their duties in a responsible, through and timely way.

Teachers are also cognisant of their legal responsibilities in relation to: • • • • •

discrimination, harassment and vilification mandatory reporting privacy occupational health and safety teacher registration.

Reviewing the Codes of Ethics Become conversant with your state or territory Code of Ethics, but also go further and read other state or territory Codes. The information we have selected for inclusion in

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this chapter provides only a snapshot of the nature and importance of such Codes. All are available online; as you look through them you will notice many common elements across all documents. You will also find that some policies place emphasis on certain ethical issues. In the balance of this section, we look briefly at the South Australian Code of Ethics, and the excellent resource developed by the Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia called Teacher–Student Professional Boundaries (2019). This resource provides an elaboration of the ethical dimension of the teacher and student relationship, discussed earlier, when introducing sections of the Victorian Code. The South Australian Department for Education and Child Development developed the Exploring Ethics Series (2014) as an integral part of their Code of Ethics. The following Professional Conduct Standards are introduced. These standards include: • • • • • • • •

Professional and Courteous Behaviour Use of Government/Public Resources Acceptance of Gifts and Benefits Public Comment Criminal Offences Handling Official Information Outside Employment Reporting Unethical Behaviour. Source: South Australia State Government Department for Education and Child Development (2014)

Teacher–student professional boundaries The Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia has updated the resource Teacher–Student Professional Boundaries (2019) since the findings of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (final report published in 2017). The authors of the resource make it clear from the outset that professional boundaries must not be breached. Teachers must act professionally at all times, particularly in their relationships with students. Their conduct, in complying with professional boundaries, must be unambiguous. The teacher-student relationship is not equal. Teachers are in a unique position of trust, care, authority and influence in relation to their students, which means there is always an inherent power imbalance between teachers and students. (Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia 2019, p. 5)

The document provides examples of some of the vulnerabilities displayed by some teachers: • • • • • • •

Teachers regarding students as peers. Teachers experiencing adult relationship issues. Immature teachers. Teachers feeling in need of attention. Teachers who abuse alcohol, or drink inappropriately in social situations. Teachers with an under-developed personal moral compass. Teachers who lack personal crisis management skills. (Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia, 2019, p. 6)

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The document provides a range of suggestions to assist teachers in maintaining professional boundaries with students. We urge you to access and read this valuable resource (see the list of government websites at the end of this textbook).

Working in rural and remote schools Working as a teacher in a rural or remote school can bring many advantages and some challenges. Many aspiring teachers are unfamiliar with the unique nature of schools in these locations. In this final section, we briefly introduce some of the aspects when considering teaching in the country or a remote region. Here are some of the questions often asked about working in rural or remote schools: • Is there a link between where you live and educational outcomes? • What challenges do Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students face? • What is the Australian Government doing to ‘close the gap’? • Why should I consider working in rural or remote Australia?

Is there a link between where you live and educational outcomes? A broad data study undertaken by the Centre for International Research on Education Systems (CIRES) called Educational Opportunity in Australia 2015: Who Succeeds and Who Misses Out (Lamb et al.), provides a very comprehensive examination of Australia’s education system. This study examined young people’s progress on four key educational milestones from early years through to young adulthood: belonging, self-confidence, purpose and perseverance. Some key findings of the study, when looking at the rural and remote communities factsheet, include: • The proportion of very remote students who meet the requirements at each milestone is between 19 and 48 percentage points lower than for the Australian population as a whole. • Students living further from the cities are less likely to catch up once they are off track at a milestone. • Rural and remote students have reduced access to education services compared to metropolitan students. These students attend school less frequently, are less likely to go to university and are more likely to drop out if they enrol. • Remote students have less positive dispositions towards school on every measure. • Remote communities are home to one-quarter of Australia’s Indigenous population. As a consequence, the educational challenges faced in remote areas have a disproportionate impact on Indigenous Australians.

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These particular findings were reported in: Educational Opportunity in Australia 2015: Young people in rural and remote communities frequently missing out, Factsheet 6. You are urged to read the full online article referenced in the following Weblinks feature.

What challenges do Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students face? The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education Strategy was endorsed by all state and territory education ministers in September 2015. The education ministers agreed to a set of principles and priorities that is to inform Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander education into the future: ‘These actions build on existing national initiatives such as the Australian Curriculum and the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers to accelerate the rate of improvement for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander student outcomes.’ (National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Strategy 2015) The Australian Government and state and territory governments are committed to the Australian Government Closing the Gap Education targets. These targets include: • increasing participation in early childhood education • improving school attendance • improving reading, writing, and numeracy • ensuring students finish their schooling. The government provides annual reports on progress made towards achieving targets. In the Closing the Gap 2020 report good progress had been made in early childhood education. The target to ensure 95 per cent of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children who are four years of age are enrolled in early childhood education by 2025 was seen to be on track, with 85 per cent of children enrolled in 2018. Targets in closing the gap for school attendance and halving the gap in reading and numeracy were not meet, although the gap had narrowed. The target to halve the gap in Year 12, or equivalent attainment for Indigenous Australian students aged 20–24 by 2020, was also on track. We highly recommend you access the reports listed in the following Weblinks feature. Weblinks Closing the Gap 2020 Overview: https://bit.ly/KAV_CTG_Overview Spotlight: Attendance Matters: https://bit.ly/KAV_SpotlightOnAttendance Young People in Rural and Remote Communities Frequently Missing Out: mitchellinstitute.org.au

Hint

Before making any decisions about working in a rural or remote location, take steps to visit the area and talk to local teachers about their experiences.

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Why should I consider working in rural or remote Australia? There are many good reasons why you should consider working in a rural or remote school. Go online and you will find lots of articles that introduce the advantages that come when working in a rural context, both in large schools and very small schools. These include lower home prices, great social life, smaller classes and developing lasting friendships in the school community. Such commentary usually mentions some of the challenges that come with such placements, including limited resourcing, the availability of specialist staff in some areas, and the challenges that come with travelling often quite long distances. In the following Weblinks feature you will find some interesting articles available online that offer insights into working in rural and remote schools. The last link—Innovative Strategies for Small and Remote Schools: A Literature Review—offers a detailed consideration of working in a small or remote school drawn from relevant research. Weblinks The Problem with Staffing Rural Schools: https://bit.ly/KAV_StaffingRuralSchools The Choices and Challenges of Teaching in Rural Australia: https://bit.ly/KAV_TeachingInRuralAustralia How to Solve Australia’s ‘rural school challenge’: https://bit.ly/KAV_RuralSchoolChallenge Is Something Going Wrong with Rural and Remote Education in Australia? (Or is it all about perception?):  https://bit.ly/KAV_RemoteEducation Recommended journal: The Australian and International Journal of Rural Education (AIJRE): www.spera.asn.au

Challenges in the lives of students In this section we will examine some of the challenging experiences some of your students will face during their time at school and how you can support them during these difficult times.

Anxiety We often hear the term ‘anxiety’ used in our schools. You may have a parent approach you about their child, explaining that they are very anxious about starting school, about having a new teacher, about not having a friend to play with or about coping with their work in class. What should we make of this? Is it anything to worry about? While anxiety is a serious issue for some students we need to differentiate between emotional upsets that are age appropriate and manageable by teachers and parents, and cases of serious anxiety in students. Sometimes, it is merely necessary to use simple routines or supports until a student feels confident to cope with the problem.

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Furber (2019) also explains the difference between stress and anxiety. Both have similar symptoms and both can have an impact on a student’s quality of life and ability to function in the classroom. However, stress is a reasonable worry response to a situation—for example, feeling fear when approached by a fierce dog. Anxiety, on the other hand, can occur when there is nothing to be frightened about. It is a general feeling that a person may have that they cannot explain. Anxiety is essentially a fear of the future or the unknown. Teachers and parents often talk about anxiety when they are describing shortterm worrying behaviour that in many cases is appropriate for the age of the child. ‘Separation anxiety’ is an example of this. It is quite normal for four- or five-year-old children who are starting school to show anxiety when separating from their parents. This is not appropriate if the student is still showing such anxiety at 12 years of age. Furber (2019) goes on to identify the characteristics of people who develop the following serious anxiety disorders: • phobias—irrational fears of specific objects or situations. For example, social phobia is the fear of negative reactions from other people • panic disorders—fear of the fear response itself • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)—fear associated with a memory of a past traumatic event • obsessive compulsive disorders (OCD) • generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)—a range of irrational worries about everyday situations. Anxiety disorders are far less common in children and teenagers than stress, but if they are severe, they are considered a mental health disorder.

Identifying anxiety in your students Usually, anxiety may be identified due to: • emotional changes—the student may be on edge, easily irritated, have overwhelming worries and fears regarding everyday activities • social changes—this behaviour often begins around the age of 13, when students make excuses about why they won’t be involved in social events. These students isolate themselves from social interaction with peers • physical changes—some students can report stomach pains, dizziness, fatigue and change in diet • sleep disturbance—sleep is of huge importance to the health of students, and thirteen- to eighteen-year-olds need 8–10 hours of sleep to function well. Sleep disruption is a common feature of anxiety in young people • poor school performance—signs to be aware of are frequently missed assignments, feeling overwhelmed by school, consistent procrastination and difficulty focusing on tasks • panic attacks—these may be present in students with anxiety, but not all students experience them. Physical symptoms like shaking, sweating and chest pain are also signs of anxiety

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• school refusal—this is one of the most obvious signs of anxiety. In severe cases this can lead to a student dropping out of school permanently • perfectionism—this is a common symptom of anxiety. The student constantly worries about not being ‘good enough’. This obsession is unhealthy and can be detrimental to the student’s well-being and self-esteem • assuming the worst—it is common for students with anxiety to focus on negative thoughts and always expect the worst. Adapted from IBBCES (2019)

Hint

Always be vigilant with any changes in students’ attitude or behaviour, including patterns of school absence that you can’t explain. Watch for signs of neglect or abuse and discuss any concerns with your mentor.

Assisting students with anxiety: what the research shows In assessing anxiety within students, Burke (2019) notes that ‘Student wellbeing and self-image can often decline as the student progresses through secondary school. This can be caused by cyber bullying in the school and/or the hormonal changes that play a role in the way teenagers manage stress.’ Bernard (2018b, as quoted in The Educator) states: ‘New research is showing that the mental health and well-being of Australian secondary school students is significantly worse than it was 15 years ago.’ Bernard was a member of the research team of ACER and Melbourne University, who carried out a longitudinal study of 135,000 young people in 700 schools who were surveyed about their social and emotional well-being. Some of the findings of this study are:  • nearly 50 per cent of students reported feeling ‘very stressed’, up from 28 per cent in 2003 when the study began • students who felt confident while doing difficult work had fallen from 76 to 59 per cent • 38 per cent of students reported ‘giving up’ when they became confused or bored in the classroom • a concerning lack of resilience among a growing number of students. Bernard (2018b) partially put this down to the modern phenomenon of ‘helicopter parents’. The Mission Australia Youth Survey (2017) found that mental health issues topped the list of young people’s concerns, for the first time in the survey’s history. This survey covered 24,055 young people aged between 15 and 19. Some of its findings were: • Over thirty-three per cent of those surveyed identified mental health as a national concern. This more than doubled the numbers of 2015 (at 14.9 per cent) • The likelihood of mental illness was significantly higher among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people

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• The top issues of concern for young people were coping with stress (i.e. anxiety), school or study problems and depression • Females were twice as likely to have a mental illness, with this rate increasing since 2012. The top issues for girls concerned their body image.

What can schools and teachers do to support their students? We know from research that sometimes schools are a significant stressor for students with the strong emphasis placed on testing and exams, particularly in senior secondary schools. It is important, therefore, that teachers are fully aware of the anxiety their students are facing and that they are involved in recommended approaches to assist students with these challenges. Associate Professor Josephine Anderson, Clinical Director at Black Dog Institute (The Educator 2018b) made these recommendations taking into account the findings of the 2017 Mission Australia report: • Anxiety prevention and intervention strategies should take place early with children and adolescents. • Whole-school, zero tolerance approaches to bullying must be in place. • Trusting relationships should be developed between teachers and their students that will encourage students to seek help with anxiety. This will reduce the stigma of students seeking help. • Discussions should be held among all students about the times when breaking a friend’s trust is the right thing to do in order to get support for them. • Teachers need to be aware of the times that students are dealing with additional stress. For example, when they are transitioning from primary to secondary school, or about to enter a stressful exam period. • Schools should create an environment that focuses on resilience. The inclusion of the MindMatters program is recommended. Other programs are: – The Friends Program – Bounce Back – The Resilience Project – Be You programs • The use of online technologies can also be used as alternatives to face-to-face support programs. These approaches are cost-effective and available for all schools, even those in remote locations. Some examples of such programs are MoodGym and BiteBack. • The unique needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students should be considered. Awareness of their feelings of dispossession, racism, disadvantage and disconnection from their culture need to be addressed in curriculum and support programs. • Teachers need to support female students whose mental health issues can be based on gender discrimination and issues of body image.

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• Anti-Bullying programs should be included in all schools. Examples include: – Project Rockit Online—a youth designed program to tackle cyber bullying – Bullying. No Way! – Bully Zero – Friendly Schools

Recommended resources • • • • • • • • •

BeyondBlue: www.beyondblue.org.au Black Dog Institute: www.blackdoginstitute.org.au Headspace: www.headspace.com Positive Body Image Activities and worksheets (Ackerman 2019):  www.positivepsychology.com ReachOut Australia: www.au.reachout.com Supporting Children with Anxiety by Apps and Online Programs:  www.education.sa. gov.au The Centre for Emotional Health: www.mq.edu.au The Women’s and Children’s Health Network Child and Youth Health:  www.sahealth.sa.gov.au WorryWise: www.WorryWiseKids.org

Weblinks Youth Mental Health Report: Youth Survey 2012–16: https://bit.ly/KAV_YouthMentalHealthReport Student Stress on the Rise—report: https://bit.ly/KAV_StudentStress A Lot of Students are Anxious or is It Stress?: https://bit.ly/KAV_IsItStress Supporting Students’ Well-being: What does the Research Tell Us about the Social and Emotional Development of Young People? (Conference Proceedings): https://:bit.ly/KAV_ACER_ConferenceProceedings

Coping with loss and grief It is inevitable that during your teaching career you will be faced with supporting students who have experienced loss and grief. This can range from the grief of losing a pet for a young child to the extreme loss of a parent or sibling. Many of your students will experience loss through the divorce of their parents. Thirty per cent of first marriages in Australia now end in divorce, and half of these involve children (ABS 2019). This can be a serious loss of stability for your student(s) and it is important that you have considered how you will support students through these times. For some children this is a very stressful time and their social emotional well-being and learning can be affected. While we will give you some general advice in this section, we urge you to use the many excellent resources now available for teachers that have been prepared by experts in areas of mental health. Some of these resources are listed at the end of this section.

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Supporting students who have experienced the death of someone close Although students will react to these situations differently depending on their age, cultural and religious beliefs, family situation and previous experiences, there are some general strategies that are recommended for you to use with your students: • Be understanding and tolerant of common grief reactions such as a decreased ability to concentrate, social withdrawal, and even anger being expressed towards the deceased person. • Be simple and straightforward when discussing death with students. • Use correct terms (i.e. ‘died’, ‘dead’), not euphemisms such as ‘they are sleeping’, or ‘they have departed’ or ‘passed away’. • Be brief and patient as you may have to answer the same question many times. • Listen and acknowledge the student’s feelings. • Express your own feelings in an appropriate way that encourages students to share their grief. • Appreciate that feelings and behaviours of students may vary and will often change during the grieving process. • Be sensitive to the cultural differences of students and their families in the expressions of grief. • Maintain a normal routine for the student in the classroom.

Supporting students affected by divorce Many of these will involve the way you respond to the student’s parents: • Continue to show that you value both parents and let the student see this by speaking equally about both of them. • Communicate with both parents by sending notes and reports to both custodial and non-custodial parents. • Invite the non-residential parent to school activities. • Be sensitive to different family structures—be aware that surnames of parents may be different. • Provide parent–teacher meeting times that are convenient for both parents. • Make school a place of stability for the student but treat the student as you have always done with the same expectations of good behaviour (Pedro-Carroll 2010). • Look for times to reinforce self-esteem. • Make activities and communication inclusive. For example, not always saying ‘tell Mum’ but instead, ‘Tell the person who packs your lunch …’ • Be sensitive if you celebrate Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, as one of the parents may not be involved in the child’s life. • The child may join a group in the school that supports students who have experienced loss. This helps the child to realise they are not alone in experiencing divorce. The Seasons Program is one of these and is mentioned at the end of this section.

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Recommended resources • Schools and Trauma (2020), by Australian Child and Adolescent Trauma, Loss and Grief Network, ANU College of Health and Medicine:  www.earlytraumagrief.anu.edu.au • Seasons for Growth—Children and Young People’s Program, and Grief Information Sheets—Australian Centre for Grief: www.grief.org.au • The Bereaved School Community Cancer Council NSW:  www.cancercouncil.com.au • Web Resources—Trauma, Grief and Loss: www.aifs.gov.au Weblinks When bereavement touches a school: https://bit.ly/KAV_BereavementInSchools Grief and Loss: Parent Easy Guide at: https://bit.ly/KAV_ParentingGuide Addressing Grief: Tips for Teachers and Administrators: https://bit.ly/KAV_AddressingGrief

Natural disasters Many schools in Australia have been faced with addressing natural disasters with their students. These have included floods, cyclones, bushfires and health pandemics such as the coronavirus (COVID-19). Where some of your students may have been directly impacted by these disasters by losing family or friends, their homes and in some occasions their schools, most children have been exposed to the news of these disasters via television news coverage and by their families discussing these situations. It is possible that many students will be anxious about these disasters, even if they were not directly affected by them. There are some excellent Australian resources that have been developed to support you when discussing natural disasters with your students. We would highly recommend you make yourself familiar with them.

Recommended resources • ‘Art and Creativity Helps Children and Adults Cope with Trauma and Natural Disasters’, ABC Sunshine Coast, (Bartholomew 2020): www.abc.net.au • Bushfire Education Teaching and Learning Resources for Early Childhood Settings, Primary and Secondary Schools (2019): www.bushfireeducation.vic.edu.au • Bushfire Response: Resource pack for Educators (2020): www.beyou.edu.au • Coping with natural disasters—FUSE (2016): www.fuse.education.vic.gov.au • Emergency and Natural Disaster Assistance: www.education.gov.au • How to Talk to Your Children about Corona Virus (COVID-19): 8 Tips to Help Comfort and Protect Children: https://www.unicef.org.au/blog/news-and-insights/ march-2020/how-to-talk-to-your-children-about-coronavirus • Natural Disaster Recovery Storybooks (2020) Children’s Health Queensland: www.children’s.health.qld.gov.au • Natural Disaster Resources: www.education.qld.gov.au • Through My Eyes: Natural Disaster Zones (2017–2018) Series, edited by Lyn White, published by Allen & Unwin, Melbourne. Teacher notes are available to support the use of this series: http://throughmyeyesbooks.com.au/index.html

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Case study 1 Yarran has been teaching his Year 6 class for eight weeks. He believes he has developed good relationships with his students, and they appear to be engaged during his lessons. However, Yarran is struggling with the workload of the job. The leader of the senior team asked him for his literacy assessment data yesterday and he told her he had only tested half of the class. Yarran said he was using his lunch hour to catch up on this work. Yarran’s wife is also concerned as he is coming late home every night and he has given up playing cricket—he says he doesn’t have time to train during the week. What advice would you give Yarran in dealing with his situation?

Case study 2 Developing your PD plan Access the government websites listed at the end of this book and search for ‘Professional Development’. Become aware of what’s available over the next twelve months in your area. Develop a personal PD plan based on those courses or activities you would like to attend. Be sure to prioritise from the most important down.

Notes

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Appendix • Planning for Day 1 • Blank templates • Weblinks

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In this section, we include some reminders to help you physically prepare your learning spaces or classrooms for Day 1. We also address the very important approaches you will take in explaining to your students your expectations of their behaviour during your first days together.

Planning for Day 1 Table 1 Areas to consider

1 Preparing your classroom environment How to make your new learning space a welcoming and engaging learning environment: consider the ideas listed opposite that are suitable for your school and the age of your students.

• Create a ‘Welcome’ sign on the classroom door that includes your name and the first names of your students. • Use a tepee tent, a dress-up box, play kitchen with cooking utensils, gardening corner and a technology hub. • Create English and mathematics group names, and display mathematics posters suitable for the level. • Develop a quiet reading space or corner with books appropriate for your students. • Organise birthday charts (if age-appropriate). • Display Positive Thinking and Resilience posters. • Add Bloom’s Taxonomy and de Bono charts (that hang at eye level). • Think about adding colour to a dull classroom by using bright backing material to display boards and dividers. • Use animal pictures to help identify seating and coat hooks for Foundation students. • Introduce a class mascot (a stuffed toy—any animal or teddy bear) that students name and take care of. • Set up your own personal space—desk and lockable cupboard or filing cabinet. • Locate your desk where you have full view of students.

2 Classroom rules Suggestions to use with junior students

• Decide on two or three simple rules which you can display pictorially in the classroom (e.g. ‘Keep hands and feet to yourself,’ ‘Listen and do what your teacher says’ or ‘Be kind to your classmates.’ • Develop ideas for rewards: use stickers for immediate feedback of ‘good’ behaviour. Have a lucky dip of rewards for little children (affordable toys, rubbers, pens etc.), extra computer tickets, or whole-class rewards of games and free time. • Consider consequences for misbehaviour: – 1st occurrence = a warning, followed by a one-on-one discussion with the child – 2nd occurrence = loss of privilege (e.g. loss of free computer time) – 3rd occurrence = contact home—speak to parent/carer about possible reasons for behaviour. – You may also want to establish clear expectations on more day-to-day behaviour. Remember to teach students:  – where to get and sharpen a new pencil – how to ask to go to the toilet, and how to come in and leave the room quietly – how to recognise and behave during ‘quiet time’ (e.g. put their hand up to ask a question, and how to ask for help) – where to put their lunch boxes, drink bottles, their home-reading covers, and any notes from their parents when they arrive at school – where to put their rubbish, including how to use recycling and compost bins. OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

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Suggestions to use with older students Involve senior students in writing the rules of your classroom. The development of a strong student voice leads to a more engaged group of learners, who will feel they have more ownership in their learning.

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• Revisit school rules and prepare to discuss with students what your expectations are regarding: – respecting the rights of all students to learn – following school rules (wearing the school uniform and being punctual) – going to the toilet at the appropriate times – completing homework requirements – having all required books and materials ready for lessons – caring for your possessions and those of others – caring for school facilities and resources. • Explore rewards you might use for any positive behaviour. These can include: – thumbs up (where you do not want to draw attention to the student) – praising the student using immediate feedback for positive behaviour – sharing a student’s work with others – giving the class free time for their own interests (e.g. using computers, reading, drawing) – taking students out for a game (check availability of space) – having treat days, special food days (always check school policy for this). • A possible plan you may use for disruptive behaviour with older students is: – 1st occurrence = a warning, followed by a discussion with you after class – 2nd occurrence = loss of privilege – 3rd occurrence = contact home, and a class task is to be completed – 4th occurrence = behaviour is recorded, and your mentor or deputy principal is contacted.

Table 2 is included to assist you in monitoring your use of a number of key practices to establish a productive learning environment. Table 2 A checklist for establishing a productive learning environment

1 Am I developing a positive climate in my classroom by:

• Building relationships with all students and showing interest in their stories? • Clearly communicating high expectations of the learning achievements of all students, and discussing how I want the class to work as a group? • Revisiting the restorative practices mantras or the social skills program that students are focusing on? • Addressing any unacceptable behaviour, not the child personally? (‘I don’t like that you take John’s pencils,’ not ‘We don’t like you when you take the pencils.’)

2 Have I maximised structure and organisation in my classroom by:

• Having predictable routines in my lessons including rules for safe, orderly movement during the lesson, and when transitioning to other learning spaces? • Ensuring teaching materials are well organised and labelled, so students can independently find what they need? • Ensuring each lesson consists of engaging learning activities with minimal ‘down time’?

3 Have I taught, monitored and reinforced my expectations and rules by:

• Establishing the rules of my classroom early in the year and revisiting these regularly while providing ongoing feedback to students on their behaviour? • Having a small number of succinct rules that are stated positively and in observable terms? (‘When we enter our classroom, we walk to our tables quietly.’) • Having the rules clearly displayed? • Responding immediately to inappropriate behaviour and managing minor problem behaviours positively and quickly? • Maintaining a calm, non-confrontational stance when dealing with misbehaviour? • Implementing any behaviour change strategies recommended for a student who is on a Behaviour Support Plan? (continued)

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Table 2 A checklist for establishing a productive learning environment (continued)

4 Have I engaged my students in a curriculum that they see as relevant by:

• Attempting to introduce lessons with an engaging outline of what is to be learnt, how it links to previous learning and its relevance to the students’ lives? • Using less ‘teacher’ talk and more student-centred, interesting, fun, real-life, hands-on and problem-based learning tasks? • Examining the big questions that students are interested in? (‘Climate Change—is it real?’ or ‘The advantages and disadvantages of social media in our lives.’) • Integrating curriculum content areas so that students see the relevance of the skills they are learning? • Using the inquiry model/approach to assist students to find and sort information? • Using a variety of collaborative learning tasks? • Using higher-order thinking strategies, such as Bloom’s Taxonomy, to engage students of all abilities in their learning? • Using methods of monitoring student engagement throughout my lessons, such as: response cards? • Differentiating tasks for students with physical, emotional, or learning challenges? • Providing choice in the ways students can show what they have learnt? • Ending lessons with reflection time involving both students and teacher? For example use exit cards (Goss et al. 2017).

5 Am I providing a supportive differentiated program to cater for students with different learning needs by:

• Giving clear, specific instructions and breaking down tasks into smaller chunks? • Actively supervising these students and checking for understanding to ensure early intervention occurs? • Providing explicit focused teaching for students who need more support? • Being flexible in my planning for these students? • Giving students more time when necessary? • Providing students with choice in the ways they can present their learning?

6 Am I acknowledging appropriate behaviours by:

• Recognising and reinforcing positive behaviours in all contexts? • Using the I-FEED-V rule when giving praise? (Praise should be- Immediate, Frequent, Enthusiastic, it uses Eye contact, Describes the behaviour, and includes a Variety of praising statements.) • Providing frequent and precise feedback for any positive behaviour observed? (‘I like the way you picked up the papers, Tommy.’) • Making an effort to positively interact with every student? • Providing immediate positive feedback for students whose behaviour is showing improvement? • Providing incentives and rewards to all students who are working and behaving well?

The next section contains blank planners of some of the pro formas and planners presented throughout this book.

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Blank templates Figure 1 Term program planner

Term ____ program planner LEARNING AREA STRAND YEAR LEVEL CURRICULUM CONTENT DESCRIPTORS

Achievement Standards

By the end of ____ Level ____

Learning Intentions

Success Criteria

1 2 3

NCCD Adjustments

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Figure 2

Reading planner Focus Reading Group

Date:

Term:

Text:

Level:

Strategy:

Language Experience, Read to, Shared Reading, Interactive Reading, Reciprocal Reading, Guided Reading

WALT Learning Intention Letter/word work Reading behaviour Comprehension (Within, Beyond, About the Text)

Name

What they can do...

Where to next...

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Figure 3 GANAG and Marzano blended lesson guide

~ GANAG & Marzano ~ Blended Lesson Guide Goal What will you be teaching? What is it that you want the students to know, be like, or be able to do? How will you communicate the learning goal to students?

Accessing Prior Knowledge: What will you do to access students’ prior knowledge?

New Information: What is the new, important, declarative and procedural knowledge that students must learn to achieve the goal of this lesson?

Setting objectives and providing feedback • Students write goals in own words or verbally articulate Reinforcing effort and providing recognition • Think-Pair-Share We are learning about... We will be able to ...

Read it Rewrite it Score it Predict it Connect it

Questions, cues and advanced organisers • Graphic organisers (note-taking and comprehension) Non-linguistic representations • Word and images Identifying similarities and differences • Compare Picture or object • Create an analogy, simile, Story or analogy or metaphor Summary or review • Classify Question or hypothesis • Venn diagram Partner strategies Cooperative learning Preview/brainstorm • Think-Pair-Share • Group activities • Whole-class discussions

Summarising and note-taking • Create a summary • Question what is unclear, seek clarification for those questions • Use/copy teacher prepared notes • Use a graphic organiser for note-taking

Declarative—gather & organise info Procedural—follow steps & practice

Homework and practice Apply Knowledge: How will you present the new information multiple times, using a variety of input modes?

Questions, cues and advanced organisers Identifying similarities and differences Declarative Generate and test hypothesis • Solve problem • Make predictions • Compare • Solve a problem • Similarities & • Investigate differences • Invent and experiment • Analyse • Make inferences • Perspective • Draw conclusions based on • Create information and facts given Homework and practice Procedural • Analyse perspectives • Use skills in a new • Create an argument or persuade situation • Analyse for logical fallacy

Goal/Summary:

Setting objectives and providing feedback • Rate your understanding of the goal

How will students summarise the learning in relationship to the lesson goal?

Reinforcing effort and providing recognition

How will they develop their own generalisations? How will you know that they know?

Homework and practice

• Summarise goals of lesson • Student selfassessment • Exit Card

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Figure 4

Reading observation notes pro forma Reading observation notes

Group: 1 Phonological awareness: a Notices and discriminates rhyme b Understands syllabification and can segment words c Blend sounds associated with letters when reading CVC words Goal:

Date: 2 Alphabet knowledge: a Identifies and names letters b Uses letter–sound knowledge

3 Comprehension: a Interacts during read-alouds and book conversations b Identifies events and characters from a text c Retells stories. d Identifies fiction and non-fiction

4 Concepts about print: a 1:1 when reading— points to words b Front cover, back cover c Left to right d Upper- and lower-case letters e Identifies letters, words, sentences

Action:

Text title: Focus questions:

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Table 3

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KWHL table

K What do I KNOW?

W What do I WANT to find out?

H HOW will I find out?

L What have I LEARNT or still want to learn?

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Figure 5

Menu planner

MENU PLANNER Menu for: ______________________ Due: _________________ All items in the main dish and the specified number of side dishes must be completed by the due date. You may select from the side dishes and you may decide to do some of the dessert items, as well.

Main dishes (complete all) 1 2 3 4

Side dishes (select_______) 1 2 3 4

Desserts (optional) 1 2 3

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Figure 6 Unit of work Unit title:

Term Level:

General Capabilities:

Teachers:

Essential question:

Contributing questions:

Understandings:

RESOURCES

Key concepts: Students will learn to (processes):

Critical and Creative Thinking Capabilities

Examples of Thinking routines

(continued)

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Figure 6

Unit of work (continued)

Establishing the topic/tuning in: To establish students’ prior knowledge about:

Learning intention:

Finding out: experiences/resources to assist students to gather information about the topic

Sorting out: activities to assist students to process (analyse, organise, classify, explore values, express feelings) the information they have gathered about the topic (including values).

Success criteria:

Going further:

Reflecting and acting:

Assessment

Assessment for learning

Assessment as learning

Assessment of learning

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Figure 7 Student Support Group agenda and minutes

SSG Minutes Student:

Year level:

Date:

Present:

Apology:

Purpose of meeting: Social

Language

General Academic

Homework

Organisation skills

Behaviour support

Other Agenda items:

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Figure 7

Student Support Group agenda and minutes (continued) Agreed actions

Person responsible

Date

Signatures:

Next SSG meeting date:

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Figure 8 Individual Learning Plan

Individual Learning Plan ILP ________ /_______ (No. of ILPs in current year / Total number ILPs)

Review date:

Date written: Year level:

Student:

D.O.B.

Age:__ years __ months

Student Support Group members consulted in writing this plan Class teacher: Parents: Principal Rep (SSG Chair): Consultants to the SSG: Additional reports: Entry skills (what the student has achieved)

Challenges (areas for improvement)

Learning priorities (future learning)

(continued)

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Figure 8

Individual Learning Plan (continued)

Student name:

Written:

Semester goals Short-term goals (WHAT) (long-term)

Strategies/methods (HOW)

Mode of delivery (WHO/WHEN)

Mode of assessment

Evaluation dd/mm/yy

Teacher—

123

123

123

KEY: 1 = Little or no progress

2 = Satisfactory progress

3 = Excellent progress/goal achieved

Signatures Parent(s)/carer(s): _________________ Teacher: _________________

SSG Chair: ______________

Other SSG consultants: _____________

Evaluation (comments pertaining to the students’ performance/learning against the set goals). ________ achievements as of ________Week ________ Term ________

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Student Learning Program

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Date:

Signed:

Parent/carer name:

Date:

Signed:

Include level of performance in accordance with AusVels/ ABLES/EAL Continuum

Use specific terms such as: • to compare • to write • to explain • to list • to compute • to evaluate

Term 4 Goal:

Term 3 Goal:

Term 2 Goal:

Term 1 Goal:

Entry skills What skills has this student demonstrated in relation to this goal?

Short-term goals What behaviour did/do you want the student to demonstrate? Use SMART goals.

AusVELS/ABLES/EAL Continuum Domain

School representative name:

SIGNATURES

Dimension

Annual goals:

Student Learning Program

Figure 9

Supports and scaffolding for the adjustment

Degree of adjustment

Type of adjustment

Adjustments, supports and learning activities for program implementation What adjustments were/will be implemented to support the student to achieve these goals?

Interpersonal development

Evidence of progress Provide evidence (e.g. data) of achievement and state the degree of improvement in performance (i.e. summative and formative assessment information, work samples presented by teacher, standardised assessments).

Appendix 243

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Appendix

Figure 10 Adjustment record for an individual student

Individual Record of Adjustments—NCCD Year: ________Term: ________

Student’s name: ________

Teacher: ________

Activity

Frequency

Teaching strategies, materials, Which subject areas programs, behaviour management strategies

Intensity 1:1, small group or whole class

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Figure 11 Adjustment record for a group of students

Record of Adjustments for a Group of Students—NCCD Students supported: Term: ________ Week: ________

MONDAY

TUESDAY

WEDNESDAY

THURSDAY

FRIDAY

MATHS:

MATHS:

MATHS:

MATHS:

MATHS:

LITERACY:

WRITING:

LITERACY:

LITERACY:

LITERACY:

Other support in social/emotional areas, including yard duty supervision:

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Signatures:

Replacement behaviour:

Review date:

Plan of responses at school and classroom level if target behaviour continues WHO will do this?

Reinforcement What will motivate this student? WHO will do this?

Curriculum adaptations What is taught? Is it meaningful? Are interests of the student taken into account? Is the difficulty appropriate? WHO will do this?

Setting adaptations How is the classroom environment arranged? WHO will do this?

Reactive strategies:

Proactive strategies:

Target behaviour of concern and possible function of the behaviour: Curriculum adaptations What teaching/ instructional style (e.g. modelling of replacement behaviour) is used? WHO will do this?

Date:

Behaviour Support Plan Developed by:

Behaviour Support Plan

Student:

Figure 12

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Weblinks Codes of Conduct Australian Capital Territory: https://bit.ly/KAV_ACTconduct New South Wales: https://bit.ly/KAV_NSWconduct Northern Territory: https://bit.ly/KAV_NTconduct Queensland: https://bit.ly/KAV_QLDconduct South Australia: https://bit.ly/KAV_SAconduct Tasmania: https://bit.ly/KAV_TASconduct Victoria: https://bit.ly/VICconduct Western Australia: https://bit.ly/WAconduct

Subject Association Contact Lists http://bit.ly/KAV_SubjectAssociationContactLists

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Glossary ACARA The Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority is the authority established by the Australian Government to develop the Australian Curriculum.

Central Coherence The ability to understand context or to see the big picture. Many people with autism are reported to have poor or weak central coherence.

Active Learning A process in which students are actively engaged in building understanding of facts, ideas and skills through the completion of instructor directed tasks and activities. (Kivunja, 2015)

Circle of Friends An approach where a group of people support students who may have difficulties in school because of disability, personal crisis or behavioural issues.

AITSL The federal government has established The Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership. Its role is to oversee the quality of teachers and school leaders across Australia. It also accredits all teacher education programs in the nation.

Circle Time A class meeting that involves the whole class sitting in a circle to discuss events, issues or problems, with the aim of encouraging trust, positive relationships, empathy, conflict resolution, and effective communication, alongside the skills of speaking, listening, observing, thinking and concentrating.

Assessment The process of gathering, interpreting, recording and using information about pupils’ responses to an educational task, or about the progress pupils are making towards attaining the knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours they are expected to learn. (Kivunja, 2015)

Code of Conduct A set of principles that describe the professional conduct, personal conduct and professional competence expected of teachers.

Assessment Rubric A set of assessment criteria that indicates the essential features of work expected of students at different levels of understanding or performance. (Kivunja, 2015)

Cooperative Learning A teaching strategy that organises students to work together in small teams so that everyone can participate in a clearly assigned task or role, which contributes to the learning of each member of the team and to the team as a whole. (Kivunja, 2015)

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) A developmental disorder of variable severity that is characterised by difficulty in social interaction and communication, and by restricted or repetitive patterns of thought and behaviour.

Cover Letter This is a document sent with your application for a position that provides additional information concerning your skills and experience.

Behaviour Support Plan (BSP) A documented approach written by school staff in conjunction with the parents/carers of the student, and sometimes other specialists.

Critical Thinking The process of actively and skilfully conceptualising, applying, analysing, synthesising and/or evaluating information as a guide to understanding, belief and action. (Kivunja, 2015)

Best Practice Pedagogy Teaching, learning, assessment and curriculum, which continuously and regularly produce superior results among learners, when compared to other strategies. (Kivunja, 2015) Bloom’s Taxonomy A hierarchical model used to classify educational learning objectives into six levels of complexity and mastery, from recall (lowest) up to creating (highest). Bounce Back A school program to teach skills for well-being and resilience, and to create safe and supportive school communities. Buddy Your ‘buddy’ is the teacher you may work with in partnership at your level, or in your faculty. Bullying An ongoing and deliberate misuse of power in relationships through repeated verbal, physical and social behaviour meant to cause physical, social or psychological harm.

Crowded Curriculum A term commonly used to identify the increasing curriculum load teachers are expected to carry. Curriculum The formal curriculum normally refers to all the subjects offered by a school to its students. The informal curriculum comprises non-academic activities, interest groups, clubs and sports programs offered within the school. Curriculum Vitae (CV) A brief account of one’s education, qualifications and previous work experiences, that accompanies a job application. Deep Learning Learning in which learners engage in critical analysis of new ideas they encounter, link those ideas to concepts and principles they already know, and through this process gain an understanding that they can apply in problem solving in new contexts. (Kivunja, 2015)

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Differentiated Classroom A learning space in which the particular learning needs and interests of individual students are accommodated.

group of students, and explain what they are learning and why. Guided reading and reciprocal teaching are both excellent examples of explicit teaching.

Differentiated Learning Differentiated learning involves the provision of multiple pathways for students of different abilities, interests or learning needs.The teacher differentiates the content, the processes used to teach, and students demonstrate their understandings in a variety of ways (products).

Formal Assessments Systematic, pre-planned, data-based tests that measure what and how well students have learnt.

Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (DDA) An Act passed by the Parliament of Australia to promote the rights of people with disabilities in certain areas such as housing, education and the provision of goods and services. Disability Standards for Education 2005 These Standards clarify the obligations of education and training providers, and seek to ensure that students with disability can access and participate in education on the same basis as other students. DSM-5 The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (2013) is a taxonomic and diagnostic tool published by the American Psychiatric Association. Duty of Care The measures that need to be taken to protect a student under the teacher’s charge from risks of injury. English as an Additional Language (EAL) The EAL Curriculum is central to the learning and development of all young Australians for whom English is not their ‘home language’. Ethics The values that underpin the work of teachers and those who work in schools including fairness, respect, integrity and responsibility. Evidence-based Practice Practice that relies on scientific and mathematical evidence to form strong inductive or deductive arguments for guidance and decisionmaking, as opposed to tradition, intuition, or other unproven methods. Executive Function The ability to shift one’s attention easily between one activity and another. Poor executive function leads to issues with organisation, time-management, understanding abstract concepts and selfmonitoring. Exemplar A best practice model, which might include lesson plans, recordkeeping approaches, samples of students’ work, and feedback from students or mentors. Exit Strategy This strategy is an example of a formative assessment strategy, when the teacher reminds students of the learning intentions of the lesson, and asks what they have learnt in the lesson. Explicit Teaching Identifies how a teacher explains a new idea or concept to a student or small group of students. The teacher focuses on the needs of the individual student or group, gathered from pre-assessment and ongoing formative assessment. The teacher may work with a small

Formative Assessment On-going assessment that serves the twin purposes of improving effective teaching and learning. Also known as assessment for learning. (Kivunja, 2015) Foundation Year The Australian Curriculum terminology for the first year of schooling in a primary school environment. GANAG model A lesson structure used with senior students: G = Goal, A = Access Prior Knowledge, N = New Information, A = Apply Stage, G = Goal Review. Hard Skills Job-specific skills that are learnt through education and training. These include lesson planning, report writing, and data assessment. High-quality Teaching Involves many attributes including a positive attitude, enthusiasm, deep knowledge of content, commitment to students’ learning and success with high expectations, effective communication, questioning, organisation and class management, flexibility and ability to create a pleasant and effective learning environment. (Kivunja, 2015) High Impact Teaching Strategies (HITS) Ten instructional practices that reliably increase student learning when they’re applied. They are: setting goals, structuring lessons, explicit teaching, worked examples, collaborative learning, multiple exposures, questioning, feedback, metacognitive strategies, and differentiated teaching. Individual Learning Plan (ILP) An ILP is a plan for a student to have a specific education program or learning strategy that takes into consideration the student’s strengths and weaknesses. Induction Program An induction program is a formal plan, under the direction of a mentor, which introduces an early career teacher to the school program, and the teaching profession in general. Inquiry-based Learning An umbrella term that incorporates a number of current learning approaches, including project-based learning. Such learning takes various forms, depending on the topic, resources available, and the age and ability of students. Interview Portfolio This document provides an abridged overview of your professional portfolio, thus making it convenient to present at an interview. This portfolio may be in written or digital format. Key Learning Areas (KLAs) The areas that need to be included in the curriculum as stipulated by the relevant educational jurisdiction; for example, the NSW

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Glossary

Board of Studies mandates the following KLAs for primary schools: English, Mathematics, Science and Technology, Human Society and its Environment, Personal Development, Health and Physical Education and Creative Arts. (Kivunja, 2015)

Key Selection Criteria These are the skills, attributes, and qualifications that an employer has outlined as being essential for satisfying the requirements of a particular job. Learning Intentions/Goals Describes what the teacher wants students to be able to do at the end of a lesson or unit of work. Mandatory Reporting Refers to the legal requirement for certain professionals, such as teachers to report to child protection authorities a reasonable belief concerning the physical or sexual abuse of a student. Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians (2008) This document outlines the agreed National purposes and role of schooling in order to deliver high-quality education regardless of cultural, linguistic and economic background. It provides the basis of the current Australian Curriculum. Mentor The senior staff member who manages your formal induction is known as your mentor. Modelling A high-impact teaching strategy where the teacher makes his/her own thinking and doing, both explicit and visible to the student(s). Multiple intelligences The conception by Howard Gardner that all people have different kinds of intelligence. The Nationally Consistent Collection of Data on School Students with Disability (NCCD) The NCCD provides Australian schools, parents/carers and educational authorities information about the number of students with disability in schools and the adjustments they receive. National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) The NDIS is a scheme established by the Australian Government that funds costs associated with disability. Norms of Behaviour The way people believe they should behave or what they believe is expected of them. Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) OH&S is concerned with protecting the safety, health and welfare engaged in employment. Orientation Program A formal program designed to introduce new staff to the school, its practices and culture. Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK) PCK is the integration of subject expertise and skilled teaching of a particular subject. Every teacher needs to keep specific methods in mind that are appropriate for teaching a subject.

Peer Assessment A teaching strategy where students evaluate their peers’ work using guidelines or a rubric. (Kivunja, 2015) Pragmatic Language Refers to the social language skills we use in our daily interactions with others. This includes what we say, how we say it and the nonverbal communication we use. Pre-assessment Assessment undertaken before new units of work are taught, with the aim of finding out what students know and do not know. Professional Development Professional development is defined as activities that develop an individual’s skills, knowledge, expertise and other characteristics as a teacher. (OECD, 2009) Professional Identity Every teacher develops a teacher identity made up of their knowledge about good teachers, their relationship with peers and the community, and their understanding of the significance of their profession. (AITSL, 2018) Professional Practice Professional duties and obligations that come with the membership of the teaching profession Reflective Journal A digital or hard copy artefact that is progressively developed to demonstrate your ongoing professional growth. Reflective Practice Reflective practice involves the ability of the teacher to reflect on their actions and so engage in a process of continuous learning. Restorative Practice Restorative practice is a program in which students learn to repair relationships that have been damaged through inappropriate behaviour. Rubric A rubric for assessment, usually in the form of a matrix or grid, is a tool used to interpret and grade students’ work against criteria and standards. (Teaching UNSW 2011) Running Record A Running Record is an assessment tool which provides insights into a student’s reading as it is happening. The Running Record provides a score of word reading accuracy, an analysis of a reader’s errors and self-correction, and an analysis of the reading strategies used. Scaffolding Vygotsky coined the term ‘instructional scaffolding’ to explain the role of teachers and others as they support a learner’s development to get to the next stage or level of learning, gradually shedding that support as the student becomes more independent. School Culture This term is used to describe something of the unique features of a school, its expectations, its ways of working, and the relationships that exist between its various stakeholders.

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Self-assessment Assessment that gives learners the opportunity to assess or evaluate their performance and gain a better understanding of how they can improve. (Kivunja, 2015) Sensori-stimulation If a person’s actions/movements feel good to that individual, then the movement/action will continue. Sensory-motor skills The process by which sensory messages are received and the motor responses (movement) they produce. Shared values Judgements staff make about the beliefs and assumptions of a school. Soft skills Character traits that reflect your ability to work and interact with others, sometimes referred to as ‘people skills’. These include communication skills, teamwork, flexibility, problem solving, creativity, forward thinking and reliability. Staff Handbook Most schools have a staff handbook that covers the main regulations and procedures that staff members are expected to comply with. Student Support Group (SSG) A partnership in the educational planning process between the parents/carers of students with special learning needs and the school. Student-centred Approach A primarily constructivist approach in which children are offered opportunities to develop their own understanding through active engagement with the learning activities and social interaction with their peers. (Kivunja, 2015) Student Choice By providing ‘choice’ to students in what they do and how they do it, the teacher can help students differentiate their learning, thus increasing the student’s level of engagement. Student Engagement Refers to the degree of interest and passion that students demonstrate when they are learning or being taught. Student Voice and Student Agency Student voice and student agency refer to the level of autonomy and power that a student experiences in the learning environment. Agency concerns giving students the power to take responsibility for their learning and so become independent and self-regulated learners. Summative Assessment Assessment that is used primarily to determine the extent to which the students have achieved the intended learning outcomes of the instruction. (Kivunja, 2015) Teacher Performance Assessment (TPA) A TPA is used to assess the practical skills and knowledge of preservice teachers. Preservice teachers collect evidence of practice

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in the final year of their initial teacher education (ITE) program. It is assessed by ITE providers and is a requirement for graduation.

Teaching Portfolio A teaching portfolio is a collection of documents that provides evidence of your teaching experiences and practice, and your emerging teaching philosophy Teacher Quality Relates to what teachers do, including their pedagogical knowledge, content knowledge and technological know-how. (Kivunja, 2015) Teacher-directed approach An approach in which the teacher not only determines the outcomes of the lesson, but also controls the learners’ activities, explicitly instructs them regarding what to do and how to do it, and ensures their attention remains focused on the stated syllabus outcomes. (Kivunja, 2015) The Friends Program Friends is a program developed by Professor Paula Barrett to help children to effectively manage anxiety. Friends is an acronym that represents the strategies and skills: Feelings; Remember to Relax, I can do it! I can try my best! Explore solutions and Coping Step Plans, Now reward yourself! You have done your best! Don’t forget to practice!, Smile! Stay calm and talk to your support networks Theory of Mind Identifies the ability to understand that others have different beliefs, desires, intentions and perspectives from one’s own. Transition Time The amount of time spent moving the children in the class from one activity to the next. (Kivunja, 2015) Visible Learning Visible learning occurs when both teachers and students have a clear understanding of the learning goals, and what needs to be done to have success. This occurs when the teacher provides ongoing feedback to the student. Well-being Well-being policies are designed to cater for the physical, social and emotional health of all members of a school community. WALT An acronym for We Are Learning To. WILF An acronym for What I’m Looking For. Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD) What a child can achieve when their activity is guided or scaffolded by a more knowledgeable person, who may be a classmate, teacher or parent. Zone of Regulation A curriculum framework for teaching students strategies for emotional and sensory self-management using four colours to help students identify how they are feeling in the moment, and strategies to help improve emotional control, self-awareness, and problemsolving abilities.

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Bibliography Alberto, A & Troutman, AC 2003, Applied behavior analysis for teachers, 6th edn, Prentice-HallMerrill, Columbus. Alberto, P & Troutman, AC 2012, Applied behavioural analysis procedures for teachers, 9th edn, Pearson, USA. Alphonse, JR & Leblanc, R 2014, ‘Explicit instruction: a teaching strategy in reading, writing, and mathematics for students with learning disabilities’, [email protected], 17 December, www. ldatschool.ca/explicit-instruction-a-teaching-strategy-in-reading-writing-and-mathematicsfor-students-with-learning-disabilities/. Alsubaie, MA 2015, ‘Examples of current issues in the multicultural classroom’, Journal of Education and Practice, vol. 6, no. 10, pp. 86–89. Arkansas Public School Resource Center 2018, GANAG, Moving teaching and learning above and beyond the core, www.aboveandbeyondthecore.com/ganag. Attwood, T 2008, The complete guide to Asperger’s syndrome, Jessica Kingsley Publishers, Great Britain. Australian Bureau of Statistics 2017, 2016 Census: multicultural—media release, cat. no. 2016, ABS, www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs%40.nsf/lookup/Media%20Release3. Australian Bureau of Statistics 2019, Marriages and divorces Australia, 2018, cat. no. 3310.0, www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/[email protected]/mf/3310.0. Australian Capital Territory Government Education 2016, Teachers’ guide to assessment, www.education.act.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/297182/Teachers-Guide-ToAssessment.pdf. Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) 2012, The shape of the Australian curriculum: version 4.0, docs.acara.edu.au/resources/The_Shape_of_the_ Australian_Curriculum_v4.pdf. Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) n.d., Gifted and talented students, Australian Curriculum, www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/resources/studentdiversity/gifted-and-talented-students/. Australian Disability Clearinghouse on Education and Training (ADCET) n.d.(a), Teaching strategies for students with a specific learning disability, https://www.adcet.edu.au/oao/ for-academics-and-teachers/teaching-strategies-for-students-with-a-specific-learningdisability/. Australian Disability Clearinghouse on Education and Training (ADCET) n.d.(b), Vision impairment and blindness, www.adcet.edu.au/inclusive-teaching/specific-disabilities/blindvision-impaired/. Australian Government Department of Education, Skills and Employment 2005, Disability standards for education 2005, https://docs.education.gov.au/node/16354. Australian Indigenous Health Infonet 2020, https://healthinfonet.ecu.edu.au/learn/healthfacts/overview-aboriginal-torres-strait-islander-health-status/. Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) 2014, Designing professional learning, Learning Forward, www.aitsl.edu.au/docs/default-source/default-documentlibrary/designing_professional_learning_report.pdf ?sfvrsn=4. Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) 2016a, Spotlight: what do we know about early career teacher attrition rates in Australia? www.aitsl.edu.au/docs/defaultsource/research-evidence/spotlight/spotlight---attrition.pdf ?sfvrsn=40d1ed3c_0. Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) 2016b, Graduate to proficient: Australian guidelines for teacher induction into the profession, www.aitsl.edu.au/docs/default-

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Index ABC charts 184–8 ABC Life 203 Abilities Based Learning and Support (ABLES) online assessment tools 146 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples challenges for students 216 effective pedagogies for students 11–12 hearing impairments in children 137 indigenous languages 11 reconciliation 6 students’ mental health 219–20 teaching standard 6 Aboriginal Voices project 11–12 ‘About Me’ activity 55–6 absent, being 45 ACARA see Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority ACER see Australian Council for Educational Research Action in ‘CAR’ 30 AITSL see Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership Alberto, P. 164, 176 All at Sea with Children’s Behaviour (Australian Childhood Foundation) 165 amputee students 141 anaphylaxis action plan 46–7 Anderson, Josephine 220 Antecedent-Behaviour-Consequence (ABC) chart strategy 137 anti-bullying policies 45, 196–7 anti-bullying programs 221 anxiety disorders, students with 106, 217–21 see also autism spectrum disorder, students with applications unsuccessful 38 writing 27–33 applying for teaching role preparing portfolio 22 writing applications 27–33 appointment to a position 42 ‘Art and Creativity Helps Children and Adults Cope with Trauma and Natural Disasters,’ ABC Sunshine Coast, (Bartholomew) 223 Articulation Screener 246–51

ASD see autism spectrum disorder, students with Asperger’s syndrome 128 assessment exit strategy 83 formative 65–6 importance 65–6 initial 64 learning and 101 pre-assessments 53, 67–8 summative 66 teaching standards 8 attendance rolls 45 attention deficit disorder, students with 106, 118, 142 attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, students with 106, 118, 142–3, 148 attention, keeping students’ 174–6 attention seeking 178 Australian Childhood Foundation 165 Australian Council for Educational Research 219 Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority 4 Australian Disability Clearinghouse on Education and Training 140 Australian Government Closing the Gap Education targets 216 Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership 206 Australian Professional Standards for Teachers 4–9, 22, 209, 216 Authentic Teacher Assessment 5 autism spectrum disorder, students with anxiety 131, 135–7 Assistive Technology Tools: Organization and Memory 133 central coherence 129, 131 diagnosis 128 Digital Resources for Students with Autism 133 escalating behaviours 134–7 executive function 129, 131 hypersensitivity 130–1 impairment of pragmatic language 129–30 impulsivity 129, 132, 136 Individual Learning Plan example 112–13

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Index

Individual Learning Plans 131, 137 managing social situations 130 meltdowns 134–7 motor difficulties 130–1 non-verbal communication 130 receptive-expressive language disorder 148 repetitive behaviour 130–1 straightforwardness 130 strategies to assist students 131–7 Student Support Groups 107 theory of mind 128 undiagnosed 117 use of social stories 132–3 vulnerability to bullying 130 working with parents 106, 135 Bahr, N. 12 Barrett, L. 172 Baumann, J.F. 149 Be You programs 220 behaviour 164–6, 177–80 Behaviour at School Study (Sullivan) 96, 169, 176 behaviour management ABC charts 184–8 argumentative behaviour 177 attention seeking 178 Behaviour Support Plans 188–93 bullying 177, 196–7 disengagement 178 disruptions 178, 194 hostile and negative behaviour 179 hyperactive behaviour 179 negative behaviours 169 perfectionist behaviour 179 physically aggressive behaviour 180, 194 policies 44–5, 58, 164 responding appropriately 176–7 restorative practice 168–9 school refusal behaviour 180 teaching strategies 174 Three-Tier Model 169 Tier One 170–7 Tier Two 177, 184 Tier Three 194–6 uncooperative behaviour 180 verbally aggressive behaviour 180 whole-school models 184–94 working with parents 197–9 Behaviour Support Plans 64, 188–93, 252 students with ADHD 143

Bell,S. 159 Bereaved School Community, The (Cancer Council NSW) 223 Bernard, Michael 219 Berry, M. 141 Best of Friends, The 169 Better Health Victoria 148 BeyondBlue 221 BiteBack 220 Black Dog Institute 220–1 Blended Lesson Guide (Ganag and Marzano) 233 blindness 139–40 Bloom’s Six Levels of Thinking 155 Bloom’s Taxonomy 23, 87, 90–4, 155–7 body image 220 Bounce Back 169, 220 Bradshaw, C.P. 184 Bridwell-Mitchell, E. 10 Brulles, D. 91 BSP see Behaviour Support Plans Buchanan, J 163 buddies 42, 50 Bully Zero 221 bullying anti-bullying policies 45, 196–7 anti-bullying programs 221 cyber bullying 221 duty of care 13 managing 177, 196–7 policies 45, 164 Bullying. No Way! 221 Burgess, C. 11, 96 Burke, J. 219 burnout, teacher 202–6 Burrow, S. 138 Burt Word test 67 Bushfire Education Teaching and Learning Resources (Dept. Education Vic.) 223 Caldwell, B. 16 ‘CAR’ 30–1 Carr-Gregg, Michael 54, 171 CASEL 99 Centre for Emotional Health, The 221 Centre for International Research on Education Systems 215 cerebral palsy, students with 141 Chappuis, S. 66 Charman, T. 107, 117, 134 chemical science example unit 99–100

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child abuse 13–14, 164 child protection 9 Child Safety policies 44 choice board examples 97, 158 Circle of Friends 169 Circle Time 169 claim-support question 100 classroom design design plan 54 flexible seating arrangements 94–5 gifted students 154–5 planning for day one 228 safety and suitability 172–4 students with ADHD 142–3, 173 students with autism 173 students with hearing loss 138 students with physical disabilities 141–2 students with specific learning disorders 145 students with vision impairment 139–40 teaching standards 7 time management 205 classroom rules 228–9 Clifford, M. 89 Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (CELF 4 or 5) 105 Closing the Gap Education targets 216 Code of Ethics (South Australian Department for Education and Child Development) 214 Code of Ethics for Northern Territory Teachers 210 Code of Ethics for Teachers in Queensland 210 Code of Ethics for Teachers in Queensland: Framework (Queensland College of Teachers) 13 Code of Professional Ethics for the Teaching Profession in Tasmania 210 codes of conduct 9, 12–13, 164, 210–11, 253 codes of ethics 210, 213–15 Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning 99 colleagues, working with 212–13 Collie, R.J. 170 concept maps 89 conch discussions 89 confidentiality 8 consequence wheel 89 Context in ‘CAR’ 30 cooperative learning 88–90 Coping with natural disasters (FUSE) 223 coronavirus (COVID-19) 223

263

cover letters 31–3 cultural and linguistic diversity 5, 10–11 curriculum planning meetings 47 curriculum vitae 27–9 Dalton, J. 88 Danielson, C. 64 data documentation Nationally Consistent Collection of Data (NCCD) 118–24, 244–5 systems 54 Data Walls 68 Davis, Lauren 9 de Bono, Edward 156 declarative knowledge 69 Dept. of Education and Training, Vic. 13, 69 Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5) 105, 128 differentiated learning and instruction 90–5 Differentiated Model of Giftedness and Talent 150–1 disabilities, students with disability categories 118–20 getting to know 51 Nationally Consistent Collection of Data (NCCD) 118–24 quality differentiated teaching practice (QDTP) 121–3 teaching adjustments 118–23 teaching standards 6 see also hearing impairments, students with; physical disabilities, students with; severe language disorders, students with; visual impairments, students with Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Commonwealth) 104 Disability Standards for Education (Aust. Government Dept. of Education, Skills and Employment) 6, 104 disasters, dealing with Disaster Plans 45, 50 resources 223 discipline 168, 176 disengaged behaviour 178 disruptive behaviour 178, 194 divorce 221–2 documentation for first position 42 Domene, J. 141 Dragon Speech Recognition software 149 dress standards 57

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Index

DSM-5 see Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5) duty of care 9, 13–14 dyscalculia 144 dysgraphia 144 dyslexia 118, 144 EAL see English as an Additional Language or Dialect Educational Opportunity in Australia 2015: Young people in rural and remote communities frequently missing out (Lamb et al) 215–16 Educator, The 219 Egeberg, H. 168, 170 English as an Additional Language or Dialect 6  146–7 see also severe language disorders, students with ethics codes of ethics 213–15 professional 210–15 in teaching 12–13 exit strategy 83 explicit teaching 85–7 expressive language disorder 148–9 feedback 8, 65, 86–7 Feedback (in IRF) 7 Ferreira, J. 12 first day planning 53–9, 228–30 5 Ws 100 5C Model (New South Wales Department of Education) 43 flexible seating arrangements 94–5 focus groups 81–2 Foundation year students activities for 57 orientation with 51–2 pre-literacy data 68 welcoming and reassuring 60 Four Domains of the Framework of Teaching (Danielson) 64 Freud, Sigmund 165 Friendly Schools 221 Friends Program, The 169, 220 Fullan, M. 12 Fullerton, E. 173 Furber, G. 218 Gagne, Francois 150–1 Galloway, A. 138

GANAG model 83–4, 233 Gardner, Howard 91, 94, 156–7 Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences 91, 94, 155–7 Gateways Programs 154 gender discrimination 220 generalised anxiety disorder 218 Gibbs, G. 7 Gibbs’ Reflective Cycle description 18 reflective exercises 53, 59–60, 90, 106, 124, 160, 212 teaching standards 7, 9 as useful strategy 17, 19 gifted and talented students activities for senior students 159–60 behavioural characteristics 153 differentiated classrooms 154–5 Differentiated Model of Giftedness and Talent 150–1 identifying 152–4 spelling and vocabulary extension work 159 strategies to assist 154–7 use of choice boards 158 Gilmore, L. 11 goldfish bowl discussions 89 Gonski, D. 96–7 Gonzalez, R. 96 Google Docs 47, 205 Goss, P. 169 Graduate to Proficient: Australian Guidelines for Teacher Induction into the Profession (AITSL) 14 graffiti walls 89 Gray, Carol 132 Greenberg, M.T. 174 Guardino, C.A. 173 guessing games 55 Gunn, J. 154 Hamston, J. 98 Hargreaves, H. 12 Hattie, J. 69, 80, 170–1 Hay Group 19 Headspace 221 Health and Physical Education example term planner 47–9 health and safety issues 45 hearing impairments, students with 137–8

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Heick, T. 174 High Impact Teaching Strategies explicit teaching 85 inquiry learning 98 key selection criteria 29 practitioners 80 teaching standards 6 High Impact Teaching Strategies: Excellence in Teaching and Learning (Dept. Education and Training, Vic.) 80 High Reliability Literacy Teaching Procedures to Building Students’ Literacy Knowledge, The (Munro) 131 HITS see High Impact Teaching Strategies hostile and negative behaviour 179 How to Differentiate Instruction in Mixed-Ability Classrooms (Tomlinson) 90 How to Talk to Your Children about Corona Virus (UNICEF) 223 hyperactive behaviour 179

inquiry learning 98 Integrating Socially model 98–100 International Competitions and Assessments for Schools (ICAS) exams 154 interview portfolio 22 interview process 34–8 IRF talking pattern 7

icebreakers 55, 58 I-FEED-V rule 177, 230 impulsivity 129, 132, 136, 142 incidents, serious 195–6 Individual Learning Plans as aid to knowing students 64 Behaviour Support Plan 188 developing 68, 107–8 examples 112–16 form examples 241–2 Nationally Consistent Collection of Data 118 professional help with 117 short term goals and 111 Student Support Groups 108–9, 111 students with autism spectrum disorders 131 students with special learning needs 52, 107, 110–11, 145 teaching strategies and 111 Individual Record of Adjustments 244 induction 5C Model (New South Wales Department of Education) 43–4 focus areas 14–16 ongoing 50–1 programs 19 Information and Communication Technology 6, 8 Initiation (in IRF) 7

Larkey, Sue 133 Learner Profiles 52 Learning Diversity leader 105, 107 Learning Forward 206 learning intentions 69–76, 100 legal liabilities 45 lessons, structuring 80–7 Levelled Reading 67 Lewis, R. 174 Li, M. 11 literacy assessment schedules 66 High Reliability Literacy Teaching Procedures to Building Students’ Literacy Knowledge, The (Munro) 131 pre-assessments 53, 67 pre-literacy data 68 Literature Circle Activity 74 loss and grief 221–3 Lowe, K. 11, 96 Lowell, A. 138 Lynch, M. 174

265

Jennings, P.A. 174 jigsaw activity 89 Johnson, D.W. 88 Johnson, R. 88 key selection criteria 29–31 Kiebel, M. 97 Killen, R. 88 Klieve, H. 11 knowledge, Marzano on 69 Kolb’s Learning Cycle 18 KWL charts 89, 235

mandatory reporting 9, 164 Marsh, C. 88 Martin, A.J. 170 Marzano, J. 174 Marzano, Robert 69, 80, 84, 96, 174, 177, 233 Mason, S. 202 Maths Olympiad 154

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Index

McCallum, F. 202 McClellan, M. 165 McGrath, H. 94 McLeod, S. 165 Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians, The (Ministerial Council on Education, Employment, Training and Youth Affairs) 4 Melbourne University 219 mentors issues for discussion 50–1, 167, 195–6 meeting your 42–3 menu planner 236 Miller, Jeanette 165 MindMatters program 220 misbehaviour ABC charts 184–8 argumentative 177 attention seeking 178 Behaviour Support Plans 188–93 bullying 177, 196–7 disengagement 178 disruptions 178, 194 hostile and negative behaviour 179 hyperactive behaviour 179 perfectionist behaviour 179 physically aggressive behaviour 180, 194 responding appropriately 176–7 school refusal behaviour 180 Three-Tier Model 169 Tier One 170–7 Tier Two 177, 184 Tier Three 194–6 uncooperative behaviour 180 verbally aggressive behaviour 180 working with parents 197–9 Mission Australia Youth Survey 219–20 moderation 8 MoodGym 220 Multiple Intelligences theory 91, 94 Munro, John 131 Murdoch, K. 98 muscular dystrophy 141 My Eight Favourite Free Fonts for Print Disabilities 139–40 NAPLAN 66 National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) 117 Nationally Consistent Collection of Data (NCCD) 118–24, 244–5

Natural Disaster Recovery Storybooks (Children’s Health Queensland) 223 Natural Disaster Resources (Qld. Dept. Education) 223 natural disasters 223 NCCD see Nationally Consistent Collection of Data (NCCD) Noble, T. 94 non-verbal communication 7–8, 66, 129–30 numeracy assessment schedules 66 pre-assessments 53, 67 Observation Survey 67 obsessive compulsive disorders 218 Occupational Health and Safety training 50 occupational therapists 117, 134, 167, 194 O’Connor, T. 170, 172 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development 207 orientation in induction 14–15, 44–7 meeting students 51–3 Overview of Robert Marzano’s Model of Teaching Effectiveness (Room 241 Team) 69 paediatricians 167, 194 panic disorders 218 paper distribution systems 54 parents/carers, working with misbehaving students 197–8, 212 quality of interactions 199 students with special needs 105–9 teaching standards 7, 9 PATMaths 67 PAT-R 67 Peace-making Circles 168 pedagogies 96 perfectionist behaviour 179, 219 personal conduct 213 PETAA 99 phobias 218 phones, use of 57 physical disabilities, students with 141–2 physically aggressive behaviour 180, 194 Piaget, Jean 5 pictographs 89 Piscitello, 140 playground duties 45 Pollock, J.E. 83

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Index

portfolio see professional portfolio; teaching portfolio Positive Behaviour Support Project 169 Positive Behaviour Support strategy 169 Positive Body Image Activities and worksheets (Ackerman) 221 post-traumatic stress disorder 218 Power, T. 159 Poyatos Matas, M.C. 202 practicums, being proactive 16–17 praising students 177 Premier’s Reading Challenge 154 Price, D. 202 Primary English Teaching Association Australia 99 primary teaching activities 57–9 Principles of Instruction (Rosenshine) 80, 85 proactive, being 14–17 Probe 67 procedural knowledge 69 product choices board 91–2 productive learning environment checklist 229–30 professional competence 213 Professional Conduct Standards 214 professional development 9, 206–9 professional ethics 210–15 professional identity 14 professional networks 9 professional portfolio 5, 8, 34 professional practices 14 Progressive Achievement Tests 67 psychiatrists 194 psychologists 117, 167, 194 quality differentiated teaching practice (QDTP) 121–3 Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority 65 questioning 87–8 Quiroz, D. 176 ReachOut Australia 221 reading assignment success criteria 75 reading observation notes example 86 reading planners 82, 232 receptive language disorder 147–9 Record of Adjustments for a Group of Students 245 Record of Oral Language 144 referees 29

267

reflective practice developing 17–19 importance 14 relationships, cultivating 12 ‘research-informed practice in education’ 80 Resilience Project, The 169, 220 Response (in IRF) 7 restorative practice 168–9 Results in ‘CAR’ 30 RICE 80 Rich, S. 159 Room 241 Team, The 69 Rosenshine, B. 80 Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse 13 rural and remote teaching 215–17 Safety Management Plan 194, 196 safety of students, maintaining 8 ‘SAO’ 31 Schelvan, R. 134 Schön, D. 18 school culture definitions 10, 16 discerning 16–17 School Policy and Advisory Guide (Dept. of Education and Training, Vic.) 13–14 school refusal behaviour 180, 219 schools assessment schedules 66–8 selecting 26 Schools and Trauma (Australian Child and Adolescent Trauma, Loss and Grief Network, ANU College of Health and Medicine) 223 School-wide Positive Behaviour Support Unit (State Government of Victoria) 184 Screener 147 Seasons for Growth-Children and Young People’s Program, and Grief Information Sheets (Australian Centre for Grief) 223 selection criteria, key 29–31 selection panels 36–7 severe language disorders, students with 146–9 Shape of the Australian Curriculum: Version 4.0, The (ACARA) 4 Simonsen, B. 170, 174 Six Thinking Hats (de Bono) 155–6 SMART goals 70 Smith-Myles, B. 134, 137

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Index

sorting and classifying activity 89 South Australian Code of Ethics 214 South Australian Department for Education and Child Development 214 Southwick, J. 137 special learning needs coordinator 105 special needs, students with getting to know 51–2 Individual Learning Plans 108–17 special learning needs coordinator 105 teaching standards 7, 104 working with parents 105–9 see also autism spectrum disorder, students with specific learning disorders, students with 144–6 speech disorders 147 speech pathologists 117, 134, 147 spina bifida, students with 141 Spinks, J. 16 Spotlight-Induction of Beginning Teachers in Australia: What do early career teachers say? (AITSL) 19 SSG see Student Support Group Staake, J. 148 staff handbooks 44–5 Stage, S. 176 standards Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (AITSL) 4–9, 22, 209, 216 Disability Standards for Education (Australian Government Department of Education, Skills and Employment) 6, 104 Professional Conduct Standards 214 ‘STAR’ 31 stationery 53 Stiggins, R.J. 66 stress 202–4 student data 8, 53–4, 68 (see also Nationally Consistent Collection of Data (NCCD)) diaries 101 participation 7 reflection journals 66 voice and choice 96–8 Student Learning Program 243 Student Profiles 52 Student Support Groups challenging behaviours 188, 190, 192 minutes form 239–40 students with special needs 52, 107–11, 117–18, 167

students engaging 95–8 female 220 getting to know 51–3, 58–9, 64, 167 keeping attention of 174–6 praising 177 pre-assessments 53, 67 Subban, P. 96 subject associations 209, 253 success criteria checklists 71 success criteria examples 74–6, 100 Sullivan, A. 96, 176 super sentences 159 Supporting Children with Anxiety by Apps and Online Programs (SA Educ Dept.) 221 ‘survival kit’ 53 Sutherland Phonological Awareness Test 144 Talking Circles 168 Talking Typer 140 Talk-to-Text programs 141 T-charts 89 teacher appraisal questionnaire 8 Teacher Performance Assessment 5 Teacher Quality and Accreditation (NSW Government) 207–8 Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia 214 Teacher Self-Assessment Tool 209 Teacher Talk: Whole Class or Small Group Discussions-The role of the teacher (Dept. Education, Vic.) 7 teacher unions 209 Teacher’s Guide to Visible Thinking Activities, A. (Bell et al) 159 teacher-student professional boundaries 214– 15 Teacher-Student Professional Boundaries (Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia) 214 teacher-student relationships 170–2, 211–12, 214–15 Teaching Gifted Kids in Today’s Classroom: Strategies and Techniques Every Teacher Can Use (Winebrenner & Brulles) 92 teaching portfolio 22–5 teaching styles 171–2 teamwork 206 term program planners 47–9, 231 themes, seeing 100

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theory of mind 128 thinking routines 100 Think-Pair-Share 89, 175 Three-Tier Model 169 Tier One 170–7 Tier Two 177, 184 Tier Three 194–6 Through Growth to Achievement: Report of the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools (Gonski et al) 96–7 Through My Eyes: Natural Disaster Zones (2017–2018) Series (White) 223 time management 204–5 timetables 47 Toddlers and Teens (Miller) 165 Tomlinson, C. 90 Torch 67 Torreno, S. 104 Tournament of Minds 154 Trautman, M. 134 Troutman, A.C. 164, 176 truancy 194 uncooperative behaviour 180 Understanding K–12 Assessment (Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority) 65 unit of work 237–8 vacancies, types of 26–7 Venn diagrams 89 verbally aggressive behaviour 180 Victorian Teaching Profession Code of Conduct 211, 213 Vision Australia 139 Visiting Teacher Service 139

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visual impairments, students with 139–40 Vygotsky, Lev 5 Wachtel, T. 170–2 WALT intentions 71 Watson, M. 88 weather policies 45 Wechsler Intelligence Scales for Children (WISC-V) 105 Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence (WPPSI) 105 Weissofner, N. 138 well-being anxiety disorders, students with 217–21 induction focus 14–15 policies 45, 164 teachers’ 202–6 What is Good Practice in Autism Education? (Charman) 107 White, Lyn 223 Whole-Group-Whole model 81–3 WILF intentions 71 Winebrenner, S. 91 Women’s and Children’s Health Network Child and Youth Health (SA Health Dept.) 221 Working with Children Check 42 work-life balance 205–6 Workplace Health and Safety procedures 9 WorryWise 221 writing overview success criteria 76 yard/playground duties 45 Zone of Proximal Development 5, 145 Zone of Regulation 169 Zones of Regulation program 133

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Title: KAV_PFTTP_22854_CVR

Format: 245mm x 190mm

Spine: 9.9mm

• How can I be successful in getting a job? • How can I best prepare for my first few weeks of teaching? • How can I best demonstrate that I have met the AITSL Graduate Standards? • What can I do to ensure my students are engaged in my lessons?

• What strategies can I employ to effectively maintain positive behaviour in my classroom?

Mary Kavanagh | Michael Kavanagh

PREPARING FOR THE TEACHING PROFESSION You will need:

Neat handwriting (It’s still important)

• What steps can I take to be well prepared to teach students with special learning needs?

Empathy

(It goes a long way)

• How can I develop effective working relationships with the parents or carers of my students? • What ethical challenges might I face as a teacher? Mary Kavanagh has extensive primary classroom teaching experience. Mary has been involved in the induction of early career teachers for over 20 years in a variety of school settings. Michael Kavanagh is an Academic Adviser (Primary and Secondary) to the Deakin University Internship Program for the Master of Teaching Degree.

Mary Kavanagh | Michael Kavanagh

Teaching is a multi-faceted, challenging and complex profession. Preparing for the Teaching Profession addresses the uncertainties you might have about assuming a professional role and the responsibilities that come with it. This practical handbook focuses on the key principles you need to know to become a successful and proactive teacher. It answers the following questions and many more, giving you the confidence to thrive in your teaching profession.

PREPARING FOR THE TEACHING PROFESSION

Your guide to becoming a proactive, successful teacher

CMYK

Knowledge

(Never stop learning)

Passion

(Never stop caring)

Stylish shoes (Your students will notice)

Generosity

(Preferably in sticker form) ISBN 978-0-19-032285-4

9 780190 322854 visit us at: oup.com.au or contact customer service: oup.com.au/help

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