School Scanning Process:
Late this spring we completed a scan that involved approximately 35% of the students that attend Ellison Elementary School. From the data collected, all students scanned reported that they believe that there are two or more adults who believe they will be a success in life. When asked about their learning and why it is important, staff noticed after patterning the data that students shared about content specific learning in reading, writing, and mathematics. Often they shared strategies they were learning. There were also examples of students sharing the inquiry they were engaged in in their classrooms around the environmental impacts of plastics, some big ideas in science, and about social responsibility. Many students were able to make connections to why their learning was important, and how it might be important for them as learners. Student’s overwhelmingly took a positive stance over how their learning was going. Students shared their learning was going “good”, “well”, “really well”, “at my level” or “okay.” However, when asked what is your next steps with your learning, the scanning data showed us that students had a difficult time with this area. Students would “reach” for responses often stating that they were either unsure of their next steps in learning or choosing learning that was unrelated to the learning that they just had shared (disjointed learning that didn’t relate to the continuum).
As a team at Ellison, we have determined that our focus will be developing staff and students’ understanding of how to identify their next steps in learning to ensure that they are reaching their full potential. This will mean that as a staff we will have to work on being very clear on our intentions for learning, on the success criteria that we co-create with staff, using learning maps with students, and developing our assessment adaptive expertise to support students in being able to realize their next steps in learning. Our hope is to have students set their learning intentions, reflect on their progress, and adjust their goals to continue moving their learning forward.
Developing our Hunches & Determining New Learning:
Some of the changes being considered to address the need are:
- more intentionally modelling, teaching, and providing time for student reflection that is connected to their current learning and allows them to see where they have come from, where they need to go next, and how they might get there
- more communication on the expectation of their current learning - “I can…”
- Reflection sets the stage to become a lifelong learner - I can be better, my learning journey never stops
- when students understand themselves as learners (where they are , where to next, what they need) it shifts their role as a learner - gives them more agency and also shifts the role of the teacher
As a team we understand the power of collaboration and recognize that we are better together. We will work as a team towards our goals and make a commitment to engaging in some new learning to support our goal. Below is some of the literature and resources that will guide our learning.