2012 in Ruru2

Sara and Jan team teaching Year 5

Year 5 class

This year we have had lots of changes in Ruru2. All our children brought their very own ipad to school on the first day. They were very excited and also you could see they were a little nervous. They had downloaded lots of apps required for school but had no idea of how to use them!!! And for the most part neither did we.

Last year we had school ipads and laptops that the children had to share! The students preferred laptops and would hide and name them in an effort to use them. ipads were used as a last resort.

Different this year!!!

  • As teachers 2011 was our first year with e learning. We moved slowly, we worked at our own pace. Initially we were in control. Over the year the children accelerated away and were independent and teaching us so much.
  • This year we have even more technical things to learn and teach. We have tried to pull back and master a few things because there is so many exciting places to go and so many exciting things to do! Making Trailers, Book Creater, Drawing Pad, Show Me to name a few.
  • We have all had to learn slowly as ipads tend to have lots of steps to do things. We had to learn what symbols mean. For example, 'arrow' to move and share, 'plus' to open and then icons for editing etc. Opening pdf's to work on or getting their work from their ipads to the school server is a lot of steps. That is if the system handles the task which depends on the day.
  • Google docs is not as user friendly on an ipad for our first time Google Doccers!!
  • Our management books have taken a bit of a back seat this term as we felt they had enough learning to do but we are now slowly reintroducing them. We are starting with spelling as this is an example of them having many choices for their learning and needs to be dated twice daily so we want them to get into the habit.
  • Ipads - Well they don't want to let them go. They want them to be attached to their hips! This year we nearly have to force them to use a computer! What a change.

Physically our class has been rearranged this year - we've removed more seats - now there's not enough to go around.
We have a kneeler to work at, 2 cosy spaces, a screen with a table behind to work at and a literacy area that we think is pretty cool!
The size of the tote trays kids use has been doubled to allow for all the books and Ipads.

Term 2

A few weeks ago our class was invited to take our ipads along to share with a junior class as they were learning about the changes in technology. Wandering around and listening to our kids share what they could do and what ipads did made me realise they have come a long, long, long way.

They were pretty proud of themselves when I pointed that out too! :)

Where to next for Term 2?

  • This term we are encouraging our students to use laptops when using Google Docs in the classroom. Allowing them to develop confidence when use the application.
  • Spelling management sheets back in action!
  • Participating in online learning as part of our volcano study
  • Adding/publishing work to our google sites to share with our families and friends
  • using vimeo to add video to our sites - this will be a new adventure for all of us.
  • Using files connect to move work from the ipad to the server and vice versa.

Team Ruru 2 2011

Sara and Jan team teaching Year 5/6

End of Term Four
The end of year 1...our thoughts
In the last 6 months our kids have really taken hold of what happens in the clasroom and made it their own. Sometimes we felt like we couldn't keep up with them. Our students who found independent learning a struggle are showing independence in a few areas and we have used the first/next /then /last model rarely this term.
students are much better at only coming to us when they really do need help and others can't help them.
The students themselves are thinking of ways to learn and coming up with ideas themselves and fluidly moving between different devices depending o the task required.
We created a DVD of our year for everyone to take with them. As a teacher I'd never made a DVD but with patience, grit and a lot of reading in the help section of imovie - we finally did it!!

End of Term Two
What worked well
  • Each child has their own Google docs . We have sorted these so they have their own subject sub folders. Which are shared to the teacher (this is our greatest success this term).
  • using Google docs for organising our reading programmes. This is great for team teaching as we can spy on what the kids are or aren't doing!!!!!
  • We are starting to group share reading activities or instructions, instead of sending the one by one.
  • The children still prefer the laptops to iPads for word processing and accessing some websites as ipads don't support flash players.
  • kids love brainpop app. love reading onto a flip, and videoing reading plays.
  • It is hard to think of how students use devices as now it is part of everyday life in our classroom to the point it is the "norm!" the problem with this is now they want more excitement and further challenges - phew! -(maybe they can start looking at finding new ways and new apps appropriate to our learning intentions). Not that we are doing everything that there is to do though.
  • Reading maths programmes are going really well. Writing is First Steps and we need to look at how we make it work for us better in the classroom within team teaching and ICT parameters.
  • We loved sketchup
  • We got extra laptops at the beginning of the term this meant we now have one computer between 2 children. Yeah!!!!
  • Children still prefer to use iPads to the extent where we have signs put on computers saying "don't touch this is my work!"
  • We removed the management books from some of the students because they could not independently work. We are working towards how we are to re introduce them
    successfully to those students. Management books are working well with the rest of the students

  • Need to teach more videoing skills.
  • Devise ways to allow the students to share their own learning and reflective voice.
  • How do we extend our bright sparks?
  • Continuity of topic and putting Poutama sheets onto Google sites was very time consuming.
  • How are we going to do our portfolio sheets onto Google sites????????
  • We realize we have not looked at last term findings.....

End of Term One
What worked well:
  • students have coped well with saving folders
  • Flips are really popular, great for reading time, children read to them
  • general motivation and keeness to get to school
  • management books are working really well and the students are becoming more independent
  • kids love the arts and crafts
  • they enjoy using the equipment before school (making movies)

  • children want to learn to type, very keen to do typing practice
  • children's preferences is to use laptops rather than iPad
  • need to do more work on teaching research skills

What didn't work so well:
  • couldn't use the iPads, couldn't save or retrieve it (T.2 now resolved)
  • Pages is tricky on iPads
  • children were saving items to laptops not server and couldn't find work (resolving T.2)
  • desktops are not being used as much as wireless keyboards and mouse interfere with each other
  • collaborative work didn't work so well, will revisit Term 2

Starting to develop some of our areas

Class Treaty represented by our Weemees

Creating our shields on the iPads

Beginnings of Science Area

Choosing where to sit

Variety of ways to record