Category Archives: Laurieston Primary School

Active Approaches to Numeracy

 

Sharon Wallace, Curriculum Support Officer of the Service and School Improvement Team recently organised a professional learning opportunity entitled ‘Active Approaches to Numeracy’. 57 colleagues from Primary, Secondary and the Curriculum Support team (including QIO) spent the day examining a range of active strategies to improve attainment in mental mathematics.

 Helen MacKinven, from Big Maths provided an overview of strategies including: jigsaw numbers, CLIC and partitioning. Colleagues were also treated to the experience of a ‘Beat That’ mental maths quiz.

Clusters then worked together to look at ways forward to improve attainment in mental maths. Feedback from this day has been extremely positive.

A number of colleagues have put their names forward to be part of the Numeracy Mobilisation Team. This work will inform the update of Falkirk Council’s numeracy strategy. The first meeting for this group is being held on 12th February. For further information on this, please contact Sharon Wallace at sharon.wallace@falkirk.gov.uk

Active Literacy – P6/7 Training

Sharon Wallace, Curriculum Support Officer of the Curriculum Support Team has carried out Active Literacy training over the past two weeks with 54 teachers. The two three hour sessions examined the writing programme incorporating spelling and the reading programme.

Session one looked at how teachers can support pupils in becoming independent spellers. Pupils are taught strategies to use their previously learned knowledge of phonemes and spelling rules to more complex, polysyllabic words.

 The course examined the programme for spelling strategy work, alongside the new addition of ‘vocabulary building’, homophones and common confusions. Trials of the programme so far indicate that pupils are really enjoying the investigation element of prefixes and suffixes and how these affect the meaning of words.

The session also examined the writing genres covered at second level looking at incorporating writing trios, chunking, use of genre success criteria and next steps.

Session two focused on the development of the six key comprehension strategies across a range of texts. These strategies are:
1. Prior knowledge and prediction
2. Metalinguistics
3. Visualisation
4. Inference
5. Main ideas
6. Summarising and paraphrasing.

Sharon demonstrated how to develop these skills using a traditional ‘novel’ text, moving image (film trailer) and a poem. The course also looked at using online tools such as Powtoon, go animate and twixster to develop reading skills.

Colleagues were given a ‘Stories Allways’ resource containing a range of Scottish myths and legends as well as two CDs. This is a great resource as it provides pupils with a range of challenging questions, tasks and a synopsis of each tale.

Colleagues enthusiastically participated in a range of Active Literacy activities across the course of the two sessions and feedback so far has been really positive.

“The course was delivered extremely well by Sharon Wallace and the resources provided were very useful.”

“The course was presented over 2 days in which it provided an overview of the key methodologies and strategies as outlined in North Lanarkshire’s Active Literacy 6/7 programme. I thought all aspects of the course were useful and it enhanced my knowledge and understanding of the 6/7 programme which I will now be able to confidently implement in the classroom.”

“I am new to teaching as well as the Active Literacy programme. I had very little knowledge and understanding prior to the course however I now feel I can confidently implement active literacy in the classroom.”

“Sharon is a very enthusiastic presenter and it is clear that she wholly believes in the Active Literacy Programme. Her passionate delivery and ideas instil in you, the confidence to have a go in your own classroom.”

Good Grammar = Good Manners – your thoughts?

Sharon Wallace, Curriculum Support Officer, Falkirk Council has been examining the area of grammar in relation to developing literacy attainment in Falkirk Schools.

Sharon started this project off by talking to pupils fro P5, P6 and P7 at Stenhousemuir and Laurieston Primary Schools. Here is a collection of their thoughts:

The pupils then went on to explore a wide range of grammar resources which included: books, games, websites, grammar literacy maps, CD containing grammar songs and grammar dictionaries.

 They really enjoyed the grammar games and websites and thought they would be most effective to support with their learning of grammar.

The pupils were really enthusiastic about the resources and developing a blog to support other learners.

Here are a few of the websites we looked at:

http://www.dreaded-apostrophe.com/

http://www.apostrophe.org.uk/page2.html

http://www.spellingsociety.org/

http://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/ks2/

Watch this space for further developments! Thanks to the pupils from Stenhousemuir and Laurieston for their active involvement in this exciting project!

Active Literacy Packs Distributed to Falkirk Primary Schools!

 

Sharon Wallace, Effective Teaching and Learning teacher, Curriculum Support Team delivered an overview session on Active Literacy second level to 90 colleagues at Camelon Education Centre.

Colleagues from P6/7 classes and members of  Senior Management Teams received the new second level packs to take back to their establishments.

Sharon provided an overview of the strategies and methodologies contained in the new pack. Colleagues who have been involved in the trials of these new materials spoke about the impact of the new resources and how their pupils have responded to the content delivered so far.

Carol Ann MacLeod, P7 Class teacher from Laurieston Primary shared her experiences of delivering reading, spelling and vocabulary building lessons. Her pupils have really enjoyed the lessons, with vocabulary building work on affixes proving the most popular.

Susan McLeod, P7 class teacher from Bankier Primary also spoke of how her pupils enjoyed the challenge of working with prefixes, root words and suffixes.

Alan Willox, DHT from Head of Muir, spoke on behalf of their P7 class teacher who has been working on some of the writing lessons. He said the pupils certainly enjoyed the lessons.

Maria McNally, P6/7 class teacher from St. Bernadette’s shared some videos of her pupils incorporating spelling rules and strategies into drama scripts and performances.

Colleagues took their new resource back to their establishments and Sharon is keen to hear how colleagues would like their training to be delivered. Sharon can be emailed or colleagues are invited to leave posts on this forum.

The second level pack develops and extends the strategies and methodologies introduced at earlier stages.

Spelling lists contained in this new pack can be accessed via the Active Literacy section on GLOW.

Sharon is also working with Secondary Schools to develop, consolidate and extend the Active Literacy skills and strategies taught at Primary School

Sharing the Learning of Active Literacy – A Collaborative Approach to Achieving!

Sharon Wallace, Effective Teaching and Learning Teacher, Curriculum Support Team has been investigating the role of other stakeholders to support pupil attainment in Active Literacy. Sharon has devised a series of sessions useful for Support for Learning Assistants in order to share the Active Literacy Programme. These two sessions have already been delivered in establishments across Falkirk and proving popular, as these quotes demonstrate:

“I wish the sessions were longer, I have learned so much already this morning!”

“I am excited to try out some of these ideas with the pupils I support!”

The two sessions look at spellings and phonics, and reading and writing and Sharon provides participants with useful handouts on activities which consolidate classroom learning in Active Literacy. Support for Learning Assistants are given a brief overview of the programme, along with practical tips to use with the pupils they support. These are hands-on sessions with Support for Learning Assistants having a go at some activities such as the five finger strategy, Elkonin boxes and diacritical marking.

The impact on pupil learning is that Support for Learning Assistants are able to use the same language associated with the Active Literacy programme and look at alternative ways to enhance the learning e.g. through the use of the outdoor environment, Smart boards, CD-roms and other sensory experiences.

These sessions are proving very popular and have so far been delivered at St. Bernadette’s, Bainsford (incorporating Drumbowie Primary) and Laurieston.

Staff booking onto CPD

Jamielee Dickson, Clerical Assistant within the Falkirk Council Education Services Curriculum Support Team deals with staff booking onto courses. Jamielee is the person at the end of the phone or sending e-mails for staff booking onto professional development.

Quality Physical Education -2 hour target

Morag Young, Physical Education Lead Officer,  in Falkirk Council Education Services, Curriculum Support Team has been engaging in series of meetings supporting the delivery of quality physical education in Falkirk primary schools. These meetings with Headteachers of Denny and Graeme cluster primary schools were to explore a variety of ways in which schools were able to meet the delivery of the 2 hour target to fulfil the pupil entitlement. These discussions provide the means to share different solutions to the different contexts in relation to staffing, accomodation and resources to name but a few.

ICT Resources to Support Physical Education in the Primary School

Malcolm Wilson, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in the Curriculum Support Team of Falkirk Council Education Services, presented a session with class teachers and visiting specialist teachers of physical education on ICT resources to support teaching physical education in the primary school.

Dance

The session started by everyone having go at the dance steps provided with the dance mat to all Falkirk primary schools (along with the free software installed on all PCs). More information about that can be found here: http://glo.li/L7znnN

Glow Groups for teachers of PE 

The session included time to browse the planning and support materials for teachers of PE which can be found in various Glow groups which included the following:

Falkirk Glow group for teachers of PE http://glo.li/e2ZeBf

Curriculum for Excellence Expanded Experiences & Outcomes (Falkirk Planners) PE http://glo.li/WKnowe

Falkirk PE resources in Glow group for Health & Wellbeing http://glo.li/gov97Y

National Glow group for teaching PE http://glo.li/Y93cGJ

Online Resource Sites

Online resources which were highlighted included the following:

www.kidnetic.com ideas for classroom, hall, outdoors or in the home – includes on-screen dance robot simulator

http://cybraryman.com/physicaled.html Cybraryman resources by category

www.pescholar.com PE Scholar

www.physedsource.com PhysEdSource – categories include gymnastics, sport/games, individual, outdoor, dance, health, research

www.thephysicaleducator.com/resources/ includes games skills cards/infographics posters, apps, blog, podcast, pupil recognition cards

www.teachingideas.co.uk/pe/contents.htm crowd-sources ideas shared by teachers, warm-up and cool-down ideas, games, sports.

Smartboard Smart Notebook Resources

SMART Board SMART Notebook PE resources can be found in Notebook by clicking on “Gallery” – enter “sport” in search box http://glo.li/rQ3eRl

Blog about class PE

Creating a class PE blog can help raise profile of PE, promote positive pupil esteem, share learning of PE activities Resources to get staretd blogging can be found here: http://glo.li/qMeQl3

Activity Timers and Random Name Selectors

A host of online or downloadable countdown timers & stopwatches, and random name, group or activity selectors, can be found here: http://glo.li/jU9ja0 

Teachers of PE on Twitter

Twitter provides access to a Professional Learning Network of colleagues sharing PE teaching ideas. Resources and a guide to setting up a Twitter account and how to use can be found here: http://glo.li/qpaM79. A short video guide “Twitter for PE Teachers” including how to get started, how to find others, use of Hashtags and more can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMjGcrBJK-c

QR codes and PE

QR codes provide quick access via smartphone QR code scanner to videos or explanatory onlien resources without any need to type in long website addresses. For examples of use of printed Step-by-step guides linked by QR codes to associated PE skills demonstration videos follow this link:

http://www.thephysicaleducator.com/resources/skill-posters/

This Video shows a report of one teachers use at a school fitness trail http://glo.li/YU4beZ

For resources to find out how to make you own QR codes follow this link here: http://glo.li/z1JVmB

Making Videos to show PE skills

Use digital video cameras for pupils to see their performance after they have finished and to compare it against their peers or against videos of professional athletes. Resources here for video cameras: http://glo.li/gTmdzS. Resources for editing video: https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/ICTFalkirkPrimaries/2010/09/16/video-editing-with-windows-live-movie-maker/Resources here for making videos from still image photographs: https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/ICTFalkirkPrimaries/2011/03/09/photostory-3/ 

Comments from participants included:

“I intend to use Photostory 3 especially for gymnastics.”

“Excellent course!”

Getting Ready for Employee Review and Development!

  • All our schools are moving forward on implementing the new Employee Review and Development (Glow login required) process( ERD). Some have already begun while others are getting ready. Anne Hutchison (CPD Co-ordinator in the Curriculum Support team of Falkirk Council Education Services) co-leads the implementation strategy at service level along with Anne Pearson (Service Manager: Curriculum Support team) and today they were out and about in schools across Falkirk working with staff from Grangemouth High, Graeme High, Laurieston, Hallglen, Victoria and Westquarter primary schools. Preparation is key to getting this effective way of working off on the right foot. So what were we doing?
    1. Speaking to support staff to let them know that they are key players in supporting the delivery of high quality teaching and learning for all children and young people
    2.Raising awareness of what an ERD meeting looks, feels and sounds like. Big thanks to Hazel Cunningham (Primary Probationer Supporter:Curriculum Support team) and Fiona Anderson (HT:  Head of Muir PS) who bravely modelled the role of a self evaluator whilst Anne H and Anne P acted as Validators. The role of a validator is to support, extend and challenge the self-evaluator.
    Everyone has a role in this important improvement priority. During January and February of this year all Headteachers and Early Years Managers are using their work profile as a self evaluation tool in preparation for their ERD meeting. To support them in their preparation a series of 90 minute training sessions have been designed and delivered by the Curriculum Support team . By session 2014-15 the aim is that:
  •  all  Falkirk schools are implementing the revised scheme
  • the revised ERD scheme is integrated with schools’ ongoing self evaluation and quality improvement processes
  • we can see evidence of cultural change in relation to self evaluation
  •  GTCS registered staff are well prepared for Professional Update
  •  we can see evidence of the impact of ERD on our children and young people’s learning experiences