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Kath Murdoch PD Reflection

    The cluster teachers attended a fantastic session on Inquiry based Learning with Kath Murdoch at Marton School on 3.5.12. Upon discussion, all Lead Teachers found the PD very motivating and beneficial for their staff and where their schools are at with Inquiry. Some of the key points from her session were;

  • Building relationships with and knowing the learners
  • Provoking curiosity - creating wondement and awe
  • Student voice and choice being a large part of inquiry
  • Helping learners to learn and understanding themselves as learners
  • Looking at the key components to an effective Inquiry process/model

Some of the notes taken by Cluster Co-ordinators are in the links following. These will be shared and developed within their schools and lead teachers.

SCS Kath Murdoch PD notes  SJS Kath Murdoch PD notes

This PD is a great 'tuning in' for teachers around working towards the following staff success indicators for our Cluster Goal 3:

  • Teachers are using formative practices to develop children's understanding of the inquiry process.
  • Teachers are integrating e-learning to support the inquiry learning process specifically planning for and using thinking skills and Key Competencies.
  • Teachers will be open and flexible to enable student voice to have an influence on the teaching and learning direction.

This will then have a 'trickle down' effect, working towards the following success indicators from Goal 1:

  • Students are able to confidently use the inquiry process applying and articulating their thinking
  • Student voice is sought and has an influence on the teaching and learning directions in each school
  • Students are able to articulate their learning using formative assessment practices
  • Key Competencies are developed through e-learning opportunities and reflected in learning outcomes



  • Sophia Douglas


    The Kath Murdoch professional development was an inspiring day for the staff at TES. The questions for prompts and learning conversations that Kath provided were one highlight of the day. In our new entrant room this gave a guide to add a selection of relevant starters to their thinking box. The thinking box mainly focuses on good questions, key words and do Bono’s thinking hats. We found the list provided on the Kath Murdoch day encourages children’s voice rather than teacher talk.

          Thinking Toolbox - TES Room 3    Room 3’s thinking tool box.

    Children being the centre of the learning and encouraging them to be inquisitive and want to discover things for themselves was another aspect taken from the day. Using the prompts of I wonder…, I see…, I think …have been used and will continue to be used within the school to help nurture our children’s way of thinking.

    Finally, the point that Kath made to remember to take time and make the most of the unexpected that can arise when working with children, was also taken on board. Too often we are caught up with getting through our timetables and teaching those core areas, not taking opportunities where real-life learning can occur. We had one such occasion in one of our rooms at TES. Their chrysalis had hatched and a monarch butterfly was discovered under a table. The class took the time to look closely at their new friend, taking photos and trying to release him. This prompted many ideas and questions from the children especially those children who are not always forthcoming with talk.

    Monarch Buttefly 1Monarch Butterfly 2

    Pictures of the Monarch that hatched in Room 5 – One of those teachable moments.