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New Entrants in a Year 1-4 MLE

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Started by Catherine Lynagh 22 Apr 2015 7:12pm () Replies (5)

Our full primary is opening up 8 single cell classrooms into two MLE spaces.  We will have Year 1-4 students in one space, and I am trying to envision how we will work with the new entrants.  I'd love to hear from other teachers in mixed-age MLEs.  Do your new entrants have their own area within the larger space?  Does one of the teachers in your team have primary responsibility for the new entrants?

Replies

  • Cheryl (View all users posts) 24 Apr 2015 8:57pm ()

    Wow! This all sounds pretty amazing. What is truly standing out to me is the importance of relationships. Being able to hold these children for a few years allows them to build strong reciprocal relationships with you (the teachers), parents and the children from NE through to year 4 or the other to year 2.

    I have started a journey of MLE and team teaching with a teacher and we have 50 year 3/4 students in 2 relocatable classrooms that are joined with a door which we took off so students could use both spaces. This environment is temporary whilst our school is building new classrooms in which the new rooms will lend itself to a more collaborative approach to teaching and learning and break out space for students to learn in. We have other teachers in our school who are starting MLE and team teaching in year 5/6 and year 7/8 as well as other teachers in our year group who are coming on board as well. We are looking closely forward as to how the environment and furniture enhances the pedagogy that encompasses MLE and how we can better suit our students learning needs within the 21st century. One of the important steps for us is reflecting on our journey and the process and educating and consulting parents along the way. I find that this MLE and team teaching approach allows us to teach and learn within our strengths and we have built a very strong relationship between us which we see as pivotal to making this work. 

    We are quite far away from our junior classrooms at the moment but we have the junior classrooms as our buddy classes. It looks as though the posts that discuss the relationship of the NE with the slightly older children work well and allow for break out time for them and times and opportunities to interact with the others in the afternoons. 

    Nice to read about other journey's and as I have just joined the VLN today, I am looking forward to learning from others and being inspired with ideas along the way.

    Best wishes on your learning journey! smiley

  • Keryn Wilson (View all users posts) 22 Apr 2015 11:07pm ()

    :):)weWe set up a MLE from NE - Y4 last year. We have 3 teachers working collaboratively, but when we consulted with our community they were concerned that the specific needs of children as they enter school would not be met in the 'big' setting. We put a lot of thought into how to maintain the things that were working for us in terms of settling our newest learners into the school setting as well as reaping the benefits of a collaborative approach. Our physical environment helped with this. The building, while not intentionally built as a classroom was most definitely crying out to be used as a MLE with its large open area, two break out rooms and two offices and attached kitchen and toilet area. We set up the 'Sooty' room in one of the break out rooms in the TLC (Toroa Learning Community) which easily housed a smaller group of children new to school.  Because of the close proximity to the main room, the newbies felt Sooty was their space but also developed confidence in the larger space where we meet each morning. One teacher (me) is responsible for their programme including pre-entry visits, parent and pre-school liaison etc. It is a bit like a single cell classroom with literacy and numeracy taken there. I have a strong focus on establishing routines and developing relationships. The ceiling is lower in these spaces too so it feels quite intimate. It's attached to another breakout room with a sliding door - we often spill out into this space during reading and maths. The older children in the TLC like to look after the younger children during activities we do together like fitness etc. We have a shared timetable which all 3 teachers plan together and we (as in the above post) group for everything so the spread is reduced. For some topic activities, we work together and sometimes we rotate groups around the 3 teachers. It depends on what we're doing. We have found that having a degree of separation, allowing children to join in with the larger group gradually when they are ready has been successful. We have a blog that might let you see us in action www.toroatimes.blogspot.co.nz. We really love working together and feel that including the NE group can be done provided their needs are planned for. As in the post above, our children stay in this environment for several years and it allows us to build strong connections with them, but they do tend to not get sick of us (or vice versa) because each of us have our own strengths and work with slightly different age groups in the MLE.

    All the best! :) K

     

     

     

  • Keryn Wilson (View all users posts) 22 Apr 2015 11:07pm ()

    :):)weWe set up a MLE from NE - Y4 last year. We have 3 teachers working collaboratively, but when we consulted with our community they were concerned that the specific needs of children as they enter school would not be met in the 'big' setting. We put a lot of thought into how to maintain the things that were working for us in terms of settling our newest learners into the school setting as well as reaping the benefits of a collaborative approach. Our physical environment helped with this. The building, while not intentionally built as a classroom was most definitely crying out to be used as a MLE with its large open area, two break out rooms and two offices and attached kitchen and toilet area. We set up the 'Sooty' room in one of the break out rooms in the TLC (Toroa Learning Community) which easily housed a smaller group of children new to school.  Because of the close proximity to the main room, the newbies felt Sooty was their space but also developed confidence in the larger space where we meet each morning. One teacher (me) is responsible for their programme including pre-entry visits, parent and pre-school liaison etc. It is a bit like a single cell classroom with literacy and numeracy taken there. I have a strong focus on establishing routines and developing relationships. The ceiling is lower in these spaces too so it feels quite intimate. It's attached to another breakout room with a sliding door - we often spill out into this space during reading and maths. The older children in the TLC like to look after the younger children during activities we do together like fitness etc. We have a shared timetable which all 3 teachers plan together and we (as in the above post) group for everything so the spread is reduced. For some topic activities, we work together and sometimes we rotate groups around the 3 teachers. It depends on what we're doing. We have found that having a degree of separation, allowing children to join in with the larger group gradually when they are ready has been successful. We have a blog that might let you see us in action www.toroatimes.blogspot.co.nz. We really love working together and feel that including the NE group can be done provided their needs are planned for. As in the post above, our children stay in this environment for several years and it allows us to build strong connections with them, but they do tend to not get sick of us (or vice versa) because each of us have our own strengths and work with slightly different age groups in the MLE.

    All the best! :) K

     

     

     

  • Tanya Wells (View all users posts) 22 Apr 2015 7:39pm ()

    We are a brand new purpose built MLE and last year had our New Entrants coming into a Year 0/1 learning community. By the end of the year we had 60 Y0/1 with 3 teachers and we strongly felt that our NE were missing out on the following....... nurture, building relationships, getting the important starting school routines, good teaching of literacy and numeracy etc  which so important to the start of their schooling and therefore made some significant changes etc.

    This year we have 2 parallel learning communities of Y1/2 working with 5 teachers. We have a 6th teacher who works with our new entrants in one of our breakout spaces for literacy and numeracy learning  (Mon- Thursday) in the mornings in a small group much like a single cell classroom. These new entrants and their teacher then spend the afternoons in the main spaces with the rest of the children and other teachers. New entrants spend up to a term with this teacher and then move to the main spaces. We all work with the same timetable which means that all children can be ability grouped across all learning communities if need be for literacy and numeracy. In term 1 and term 2 we have had the same teacher working with our New Entrants but this doesn't have to be this way, any of our team are capable of working with our New Entrants.

    We find this to be really successful and that our older children step up and be Tuakana. The feedback from teachers and parents is positive. By keeping the same group of students in our learning community for up to 2 years or 2+ years depending on when they start means that teachers, parents and children build stronger relationships. 

    Hope this helps you!

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