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ICTs Supporting Key Competencies

About Us
Waihi Schools Cluster is comprised of 6 small/medium, rural/semi-rural schools in the Waikato region. There are approximately 40 teachers within the cluster. There is a very wide range of skills and confidence levels.
- our VLN
- our wiki

What We Wanted to Do

Improve and increase the use of ICTs to support the development of Key Competencies (KCs).

Why We Wanted to Do It:
We used the ICT PD Cluster Self-Assessment Rubric to get an understanding of where our schools were at in regards to implementing the Key Competencies through the use of ICT. National Goal 1 - Key Competencies showed five schools at level 2 "School personnel have begun unpacking key competencies and identifying how to incorporate them in class programmes through elearning" and one school at level 1, meaning that they had "no knowledge or understanding of how to develop key competencies through elearning". It was pleasing to see that some schools had shifted from when we last completed the rubric at the end of our first year in the cluster.  However, clearly this is still an area that needs focus.

Informal observations, conversations and teacher survey results also reinforced the rubric findings.

What We Knew:
Observational and survey data indicated that there were four parts to this problem.
• Firstly, teacher perception was actually at odds with what was happening in the classroom. Many teachers were using ICTs to support KCs without realising it.

• Secondly, many teachers were not sure which ICTs they could use to support the KCs.
• Thirdly, some teachers were not confident about using ICTs to support KCs in their classrooms
• Fourthly, there were still a few teachers without a good understanding of the KCs themselves

What We Did:
• Lead teachers explored ways that ICTs could support the KCs at lead teacher days
• Lead teachers and the facilitator led staff meetings in each school. Teachers discussed, brainstormed and shared ways that ICTs could support KC development.
• A section of the Cluster wiki was created for sharing ideas on this subject - This was initially created by the lead teachers, then ideas and classroom examples were added
to by staff at staff meetings.

Teachers have been encouraged to have class blogs and/or wikis which help foster a number of KCs and most teachers now have one.
• Inquiry has been a focus area for the cluster and schools have looked at ways that an inquiry-based approach can foster the KCs and the ICTs that support this. Useful information and links have been added to the cluster wiki.image

What Happened as a Result:

The ICT PD Cluster Self-Assessment Rubric proved to be very useful in helping teachers and schools to identify areas of concern and then work on their next steps. It also enabled teachers to take ownership of their learning.

• An extremely useful bank of ideas and classroom examples has been developed and will continue to grow. See two examples here. Another example (i-pads) is in the comment of this Resource.

• Teachers were surveyed again using the ICT PD Cluster Self-Assessment Rubric Nat. Goal 1 - Key Competencies and there was a marked improvement. The average had moved from Level 2 to level 3 "School personnel have unpacked key competencies and can identify connections and e-learning opportunities across all areas of the curriculum.", with many teachers rating themselves at level 4 - "Key competencies are a component of class work and students are developing awareness of their importance.  Activities incorporating e-learning are designed with key competency development in mind.  Teachers can articulate how key competencies are developed in their programme. Teachers model key competencies in their teaching.". There were still a few teachers who felt they we are at the lower end of the scale.

What Are Our Next Steps?
This is an ongoing process, the issue was identified in December 2010 so we have only been working on this for a few months, we hope to see continued growth in this area and will continue to monitor the situation. In addition we will:

• Continue to add to the cluster wiki pages on use of ICTs to support the KCs.
• Make use of ICTs to support the Key Competencies a focus for:

* Junior and Senior teacher network days
* Our Waihi Wired workshops afternoon
* Our cluster mini-conference
* Staff meetings led by lead teachers



  • Robbie McGougan

    Puppet Pals HD on iPad - ICT Key Competencies Links

    At Waihi East Primary School a year 5/6 class is studying 'Matariki' with a view to performing a myth or legend relating to 'Matariki' in a school show near the end of term 2 2011. Our Arts drama focus is - Level 3 Achievement Objective: Developing Ideas: Initiate and develop ideas with others to create drama. Specific Learning Outcomes selected for Assessment: Students will perform a drama including their understandings of Matariki (whakapapa, the land, the stars) in the Production. We are linking key competencies with this 'Matariki' unit they are: 'Participating and Contributing' and 'Relating to Others'.

    An ICT learning experience that links with these 'Key Competencies' is outlined below:
    We listened/watched a movie of the 'Creation Myth' to familiarize ourselves with the story line and characters. Next we used Puppet Pals HD on the iPad to re-enact the myth or legend. Link with Key Competencies - 'Participating and Contributing' working together in a group to draw the characters in the myth and to rehearse each persons speaking parts. Key Competency - 'Relating to Others' students behaved appropriately during rehearsal having turns, encouraging each other to use good character voices. Below is one of our Puppet Pals HD Creation Myths.

    Submitted by -Robbie McGougan - Teacher - Rm 3 Waihi East Primary School