Student Led Conference
provides opportunities for student reflection and goal setting in relation to
all areas of learning. This year, in my year 3 classroom, I used the PYP
attitudes to provide a backdrop for this type of selfassessment; specifically
in relation to Mathematics.
Phase One: Connection
Initially, students were
given a chance to reflect on the attitudes and how they relate to Mathematics.
As a focus question, students were asked:
“What would these attitudes
look like in a maths lesson?”
Discussion was rich and
varied. Student comments included the following:
·
If you’re
enthusiastic about maths, you can’t wait to start working on a problem
·
Curiosity means
asking questions and going deeper
·
Commitment looks
like sticking with difficult problems and not going straight to you for help
·
Some of the
attitudes are connected. Like, if you’re confident in maths, you’re going to be
enthusiastic about it
Interestingly, some students
had questions that others answered. For example:
Student A: “I don’t think
empathy is really relevant in maths. I mean, how can you show empathy?”
Student B: “Actually, I
think I can show empathy by helping others who don’t get it.”
This discussion really
helped students to make connections beyond playground examples of the
attitudes. Often students in my class explain the attitudes as play based
intentions or more generally in relation to their learning. For example, “I
show integrity by being honest about my behaviour.”
Phase Two: Selfassessment
Following initial
discussions, students were asked to consider an attitude they felt they have
consistently demonstrated in relation to mathematics learning. At first
hesitant, students became more vocal as individuals shared their reflections.
Students were encouraged to provide examples and evidence of their attitudes.
Examples included:
·
I have always
shown independence because I like working on tough problems by myself
·
I am confident
at maths
·
I cooperate
during group tasks
Students recorded their attitudinal
strengths and this led naturally into consideration of areas for improvement.
Students were asked to identify an attitude they would need to more
consistently demonstrate during maths lessons as well as describe what this
would look like during the lesson.
Examples of most attitudes
were represented and included:
appreciation

supporting others in their different
approaches and strategies

confidence

working on fluency at home so I can
be more confident at school

enthusiasm

talk positively about my maths
abilities

commitment

setting and achieving goals

creativity

trying to solve problems in more than
one way

cooperation

working more productively in groups
and listening to others’ ideas

tolerance

working with my head down for the
whole lesson even when problems are difficult

empathy

helping others to understand when
they don’t

Phase Three: Evaluation
As a oneoff exercise, this
series of experiences would have had little long term benefit. With that in
mind, we have revisited these goals throughout the year. My lesson structure is
mostly as follows:
Warm up


Presentation of task


Attitudinal
goal revisiting

What
is your goal?

Students attempt task


Student sharing


Consolidating tasks


Closure

Summary
Students were able to
confidently explain their goals and attitudes to parents during Student Led
Conference. I have noticed improved attitudinal change in the cohort generally
and in particular with some students. Other benefits have included improved
understanding about the attitudes in relation to mathematics for both the
students and teacher. Students reported that it was an important process in
helping to improve their learning.
Kristie Gibson
Head of Year 3 (Curriculum)
Australian International
School Singapore
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