In 2018, the team at Grovelands Primary School continued the implementation of our whole school policies and plans in Literacy and Numeracy. This included continuing the implementation of Literacy & Numeracy Blocks utilising the iSTAR model for lesson design. To inform this approach staff utilised collaborative opportunities to analyse school and system data, reflecting on student performance, and rigorously evaluating their planning and assessment practices. This was led by our Deputy Principal, Curriculum and Performance Development in collaboration with our Teacher-Leaders in Literacy and Numeracy. The Teacher- Leaders also mentored teachers across the school to lift skills and advance our curriculum priorities. Oral language and word problems in Mathematics were focus areas.
The Administration conducted classroom walkthroughs each term, with a focus on providing feedback to Teachers around lesson design. Teachers worked in Triads, conducting peer observations utilising Swivl technology to share and reflect on their practice, particularly the implementation of plenaries. Teachers at like levels met in groups using a case management approach to identify, monitor and assess student progress and assess the impact of classroom practices and programs. Collaborative planning was identified as a key element of successful implementation of school programs and practices.
The implementation of EALD Progress Maps continued on a ‘needs’ basis. It is evident that a school wide approach is required, including resourcing and PL, and this is a priority for 2019. Our whole school approaches to the explicit teaching of oral language and phonics continue to be a focus, as identified through our data collection. Our strategic direction in our operational plan for Literacy in 2019 reflects these priorities, with funding and resources provided to meet these needs.
Our Writing data indicates a need for significant improvement, and the implementation of an evidence-based, whole school approach. The Year 3/4 team embarked on a trial of the ‘Talk 4 Writing’ program, and the data collected indicated great improvement over a short period of time. All staff engaged in an information session, with endorsement of the program as a whole school approach achieved. Training for all staff in ‘Talk 4 Writing’ will occur in 2019.
The need for improved whole school data is ongoing. The school has elected to implement Progressive Achievement Testing (PAT) assessments in 2019 in Maths, Reading and Grammar & Punctuation. This data will supplement teacher judgments, NAPLAN and other data that is collected to enable teachers to make better and more targeted decisions about planning, teaching and assessing.
To promote Literacy across the school, several events were conducted in 2018. These included Literacy Month, Book Week, and National Simultaneous Storytime.