School Name: Seaquam Secondary
School District: SD#37 Delta
Inquiry Team Members: Cameron MacGillivary: firstname.lastname@example.org, Heather Pue: email@example.com, Ian Close: firstname.lastname@example.org, Jaskaran Dhanda: email@example.com, Lanz Singbell: firstname.lastname@example.org, Shayna Taffinder: email@example.com, Tracey Dempster: firstname.lastname@example.org, Brooke Moore: email@example.com, Zach Lund: firstname.lastname@example.org
Inquiry Team Contact Email: email@example.com
Type of Inquiry: NOIIE
Grade Levels: Secondary (8-12)
Curricular Area(s): Not applicable
Focus Addressed: Core competencies (for example, critical thinking, communication, problem solving), Formative assessment, Self-regulation
In one sentence, what was your focus for the year? How to help students develop more independence as self-regulating learners.
Scanning: We entered the Spiral having noticed that students often responded with disengagement once assigned a task – asking for help about what to do, rather than thinking about it themselves. They had trouble knowing what the assignments were asking them to do, so as a result, they planned for it ineffectively. Teachers felt like they were doing a lot of heavy lifting for students.
Focus: We were hoping that students would sink their teeth into their assignments, developing resilience and perseverance when doing challenging learning. We hoped they would become more self sufficient and directed.
Hunch: We had a hunch that we needed to teach learners to engage with a task and how to remain engaged, even when things got tough.
New Professional Learning: We found Butler, Schnellert and Perry’s Developing Self Regulated Learners very helpful. This was our core text. We also leaned on formative assessment research and Timperley’s thinking around cognitive engagement, as articulated when students answer the Big Three: What am I learning? How is it going? Where to next?
Taking Action: We made a visual tool out of the Strategic Action Cycle, to help us think about how we present assignments to learners. After using that for awhile we realized that the Big Three are a part of the conversation, so we adapted the visual to include the Big Three Questions.
Checking: When we use the Strategic Action Cycle poster in the minute to minute conversations with our learners, we notice that they start to internalize the language and the process of engagement. We also notice that they are better able to move through the process of completing an assignment with less calling on the teacher, because they “don’t know what to do”. As a result, when teachers do get asked questions, the questions show more intellectually rigorous engagement than before.
Reflections/Advice: We are curious about how we can share our learning with our broader school community, because we suspect that student learning would be significantly impacted if teachers across the grades shared the Strategic Action Cycle language and planned their teaching in such a way that they teach specific skills at each of the phases – specific to the phase and their discipline.