Towards the end of last year I mused over the nature of teacher reporting to parents.
My thesis (ooohhh, fancy word!) was based around the extremely stagnant nature of reports. That is, because we are only reporting to parents every half year, most of the time what we are putting in our reports is already out of date. Often by many months.
My post was inspired by this tweet from Miss D:
— Danielle Myburgh (@MissDtheTeacher) November 27, 2014
My post was also inspired by my son’s kindergarten and their regular posts on his Educa profile. Anyone with preschool children at an early childhood centre using Educa will know how fabulous it is when you read another story on how your child is learning on their own and with others.
Anyone who has seen Point England School in Auckland knows how well their students use blogging to record their learning. I was first shown these at a professional learning day back in the Easter holidays. As soon as I saw Blogger I started musing.
After musing on this for a few months and deciding on going down the Google Apps / Hapara route, I’ve also decided to begin using Blogger to report to parents in a similar way as my son’s kindy reported on his learning (he’s now at school so his next report is his 4-week one… I think…?).
Blogger allows parents, or anyone for that matter (brothers, sisters, grand-parents, overseas relatives etc), to sign up to follow the blog. Every time there is a post, they get an email alert. Alternatively people can subscribe via their RSS reader.
What’s in a learning story?
How I’ve structured my learning stories is very similar to how my son’s former kindy did.
- Outline what was observed.
- Point out what learning was happening.
- Suggest next steps for my teaching.
- Link the learning back to our school curriculum.
I am in my very early stages of this form of reporting to parents; it’s only been going this week! I do, however, feel rather enthused by the whole thing. What it’s done is made me really hunt out the authentic learning moments my students are having.
So far that’s four stories I’ve done this week involving eight of my twenty three students. We’ll see how this pans out.
I’m picking I’ll still have to churn out 23 old-fashioned reports come November…