Leadership Research: Vol 06, No 1. (2015)

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 25
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    Altered books as a form of student reflection about constructivist learning experiences
    (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 2015) Toth, Natasha Anne; Moll, Rachel
    Improving student motivation and engagement in learning curriculum outcomes has become an increasingly difficult task in the 21st century. The purpose of this study was to discover if using constructivist teaching strategies, such as student group work, differentiated instruction, inquiry-based learning strategies, and experiential learning would increase student motivation and engagement, opposed to when commercially scripted programs, such as Saxon Math and Reading Mastery were used to teach lessons. An integral part of constructivist learning is the development of student metacognition (student self-reflective practice). The students in the study created an altered book (an existing book altered to consider the learning and creativity of the student) to document their experiences and thoughts about different learning activities that took place throughout the school year. Altered books are a form of artistic journaling where a pre-existing book is reworked to provide a new surface where images (drawings, collage, photography, etc.) and writing are used to document the author’s reflection. The students’ altered books were interpreted at the end of the school year through qualitative data analysis to see what the books revealed about the participants’ engagement level and the ability of the participants to develop metacognition skills by reflecting on their learning. Kolb’s model of “Teacher as a Guide” and Thorpe’s “Theoretical Model of Reflection” were used as the basis for interpreting the metacognition and engagement level of the participants during learning activities based on constructivist methodology opposed to traditional teaching strategies.
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    Leading through the arts: an aesthetic leadership research project
    (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 2015) Boise, Wesley; Moll, Rachel
    This project was to engage in a reflective inquiry process exploring notions of student leadership in the context of an extra-curricular drama production in a British Columbia ‘offshore’ school in Bundang, South Korea. There are two key components: a film project, and accompanying documents including a literature review, reflections and implications. Research related to student leadership, drama as a subject, drama assessment and how drama can work in assistance with EL learners has been reviewed for the purpose of supporting a documentary style film produced at BIS Canada, a BC Offshore school in Korea. The documentary film followed an extraordinary group of ELLs that were involved in the creation of an extra curricular secondary school drama production. The creation process took place at BIS Canada from September 2014 to March 2015. Through interviews and candid observation, evidence of student leadership, achievement, growth, confidence and a sense of self was displayed through the medium of drama and captured in the documentary film. Reflection on this process and what can be gained through this method has been displayed. Another surprising result was a significant shift in the leadership style of the drama teacher/director in response to the desire to support the emergence of self-regulated student leaders.
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    New learning models: helping students learn about learning
    (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 2015) Mudge, Luke; Moll, Rachel
    The goal of this project is to outline a framework, and create models, that can be used by teachers to guide learners through the process of designing their own learning. This work presents a theoretical framework and practical model of learning in which “learning to learn” is intentionally and explicitly part of the learning process and outcomes. The goal is rooted in a desire to have students to learn about learning by designing their own learning. As students become involved in the learning design, they also take ownership of, and direct their own, learning. While students are active participants in the learning design in this model, this paper suggests that the role of the teacher is much more than passive facilitator and is intensified by the dual role of teaching content and teaching learning.
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    Challenges, as perceived by teachers, to learning outdoors
    (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 2015) Chantrell, Gary; Moll, Rachel
    Childhood in the twenty-first century is increasingly spent indoors. As a result, children today can face increased physical and socio-emotional health concerns. An approach to address these concerns is to support opportunities for teachers to integrate outdoor learning into their daily curriculum. Research into the challenges teachers face in taking students outside reveals two broad areas of concern: practical and philosophical. To help combat these challenges, I designed a website whose aim is to raise awareness of the benefits of learning outdoors, and to examine the barriers teachers face. Finally, it offers resources to help overcome challenges and barriers to outdoor learning. It is hoped that www.outdoors68.ca will act as a resource guide to teachers interested in outdoor learning.
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    Building a personal learner’s manual: students knowing themselves as learners
    (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 2015) Turney, Barbara; Moll, Rachel
    In this research, I explore the ways in which student reflections about themselves as learners grow in depth and in complexity, as they are encouraged to identify and articulate skills and characteristics that make up their “Personal Learner’s Manual” The purpose of this action research was to gain a better understanding of ways to support students in their development of a strong learner identity. The narratives were collected from monthly student reflections, weekly goal setting reflections and observations done by the researcher. This project involved 18 Grade 6/7 English students in a dual track English/French Immersion Elementary School in Northwestern British Columbia. Students were asked to set weekly goals and reflect on where their learning was going, how it was going, and where to next in their learning. Students were given the tool of eight characteristic traits and criterion to help them describe who they were as learners in different learning situations. The importance of being confident, industrious and risk taking were the most referred to by the students and what they felt they possessed or needed to acquire in becoming successful learners. Being compassionate and thoughtful were the least referred to in the students’ goal setting and reflections. Building a common language of characteristic traits and giving opportunities for students to explore these traits in different learning environments and reflect on their learning increased their ability to articulate and expand their repertoire of characteristics and skills as a learner over time.