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The Bridge newsletter 2 180117

Irish Medium Schools

Irish Medium Schools Gather to Hone Their Transition Focus Cruinniú na agus aistriú Irish Medium Schools from the North West and Belfast met at Fortwilliam recently to share good practice in transition between KS2 and KS3. Many of the teachers from the Derry, Strabane and Belfast schools have attended the CPD Transition Project’s training days over the past two years. Representatives from Gaelcholáiste Dhoire, Susan Ui Mhianáin and Connla Ó Coinn gave presentations on their transition work with partnership schools. Connla Ó Coinn, Numeracy Coordinator at Gaelcholáiste Dhoire, Dungiven stressed the importance of differentiation in the classroom. “The pupils need to have different goals, and we need to have established curricular goals cross-phase,” he said. Mr Ó Coinn highlighted the importance of sharing schemes of work with partner primary schools which would help to avoid re-teaching. “This is particularly important for the more able students who get bored if this happens. Differentiation is key to ensuring that students are experiencing a continuum in their learning,” he said stressing this would have a positive impact on standards. Mr Ó Coinn emphasised the value of using common mathematical terms cross-phase. “There are limited chances of using mathematical language outside the classroom,” he said. A dictionary of key mathematical terms operating cross-phase would ensure that the students were using the correct version in Irish. This dictionary could also be taken home to parents. “This would ensure that the correct mathematical language is being used, which will minimise misunderstanding,” he added. Susan Ui Mhianáin, Senior Teacher and Literacy Co-ordinator at Gaelcholáiste Dhoire outlined the school’s partnership approach to developing a bridging unit between the two stages. She also referenced the importance of reviewing schemes of work and seeing samples of pupils’ work cross-phase so that planning for the continuum can take place, which reduces overlap. Mr Ó Coinn said that Growth Mindset and the use of the power of ‘Yet’ from the CPD Project training days had been adopted into classroom practice in his school. The Vice-Principal of Coláiste Feirste, Belfast Mr Micheal Mac Giolla Ghunna is eager to build on the benefits of transition partnerships between Irish medium schools. Primary pupils in the Belfast area will have an annual opportunity to experience what life is like in a post-primary setting at Blas den Choláiste on the 14 December at Coláiste Feirste. “This will be a good opportunity for teachers to develop their transition partnerships further,” Mr Mac Giolla Ghunna said. The Principals and teachers worked in three numeracy and five literacy focus groups at the Fortwilliam day. It was agreed that working on transition would offer opportunities to share currently limited resources and to observe colleagues in the classroom. It was also thought that the practice of social conversation could be discussed and planned further to ensure continuity between the key stages. Including parents in the transition process was seen as important by the groups, a suggestion was made that PTE and PTM results should be shared with parents with an accompanying booklet, to assist in understanding the data. The creation of bridging units to ensure that learning is retained over the summer months was a popular idea in many of the focus groups. Tháinig Gaelscoileanna ón Iarthuaisceart agus ó Bhéal Feirste le chéile ag Dún Liam ar na mallaibh le dea-chleachtas a roinnt maidir le haistriú idir EC 2 agus EC 3. Bhí go leor de na múinteoirí ó na scoileanna i nDoire, an Srath Bán agus Béal Feirste i láthair ag na laethanta traenála FPG a chuireadh ar fáil ag an Tionscnamh Aistrithe le dhá bhliain anuas. Rinne ionadaithe ó Ghaelcholáiste Dhoire, Susan Uí Mhianáin agus Connla Ó Coinn, cur i láthair ar an obair aistrithe atá idir lámha acu le scoileanna comhpháirtíochta. Chuir Connla Ó Coinn, Comhordaitheoir Uimhearthachta ag Gaelcholáiste Dhoire, Dún Geimhin, an-bhéim ar an tábhacht a bhaineann le difreáil sa seomra ranga. “Ní mór spriocanna éagsúla a bheith ag na daltaí agus tá gá le spriocanna curaclaim aontaithe trasna na n-eochairchéimeanna,” ar sé. Chuir an tUasal Ó Coinn béim, fosta, ar an luach a bhaineann le scéimeanna oibre a roinnt le bunscoileanna comhpháirtíochta le go seachnófar ateagasc. “Tá sé seo tábhachtach ach go háirithe do na daltaí is cumasaí a éiríonn dubh dóite má tharlaíonn sin. Is í an difreáil an eochair a chinntíonn go mbeidh na daltaí ag dul i dtaithí ar chontanam ina bhfoghlaim,” ar sé agus bhéimnigh sé go n-imreodh sé seo tionchar dearfach ar chaighdeáin. Chuir an tUasal Ó Coinn béim ar an luach a bhaineann le téarmaíocht mhatamaitice choiteann trasna na gcéimeanna a úsáid. “Is teoranta na deiseanna a bhíonn ann le teanga na Matamaitice a úsáid taobh amuigh den seomra ranga,” ar sé. Chinnteodh foclóir ina mbeadh chroíthéarmaí matamaitice agus a bheadh ag feidhmiú thar na heochairchéimeanna go mbeadh na daltaí ag baint úsáid as an leagan cruinn i nGaeilge. Thiocfadh an foclóir a thabhairt abhaile chuig tuismitheoirí fosta. “Dhéanfadh sé seo cinnte de go bhfuil an teanga mhatamaitice chruinn in úsáid, rud a laghdódh míthuiscint,” a lean sé. Mhínigh Susan Uí Mhianáin, Múinteoir Sinsearach agus Comhordaitheoir Irish Medium teachers meeting at Fortwilliam, Belfast. Connla Ó Coinn 10 - The Bridge

nGaelscoileanna mar aidhm Litearthachta ag Gaelcholáiste Dhoire cur chuige comhpháirtíochta na scoile chun nascaonad a fhorbairt idir an dá eochairchéim. Rinne sí trácht fosta ar an tábhacht a bhaineann le hathbhreithniú ar scéimeanna oibre agus le breathnú ar shamplaí oibre na ndaltaí trasna na n-eochairchéimeanna, ionas gur féidir go mbeidh pleanáil ann le haghaidh an chontanaim, rud a laghdaíonn forluí. Enniskillen Schools Strive for Seamless Transition Through Joint Data Focus Dúirt an tUasal Ó Coinn gur glacadh le Meon an Fháis (Growth Mindset) agus úsáid ‘The power of ‘Yet’, ó na laethanta traenála Thionscnamh CPD, i gcleachtas seomraí ranga ina scoil. Bhí fonn ar Leas-Phríomhoide Choláiste Feirste, Béal Feirste, Micheál Mac Giolla Ghunna, tógáil ar na buntáistí a bhaineann le comhpháirtíochtaí aistrithe idir Gaelscoileanna. Beidh deis bhliantúil ag páistí bunscoile i gceantar Bhéal Feirste dul i dtaithí saol i suíomh meánscoile ag Blas den Choláiste ar an 14 Mí na Nollag. “Deis iontach a bheidh ann do mhúinteoirí a gcuid comhpháirtíochtaí aistrithe a fhorbairt níos mó,” arsa an tUasal Mac Giolla Ghunna. D’oibrigh na príomhoidí agus na múinteoirí i dtrí fhócasghrúpaí uimhearthachta agus cúig fhócasghrúpa litearthachta ag an lá i nDún Liam. Comhaontaíodh go gcuirfeadh an comhoibriú ar aistriú deiseanna ar fáil le háiseanna a roinnt agus le bheith ag breathnú ar chomhghleacaithe sna seomraí ranga. Pléadh fosta go dtiocfadh nós an chomhrá shóisialta a phlé agus pleanáladh a thuilleadh le leanúnachas idir na heochairchéimeanna a chinntiú. Ba é tuairim na ngrúpaí go raibh tábhacht ag baint le tuismitheoirí sa phróiseas aistrithe, rinneadh moladh gur chóir torthaí PTE agus PTM a roinnt le tuismitheoirí mar aon le bileog in éineacht leo, le cuidiú leo na sonraí a thuiscint. Smaoineamh coitianta i measc na bhfócasghrúpaí ná cruthú nascaonad lena chinntiú go gcaomhnaítear an fhoghlaim i míonna an tsamhraidh. Cross-phase teachers work on data. Louie Burns and Dylon Webb P7 pupils at Enniskillen Integrated Primary School. Enniskillen Integrated Primary School and Erne Integrated College placed data exchange at the core of their transition action planning so successfully that measures are underway to expand the information being transferred between the two schools. The schools identified data sharing as a means to inform and reinforce teacher planning to ensure each child’s transition is as smooth as possible, thereby accommodating the learning continuum. Enniskillen Integrated Primary School‘s Principal, Mrs Adele Kerr explained that the objective of the schools’ transition planning in 2015-2016 was for the GL Digital assessment pack to be implemented in both schools, to facilitate information transfer and collaborative planning. Mrs Kerr had already invested in the GL Digital Assessment pack, which uses CAT4, PTM, PTE, Baseline, Baseline Progress and PASS attitudinal measure to provide a detailed profile of each pupil’s learning needs and strengths. Her decision to incorporate the GL Digital Assessment measures followed a process of self-evaluation at her school, which identified the need for a more coherent picture to be extracted from the data so that planning could be more specifically aligned to pupils’ learning needs. The data is used by class teachers to collaboratively review each teaching group; prioritising pupils’ learning deficits and providing evidence of the need for further testing and intervention. This monitoring of pupils’ needs facilitates ‘Precision Planning’ where the planning is targeted directly at topics where the pupils need help. Erne Integrated College’s, successful implementation of GL Digital Assessment was led by Senior Teacher, Mr Andrew Kerr. “The PTM and PTE scores of the current Year 8 students were successfully transferred and their new teachers began working on planning for their needs in Key Stage 3 prior to their arrival,” he said. “The mathematics subject area has requested more information and the transition Action Plan for this year is focused on transferring the complete PTM and PTE profiles for next year,” Mr Kerr added. Erne Integrated College has incorporated the data into SIMS Assessment Manager which facilitates the sharing of data with all teachers and is now an integral part of their target setting and review process. Susan Ui Mhianáin Principal of Erne Integrated College, Jimmy Jackson-Ware commented that the use of PTM and PTE for precision teaching will have an impact across the entire curriculum as all subject teachers will have a greater understanding of their students and will be able to model support strategies to meet the individual needs of students. The Bridge - 11

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