Thursday, November 29, 2012

CBL Reflection

Let's Reflect!

Over the next few days I would like students to reflect on Challenge Based Learning in our classroom this term.

The following prompts will help you with this process.

The way you present your reflections is up to you- you may like to create a video, record audio, tell a story, write a blog post, make a Glog, the choice is yours!

I can't wait to see what you come with!

Miss Spink

Reflection Prompts:

Reflection Prompts

Understanding the Challenge

• Explain the big idea, essential question, and the challenge.
• Why is this important to you and your community?
• Who does the challenge impact?

Guiding Questions/Research

• What were the most valuable guiding questions?
• What kinds of surprises did you encounter during your research?
• What resources were the most valuable?

The Solution

• Describe the process your team went through to come to your solution.
• What things did you try that didn’t seem to work?
• Why do you think your solution will make a difference?

Executing the Solution

• How did you put your solution into action?
• How did you measure its effectiveness?
• What obstacles did you face during this process?


• What challenges did you face working as a team?
• How did your group utilize individual talents?
• What have you learned about collaboration?

Review of Your Work

• Could you have solved this challenge differently?
• What would you do differently if you were to take on this challenge again?
• What is one thing you learned that you will never forget?


• What did you learn during this process that you didn’t know before?
• How can you apply this process and/or your solution to other similar challenges 
in the world today?
• What skills did you learn that apply to other areas of your learning?

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Challenge Based Learning In Our Class

In Term 4 our 'Inquiry' topic is Increasing Understanding and Awareness About Asylum Seekers. Now the reason I put some quotation marks around inquiry was because (technically) this term we are not doing Inquiry. Instead of 'inquiring' we are finding a solution to a challenge. CBL stands for Challenge Based Learning. 
This way of learning gives us a more professional feel and it also helps that we each have modernised roles which can help give us skills for the future.

Here is our challenge video-

You can find an overview of our challenge here-

There are steps to progress from our challenge to a solution. The first thing is our guiding questions. There are two types of guiding questions. The first types are 'over the surface' questions (OTS). These are 'easy' questions that can be easily answered. The other type of questions are 'under the surface' questions. These usually require more research and have a more definitive answer. We all came up with questions and we divided them for each group.  We have formed four groups that are coming up with solutions. 

The names of the group are:

  • Asylum Savers
  • Asylum Helpers
  • Ocean Seekers
  • Seek the Asylums

I'm in Asylum Savers as a research librarian. Our group is making a PowerPoint to document our guiding questions.  After that they had to combine all of our information to create a solution that we can do by themselves. CBL is new for all of us so when we started we were a bit shaky.  It was very challenging but because we have one of the best teachers in the school, Miss Spink, she helped us off with all the basics and then we went off mostly by ourselves. To answer the guiding questions we participated in a range of guiding activities. Some of the guiding activities including watching videos from Behind the News and Go Back To Where You Came From, reading books (Home and Away by John Marsden was a stand out) and reading newspaper articles.

Like most other projects, this is taking a lot of time, but now Miss Spink has set a deadline so that should speed things up. We don't have much time to do this only just a few weeks left. We must post our progress on a website called Edmodo, that way Miss Spink knows what each group is up to. 

The stories we have heard in our research and the stuff Miss Spink has showed us in our guiding activities, are all sad and make us think about what is happening to asylum seekers. There was also a simulation Miss Spink found on the Go Back to Where You Came From website that freaked some of us out. It put us in the shoes of the asylum seekers, where something happened in Australia and we had to escape. We were deported back to Australia where the bill of the plane ride was going to be sent to us. Wasting $3000 to go to some unknown country and be forced to go back and we had to pay for it, during the simulation we lost all contact with our friends and family and had to pay illegal people smugglers to get us out of the country. We are so lucky that civil wars and violence that is happening in so many countries does not happen in Australia. 

Our group has come up with a solution to not only make people understand about the issues with asylum seekers but help them as well. We have organised a grocery drive and will be donating our items to the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre

By: Cheuk Yue

What is something new and interesting you have learnt about through CBL this term?

What do you like about having to solve a challenge?

What solution has your group come up with for our challenge?

What is one thing you want people to know that may help 'Increase understanding and awareness about asylum seekers? 

Monday, November 12, 2012

What Makes A Good Procedure?

Over the last few weeks, we have been working on procedure writing. Before we were able to write any type of procedure we were given the task of investigating exactly what makes a good procedure. We came up with a list of ideas as a class and were then challenged to come up with a way to show our understanding of procedure texts.

Most of us focussed on recipes as these are a popular type of procedural text. We are also working on developing a cooking demonstration DVD and recipe book!

Take a look at what we know about procedures-

By Tatenda and Aaron

By Kyla and Celine

By Makeelly and Chelsea

Why do you think procedural texts are important?

What kind of procedural texts have you written in the past?