We have had quite a few little chats about the learning dart board idea that came from one of the the students. It’s been interesting as the thoughts of the children have changed and developed over time and it has really shown how they have matured as learners throughout the year..
To begin with, we discussed whether we wanted to use the idea in the class and the overwhelming consensus was YES! This was because it allowed them to reflect visually, and they could use this on their blogs to help explain where they were at. They also thought it would show themselves and others the frequency with which they reflected, if every time they reflected they drew a dot. Lastly, the class thought that it would be useful to show progression, if you used arrows to show movement from feeling less to more confident about a learning intention.
In the end, they decided that a little copy of a dart board to have in their books each week was the best use of the idea. But then we got a comment on my blog:
What an amazing idea. If one was to put up a target that students could put their names on then students who need support could then see those who feel more confident and then approach them for support. Kids are amazing at coming up with innovative solutions and that takes the pressure off us as teachers and the whole learning experience becomes shared and collaborative. Give him a “thumbs up” from me or should that rather be a “bullseye”!
This prompted a whole new round of discussion, the end result of which was to have 4 large targets for each of the core areas of learning (reading, writing, maths and inquiry). These would go on the windows of the classroom so other teachers could steal the idea and use it in their classes too (these kids really understand how teachers are learners too and we all grow by sharing ideas). Each class member would have 4 laminated names which could be Velcro-ed onto each target, depending on how they were feeling about a subject. The point of having big targets that everyone could see, was so kids could give and receive help based on other people’s reflections and placement on the target.
I asked if you would feel bad about yourself if you were on the outer ring and others were further in. To which the children looked at me as if I had lost my mind. They didn’t feel this way at all because they all have different things to work on, if would allow them to get help from other people more easily and if they were on the bulls eye of the target all the time, it would mean the work wasn’t challenging enough anyway.