Practicum Assessment

MSpecEd/MDisStud

Name of student:Leah Gillespie
Student number:45260990
Supervising teacher:Linda Kaye

Practicum start date:27/03/2018
Practicum end date:03/05/2018
Number of days:8
Agency/School:Gymea Bay PS Vision Support Team
Course code:
Block:1
Created:01/05/18
Last modified:04/05/18

Plan for and Implement Effective Teaching and Learning

1. Establish school student needs

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • demonstrates the ability to interpret the physical, social and cognitive implications of vision impairments using clinical and functional vision reports
  • completes learning media and literacy assessments to guide teaching and learning
  • uses a range of assessment strategies to establish the learning strengths and needs of individual school students with vision impairment, including school students with deafblindness or vision and additional/multiple disabilities (this may include undertaking informal and formal, diagnostic, formative and summative assessments or interpretation of existing records)
  • uses a range of data collection methods and understands how reports provided from other agencies support planning
  • uses functional assessment tools
  • demonstrates an understanding of the importance of collaboration with the school learning support team when applying for disability-specific special examination provisions
Additional Comments:

As anticipated at this stage of her training, Mrs Gillespie’s ability to interpret the physical, social and cognitive implications of vision impairments using vision reports is at an emergent stage. She has, however, demonstrated the capacity to seek assistance from her Assistant Principal - Vision and her teaching colleagues, in addition to independently researching the implications of specific vision conditions. This ability will definitely strengthen with experience. She has certainly demonstrated the ability to effectively assess the needs of her students through a range of assessment strategies. She is able to perform independently yet is comfortable in seeking support and advice to assist with more complex situations.
Mrs Gillespie is able to draw upon her rich previous teaching experience to problem solve and plan appropriately.
She consistently maintains focus on the child and the teaching situation. She uses her time with admirable efficiency and shows a propensity to prioritise with supreme effectiveness. This is an essential skill in the role of an Itinerant Support Teacher - Vision.


2. Design and implement Personalised Learning Plans

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • consults and liaises with the school student, parents/carers and educational team to develop Personalised Learning Plan
  • sets learning goals that provide achievable challenges and maintain high expectations for all school students with vision impairments
  • implements SMART (Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely) goals for individual school students with vision impairments that comply with curriculum requirements
Please provide a comment relating to the school student’s ability to link goals from the Personalised Learning Plan to individual lesson goals and to record specific examples and evaluate the school student’s achievement of the goals.

This is a particular strength of Mrs Gillespie's. She has a strong background in Special Education, and her ability to establish, implement and evaluate appropriate SMART learning goals, with consultation from all stakeholders, is exemplary.


3. Plan, structure and sequence learning programs

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • effectively plans and implements teaching and learning programs that engage school students and support their learning needs in the following areas of the Expanded Core Curriculum:
    • print or dual media literacy development (Focus school student 1, Prac block 1)
    • braille literacy development (Focus school student 2, Prac block 2)
    • enhancement of visual skills and visual functioning
    • orientation and mobility and physical abilities within the school environment
    • social-interpersonal skills (e.g. socially acceptable behaviour, self-confidence, and self-advocacy)
    • life skills (e.g. organisational, time management skills, and decision-making skills)
    • facilitates generalisation of skills across learning environment
Additional Comments:

Mrs Gillespie has demonstrated a sound knowledge and understanding of the Expanded Core Curriculum. Her recent training in Orientation & Mobility benefitted her students, and this will only be extended with further experience.
She was observed appropriately encouraging organisational, time management and decision-making skills - in her interactions with DB and BJ particularly - throughout this practicum experience.


4. Use teaching strategies/behaviours

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • implements teaching strategies and environmental modifications/adjustments to maximise the use of functional vision and to minimise the impact of vision impairment on school student learning
  • implements differentiated teaching and instructional strategies that promote skill development, problem solving, and critical thinking in individual school students
  • demonstrates competency in classroom management and implements behaviour management support for individual school students
  • demonstrates knowledge of the production and use of accessible materials including braille, large/clear print and electronic formats, tactile graphics. and audio-described materials
Additional Comments:

Mrs Gillespie's background in behaviour management and classroom management strategies is an area of strength. She has exhibited skills in the production of suitable accessible learning materials in alternative formats which is commensurate with those at Graduate level.


5. Evaluate and improve teaching programs

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • collaborates with class or subject teachers to develop adjustments to teaching programs or to develop individualised disability-specific programs
  • demonstrates knowledge of strategies that can be used to evaluate and improve teaching methods and learning programs, including review of feedback from school students, and parents/carers and school student’s assessment data
  • monitors school student’s use of skills learned and uses specific procedures to further enhance school student’s skills (incidentally and/or in specific sessions)
Additional Comments:

This area is a forte amongst Mrs Gillespie's skills. Collaboration with school personnel, students and parents/carers is of the highest calibre. She constantly reviews the efficacy of her pedagogy and adjusts according to student need.


6. Engage parents/carers in the educative process (where relevant)

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • demonstrates professional practice and inclusive strategies by working collaboratively with parents/caregivers, class and subject teachers, learning support teams, multidisciplinary teams and relevant agencies to improve teaching, learning and support for school students
  • establishes and maintains rapport with school students and their parents/caregivers through active and constructive listening techniques
  • communicates with parents/carers about their school student’s learning and well-being in an effective, respectful sensitive and confidential manner
  • writes informative notes/reports on school student’s achievements for parents/carers
Additional Comments:

Mrs Gillespie has shown the ability to rapidly establish a successful rapport with the students with whom she is working, and she communicates respectfully and professionally with all school personnel and parents. Her record keeping is meticulous and evidence-based.


Create and Maintain Supportive and Safe Learning Environments

7. Support school student participation

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • demonstrates inclusive and positive interactions to engage and support school students in meaningful learning activities
  • promotes school student’s development of age-appropriate social interaction with their peers
  • supports school student’s responsibility and independence for learning
  • identifies and implements reasonable adjustments to the curriculum, teaching methods and the learning environment to support school student’s full participation in the life of the school
  • ensures safe, responsible and ethical use of ICT

Additional Comments:

Mrs Gillespie has modelled appropriate positive interactions for the students' peers and their teachers. She has encouraged age-appropriate interactions and supported the students' independence, providing clear and specific feedback to support their learning journey.

8. Manage technology effectively

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • implements teaching strategies for selecting and using mainstream and assistive/access technologies and optical devices that facilitate school student’s learning and research skills
  • supports school student’s responsibility and independence for technology
  • select appropriate technology for school student’s needs

Please provide a comment on the student’s ability to manage access technology

There have been limited opportunities for Mrs Gillespie to demonstrate these skills during this practicum experience. The Assistive Technology options to which she had access included the Prodigi Connect 12 and the iPad. She demonstrated an ability to independently research these pieces of equipment, plan effective lessons utilising them and successfully instruct students in their use. She is developing her knowledge of iPad Accessibility features. She performed above the level expected at this stage.

Assess, Provide Feedback and Report on Student Learning

9. Provide specific feedback to school students on their learning

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • demonstrates effective consultation with school students and strategies to provide specific feedback for achievement in targeted areas/goals for sessions
Additional Comments:

Effective feedback is a cornerstone of successful teaching and Mrs Gillespie demonstrated strong skills in this area.

10. Report on school student’s achievement

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • evaluates school student’s learning to modify teaching practice
  • uses appropriate oral and written reporting skills to record school student’s progress in relation to SMART goals
  • uses a range of strategies to provide targeted feedback based on an informed and timely judgment of each school student’s needs in order to progress learning
  • interprets school student assessment data, including assessment reports from the health, medical, educational and allied health professionals
Additional Comments:

Mrs Gillespie is able to reflect on her teaching practice and adjust her strategies accordingly. She demonstrated a repertoire of appropriate strategies and maintained effective record-keeping. She is very much "in tune" with students' learning and makes sound judgements based on formative assessments in order to progress their learning. She meticulously reports on students' progress, in both oral and written formats. Her previous background in a Special Education setting enables her to skilfully interpret reports from health, medical, educational and allied health agencies.

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Engage Professionally with Colleagues, School Students, Parents/ Caregivers and the Community

11. Engage professionally

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • works collaboratively with other staff to increase awareness of school student’s needs.
  • uses interpersonal skills to communicate effectively and ethically with school students, families, colleagues and community members
  • complies with relevant legislative, administrative and organisational requirements/policies
  • demonstrates understanding of the importance of regular professional dialogue between educational team members supporting individual school students
Additional Comments:

Mrs Gillespie's ability to work collaboratively, respectfully and professionally with all staff sets her apart from peers in this role as an Itinerant Support Teacher - Vision. During her practicum experience, she participated in a Review Meeting for a student with complex support needs. Her interpersonal skills are of the highest order. She has an in-depth knowledge of the relevant legislative, administrative and organisational policies. Her commitment to regular professional dialogue has been exceptional and her understanding and execution of the role is extremely impressive.

Applying Theory to Practice

12. Engage in profession learning

  • Not Achieved
  • Beginner
  • Advanced Beginner
  • Graduate
  • Above Graduate Level

For example:

  • demonstrates application of professional learning from current studies to improve practice
  • demonstrates application of professional learning from recent practicum to improve practice
  • reflects on professional practice and demonstrates ability to change performance based on feedback from other professionals, review of their own teaching and school student’s performance in relation to learning goals and engagement
  • demonstrates willingness to engage with other staff (particularly classroom teachers) to transfer specialist knowledge and experience relating to school student’s sensory impairment needs e.g. explains suitable adjustments to classroom teachers, teacher aides etc.
  • can identify areas Aspirations following review of their digital session
Please provide a comment relating to the student’s ability to demonstrate application of theory into practice:

Mrs Gillespie demonstrated an ability to recommend suitable adjustments to classroom teachers in a gentle and professional manner, which was observed to be very well-received. She acknowledged that the student is the teacher's responsibility and she supported the teachers in a professional, engaging manner. This can be a difficult area to navigate and she managed it with aplomb. She effectively integrated her new professional learning into her teaching practice. She demonstrated an ability to reflect on her teaching practice (as all good teachers do) and make adjustments according to student progress and feedback from colleagues. She displayed an openness to constructive feedback, and implemented suggested strategies into her teaching practice, to the benefit of her students.

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Do you consider that the Student is at risk of failing to achieve “Graduate level” by the end of their overall Practicum experience? No

Final Summary Statement – Student’s overall performance during this practicum:

Mrs Gillespie displayed an ability to coherently apply and integrate theoretical concepts into her practice. She routinely and effectively applied her new professional learnings to improve her practice and she demonstrated her ability to reflect on her teaching, based on discussion and evaluation from her Supervising Teacher. She liaised competently and effectively with relevant staff and made appropriate adjustments in teaching strategies and resources to the benefit of her students. She demonstrated a strong understanding of students' needs and selected appropriate technology. Mrs Gillespie encouraged and supported students' responsibility and independence in the use of appropriate technology. Her teaching strategies facilitated student learning. She showed that she was able to maintain and develop her knowledge of current research and was able to link this with effective practice. There is no doubt she will make an effective and valued contribution to this field.

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