Practicum Assessment

MSpecEd/MDisStud

Name of student:Tara Hearn (Tasker)
Student number:3252001
Supervising teacher:Ana Levar

Practicum start date:17/10/2018
Practicum end date:08/11/2018
Number of days:8
Agency/School:Ruse Public School
Course code:
Block:
Created:05/12/18
Last modified:14/12/18

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:

Tara demonstrates sound understandings of collecting data, consulting with colleagues, and using a range of strategies to gather information. I was able to discuss special provisions for exams with her, and how this needs to be part of a collaborative model. She articulated clear and appropriate strategies for being part of the school's Learning Support Team on a consistent basis.


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.

Tara uses all the information she has collected from observations, vision reports, and discussions with colleagues, to set realistic goals that are also mindful of high expectations. Her evaluations focus on how goals have or have not been met, along with directions for future lessons. It was challenging for Tara and the co-operating teacher to do this in such a restricted time frame.


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:

Tara's teaching and learning experiences were mostly effective, and they included all aspects of the Expanded Core Curriculum as much as was possible in the short time frame allocated to the practicum. Tara needs to be mindful of discussing the lesson well in advance with co-operating teachers, checking the equipment to be used, and managing time in a lesson. It is also important to remember the role of the ISTV and to know when to step back and encourage students be independent learners.
Extended opportunities to implement, evaluate, take feedback on board, and follow up would have been beneficial for stronger understandings of the Vision teachers' role but this was beyond Tara's control.


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:

Tara demonstrates emerging knowledge of differentiated teaching strategies to suit individual students. This was reflected in her lesson plans and in her conversations with me and with colleagues. She asked pertinent questions, communicated her knowledge of Braille production, large print, tactile graphics, audio, and digital materials, and discussed various situations where specific formats may work best for her focus child. She showed interest in the development of Braille skills in the early years, and in the resources we have developed to support effective teaching and learning experiences in this area. I would encourage Tara to reflect on the specific role of a Vision Support teacher, especially where boundaries sometimes blur with the classroom teacher or learning support. For example, when a student has a group task to work on in class, the ISTV needs to remove themselves from the activity and observe from a distance rather than join in and discuss lesson content.


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:

Tara needed to communicate some lesson plans in advance, especially for classes requiring a range of resources and structured, sequenced steps, such as cooking. It is important to talk through the lesson with the classroom teacher in order to be fully cognisant of the steps, the materials, and the student's prior knowledge and skills prior to the actual lesson. Tara accepts feedback from co-operating teachers to make appropriate adjustments to her plans and has reflected on lessons, and set goals for both herself and the student.


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:

Tara demonstrated respectful, professional, and ethical conduct in all communications with staff, students, and families. She engaged with students in a friendly, pleasant manner and they enjoyed interacting with her.


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:

Tara shows emerging understandings appropriate for a Graduate and will continue to develop her awareness of when and how to effectively scaffold independence by gradually withdrawing support, rather than staying with the student when vision support is not required. There were some situations where Tara needed to step back rather than step in, and a longer practicum would have given her the opportunities to reflect, take feedback on board, and refine those skills in the classroom. She articulates a range of reasonable adjustments that are age appropriate, and her interactions are consistently positive and inclusive. Tara was aware of the need for support in practical classes such as PE and Science where student safety is paramount.

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

Tara showed interest in the BrailleNote and JAWS, the two main accessible technologies currently being used by our students who are blind. Both students are proficient and independent users of these technologies so Tara was limited in what she could do regarding selecting appropriate technologies. We were, however, able to discuss a range of other students and devices, and identify appropriate options.

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:

Tara provided suitable feedback to students as needed, and in the context of the lesson. She identified future directions that would support learning and skill development. It is important to remember that Vision Support teachers need to give feedback only on the Expanded Core Curriculum, and not on syllabus/ curriculum content.

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:

The brevity of the practicum prevented Tara from doing this is in detail but she showed competency in the tasks undertaken. Further experience will give her more opportunities to extend and refine these skills. Tara uses a wide range of strategies, and discusses them with colleagues, when collecting and interpreting data. She asks relevant questions and uses the information to develop a stronger understanding of the student. Feedback provided to students is positive, specific, and encouraging.

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:

Tara shows strong understandings of Codes of Conduct and legislative requirements that align with Quality Teaching Standards and the Department of Education policies. She is consistent in communication with all members of the team. In all professional communications it is essential to remain focused on the specific subject matter. Tara shows evidence of working to improve her knowledge and skills through consultation with experienced Vision Support teachers. Debriefing with colleagues is a beneficial strategy outside the classroom situation. I would encourage Tara to collaborate with an experienced Vision teacher in a mentoring capacity to continue building her skills in this area.

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:

Tara showed strong interest in all students and was actively engaged in learning about their strengths and needs. She was keen to apply learning from her studies and from her previous practicum, using prior knowledge to build on her own learning needs and strengths. Tara identifies and critiques her learning and teaching, and is professional in accepting feedback.

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:

Tara demonstrates a range of positive attributes conducive to being a Vision Support teacher. She clearly enjoys working with the students and is interested in learning how to best support them. Tara participated in several classes such as maths, science, PE, cooking, and history which enabled her to learn more about how reasonable adjustments vary across contexts, and how a student may require a high level of vision support in one class but minimal or no support in another. Tara shows clear understandings of the Vision teacher's role as an advocate for students, and as a member of a collaborative team.