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Pasifika and e-Learning: Media gallery

Assessment and e-Learning

An Auckland Girls Grammar School Samoan language teacher explains how she combines e-Learning tools in her assessments to allow her students to achieve to their potential through the use of YouTube channels to film oral language assessments. This means that students are able to film their assessments without the time pressure or time constraints of timetabled classes as an example of ubiquitous learning.



The tools that we use in terms of recording the students, whether it’s assessments or learning activities, so they can reflect on how they did in things like interactions, or if they’re doing speeches or even if they’re just discussing different parts of a learning task. And so this helps us, you know, have a dialogue about where they think they could improve, teacher feedback to students and also students reflecting on themselves and their progress, it’s really good when we record the students at the beginning of a task, even though they may be reluctant to be recorded, and then they are able to look at how they have progressed by the time they are being assessed. And they are able to realize how far they have actually come in terms of learning.

Our faculty are looking at implementing the “My Portfolio” app for our students because for Samoan language and they and other languages there are a lot of assessments where they have to submit portfolios such as writing and interactions. We were introduced to this app and we feel it would be a great way for us to manage this a bit better but also for students to create and develop their portfolios in a way where they can do it off-site, in class, and are able to have the freedom to do it in an environment where they feel more comfortable. Students learn in different ways, not necessarily just Pasifika students, but students, different students learn in different ways, they process things in different ways, so it makes sense that they would be comfortable to be assessed or to submit their assessments through different formats.  And as long as we’re keeping within the standards, and their requirements, we have to be creative as teachers to look at different ways that students can submit things. And for them, as long as they are able to demonstrate that they have the skills, being creative in terms of whether they submit their contribution to a debate, or whether it’s something to do in terms of a cultural custom, so those things that I guess, enable students to have the freedom, to demonstrate that they have the knowledge and skills for a particular standard.

We’ve started to use more of YouTube and we’ve just recently found out how great that tool is in terms of how the flexibility for storage and also it gives the students the autonomy to be able to record at any time. So by having these types of tools and even their own devices, they are then able to in even their own time or even in an environment that’s a bit more comfortable for them, they can feel more at ease to demonstrate or to be assessed and to even be able to reflect on some of their actual assessments. And some of their answers are some of the best answers that we can’t always capture when they’re in a formal situation.

Great learning comes from discussions with the students where they can question things to do with their own life they don’t quite understand and their parents may not be able to explain to them, mannerisms, our customs, just lifestyle. One of the interesting issue that comes up with our school, with being a girl’s school is that the girl question a lot of the expectations and the roles between genders. SO as a young Samoan woman growing up in new Zealand and living in a Samoan family and environment there are a lot of issues that will come up with things that they will question and it’s really great to have that kind of dialogue in the classroom and they really appreciate it but also they feel comfortable and safe in that environment to question different issues or even different expectations in their lives.

Digi advisors and the Virtual Learning Network

A Pasifika teacher shares his story about the benefits of being involved in the Digi Advisor project and being involved in online communities of practice on the Virtual Learning Network.



The Digi Advisor project has allowed me to have regular face-to-face contact with a mentor which I found extremely useful because you can actually ask and discuss ideas a lot more closely when you have that face-to-face contact with your mentor as opposed to online discussion.  One of the new eLearning tools I was able to use this year, which I currently use, is the VLM. So using the St Pauls college group as a Homebase, it’s allowed me to join up with other groups, look at some of the questions that have been asked by different teacher around the country, posing my own questions it’s allowed me to interact with others and not only answer their questions but also have mine answered and to bring it back to the home base and bring it back to the St Pauls college group for discussion with my fellow colleagues.

One of the good things about the eLearning tools, particularly the VLN, is that it’s given me access to past and current research, and in terms of what people in and around the country are using and so some of the different avenues for different strategies and techniques in terms of dealing with not only Pasifika students but also students in general. So that’s allowed me to get ideas and also discuss ideas with teachers which I wouldn’t get the opportunity to just within my school.

So in terms of the projects the um things I will share with staff is I think one of the main things is the student voice. So what the project has allowed us to do is given us a forum for the boys to openly discuss their honest feelings about not just the teachers here but teachers in general and their feelings about the way the educations system is. Particularly student voice is one aspect I would share with staff. And also the eLearning tool, so the VLN. I think particularly for our school being predominantly Pasifika it’s definitely a useful tool to share with the staff, cause I know that a lot of them would have the same questions that are being discussed In those forums, but for some of them they wouldn’t know who to ask, so it’s definitely it definitely provides them with people to be able to ask those questions to.

Language enhancing the achievement of Pasifika |  Pasifika Education Plan |  Effective teaching for Pasifika students – Strategies for success |  Effective teaching for Pasifika students – Working with students |  Effective teaching for Pasifika students – Stories |  Pasifika giftedness |  Engaging with Pasifika parents, families, & communities