2022 Learning Spotlights

2022 OPS Learning Spotlights - In Term 3 and 4 newsletters we will be sharedsome of the exciting approaches to learning occurring in our teams.

Many of these spotlights link to learning which staff have been involved in as part of our staff professional learning - you can see more about this on our OPS Staff Professional Learning page.


Kiwi Learning Community

We are a team of six Year 0/1 classes located in Rooms 1, 2, 3, 23, 24 and 20.

This week’s 'Learning Spotlight’ focuses on…

  • High Expectations and quality learning experiences

  • A progressive and enabling curriculum

As a team we know that it is important to have high expectations for all students and quality learning experiences. We have been focusing on making learning accessible for all learning types through hands-on activities.

Last term we had loads of fun doing interactive activities about the Tainui waka and our local maungas. We grew kumara, made waka and wharemoes out of sticks- plus

lots more! The teachers even did some learning through our team role play for the children!

This term we are co-teaching in inquiry by giving the children another wide range of learning experiences. These include drama, music, art, collaborative games and STEAM challenges.

Every week classes get to try new activities in different spaces and with a different teacher from our team.

The children are enjoying working with other teachers, different friends and in new spaces. The teachers are loving getting to know all the Kiwi Learning Community better!

Student Voice:

“I like going into different classrooms because they have different activities.”

“We made bugs in Room 1. It felt smooth and I liked it. I made an insect.”

“I like it just because we have so much fun!”


Piwakawaka Learning Community

Piwakawaka Team - This team is made up of four Year 5 and 6 classes.

This week’s “Learning Spotlight’ focuses on…

  • Learning focused relationships supporting wellbeing and intrinsic motivation

Both the Tautua (Service) and the example of learning in different Maths groups support this focus.

Part of being a family, a unit, a team, a group is you do things to look after people, to encourage, to uplift, to lead, to check in, to include…

And when you do these things, you don’t expect anything in return…

“O le ala i le pule o le tautua” - the path to leadership is through service.

Our Piwakawaka learning community is learning that it is a gift to give service. We are enjoying giving back to the teachers and school that has given so much to us.

We have weekly meetings where we build strong mixed teams and plan service activities around the school.

A highlight for R14/22 students was pouring our teachers ice-cold water on World Teachers Day.

Homework task: make a cup of tea and a finger bowl to give tautua/service to an adult in your family.

Enzo: It made me happy that it made my mum feel special.

Emily baked beautifully decorated biscuits for the Piwakawaka teachers for their team meeting.

Student Voice…

“We found out that teamwork is hard!”

“You have to work together.”

“You have to communicate with each other.”

“If you don’t work together, you won’t achieve your goal.”

“It’s cool to give back to the teachers.”

Flynn: I liked working with the protractors and making angles, it was really fun.

Amelia: I liked working with different people.

Tiana: It was amazing because the rotation was fun and it was cool meeting different students.

Mikayla: I got to hang out with some of my friends that aren’t in my class.

L’Ryan: We were building stuff with multilink cubes and that was fun.


Kea Learning Community

We are a team of four Year 2 classes located in Rooms 10, 11, 12 and 13.

Kea Team iPad App Trial

This week’s “Learning Spotlight’ is a trial of software which supports learning in some different curriculum areas. It focuses on goal number 2 “OPS ākonga experience coherent pathways - (below) …

  • A progressive and enabling curriculum

  • High expectations and quality learning experiences.

Osmo in the Classroom

  • Over this term Room 12 has been trialling Osmo, an app based collaborative learning platform with the classroom iPads. The children are working together and individually on reading, maths, and creative drawing games. So far the drawing and story play has been most popular.

  • The app is able to take drawings from the children and animate them within the story. The app uses mirrors and the camera to see their creations, interacts with the learners, then gives them real time feedback. It has been exciting to try the new technology and think about how we can continue our collaboration as the Kea Learning Community continues to grow.


Kereru Learning Community

Kereru Team - This team is made up of three Year 4 classes.

Kereru team Collaborative Maths

Teachers in the Kereru Learning Community have collaboratively planned maths learning with a focus on challenging all learners and learning in multi level groups. Planning includes both the learning for the Kereru ākonga and ‘co-teaching’ strategies which will be used by the teachers.

This collaborative learning in the Kereru Learning Community focuses on both of the two goals (below) we are focusing on in 2022.

  • high expectations and quality learning experiences

  • utilising physical learning spaces,

  • developing shared high expectations and high trust for ākonga and

  • promoting ‘learner agency’ (also discussed in Week 3’s newsletter)

  • learning focused relationships

Maths starts with a ‘Provocation’ - an open ended maths problem planned for groups to extend and challenge their thinking. These tasks aim to integrate elements of fractions and measurement, which are the Kereru areas of focus of the term. The ‘problem’ is planned to be possible for any of the ākonga to participate in, what differs will be the strategy they use to solve it.

Ākonga at different Maths stages or levels will tackle the problem in different ways and use previously taught strategies to solve it.

By learning together, ākonga observe and are exposed to different approaches and strategies from each other. Ākonga at all different levels are challenged.

Teachers support the ākonga in solving the provocation and observe the strategies they are using.

Next ākonga are involved in Maths ‘Learning Labs

Teachers offer options for ‘learning labs’ available that day. The learning labs are based on student needs and next learning steps identified from teacher observation and assessments. The ākonga are encouraged to select the lab which will meet their needs or their next learning goal. The teachers are also closely monitoring this to ensure ākonga are being catered for and challenged…and where necessary, teachers will support ākonga to select the most appropriate Learning Lab for their needs.

One of the major benefits of this approach is that each of the three teachers is able to focus on only one group of learners with similar needs at this time. They can be focused on the similar specific learning needs of just one group.

The more flexible learning spaces in the Kereru Learning Community (the leased space under the yoga centre across the road from the hall) means this powerful learning is easier for teachers and ākonga. They can gather and move around the spaces easily, and teachers can observe and support ākonga in different spaces.

iPads are used to support learning and allow for the ākonga to independently extend and develop their maths learning and goals.

Student Voice:

Sabien, Theo, Louis, are all from different classes from within the Kereru Learning Community and were working together on an initial activity when they shared their thoughts…

“It’s good working with other people. Last time we worked together we were the first ones finished.”

“It's really fun learning with people who you have not learned with before.”

“It feels really good because you learn in different ways.”

“I think it's good, it's one big group - it helps our learning by working together when we want to, working with other people, which can help you get smart.”


Tui Learning Community

Tui Team - The Tui Team are a team of three Year 3 classes located in Rooms 7, 8 & 9.

The teachers identified that Room 6 is often an underused space right by their classes and have decided to utilise it to enhance learning opportunities for their ākonga. The teachers are encouraging the ākonga to call it a ‘Learning Space’ and use the words - ‘Our Tui Learning Community’ rather than Room 7, Room 8 or Room 9.

We are focusing on the importance of building the trust between kaiako and tamariki.

We have found the students across the Tui team supporting each other in different locations as they move across for collaborative writing and reading. We understand this is new for the students and teachers, and we are keen to refine our approach to improve student learning. The feedback we have received from our ākonga has been positive. The teachers all feel we are building strong relationships with our students across the team rather than just in their individual classes.

Student Voice:

Jack W - “It’s good having spaces because we work with other children across the Tui team. We also learn to use WE CARE”

Zara- “We get more space to work, not just a tight area”

James- ”We like to work independently as the teacher does not always interrupt you. We also see children supporting each other”

Jack- “We get to move and work in different spaces”

Emilee- ”The noise is much less. It helps us with our learning”

Mattis-”We meet more people and make more friends. We get more choices of activities”

Lachlan-”We can work on our own and take help from our friends”

Alice-”The teacher has more trust in the class”

Meika-”Moving around makes me feel good”

Namrata Ghadiyar - Tui Team Leader