Cambridge Elementary 22-23

OUR CONTEXT

At Cambridge, we recognize our Strengths and Stretches.  We express our needs and seek help.

We understand that learning takes patience and time.

At Cambridge, we  know that challenges can be opportunities for growth.  We persevere in difficult situations.

We understand  that learning  involves recognizing the consequences of ones actions.

At Cambridge, we know that setting goals can both be motivating and help us to be purposeful.

We understand that learning requires the exploration of one's identity.

At Cambridge, we are kind and respectful.  We appreciate ourselves, others, the community and the land.

We understand that learning is holistic, reflexive, reflective, experiential and relational.  Learning is focused on connectedness, reciprocal relationships and a sense of place.

At Cambridge we have active family involvement.

We understand that learning involves generational roles and responsibilities.

OUR LEARNERS

Students who are personally aware and responsible take ownership of their choices and actions. They set goals, monitor progress and understand their emotions, using that understanding to regulate actions and reactions. They are aware that learning involves patience and time. They can persevere in difficult situations, and understand how their actions affect themselves and others. The core competencies of personal awareness and responsibility are embedded throughout the BC curriculum. Evidence of our learners competencies and development are provided below.

Our learners can express their learning needs, seek help and advocate for themselves.

Over the year our teachers have been building our students' confidence to enable them to seek help and to develop skills to be able to self advocate for their needs in their learning. Throughout the school year the teachers have seen an improvement in the students' abilities to problem solve and in their understanding of what they may need to help them learn better, such as noise cancelling headphones or one-on-one support from a peer or teacher.  In particular, teachers noticed an improvement in student learning in Math after their focused work on goal setting which included choosing a goal and creating a plan to reach that goal.  Students reviewed their progress on their goal and adjusted their plan, if needed, midway through.

Our learners understand that learning takes patience and time. They are developing strategies to persevere in their understanding of new concepts, different perspectives and  difficult situations.

Many of our classes have incorporated the use of morning meetings, regular check-ins, and community circles to help students to develop a better understanding of one another and themselves. They are provided opportunities to share their perspectives and to listen to other points of views. 

Our students are learning to understand their emotions and to manage their actions and reactions. They are learning to set a goal and to create a plan to achieve that goal.  Goal Setting Activity.pdf

Throughout the year our students have been using the Second Step digital program, as well as other goal setting tools,  to help them to develop goals and to understand their needs. Through Second Step, students have been learning to understand their emotions and have learned about strategies they can use to manage their actions and reactions. They are better able to understand the brain and the ways they can change their mindset to enable learning to take place. Through goal setting, students have considered the following:  their challenge, strategies to help them overcome their challenge, what they need to be successful (for example, actions/tools), a plan of action, and at a mid-point check-in, what's going well with their plan and what things they may need to adjust.  They then assessed whether their goals were successful and if not, what challenges they faced in reaching their goals.  As part of this work, our students have also been learning to have a growth mindset.


Our learners are learning to find purpose and motivation in their learning by learning about who they are as learners and understanding what they need to learn best. They are able to develop and plan goals for their learning.

Our students have been developing goals throughout the school year to help them better understand the type of learner they are and to understand what they need in order to learn best. Teachers have been learning about our learners through their goals, reflections, and discussions about their learning. Using core competencies and student  reflections, we have been able to support our students' goals and to understand their perceptions of who they are as learners.


OUR FOCUS

Each and every day our team of educators at Cambridge Elementary weave social emotional learning into their day-to-day lessons. Working with our students, we have been focusing on developing our student’s self-management, self-understanding, and goal setting skills. Using the core competency, Personal Awareness and Responsibility, we wanted our students to become personally aware and responsible individuals who are able to take steps to regulate their emotions, monitor their progress, to be able to set and adjust learning goals, and be able to recognize and advocate for their own rights.

Our team focused on students learning important skills to demonstrate personal awareness and responsibility through developing the ability to;

  • Express needs and seek help
  • Find purpose and motivation using goal-setting in the area of Mathematics to improve performance and confidence
  • Persevere in difficult situations
  • Understand that learning takes time and reflection
  • Understand that learning involves recognizing the consequences of one’s actions and that actions have consequences, both positive and negative.

Students’ reflections from the 21-22 school year guided us on our journey towards our focus on goal setting in Mathematics for the 22-23 school year. We have used the MDI (Middle Years Development Instrument) from two years ago, as well as various surveys from this year, to help us with gathering evidence from our student learners.

From the BC Curriculum Core Competency; “Students who are personally aware and responsible take ownership of their choices and actions. They set goals, monitor progress and understand their emotions, using that understanding to regulate actions and reactions. They are aware that learning involves patience and time. They can persevere in difficult situations, and understand how their actions affect themselves and others."

As part of our exploration of student learning, we compared the 2021 Grade 4 MDI results regarding Personal and Social Awareness and Responsibility to a 2022 and then 2023 Student Survey, asking the same questions.  This gave us a comparison of growth over three years. Below are samples of responses from our cohort with regards to self regulation (long term).

Below are collections of writing samples that exemplify our students’ learning experiences as they relate to Personal and Social Awareness and Responsibility as it pertains to long-term self regulation.

As part of our exploration of student learning, we compared the 2021 Grade 4 MDI results regarding Personal and Social Awareness and Responsibility to a 2022 Student Survey of students, asking the same questions.  Below are samples of responses from our cohort with regards to self regulation (short term)Below are collections of writing samples that exemplify our students’ learning experiences as they relate to Personal and Social Awareness and Responsibility as it pertains to short term self-regulation.

These surveys showed us that students were particularly focused on goal setting as it pertains to mathematics, which led us to focus on this area for the 22-23 school year.  We completed a survey at the start of our work on goal setting as well as at the end of the year of goal setting to gauge student's feelings toward Math and to see if goal setting could be linked to improvements in how they feel about Math.

Students were given the same survey twice during the 22-23 school year to gauge growth in their perceptions about Math. Below are the results of those surveys and comparison statements:






Overall the data collected indicated that student goal setting and planning improved student's Math scores as well as their confidence and overall feeling of readiness in Math.

Staff were also surveyed with regards to student growth over time:

Students completed a writing activity to summarize whether they thought goal setting was beneficial to their learning in Math.  Below are some of the statements they shared:



It is interesting to note that 18 students were randomly selected from 4 classes to complete this task.  Of those surveyed, only one felt that goal setting had not benefited them.  The writing of student #14 (shown below) outlines this lack of success in his/her case:

Overall, the data collected indicates that goal setting had a successful impact on student learning in the area of Math.

OUR NEXT STEPS

Working with our students we have been focusing on developing our student’s goal setting skills. Using the core competency, Personal Awareness and Responsibility, we wanted our students to become personally aware and responsible individuals who are able to take steps to regulate their emotions, monitor their progress, to be able to set and adjust learning goals, and be able to recognize and advocate for their own rights.  We have collected a variety of data over the past three years to inform us in regards to student progress.

We believe the data collected over the 2021-2023 school years tells us:

a) Students are beginning to understand their feelings and emotions.

b) Students are beginning to name, explain, and use strategies that have been taught in class on how they can help themselves and respond to their emotions.

c) Students are beginning to understand the process of setting goals to further their learning.  In particular, many students were able to recognize the need for goal setting in the area of Numeracy, as they found that Math was an academic stretch vs. a strength.

and;

d) A student focus on goal setting in Numeracy, giving consideration to the curricular competency of reflecting upon their mathematical thinking, while understanding the importance of creating a step-by-step plan to achieve their goal, has helped them to become more aware of their learning needs and better able to think about how they can meet those needs.

In terms of the coming year, the school is planning to continue focused work on SEL and in particular, goal setting, while at the same time moving on to look at improving student reading.


Surrey Schools

Formed in 1906, the Surrey School District currently has the largest student enrolment in British Columbia and is one of the few growing districts in the province. It is governed by a publicly elected board of seven trustees.

The district serves the cities of Surrey and White Rock and the rural area of Barnston Island.

Surrey Schools
14033 - 92 Avenue Surrey,
British Columbia V3V 0B7
604-596-7733