An education revolution is taking place in three Launceston schools as part of a collaborative research project connecting Tasmania and Victoria.
University of Tasmania is collaborating on the research, which is being spearheaded by Professor Vaughan Prain, from Deakin University. Collaborators from La Trobe University are also involved.
The study aims to increase engagement in education but empowering teachers and school leaders to think about education in a different way.
Professor Prain said the schools involved in the project had become test sites for different education delivery models, with eight schools in Tasmania and Victoria taking part.
"Education is changing, we know that, so this study is about showing teachers how they can learn from each other and create engaging learning for regional schools," Professor Prain said.
Kings Meadows High School, Ravenswood Heights and Exeter Primary School are all participating.
The research study has involved establishing teams of teachers to collaborate on learning plans and delivery as well as encouraging self-directed learning in the schools.
Pupils at Ravenswood Heights were encouraged to choose meaningful writing topics and write for real audiences, while at Exeter Primary School student data was used to set personal mathematics goals.
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Collaborative planning for maths teachers has also been implemented at Exeter Primary School, made possible by an online platform called CANVAS.
Professor Prain said CANVAS allowed student's work and other data to be uploaded to a central place.
The work can be accessed by teachers and parents and helps to create collaborative partnerships among teaching staff.
"We need to learn from each other and access different resources," he said.
UTAS collaborator Damon Thomas has been working at Kings Meadows High School to help develop the programs there as part of the research.
Kings Meadows has introduced iPads into classrooms to help children engage with literacy and use technology as a tool for learning.
He said the project was also about redefining learning spaces, with schools involved opting in for a more unstructured "classroom" complete with different types of furniture and desks such as stools and beanbags.
"The schools in Victoria who are involved in this study already have purpose-built facilities so what we're trying to do is find out how we can apply what they are doing to a more traditional setting," he said.
- Professor Prain along with the researchers, teachers and staff involved in the project will present the findings at a community forum on March 28. The forum will be held at the Rory Spence Lecture Theatre, Inveresk, from 7.30pm.
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