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9. The presentation to Mr Jacob Mana and the Local Iwi.

On the day, we had the presentation at 2.30pm. The principal, my teaching assistant and my tutor teacher were attending as the company owner and representatives of the local Iwi respectively.

I booked the hall so that we could have the morning and afternoon to rehearse. At 11am, they practised in their teams whilst I put some of their work up on the wall. There were a lot of unfinished works but I was not phased by this, we did what we could and concentrated on the hands-on stuff. 

Next time I will use what I have learnt to improve the transmission of the learning into other curricular areas. (More detailed photos of their work will appear in the last blog of ONLY photos.)

Then we set about the final rehearsing. Three girls from the same freeze frame were absent so we had to re-jig and get rid of one of them (5 instead of 6). Instead of me calling out the six-word poem at the beginning of each freeze frame, I split this in between the two girls with nothing to do. One of them was obviously too quiet so I asked who would like to do it and found a loud replacement very quickly! I have to tell you that it was REALLY difficult to give up that job. The poem coats the FF in drama and my booming voice was perfect! But, yet again, the kids came through and their projected voices were great! I stood out of the way and did not participate AT ALL. I just took photos and walked around...proudly! They were so good! They finished with a Q&A and they all seemed very proud of their efforts.

 Host Laura's Welcome and Introduction.   

Setting the scene..with the Six-word Poem...        ...Very dramatic!

Pressing the 'button' to get the FF moving...

 Like a real company...



Engaged... their all!

Telling their stories.


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3. The opening sequence

Viv says:

Last time we talked, we looked at a possible sequence for the opening few sessions. I'll share this outline here but I bet things changed in practice, right Miguel?

Yes they did :) We also had much shorter lessons than anticipated and fewer lessons due to school closures and meetings. That's ok though as I am enjoying the challenge of fitting in the MOTE whenever we can, and I have been excitedly saying things like "hopefully we will have time to do some drama later?" Yay!

Suggested sequence was:

1. A warm up on preparing to play / imagine through the "Scarf game" (kind of like the object transformation in this link)

This went swimmingly. The kids first co-constructed the requirements for a safe drama environment and then agreed to honour them for their classmates. They enjoyed the scarf game and they were pumped to get started.

2. A trading game activity on the question "what is identity?" (Trading game described here by Brian Edmiston)

10. Responses and Final Reflections.

Phew! All done, what a ride! I think it took us 7 weeks all in. Considering the amount of upheaval that we experienced, we did a great job. What I wanted to prove most of all was that YOU CAN DO THIS. In a very short time. I'm a 2nd-year teacher struggling to get my program together...but won't I always be? Yes, the cross-curricular work was not to the best standard but that was through my inexperience. I now see that I could EASILY have improved the standard of the work by either:

making the quality of the work PART of the Mantlehaving some forethought about my core subject teaching, and theming that work according to the topic and our focusMy MOTE was very separate from my core subjects. This needn't/shouldn't be the case. I did this because it was the first term and there was too much going on with assessment and class setup and what not. Next time I will integrate the MOTE story across the curriculum. It's easiest to do with art but making it part of literacy an…

2. Planning discussions

Viv says:

We began our journey with several planning conversations in January / February. Here's some of the background information we discussed in those meetings.

Who are the learners?

Intermediate age children in New Plymouth schoolVery 'willing' class who have already established strong relationships with each otherSchool wide inquiry topic for the term:  Identity Client, commission and responsible team selected: The class will be positioned as a team of museum curators commissioned by the local council to investigate a traditional greenstone Adze found by a builder digging in a local park. Note: Miguel made the very sensible and pragmatic decision to adapt an existing plan he'd experienced himself as a student at university. He could see how that resonated strongly with the required topic of 'identity'. 

Possible curriculum tasks emerging: Investigating the original purpose, meaning and manufacture of Adzes in Māori culture. Exploring why this Adze might have been …