Science of Learning Research Centre (SLRC)

Genazzano has recently joined the Science of Learning Schools Network through the University of Melbourne and the Science of Learning Research Centre. This is an exciting opportunity to be supported by world class researchers in Learning Sciences as we continue to develop a culture and build staff capacity in evidence based classroom practices for improved student outcomes.

2017 Student Feedback: Improving teaching efficacy in Mathematics

This year, the Mathematics department are participating in the Pivot survey. This online evidence-based student survey and interactive results reports will help inform and guide professional learning goals for the Mathematics teachers. The survey results will allow teachers to see how effective their teaching practice is and it will allow students to “have a say” on their learning environment. From the results of this survey teachers will be better informed on the impact that they have on their students and will highlight strengths and weaknesses. Surveys will also provide information about students’ attitudes and perceptions of mathematics. This data will be explored to understand and improve classroom practices and to guide future professional learning. Carol Patterson

Connecting Readers: Fostering interest and engagement with reading through peer interaction 2016-17

Action research has been undertaken by teacher-librarian Julia Petricevic (awarded the 2016 School Library Association of Victoria Research Fellowship), and College library staff.

In 2016, 600 students were surveyed on reading habits, attitudes and approaches. Peer recommendation was found to be an effective way to help students select books to read. In 2017, the research focus is determining the most effective strategies to facilitate peer interaction around reading recommendations in Year 7 students.

Enhancing Learning Engagement: Promoting Flow with Dr Judith Paphazy

Under the guidance of Dr Judith Paphazy, the Primary team has been researching and implementing pedagogical practices that actively promote Flow in the classroom. Based on the work of Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi, and with its roots in Performance Psychology and Positive Education, Flow Theory is premised on the belief that learning best occurs when students engage in activities that combine challenge, excitement and require peak performance. Also known as ‘being in the zone’ the person in the state of flow feels energized, challenged, enjoyment, focused, competent and fully immersed in the task.

Teachers at Grange Hill strive to create learning environments that challenge all students and promote their wanting to learn while deriving both satisfaction and enjoyment from that learning. Genazzano is one of the first schools in Australia to apply Flow Theory to early childhood education. We are excited to further this work in 2017.

Independent Schools Victoria 2017-18

Genazzano has been accepted into the Prep Literacy Project which is a 2 year project to target exemplary classroom teaching of reading and writing in classrooms to deepen focus on language development. This highly interactive project will focus intensively on literacy and on language for superior teaching and learning outcomes.

Purposeful Teaching of Mathematics

In 2015 and 2016 the Mathematics Department has worked with the staff at the Catholic Education Office and the University of Melbourne participating in the Purposeful Teaching of Mathematics Program as well as the Formative Assessment Reform Mathematics project. From these research projects the Mathematics teachers are using the skills gained to help them identify areas of weakness in students’ skills and to implement different teaching strategies to address the individual needs of the students.  Pre- and post-testing, formative assessments and targeted teaching techniques are integrated into regular classroom teaching. Carol Patterson

University of Melbourne Network of Schools

Genazzano is a member of the University of Melbourne Network of Schools. The Network is a collaborative partnership for Victorian schools to work together with University mentors, educational theorists and researchers to make a collective impact on student learning. The College is working on a project to build staff capacity in data literacy for improved learning growth. Teachers are engaged in data analysis and action research to continually monitor and improve student outcomes.

Mental Rehearsal to increase confidence in public speaking 2015-16

Action research was undertaken through the Performance Psychology department to look at using mental rehearsal training and other performance psychology techniques with Year 9 students around public speaking anxiety. Questionnaires relating to confidence and anxiety were administered pre and post a 5 session skills training program delivered over a term. Results showed significant increases in positive self-perceptions, and significant decreases in negative self-perceptions around speaking in public following the performance psychology and skills training intervention. The results provide further evidence for Genazzano’s focus on the specific teaching of skills in thinking, mindset and performance to support student achievement.