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Teaching digital stories using tuakana-teina

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Duration: 3:3

Irongate School has a focus on improving student literacy levels particularly for their large population of Māori and Pasifika students. The tuakana-teina relationship, an integral part of traditional Māori society, provided the model for the buddy system they are using. The older or more expert tuakana (Year 5/6 students) help and guide the younger or less expert teina (new entrant students). In this clip students and teachers share how after listening to senior students' digital stories a new entrant class wanted to make their own. Using Photostory, Year 5/6 students teach their younger student buddies the techniques involved in both creating and self monitoring their work. These stories are now reading material for the students. 

In reading time we go on the task board and watch the reading on the computers. We’ve got two, and one big one. We do it by ourself. We can listen to it.

When they went over to listen to their stories and share their stories with their buddies they came back absolutely enthusiastic about wanting to have their own Photostorys and that got us started on our journey. We decided to make it simpler and use four pictures in our story wheel and the children created their four picture sequence first and then from there we got the buddy children or the experts to come over and help us um do our Photostorys.

We had to teach them by showing them with our hands but just not touching the computer.

And we set it up a little bit like a production line so that everyone was busy at the same time so we had one group who were taking the, teaching the littlies how to take photos, another group then were teaching them how to import their photos into Photostory and then the last group were teaching them how to do their sound recording.

Now stand up, properly. Click it. Click. Click.  Is, now push that to have a look at them

My photo, that one went white.

Okay, do you want to do that one again?


Okay just do it again.

‘Cos I zoomed in too fast.

Okay, ready?

I’m gonna zoom out.

Yep. Okay ready?

Um mm.

Go into it.

Yes and click

Um and then throughout the process teaching them about you know was that photo, do you think that photo’s going to be good enough? Is it clear? Um, can you listen to your recording? Is it clear? Will someone else be able to listen to it? So at the beginning of that part of the process I said to them if you’ve learned how to do something properly you’ll be able to pass that knowledge on to somebody else. So that gave them ownership of their own learning because then they realised that, oh, I can actually go and explain it to someone else and not just someone that’s my peer but a little five year old who needs really explicit instruction. I think that the way that we ended up with the two classes working together has really empowered the older children so um from here we’re using the same model where we’ve started with one class and learnt how to do a particular project and taken it to another class to teach them.

Tags: English, Primary, Literacy, Tuakana-teina, Collaborative learning, Cultural responsiveness, Photostory, Digital stories, MASAM, Māori, Classroom practice, Digital fluency