Three online learning modules are now available to help teachers to understand Koorie English, and its relationship with student achievement.
Koorie English is a dialect spoken by many Aboriginal students and families in Victoria. It is comprised of linguistic, socio-cultural and non-verbal features that teachers may not recognise, which can impact on student wellbeing and engagement.
This free online professional development consists of three modules available on multiple dates in 2021, which will give teachers strategies and advice for supporting Koorie English speakers in the classroom.
Module 1 unpacks the linguistic, socio-cultural and non-verbal aspects of Koorie English as a dialect, while modules 2 and 3 have more of a classroom focus. The training includes videos, activities and breakout rooms for discussion.
Lifting engagement in the classroom
Josie Tresize, a Learning Specialist from Huntly Primary School, observed significant changes for one of her Koorie students within weeks of completing the training.
'He was very quiet, had very little input into the goings-on of our classroom, produced and completed very little work,' Josie said.
In addition to willingly seeking teacher assistance, the student now attempts and completes more work, providing the school with better understanding of his capabilities and achievable learning goals. Other students in the classroom have also benefitted from these changes as well.
'I haven't changed the way I teach, but it has opened up more opportunities for the students to engage with me as their teacher,' Josie said.
She also noted the professional development had provided opportunity to engage in reflective practice and discuss different approaches with other teachers across the state.
'Even just going into it, I wasn't sure what I was going to get out of it, but having discussions led to more questions to think about before I went back into the classroom,' she said.
How to register
The Koorie English professional development is free to all teachers and education support staff from primary and secondary schools.
Staff can register for each module using the Eventbrite links below. Additional dates will be added to these pages in early 2021.
Module 1: What is Koorie English?
Date: Monday 15 February 2021
Module 2: Language and Wellbeing (Engagement)
Date: Monday 22 February 2021
Module 3: Koorie English and Literacy in the Classroom
Date: Monday 1 March 2021
Find out more
For more information, refer to Koorie English Online.