Education Research Projects (ERP’s) provides students the opportunity to bring their lives and cultures into the study of the sciences, arts, history, humanities, IT and Civics alongside explicit instruction in literacy and numeracy. Each term they explore a major curriculum discipline and link it to a project.
Associated practices (Education Research Projects):
· Education Research Project (ERP) is the study and research of a major curriculum area over the course of one term.
· Teachers provide a range of learning opportunities, knowledge and skills for students to explore and learn alongside students bringing some of their own lives and interests into the learning through a research project.
· Students examine a curriculum area, known as a subject focus (chosen by the educators from the Framework) and link a range of elements of other curriculum areas, skills and their own life to the project.
· Before the term starts the teaching team review the curriculum descriptor for the broad subject area and articulate in about one sentence what the major aim is (realistically) that they want the children to learn over the course of the term. This overarching statement aim guides the formulation of learning intentions, skills and knowledge the teachers set for the students consistent with the state/national framework but reflecting the community and culture of students.
· Learning intentions should be broad and related to conceptual understandings / demonstration of skills/ knowledge and aiming to meet the main aim of the subject focus.
· Integrating the ERP with other curriculum areas (such as numeracy and literacy) is facilitated and personalised by the educators in their planning and in discussion/negotiation with the student. ERP’s are able to incorporate elements of literacy and numeracy, IT, Art and other specialist areas. Literacy and numeracy skills can link to ERP’s and tasks related to literacy and numeracy (but linked to ERP’s) may be conducted during literacy and numeracy lessons.
· Links with other curriculum area may be the same task for all students or may be personalised on an individual or small group basis.
· Children usually work alone on their ERP. They are initially introduced to a range of ways to research, use tools and presentation skills, which they apply as they work on their ERP.
· Students present their learning related to the ERP, literacy, numeracy and other related learning to the school community each term in an Expo to parents, teachers and other students a few weeks before the end of teaching term
· When students are asked about their learning in ERP’s, they should be able to reply along the lines of:
“The subject focus for this term was economics. Our key learning intentions and aims included budgeting, saving and marketing. My numeracy component was to include a spreadsheet to demonstrate the skill of data collection and my literacy component was to demonstrate my ability to write a persuasive text. My particular interest is in skateboarding and so I am incorporating into my research project some aspects of skateboarding which had to include: budgeting, marketing, a persuasive text and the data collection. I used IT, PowerPoint, I designed and constructed a 3 dimensional skateboard which I wrote some of the information about marketing and budgeting“.