Date
19 July 2019

Review recent research, commentary, and initiatives

Suggestion for implementing the strategy ‘Exploring Māori cultural perspectives on inclusion, learning support and disability’

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Effective approaches

Effective approaches

The Schools' provision for students at risk of not achieving (August 2008) report by ERO outlines five effective approaches characterising good practice.

  1. Teachers’ knowledge and understanding of how to establish effective teaching and learning relationships with Māori students is of prime importance, especially for those at risk of not achieving.
  2. Where teaching is inclusive and reflects the student’s life, knowledge, relationships, and experience, students are more likely to engage with learning.
  3. School leaders play an important part in establishing and sustaining whānau involvement and support.
  4. School leaders are pivotal in ensuring that professional learning has a strong basis in student performance data, and that this information informs the teaching strategies best suited to meet students’ needs.
  5. Whānau have an important role in working with school leaders to ensure the pedagogy is culturally relevant and responsive to their children, and that it is focused on improving outcomes for Māori learners.

Source: ERO. Schools' provision for students at risk of not achieving (August 2008) (opens in a new tab/window)

Cultural competencies of teachers

Cultural competencies of teachers

Effective teaching and learning depends on the relationship between teachers and students, and students’ active engagement.

Tātaiako: Cultural competencies describe the competencies teachers need, and what the results could look like for learners and their whānau when they are put into practice.

  • Wānanga: participating with learners and communities in robust dialogue for the benefit of Māori learners’ achievement.
  • Whanaungatanga: actively engaging in respectful working relationships with Māori learners, parents, whānau, hapū, and iwi.
  • Manaakitanga: showing integrity, sincerity, and respect towards Māori beliefs, language, and culture.
  • Tangata whenuatanga: affirming Māori learners as Māori; providing contexts for learning where the language, identity, and culture of Māori learners and their whānau is affirmed.
  • Ako: taking responsibility for their own learning and that of Māori learners.

Source: Tātaiako: Cultural competencies for teachers of Māori learners (p 2) (opens in a new tab/window)

Take a learner centred approach

Take a learner centred approach

To ensure that all Māori can achieve their full potential, the system must fit the learner rather than the learner fit the system.

In dealing with issues of Māori learner underperformance and unrealised potential, there is a tendency to locate the issue of underperformance in the students themselves.

Personalising the school's approach to learning so it is relevant and meaningful, no matter what the level of ability of the learner, will ensure that schools effectively meet the needs of each individual in a way that works for them.

The risk of negative self-concepts

The risk of negative self-concepts

You may be wondering why positive student-teacher relationships are more crucial to learning for these groups of students than to students in general … chief amongst them is the connection between learning and ... self-esteem, self-efficacy, self-identity, self-concept and self-assessment. Students from ethnic minorities and those with special education needs have an increased risk of developing negative self-concepts ...This in turn affects their ability to learn.

Dr Jill Bevan-Brown

Impact of teacher beliefs

Impact of teacher beliefs

Teachers found that when they valued the diversity of students and used it as a strength in the classroom their pedagogy became much more inclusive.

At its simplest, the research showed that 80% of the students identified their relationship with their teacher as the critical influence.

By contrast 60% of teachers identified the students’ home and family background as the major influence.

Confronted with this evidence and supported with professional development the teachers recognised that to make a difference they would need to change their beliefs and practices rather than expect family circumstances to adjust. When they did the results were marked in terms of improved engagement and increased academic achievement.

Ministry of Education

Useful resources

Useful resources

Website

Cultural considerations – He kākano i ruia mai i Rangiātea

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Visit website

Website

Rangiātea: Hamilton Girls' High School

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Visit website

Next steps

More suggestions for implementing the strategy “Explore Māori perspectives on inclusion”:

Return to the guide “Supporting Māori students”

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