Stylefit in Schools by Suraya Dewing (NZ)

We began testing Stylefit with students from a school in West Auckland, New Zealand, in 2017. Room 15 students (Y4) are often second language speakers and students who will struggle in a technology driven world due to limited access. Their progressive teacher is a wonderful man who was willing to test Stylefit in its earliest form. It was amazing how these eight year old students got to grips with the complex and clumsy technology in the early days. 
We were incredibly lucky to have the school's support as it enabled us to observe how the students used it and to take this into account when we developed the latest version which is specifically for students.
In 2018 we ran a year long trial. In that time we visited the class seven times. The first visit was crazy with 'naughty' students facing the window.

They were quite clear that writing was their least favourite activity. 
On our third visit we arrived to a totally different scene. The students, mostly boys, sat around a table in the middle of the room with their laptops, logged on and ready to go. And that was how it continued.
One day the teacher warned us that the students would be difficult that day because they had had late nights with their concerts and a performance in front of assembly. To top it off they were promised fish and chips for lunch - a real treat! We did not expect much writing to get done that day. But when we entered the classroom they were sitting around their tables, logged on and ready to write.
What happened next will remain with me forever.
There was absolute silence for 40 minutes while these students wrote their stories.  Silence. 
I said to the teacher, "can you hear that?"
He said, "yes" and shook his head. "Never seen that before."
At the end of the year we measured their writing skills again
st another Y4 class and our class performed better by 50%. Our students knew the terms for parts of speech, how they worked in sentences and they wrote longer, more readable stories.
We returned this year after a gap while we developed the next version with Callaghan Innovation and navigated around Covid19.
This year's group of Room 15 students were again our test group as we observed them getting started (now an automated process) on the latest version of Stylefit. The 2021 version is a vast improvement on what the students from the 2018 class had to deal with. 
That first class holds a special place in our hearts and it was incredibly special when some students (now seniors) came to see us to say 'hello'.  When we asked if they were still writing, they chimed, "Yes, we love writing."
I knew immediately why we had worked so hard and for so long on this project.
 That 2018 writing class set in motion a process for developing a technology that enables students to be self-directed and collaborative learners freeing up their teacher to concentrate on those students who need assistance. 
It works for everyone!


Stylefit for schools is a stand alone technology accessed through