Good Practice at Upton :
Below is a photo of Hannah and Lauren, Year 8, receiving their certificated from Mrs Dixon Headteacher. They took part in delivering a work shop on Feedback using iPads for learning at the SSAT national conference. Well done!
In Science Year 7 have been learning about specialised cells and have produced some fantastic models and cakes for a homework task. The photographs are from Mrs Bradbury, Head of Science.
Level 1 TEEP training. Presentations on the TEEP journey below by Upton staff, 12/1/15
Learning that tastes good, and gives us that sense of satisfaction after a good meal. What might the ingredients be?
- Staples: learning from the teacher – direct instruction; formative feedback in some form; learning from books; reading aloud; think-pair-share; asking questions; solving problems;
- Variety: making videos or websites; teaching part of a lesson; making a model or a composition; acting out a role-play; experts and envoys; peer assessment; debates and discussions; designing your own experiment; pre-learning material from online video tutorials; using ‘ExplainEverything’ to produce a short presentation for the class.
- Tastes: Having the option to respond in a variety of forms; or to choose the topic; or to work at a pace that suits; to create learning independently; to work collaboratively with a group of my choice; to learn through extended open-ended projects with opportunities for doing some things in depth over time.
Pitch It Up. Aim High. Expect Excellence. Demand It.
It’s not one strategy…it’s more a frame of mind; the cumulative effect of the many micro-strategies that result in higher levels of engagement, longer periods of concentration, wider use of vocabulary, better explanations, deeper learning and stronger performances. Click on the link below and watch the video.
The TEEP planning cycle: Common misconceptions
It has been a while since your 3 days of training and since you revisited the planning cycle. Click on the link below to dispel those common misconceptions.
Article of the week:
The goal of summative assessment is most often to measure student learning at the end of a topic or unit by comparing it against some ‘standard’ – i.e. a grade or level. Summative assessments – tests, exams, final projects etc. – are often high stakes and ‘one-off’, and in many students this can lead to a ‘fixed mindset‘ approach to them.
On the other hand, the goal of formative assessment is to monitor student learning by providing ongoing feedback that can be used by students to improve their learning. This process should help students identify their strengths and weaknesses and target areas that need work, and in the process help teachers identify where extra support/teaching is needed.
What if we could do both at once? Do we have to choose? Isn’t that what the growth mindset is all about?
Possibilities for using a mock exam formatively:
- Revisit questions answered incorrectly – students go back and improve, then remark!
- Break questions down and attempt as a rally
- Get students to mark / coach each other
- Agree as a class what is required for the marks in advance
- Use previous papers to help recognise the type of question and the style of answer
- Identify common misconceptions to address with students – build this in to D.I.R.T
- Reflect on one’s own teaching of problem areas to identify gaps in teaching /learning
- Co-construct a WAGOLL by taking the best student answers from each question – groups have ownership of a ‘perfect’ model paper
- Incorporate quick strategies like a ‘5 minute steal’ or use question tokens during the exam – students can ask you questions but it will cost them a token!
If you’re going to set a mock exam, you might as well make it work for you. I strongly recommend getting into a habit wherever possible of marking mocks quickly enough so that students can act on your feedback in the next lesson, therefore planning your next lesson for you. If this isn’t practical, why not get them to mark their own/each others in class? Some teachers would recoil in horror at the idea (“what if they cheat?”) So what! Let them ‘cheat’ if it helps them learn! After all, we can never go back in time, all we want our students to do is to do better next time.
How do we ensure that students do better next time? Give them the time and opportunity to improve – D.I.R.T or ‘MAD time’ next lesson. Here’s an example of the guidance given to Engineering students the lesson after their recent mock exam:
They then had a good chunk of the next lesson to ensure they went back and improved their score by at least ten marks. Simple, no bother formative assessment leading to progress for the students.
1) The Secret of Literacy: Making the implicit, explicit by
Literacy? That’s someone else’s job, isn’t it? This is a book for all teachers on how to make explicit to students those things we can do implicitly. In the Teachers’ Standards it states that all teachers must demonstrate an understanding of, and take responsibility for, promoting high standards of literacy, articulacy, and the correct use of standard English, whatever the teacher’s specialist subject. In The Secret of Literacy, David Didau inspires teachers to embrace the challenge of improving students’ life chances through improving their literacy. Topics include: Why is literacy important?, Oracy improving classroom talk, How should we teach reading? How to get students to value writing, How written feedback and marking can support literacy.
2) Mindsets in the Classroom: Building a Culture of Success and Student Achievement in Schools by
When students believe that dedication and hard work can change their performance in school, they grow to become resilient, successful students. Inspired by the popular mindset idea that hard work and effort can lead to success, Mindsets in the Classroom provides educators with ideas for ways to build a growth mindset school culture, wherein students are challenged to change their thinking about their abilities and potential. The book includes a planning template, step-by-step description of a growth mindset culture, and “look-fors” for adopting a differentiated, responsive instruction model teachers can use immediately in their classrooms.
1) Carol Dweck researches “growth mindset” — the idea that we can grow our brain’s capacity to learn and to solve problems. In this talk, she describes two ways to think about a problem that’s slightly too hard for you to solve. Are you not smart enough to solve it … or have you just not solved it yet? A great introduction to this influential field.
2) Execellent examples of starters and plenaries.
3) Leaving a high-flying job in consulting, Angela Lee Duckworth took a job teaching math to seventh graders in a New York public school. She quickly realized that IQ wasn’t the only thing separating the successful students from those who struggled. Here, she explains her theory of “grit” as a predictor of success.
4) What Twitter offers teachers: The evidence
5) Blooms Taxonomy revised and high order thinking