Category: progress

#TMNSL 20/03/2014 – Workshop resources: ‘Solo taxonomy’

Solo Taxonomy by Mat Pullen – @Mat6453


Mat Pullen delivered a workshop at #TMNSL on 'Solo Taxonomy.'

‘Solo Taxonomy’ by Mat Pullen.

Workshop Summary.

I have been thinking about SOLO taxonomy for a while and the impact it can have on student learning in PE. I have also looked at ways to make it easier for students to access.

Guide to Solo Taxonomy

Guide to Solo Taxonomy

I have previously blogged about Project Based Learning here and the feedback has been really positive. both staff and teachers are engaged in this approach to co construction of the curriculum and lots of teachers are telling me about their plans for embedding it in their schemes.

To move things on a bit I wanted to look at ways of supporting students to create their own learning models. To help facilitate the process of finding out what they need to improve on and where to find out how to do that.

That is where the link with SOLO comes in. I have used SOLO to great effect in practical sessions and students are really showing great progress in lessons and more importantly they kbow what they need to do to keep progressing.

In order to support this further I have created posters that I can use in sessions that allow the students to acces some visual cues to support them in their construction of lessons. The posters trigger augmented reality links to images and videos to help students check on technique and to assist in giving detailed feedback to each other.

The process is fairly simple, I created a poster on my iPad using Comic Life. Add this image to Layar.com in their creator section, add in video and images to the relevent sections and voila, augmented reality posters. The students can now access these with any device with the Layar app installed.

So now in a session, we start with students looking at a problem that they need to solve, they look at the skills they will need to develop to support them in overcoming the problem.  Around the hall are posters with links to images and videos to help support their learning.  They integrate numeracy to support their understanding of success, they use literacy to improve communication and feedback and they can see how they can progress using the SOLO stages.

This is a real change in lesson structure but really engages students to be active whilst learning a whole wealth of key transferable skills.

Related blog post.

Presentation slides.

@Mat6453 on Twitter.

#neverstoplearning


#NeverStopLearning by @DavidJesus

#NeverStopLearning by @DavidJesus

 

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‘Quick wins’ #14 – Walking dictation – Team work, communication and accuracy.

@gapingvoid

Image from @gapingvoid – http://gapingvoid.com/

Why? Proof reading – self assessment. I am forever correcting the same mistakes which arise from a lack of proof reading. As soon as I question a student they know how to correct their work, but they don’t seem to do it!

Possible solution. Walking dictation. Students work in group of three – one student is the scribe and the other two are runners. Differentiated texts, images or sound files are placed across the classroom from where the groups are based.

One runner from each group at a time ‘walks’ to their allocated text, reads part of it and returns back to the group where they dictate to the scribe what they read. The other runner hears how far their team mate read and goes up to the text to read and then return to relay the next part of the text to the team. The scribe is using listening and writing skills and the runners are using listening, reading and speaking skills.

All members are working on their communication and team work skills.

What’s the carrot?  Well there has to be a success criteria and I use the least amount of points win. Winners win one point, second place two etc. However, points are incurred for misspelt words, or indeed missed words.

Resources.

Walking Dictation – How to – editable

Outcome. Challenge and drive for accuracy. It is an engaging task where students realise the importance of accuracy and to check over their work to eliminate avoidable errors.

Post submitted by:

Becky Thielen

Head of MFL

@EduThielen

#neverstoplearning

Feedback. Please let us know how ‘Walking dictation’ worked for you. Leave a comment on this post or tweet us at @nslhub.

‘Quick wins’ #13 – How to mail merge student test results into feedback sheets

Why? We wanted an efficient way to communicate the students strengths and weaknesses to students based on their most recent mock.  We saw the value in a question by question breakdown but it seemed time consuming.

Possible solution. We made a feedback sheet that had space for a question by question breakdown and comment on where to revise.  We then used a mail merge to drop individual results into the sheets.

Resources.

Outcome. The students said the detailed feedback really helped them focus their revision.  Allowing them to work on the topics they needed to instead of succumbing to the temptation to just practise what they were already good at.

Post submitted by:

Vyki Shaw

Head of Maths

@vykishaw

Blog

#neverstoplearning

Feedback. Please let us know how ‘mail merging student test results into feedback sheets’ worked for you. Leave a comment on this post or tweet us at @nslhub.

Hardwiring learning and effort = success

brain-train

I try to lead by challenging preconceived notions that people are born talented or lucky.  In Daniel Coyle’s The Talent Code: Greatness isn’t born it’s Grown he argues that talent is grown through purposeful practice…deep practice.  Below I give a specific example of how this can be seen in students’ learning.

“We all have the ability to profoundly change our levels of talent, our level of skill. Where clusters of great talent emerge there has been a culture created where individuals are constantly reaching and repeating, making mistakes, receiving feedback, building better brains, faster more fluent brains…inside the brain myelin acts like insulation on the pathways and connections in the brain – each time we reach and repeat we earn another layer – signal speeds in the brain start to increase from 2 mph to 200 mph – neuro broadband – (or the difference between normal and great).” (Dan Coyle)

What he is describing is the hardwiring of the brain – through repeated efforts, mistakes and improvement, until the action (or learning) becomes as natural as riding a bike. That is how talent is created.

This recently became really evident to me during a lesson observation of my Y12 Sociology class: one observer sat next to a student and asked her to deconstruct the exam question we were looking at (having heard me used the word ‘deconstruct’ in my instructions). I was amazed, and pleased, to hear her deconstruct the question effortlessly, without hesitation and to depth, drawing on prior knowledge, pulling out command words, key subject-specific words and implied meaning behind the question in a thorough analysis that was no less deep than if I had done it. I realised then that her success in that skill (which she hadn’t been able to do at the start of the year) came from the fact that this was how we started every topic that we studied: with an exam question that we deconstruct thoroughly. Essentially, us practising this skill at the start of every topic had resulted in it becoming ‘hardwired’ in her brain so that she could effortlessly pull it out no matter what the topic or question. Deconstructing an exam question is a transferable skill so I hope that she is able to make use of it in her other subjects as well.

time-effort-success

This message of repeating to hardwire your brain is exactly what I’m trying to get across to Y8 in my assemblies, preparing them for their mid-year exams, and reminding them that determined and deliberate effort = success.

Here’s another useful resource, Dan Coyle’s TED talk…

Post submitted by:

Domini Choudhury
Assistant Principal

#neverstoplearning

Feedback. Please let us know how ‘Hardwiring learning and effort = success’ worked for you. Leave a comment on this post or tweet us at @nslhub.

‘Quick wins’ #11 – Tracking progress over time.

Multiple assessment sheets seemed like a good idea... Image by @gapingvoid

Multiple assessment sheets seemed like a good idea… Image by @gapingvoid

Why? In Art & Design we mark students coursework & exam projects numerous times before the final marks are submit at the end of the course. I found that students would occasionally lose the odd feedback sheet & sometimes even the assessment booklets I provided.

Possible solution. To make certain we have a clear record of progression in sketchbooks,  I adapted an assessment worksheet I saw at Redland Green Art Department for our GCSE & A-Level classes. It is just one A3 assessment sheet which clearly shows the progression students make over time in each of the assessment objectives. Every time work is marked, I do it in a different colour pen and pupils can see their work gaining more marks as they redraft & build up their projects.

 Resources.

GCSE Marking Progress Sheet (editable) – Easily adapted for any subject!

Shrinking the change - removing clutter and focusing on what's really important.

Shrinking the change – removing clutter and focusing on what’s really important.

Outcome. Pupils & teachers can see clearly see on one page (which is stuck into sketchbooks) where they are making progress and the areas in which they need to improve.

Kate Heath

Art Teacher / Artist / Leader

@ArtEdu_KHeath

#neverstoplearning

Feedback. Please let us know how ‘Tracking progress over time’ worked for you. Leave a comment on this post or tweet us at @nslhub.

Begin with the end in mind.

Begin with the end in mind.

Begin with the end in mind.

Recently I rediscovered a strategy that has revolutionised my teaching; a fundamental shift in mindset resulting in enormously simplifying my planning, consistently producing lessons graded as ‘Outstanding’ and receiving overwhelmingly positive feedback from student voice in my classes. It’s not new. It’s not difficult. It is simple.

The strategy (taken from Stephen Covey’s ‘7 Habits of highly effective people’): beginning with the end in mind.

I have now begun to structure the teaching of every topic/unit of work by starting with the end i.e. at KS4 and KS5, starting with sharing a possible exam question for that topic; or at KS3, starting with sharing the end of unit assessment, using these to create just one set of learning objectives for a sequence of lessons (differentiated by bands of marks in an exam question or success criteria for levelled skills and content in a KS3 assessment), rather than pandering to the misconception that every individual lesson requires a new and different learning objective.

We start by deconstructing the exam question (using the opportunity to draw out prior knowledge to help in deconstructing a question for a topic they haven’t studied yet and discussing a bullet-pointed checklist of the success criteria/mark scheme for the question) or, with KS3, drawing out the skills they will need to use and what the assessment task will be. Planning and delivery of knowledge and skills for the new topic becomes so much simpler as in ‘keeping the end in mind’ we regularly return to the exam question or end of unit assessment checklist to self or peer assess how much knowledge and skill we’ve gained to be successful in completing the question or assessment. My planning has simplified because I now know that simply with a well-thought out set of learning objectives shaped by the end goal, a passionate delivery of subject knowledge and content (drawing students into this with ‘storytelling’ and deep questioning that also encourages them to link their verbal answers to the end in mind), and encouraging students to regularly assess their progress against the end in mind, I have the tools to provide my students with at least a Good lesson each time.

I worried for a while that the students would be bored by starting every new topic in this same way and being so exams, or assessment, driven so I carried out some student voice work with my classes. The students love it. They say it keeps them focused, they understand how everything they learn fits in with what they will be assessed on (some students sharing horror stories with me of when they’ve had teaching where the end of unit assessment did not assess them on the skills they had been learning all term). Most importantly, the student voice revealed the sense of success the students feel as they work towards the end goal. Each time they are able to link a verbal answer to the end goal, or prove in a self or peer assessment that they have mastered the next skill or gained the next piece of knowledge towards that end goal, they feel a sense of success and can see the progress they are making.

Then, when they come to the end of the topic and properly complete the exam question or end of topic assessment, students are already in a good starting place because of the way the teaching of the topic has been structured. Finally, unless they gain full, or almost full marks in their exam question, my students know that they will never be allowed to just do the question once and that they will have to redraft it again. But that, and the magic of storytelling, whatever your subject, is for another time.

Here’s a video summary of Stephen Covey’s ‘7 Habits of highly effective people.’


Post submitted by:

Domini Choudhury

Assistant Principal

@DominiChoudhury

#neverstoplearning

‘Quick wins’ #10 – Formative feedback marginal gain.

Image by @gapingvoid - http://gapingvoid.com/

Image by @gapingvoid – http://gapingvoid.com/

Why? Returning formative feedback often has a demotivating impact, despite any positive comments. This is a particular issue for Key stage 4  C/D borderline students who find the leap to the next grade quite daunting, and able students attempting to bridge the gap between A-A*.

Possible solution. To direct student focus to improving I have added an extra comment to assessment sheets. When students receive their assessments they now see not only their target grade and current grade but the marks required to get to the next grade,

Resources.
Here are a couple examples of this marginal gain being implemented…

Example from a KS5 Art progress booklet.

Example from a KS5 Art progress booklet.

Example from a KS4 Computing class.

Example from a KS4 Computing class.

Outcome. The effect was immediate as students focused on the marks required to achieve the next grade rather than their current grade.A year 10  student commented on the fact that he was just 2 marks away from achieving a C grade, not that he had a D grade. In his previous assessment he had felt quite despondent. It is a simple yet, effective motivational tool that provides an instant snapshot of how close they are to the next step.

Post submitted by:

Rachel Taylor-Evans

Head of Art

#neverstoplearning

Feedback. Please let us know how ‘Formative feedback marginal gain’ worked for you. Leave a comment on this post or tweet us at @nslhub.