The aim of the Learning and Teaching Group is to expand the role of Learners in Stanwell’s self-evaluation and improvement process. This is done in a variety of ways including Learning Partner lesson reviews, Departmental Learner Voice Groups and Learning and Teaching surveys.
Year 12 students apply to become Learning Partners in September. We then evaluate and review selected lessons and give feedback to our Teaching Partners on agreed focus areas of their lessons. We also help to design and give feedback on Learning & Teaching surveys and identify additional opportunities for Learner Voice.
There are 12 students involved and each is partnered with a teacher who has volunteered to take part in the scheme.
During the last round of reviews, we met with our Teaching Partners and agreed on a set lesson to review. We made notes on various aspects of the lesson under the four categories of numeracy, literacy, ICT and praise and gave feedback on how well pupils were able to complete the work set and if they were given positive feedback. We then discussed our feedback with the teacher and talked about what we thought was good about the lesson and anything that we thought could be improved. Some examples of the feedback are shown below:
“Some pupils grasped the concept of ‘exit cards’ better than others but they generally saw the use in completing them. All pupils participated.”
“All pupils were encouraged to participate in giving praise and constructive criticism of a selection of pupils’ work. Questions were asked by the teacher to consolidate their understanding.”
“Most pupils preferred ‘Today I learned…’ as their exit starter. That phrase could be banned next week to try to encourage a greater range of feedback from the pupils.”
Everyone involved in the scheme feels that it is vital for pupils to have a say in how lessons are structured to ensure that all pupils benefit from the key skills practiced and are able to perform to the best of their abilities. We think that having a Learner Voice is the best way for all students to feel valued and that their opinions about the way they learn are important to the school. It can also be very useful for teachers to gain a pupils’ perspective on methods of teaching so that they can be confident that everyone is fully engaged and benefitting from the experience.
We will continue to work with teachers in a partnership throughout the year and aim to ensure that Learners’ voices are heard, and that pupils and teachers work together to help everyone get the most from their lessons.
Each subject has its own Learner Voice Group consisting of two pupils from each year group. The DVLGs work closely with their teachers giving regular feedback at the end of each topic and half term.
The 2014 Learning and Teaching Survey was carried out in December allowing all pupils the opportunity to give feedback on many aspects of their Learning. Pupils answered questions ranging from how much they enjoy their lessons to the regularity of teacher feedback and their awareness of current and target grades. The results of the survey were fed back and discussed with pupils in the Spring term. Much discussion was had in classes and many suggestions were considered for improving Learning and Teaching.
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