Last week’s CPD raised a lot of interesting questions about pupils’ learning & thinking and certainly encouraged me to look at teaching from a different perspective. Here are a few of the “gems” from the session…
1. Evidence-based teaching
As there is a wealth of rigorous research and evidence on what works best in the classroom, let’s use it!
Top proven methods to impact on achievement:
– Similarities and differences (tasks that require students to compare and contrast)
– Graphic representations (drawings, illustrations and annotated diagrams)
– Note-making (personal and organised notes)
– Manipulatives (students manipulate pre-printed cards to represent their ideas)
What do they all have in common? They are VISUAL!
2. Visual tools
We can only take in so much information which is why visuals are superior to text in communicating concisely and clearly key messages. In these circumstances visual representation is thought to aid understanding and memory because it better fits with the brains method of processing information than standard note-taking, as the brain stores information in patterns and associations, not linearly.
– Make the learning visible
– Use graphic organisers to help students organise their thoughts, make personal sense of the new information and to stimulate the mind to make associations (Venn diagrams or charts to compare and classify items, fishbone diagrams to see that there may be many causes leading to one effect, mindmaps, spider diagrams etc)
– Use teacher-prepared notes
– Encourage students to summarise (they can put what is essential in their own words)
– Incorporate words and images using symbols to represent relationships
– Use physical models and physical movement to represent information
These are visuals that describe the step-by-step processes of high quality teaching techniques. Through images and very few words they explain expert teaching and show you exactly how to conduct some activities and be a better teacher. You can access some free ones on the website http://teachinghow2s.com/cpd-how2s