One school started by having collaborative marking sessions with small groups with the teacher. They began with work from a different class, using pink and green pens for best bits and improvement places. Then one person form the class’s work was used to model the process. Now all the children want theirs to be chosen as a model. This ties in with the growth mindset of course. Children have now embedded reviewing skills. They continuously talk about their improvements in all lessons, not just when they are told to. Children now don’t mind making mistakes.
The learning pit stops are sometimes oral. In writing, developing characters, children were focusing on adding adjectives. They first just chose any adjectives. The class stopped and listened to how the words sounded then focused on choosing the best adjectives. Children had time to do this and were encouraged to magpie words. Through listening they could hear immediately which were best and which were not. This was immediate feedback that children were able to act on.
Photographs and videos are taken using the class iPads. The iPad can be plugged directly into the whiteboard, allowing pupils to see their good work/experiences in progress. This can be talked about/shared with the group, if speech allows, or used as a reminder of previous work/experiences.
The photographic evidence can be dropped into a ‘learning journal;’ for each pupil. These can be easel annotated in the lesson or by a TA. The pages can be emailed/dropboxed/printed to other staff/parents/outside agencies, as well as crating a beautiful book of photographs/evidence to remind children of all their achievements, experiences and improvements throughout the years. The app used is called Noteshelf.
Michelle Bailey and Fran Smith, Greenside School, Stevenage SLD/PMPL
It had been hard to do peer assessment initially in Year 1 but it happened over time. Children now read their work out loud to their partner and use the success criteria to check. They give very positive comments to each other but are not yet able to give appropriate next steps.
Mid lesson learning stops at the visualiser have created an ethos of positive comments. Children are willing to accept ‘even better ifs’.
I introduced the ‘purple pen of power’. If children are addressing teacher feedback or targets, they use the purple pen to make their edits. Children enjoy using the pen and it leads to immediate improvement. Children are now asking for feedback so that they can improve their work and use the purple pen of power! It was clear to Ofsted in this school that targets were being addressed.
It was felt that talking partners and success criteria must be fully embedded first so that children can actually make their improvements together.
Mid lesson learning stops with the visualiser were appropriate in Year 2, linking with the success criteria.
Peer feedback has improved, becoming less cosmetic and more constructive. All teachers said that children are developing the confidence to give and receive feedback sensitively.
A Year 2 group of children moving from 2a to 3c were shown a Year 4 level 4c piece of writing without being told what level it was or who had written it. We talked about why it was good and then they used the same start. All children wrote at level 3 and some at 4c!
C. Rollinson, Thameside Primary School
It was felt that the most important factor for younger children was seeing the process of reviewing modelled lots of times, with anonymous pieces of work, by the teacher, using a puppet.
Using mid lesson learning stops at the visualiser then children making improvements cooperatively with one book between them has given them better understanding of how to improve. Children are making progress because they know how to improve. They are proud at the end of lessons. There is celebration when the improvements have been made.
Random choosing of children at the visualiser has worked well with the growth mindset and has improved the quality of work and the learning atmosphere. Children like to be picked.
Cooperative improvement has been effective using whiteboards, so the original writing is a work in progress, then when improvements are made they write it up in their books.
In maths, stopping to review the success criteria against a calculation (prove it’s right or wrong) has led to better understanding of the process.
Some teacher used the code ‘OF’ for oral feedback. This teacher feedback would be focused on the learning intention.
One OFSTED inspector said there should be a ‘next step’ comment for every piece of work (Pointless –it won’t have an impact unless there is dialogue.SC).
Talk partners are giving verbal feedback to each other. Children know their individual targets and have small next steps (e.g. add an adjective), which has an impact on their standard of writing.
One school has feedback from Year 6 buddies which enabled children to know exactly how to improve and together they made the improvements.
Some teachers tried using highlighters and children writing using double spacing. It was felt that this was probably easier with older children and some felt that children were only interested in the good bits and smiley faces.
It was felt to be important in the culture of the classroom to talk about and model the zone of proximal development, making clear the comfort/stretch/stress zones. Where this had been done the language of learning was being developed and children felt happier about being stretched and wanted to challenge themselves.
There was some problem about the balance between giving feedback against learning intentions and success criteria or spellings and handwriting etc.
Claire Hodgson | firstname.lastname@example.org
Tower Hamlets, London
Stella Smith | email@example.com
Stella Smith | firstname.lastname@example.org
Pauline Hill | email@example.com