Most teachers had used lollysticks to pick random talk partners but chose where the pairs sat. Children now in mixed ability learnt from each other. They also learned to listen and when to help. Children enjoy learning who their new partner will be each week.
Three teachers had trained effective communication for the partners. They knew how to talk, agree or disagree respectfully. They were engaged with their partners.
Most teachers had used threes, especially with children with SEN. This allowed two children to talk and the other to learn and to model expected behaviour and learning.
Two teachers asked children to give compliment slips to each other at the end of the week, sometimes focusing on a specific power or talk partner success criterion. This made the children consider how their partner nod helped them, which reinforced the talk partner success criteria. Children enjoyed reading their compliments and felt appreciated.
Two children who did not get on well with each other were randomly partnered. By the end of the week they were helping each other doing maths. Zak was breaking down the steps needed for long multiplication with Jake listening carefully. Jake went home and told his mum that he really enjoyed working with Zak.