Where risks are taken, mistakes are made and where mistakes are made, learning happens. This is the philosophy taken by teachers with their pupils but rarely do we apply it to our own practice. More often than not teachers play it safe and stick to what they know, particularly during lesson observations. Literacy WAGOLL would like to introduce 'Take a Risk Tuesdays!'. It is time to experiment, it is time to innovate!
They are not about getting everything right but more about reflecting on your teaching and how it impacts on learning. Take a look! More details, hints and tips on the challenges are listed below.
The Question Lesson - This challenge is all about effective pupil interactions. We know questions have the power to develop learning but they can encourage independence too. Think about how you can deliver instructions by just using questions or respond to a pupil's question by asking a question in return and prompting them to find the answer for themselves.
The Naked Lesson -This challenge is about stripping back your lesson to the bare bones. Jazzy resources are great but sometimes they can distract children from the true focus of the lesson. Not to mention, they can take an age to make! Try delivering a lesson without any teacher created resources. Think about how pupil created resources can have an impact on learning. perhaps they can be created through flipped learning opportunities or even build up lessons.
The Inside Out Lesson -Too often teachers stick to similar structured lessons. They begin with a starter or warm up followed by teacher input where new learning is shared. A 'main' activity is usually then used to give children a chance to practice and apply their knowledge. This challenge is all about flipping these lesson structures as, often, they can hold children back. Why not try starting the lesson with the main activity and see what happens... Be reactive based on what the children can and can't do in the activity.
The Silent Lesson -'too much teacher talk'. 'The lesson was led too much by the teacher'. If you hear these comments as part of your lesson feedback, then this is the challenge for you! Ronan Keating once sang 'you say it best, when you say nothing at all' and this is sometimes true for teachers too! Have a go at teaching without speaking - true facilitation. Think about how activities can be designed and how scaffolds can help child know what to do next. Think about how peers can support pupil progress.
And now reflect... - These challenges are not lesson structures and will not always provide answers. wHAT IS IMPORTANT AFTER YOU COMPLETE EACH CHALLENGE IS THAT YOU REFLECT ON THE CHALLENGE AND THE IMPACT IT HAD ON STUDENT LEARNING AND ENGAGEMENT. Think about how you can adapt your day to day lessons plans based upon what you learnt. Focus on what went well and indeed, what went wrong!
Have fun with the challenges and let us know how you get by annotating the reflection page and posting via our social media pages. Tag us with your reflections!