Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Leashes not required

Leashes not required


For the past 3 weeks I have been personalising every child’s learning in my class. I use a weekly plan which is made up of Literacy and Numeracy targets specifically chosen by me so that the child can work towards these during the week. Every child is given the opportunity to add further targets which they feel will make a difference to their learning. These targets are taken from the Year 4 EoY targets for both Literacy and Numeracy. Children also have the opportunity to create their own ‘Most Important’ target for that week and a Personal Journey (PJ) which is Project Based Learning.

I have noted distinct and measurable improvements in every child’s learning since their introduction 3 weeks ago, for example, this week every child in my class has met or surpassed their numeracy targets. Each child is now responsible for their learning and the PJ inspires them to focus on the learning that will move them forward. This personalisation allows me more time to focus on teaching specific skills to many more children than I would otherwise have taught using a centre stage approach where I would stand at the front introducing and explaining for 10-15 minutes to the whole group before allowing them to show their understanding.

The use of a PJ has become my weekly plan. I do not blindly follow units of work or prescribed schemes as these have been written as guides and not as a step by step teaching method. I use National Curriculum objectives to focus on specific learning targets for every child. In this way children in my class may end up working on various mathematical concepts during any one lesson.

My TA has found using the PJ’s more beneficial as they have helped her focus on the needs of every child as she can refer to the PJ at any time.

Lesson times are now blended into one another and there have been occasions where some children have worked on Numeracy whilst others have been focusing on improving a Literacy target. The children are more focused, their learning is improving, targets are being met and in the next few weeks I will use written assessments to measure progress against my own professional judgements. That's when many of the readers of this blog, my colleagues and other educators and parents will discover if a personalised approach is beneficial to developing, promoting and extending learning.

Many thanks to artfulscribe for use of the image