Taking a step back: How are we doing?

I recently visited all 3 Year 6 classes and spoke informally to randomly chosen students. I had decided to do this to get an idea of where the students were at with their learning and what our next steps as teachers were. This is what we came up with after reflecting as a team on the students’ responses:

Things that are going well in our practice:

Next steps for us:
  • Students have come a long way since the beginning of term.
  • Majority of students know what their writing goals are off the top of their heads.
  • They can articulate good ideas regarding what they do already and what they could do to be a successful learner.
  • They are honest and open about their learning.
  • They are aware they aren’t ready for too much more control in the classroom quite yet.
  • Kids seem to feel they are in a partnership with us when constructing goals. They have a pretty good handle on what their strengths and weaknesses are.
  • We are offering children a fair bit of choice and flexibility and opportunity to be creative and this will increase throughout the year.
  • We think we are doing OK at individualising and differentiating learning for kids, mainly through individual goals.
 Putting skills to be a successful learner into place:

  • Collaboration – working on now. Lots of practice and reflection.
  • Putting into practice what they know to be the right thing to do. They have already made progress this year. Refection will continue to help this.
  • Unpack what “concentrating hard” and “working hard” actually mean, whether this is OK on its own and how to make this happen…


  • Make a table of what the teacher controls and what the kids control and where we would like to make changes in the future. Give the kids a better understanding of their role and our role in the class.
  • Photograph good and not so good seating choices and discuss.
  • Video groups/pairs working well together. Unpack how to have a good learning conversation.
  • Keep talking about the relevance of what we are learning, in all areas. This should help kids reflect on the relevance more than just “it will help me later in life/ for a job.” This should help them value their learning more too.

2 thoughts on “Taking a step back: How are we doing?

  1. You are obviously being very active about inquiring into your teaching practice! Well done with such great collaboration amongst your teachers and students. I am sure everyone must feel excited about the path ahead! It will be really interesting to see if the students can give honest reflection about their seating arrangements and working in groups.Lyn Dawes (2008) has some good activities for developing group rules and discussions…you can google that. I will try to send you the link.

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