What are the core components of Teaching and Learning?
A good starting point when considering the core components of Teaching and Learning is to look at the most important purpose of teaching and we need to look no further than Ofsted for this:
‘The most important purpose of teaching is to raise pupils’ achievement’. School inspection handbook January 2014
‘The most important purpose of teaching is to promote learning and improve outcomes for learners.’ Handbook for the inspection of further education and skills January 2014
Remembering that achievement and improved outcomes are not restricted to obtaining qualifications but extends to promoting pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.
It is worth bearing in mind that an expert in a subject does not necessary equate to a good teacher. Of course it goes without saying that an effective teacher has to know their subject but they also need to know how to teach, be enthusiastic and inspiring and fundamentally know what will influence the learning experience of their audience. Therefore planning is essential but this is not limited to a lesson plan, indeed to the question in the School Inspection Policy : FAQs document the answer to the question:
‘Does Ofsted expect to see a lesson plan for every lesson it inspects?’
‘Inspectors do not expect teachers to prepare lesson plans for an inspection, but will expect the delivery of lessons to demonstrate evidence of effective planning. Inspectors do not expect to see any particular lesson structure.‘
Comprehensive planning and preparation are essential for effectiveness and embrace a broad range of topics including:
1. Knowing your pupils and using assessment to set tasks that are challenging and that match their needs accurately in order to engage their interest and encourage them to take ownership of their own learning.
2. Planning the right delivery method (everyone learns differently).
3. Consideration of time management, amount of content, pace.
4. Having well informed lesson objectives that are very clear and have simple instructions.
5. Organising the room layout and resources (including your valuable TAs) to maximise the learning opportunities for all pupils.
6. Having a strategy for assessment of learning during lessons. Of course however thorough your planning and preparation things do not always go according to schedule or produce the results you were aiming for. Therefore it is vital for teachers to systematically check pupil’s understanding in lessons, and make appropriate interventions.
Just as teaching and learning are interdependent, so is the teacher pupil relationship and respect and understanding between both parties should be fostered, especially as this could influence pupil behaviour. That is why timely marking and constructive, motivating feedback from teachers are so important and core components to a pupil’s learning. Pupils need to know where they are, what they need to do to reach their next level and be confident that support is available if they need it.
Therefore when it comes to a school/college/provider monitoring the effectiveness of the teaching and assessment that is taking place in their organisation lesson observations (although extremely useful) are only part of the picture. Judgements should also include homework setting, effectiveness of marking, quality of feedback etc.
These 6 components of the teaching /learning process are some of the components of effective teaching when it comes to boosting teaching staff professional development.
To find out how Observation Manager can help your organisation manage all these aspects of teaching and learning contact us either by calling 01985 844087 for a free no-obligation, on-line demo or by emailing info@TeachingPlusLearning.co.uk.