Responsive Teaching

Thinking about the best way of feeding back to pupils remotely, I am reminded of Dylan William’s suggestion that formative assessment would have been better off being called ‘responsive teaching’. As teachers we are often trying to stretch feedback to fit various purposes, but surely the primary function should be to provide the teacher with information so that they can respond through their teaching.

Park this idea for a moment, and consider these aspects of Rosenshine’s principles: presenting new material in small steps, guided practice and independent practice. Although the principles are intended to be fluid, these elements act as stages through which pupils can progress when addressing a particular concept. They hinge upon Principle 6, “check for understanding”, which we can use to judge when pupils are able to move between these three stages. This illustrates one interpretation of ‘responsive teaching’.

The following is my attempt to show what this might look like, taking into account some of the different aspects of assessment. Hopefully it makes clear that a range of assessment methods are used as pupils move from new concepts to independent application. As ever, it is about judging which strategy to use when and matching these with the task in hand. This is in no way intended as a policy to be followed, purely an attempt to illustrate my thinking on the subject and spark some discussion about how this might apply to different subject areas.

Responsive Teaching

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