Learning Strategies course
In order to effectively deliver inclusive teaching, teachers need to be able to:
- understand and evaluate the best available methods of encouraging learning in the classroom
- decide on relevant assessment strategies
- plan appropriate teaching and learning programmes
This course provides an introduction to learning theory, which is the basis for all teaching approaches.
The course content draws on the evaluation of the most effective strategies outlined in the Sutton Trust Toolkit, such as giving effective feedback, making effective use of teaching assistants, and effective interventions to support students with SEND.
On successful completion of the course, participants will be able to:
- Evaluate the strengths and limitations of behaviourist, humanist and cognitive learning theories and their significance in understanding how learning takes place
- Explain why responsibility for learning lies firmly with the teacher rather than locating it in any characteristics of the learner
- Describe the main characteristics of norm-referenced summative assessments
- Evaluate and use a range of formative assessment formats, including criterion-referenced assessments, rubrics and curriculum-based checklists
- Use criterion-referenced assessments to plan a teaching and learning programme
- Use the instructional hierarchy, providing learners with opportunities for daily practice, to acquire mastery of skills
- Use criterion-referenced assessment to set SMART goals
- Apply a graduated approach to meeting the needs of learners based on the assess, plan, do, review cycle
- Provide pupils with immediate, simple and manageable feedback related to specific learning tasks
- Use task analysis and scaffolding strategies, such as prompting, shaping and modelling, to break tasks down into simple manageable steps that can be linked together
- Deliver effective reinforcement and rewards based on individual responses to aid learning
- Maximise the effectiveness of additional help in the classroom
Feedback from our participants
“This training has helped me to refresh some of my thinking and practice. After teaching for so many years it has been good to come back to basics and back to theories and strategies to enable me to better meet my learners’ needs. I have become more confident in my knowledge around effective teaching and learning, being more comfortable with my decisions in this area.
“From implemented strategies, progress has already been seen to happen - demonstrating the usefulness of this training and the theory behind learning and classroom assessments and interventions.
“The ABC intervention was interesting for me and I think this is the section I have taken the most from. I have met some challenging behaviour in classes and this has helped me to understand and identify the types of behaviour and the triggers for it. Within my class I now sit back and think about the types of behaviour and look beyond them to see if I can identify the antecedent and prevent it from happening. I have enjoyed this and have seen a great improvement in my current class.
“Having now done this course I am aware that sometimes I 'set the bar' too high when setting a specific task/target and that I need to differentiate the work according to the children's ability. I very much agree with the statement that “knowledge of the learner can maximise the impact of teaching” and apart from the occasional 'blip' I would to think that I do 'know' the children I teach and that this knowledge does help me deliver a more effective lesson including the element of fun and surprise!
“The training has made me review interventions in conjunction with learning theory. This is a much more focused approach and I will be able to use it again in the future. I like to work with SMART target setting, as it helps me stay driven, so every opportunity to practise this is valuable.
“I can write more specific targets using SMART after the face to face training. My tutor used the example of an iceberg which was helpful in understanding underlying difficulties to aid target writing.
“The main outcome of taking part in the course has for me been to question how effective I am as a Teaching Assistant both in delivering my own lessons and in those lessons in which I support the class teacher. I have learnt how to approach my teaching in a variety of ways, and how by using different strategies with the children I work with I can improve their learning in a positive way.
“This training has made me aware of all the different learning theories and how each theory applies to certain students. It has made a big impact on targets that I set pupils, ensuring that they are SMART. It has also increased my confidence when feeding back to teachers and other agencies.
“Following on from this training I have had discussions with the classroom teacher on how I can carry out interventions that are directly linked to and support the individual targets set out in each student's IEP. I believe this will have a significant impact on outcomes as my work in the classroom will be more focused and targeted.
“After doing this course I now evaluate all the lessons I am involved in, especially the literacy lesson I teach. I have now changed the way I work with the less able children of the group, instead of them all doing the same I have given them slightly different ways to learn the sounds and words we work on. I have already seen an improvement in all of them. Working at their pace has definitely helped their learning.