The key impact of everything we do in school should be on the pupils: their welfare, character, learning, achievement and understanding.
I have been reflecting on the questions that I ask of pupils when on learning walks or looking at books together and considering how these link to our school’s “Teaching for Learning Foundations” and also how they fit with book monitoring, learning walks, lesson observations and pupil achievement discussions in evidencing progress towards ARE for each year group.
Sometimes these conversations can feel rather formulaic, or I realise I am asking the same few questions of many pupils. I have asked a question of colleagues on Twitter to see the range of questions other teachers use and to broaden and improve my repertoire.
Currently this is my range of questions to select from.
What are learning today? What are you learning that is new? Why are you learning it? (Learning Aim)
How has your teacher helped you to be clear about what you are learning?
How does this learning to link to other learning you’ve done before today?
How do you know if you’re being successful at this learning / task? What in particular are you trying to improve today? (Success Criteria)
What would you do if you were stuck? (Class culture / Learning environment & Walls)
How are the adults / other children / resources / displays helping your learning in this session?
How tricky is this learning for you? (Challenge)
What questions has your teacher asked in this session? How have they helped your thinking?
Focus in on a specific piece, and start discussion with an open agenda (individually / groups)
Show me something you are proud of in your book? Tell me about why you are proud?
Show me something you struggled with in your book? How did you get better at this? How were you helped? Do you still understand it now? (Mastery)
Can you show me some examples of when the teacher’s feedback has helped you understand or get better at your learning?
Which comments / feedback do you find most helpful in improving your learning or work?
If we look at the first few pages and the last few pages, what do you think you’ve got better at? Can you show me examples?
What targets are you aiming to get better at? Can you show me some examples of how you are improving / being helped?
How do you let the teacher know how well you think you’ve done with your learning / task? Can you show me an example? (Continuous Diagnostic Assessment)
What do you think you are really good at?
What do you find hard to do? / What do you find a bit tricky? Can you think of anything that would help you with this? (Challenge)
Can you think of something that used to be really hard but is now much easier? (Mastery)
What do you enjoy learning and why?
When do you get to make choices in what you learn about or how you learn? Can you give some examples? (Independence / pupil partnership)
How do Learning Partners help you? Can you give an example? (Discuss and reflect)
Do you know how to improve in your learning /activities / work? (What and how do you know?)
What sorts of things does your teacher do or say in most sessions? What other things often happen?
What do you think makes someone a ‘Great Learner’?