Creating Motivated and Confident Learners by Celebrating Success

Do you remember when you were at school and you would receive a reward for doing great work? We probably all remember a time when this happened to us and we had a sense of bursting pride from it. This also helped with our confidence, instilled more of a love of learning, and may even have led to what we do as a job now.

In this blog, we’re going to take a look at why we should be celebrating success in the classroom, as well as strategies for doing so, without taking away from that all-important teacher time.

Why We Should Celebrate Success…

To Help Students See That Hard Work Leads to Growth

There needs to be a move away from the thinking that achievement can be based on either ability, others around us or plain good luck. Effort is significant too. Although this is already widely understood, we should be rewarding this over anything to motivate our students. Focusing on this as a tool that underpins achievement will help with students seeing the value of working hard and will help them with putting more effort into their work, which in turn, will improve their outcomes and growth.

To Instil a Love of Learning

You can help your students grow in confidence in so many areas by celebrating their accomplishments. Besides, what’s better to build confidence than being told you’re doing well?

To Motivate Learners with Their Studies

Praise is a major driver in motivating students to work hard and do well. But we need to make sure we’re giving praise that is helpful. We can do this by making sure it’s sincere and genuine, specific and descriptive, to ensure students know where they have done well, but also realistic, so it focuses on specific behaviors.

How We Should Celebrate Success…

Celebrating success must be done well for students to really benefit from its impact. Consider implementing the following into your praise:

  • Focus on the hard work and effort rather than just the achievement when praising students.
  • Make sure you clearly point out who is being celebrated and the reason why.
  • Give more background information about performance.
  • Make sure praise is transparent and varied.

Strategies for Celebrating Success

It’s true that there are many schools with their own Behaviour Policy in place that details rewards or what to do when there’s negative behaviour. However, it may be worth reviewing some of this policy to help with motivation and creating confident learners.

Create Postcards for Parents/Carers

This is a personal reward, but you could send home postcards to say “well done” for something – this will help engagement and the home school link. You can make these yourself and print them out. Sometimes, students won’t come home and shout about their successes, so these are a great idea for you to do something to show great work.

Share Any Successes on Social Media

Does your class or school have a social media page? We know these are very popular! You could post photos or messages of your students’ work to show parents and celebrate success; this is a great way of improving parental engagement and quickly sharing fantastic work with a wider audience too.

Set Up a Special Treat or Lunch

When your whole class has done fantastic work, as a special reward, at lunch, you could give your students passes, or Golden Tickets, to a separate table and maybe even have teachers serve them ! This will make them feel very special and set them apart from their peers – plus, other students will see which will inspire them to want to try and aim for that treat too!

Don’t forget that on Exact Path, you can also set up Challenges which mean you can put a ‘special lunch’ as a reward for skills completed or time spent on learning paths. Our report from Century Analytics shows that students who complete just eight lessons on Exact Path demonstrate significant growth, so this is a great way to improve outcomes.

Celebrating success is a great idea for so many reasons – success looks different for every student, so taking time to highlight this can help with motivation, confidence and class morale. So how do you celebrate success in your classroom? Let us know in the comments below.

You’ve Identified the Gaps, What Do You Do Now?

Let’s imagine you’ve identified your students’ learning gaps from a diagnostic assessment. What are your next steps to provide personalized learning and best support each student in your class to help them improve their understanding?

One of our solutions, EducationCity, could be the answer! Let’s dig deeper in how you’ll able to deliver a personalized learning approach…

MyCity on EducationCity

MyCity enables you to create an individualized lesson plan so you can monitor progression and support intervention, saving you valuable time in planning lessons.

What are the benefits?

  • Additional Help: Address misconceptions so you’ll able to provide extra support for students (identified from the Assessment Report).
  • Support Different Abilities: Set different work for groups of students’ depending on their capability.
  • Track Progress: Easily identify areas of weakness and learning gaps using the tracking tab within the MyCity, as well as seeing who has completed work, what’s still in progress and what hasn’t been started.

MyRevision on EducationCity

When students score less than 100% on an assessment, a MyRevision Journal is created, which includes a range of resources to build students’ knowledge on the topic they may be struggling with.

What are the benefits?

  • Revision Pathway: A MyRevision is personalized for each student, targeting areas of improvement identified from the diagnostic assessment.
  • Boosts Progress: Improve students’ understanding on a concept, reinforcing knowledge taught in the classroom before the assessment.

Grouping Students’ on EducationCity

Group students by any criteria you choose, so you can create similar ability groups for targeted learning or even mixed ability groups to encourage students to support one another.

What are the benefits?

  • Adapt Learning: Set particular work for each group within a MyCity to support with targeted learning.
  • Keeping Track of Groups’: Monitor progress in SuccessTracker and MyCity to keep track of where your teaching methods need to be adapted.
  • Intervention: Noticed some students need extra practice? Set specific Groups practice in a certain subject area in MyCity to do in class or at home.

Home Access with EducationCity

Home access enables students to continue learning away from home and over the holidays, enabling the child’s parents to monitor their progress and step in if needed.

What are the benefits?

  • Automated Marking: Within SuccessTracker and MyCity’s Tracking tab, you can see your students’ results from automatically marked activities and assessments, saving you valuable time so you can focus on other areas of teaching.
  • Personalized Learning: Allocate specific content to students in a MyCity so you know they are providing homework appropriate to their needs.

Being able to effectively monitor growth during a child’s educational journey is important, so you can celebrate their achievements, especially if they have overcome a misconception barrier. Identifying learning gaps as soon as possible is key in being able to put steps in place for improvement.

If you’d like to explore the features mentioned above for yourself, simply sign in here. Alternatively, if your school doesn’t have EducationCity, get in touch with our team to set you up with some free access.

How to Use Data Visualization

What misconceptions do you come across in your class? Have you spotted learning gaps? These are the challenges we want to try and help overcome with EducationCity’s Assessment Report.

Before we explore the solutions to any misconceptions you may have come across, take a sneak preview into the How to Use Data Visualization pack. This includes how they report on EducationCity can help you identify learning gaps, and where misconceptions have occurred. Click the button below to download the pack.

Why do misconceptions occur?

A misconception is a misunderstanding of a view or opinion that is perceived inaccurately. Sometimes students may find it hard to grasp ideas or concepts covered in class.

They may perform best in different areas of their learning, for example, some students may be stronger in certain subjects than others or perform better in assessments. Some steps can be put in place to support students in fully understanding the underlying concepts, enabling you to measure their success and growth.

How can misconceptions be addressed?

Instructional support (scaffolding) can be used to help students master a new task or keep up with more advanced learners. Examples of scaffolding strategies using technological aids and being part of learning groups that pool students’ knowledge to support one another.

Performance feedback either from peers or a teacher ensures students who are mastering new academic skills have frequent opportunities to try these skills out with immediate feedback and encouragement. Effective guidance will only help students grow in their abilities!

Make the lesson relatable with students ‘Talk-Through’ Activities. When students appear to have successfully learned a skill, set up activities for them to complete and ask the students to ‘talk’ through the activity, e.g., each step that they are taking, describe their problem-solving strategies aloud, describe any problems they may come across and how they will solve them. This will not only make students feel more confident but help to address any gaps in learning where intervention may be needed.

So, now we’ve discovered how misconceptions can be resolved, how can EducationCity’s Assessment Report help?

Once you know what areas within the topic have been misunderstood, you can then start to personalize your lessons to help your students’ understanding.

Whilst it’s important you manage students’ progress, it’s also beneficial for students to track their learning progress too. Following an assessment, a Revision Journal is automatically generated if the student scores less than 100%. The revision contains Activities and Learn Screens to offer additional support. This means that whilst a student is completing their work, they can keep track of their scores as the content is automatically marked. This takes the time you would spend for marking out of your hands!

In the example below from an Assessment Report, you can see that Alanna answered a question incorrectly, where she had to complete the number sentence. Her peers, Alex and Amelia, got this correct, so this is a good opportunity for group work to help Alanna fill this learning gap.

Aaron didn’t attempt that same question, nor a few of the others that fall under the number sequences objective, so it could be he struggled with this area of the assessment. You could personalize learning and address these areas of weakness by creating a MyCity with the content on number sequences and patterns for some revision and practice.

Whether you have students struggling in your class who need that additional bit of support or reinforcement on a topic, there are several ways misconceptions can be addressed using EducationCity.

If you’d like to explore the Assessment Report for yourself, simply sign in. Alternatively, if your school doesn’t have EducationCity, get in touch with our team to set you up with some free access.

 

Connecting the Dots with EducationCity’s Assessment & Reporting Features

We’ve launched some exciting changes on EducationCity recently, to support our journey to becoming an integrated assessment and curriculum content resource.

As part of our 20th year providing educational resources to schools worldwide with EducationCity, we’ve added to our offering and ever-growing bank of resources. We’ve been busy looking into how we can support teachers with their time and challenges. This is where, with teacher feedback, we started our assessment journey.

As part of this journey, we undertook some user testing on assessments with a research company called Schoolzone. From this, we found that 97% of respondents said our assessments are pitched correctly for age-related expectations. Also, 98% said our assessments are appropriate preparation for standardized testing.

With this feedback in mind, we expanded our range of assessments which involved our team of educators writing over 4,000 new assessment questions. These were all curriculum-linked and with the view to helping teachers with providing more personalized support. Alongside this too, we also had the view of helping them with identifying gaps and saving time with differentiation.

Depending on which curriculum you’re following, we’ve added assessments in all year groups and these include:

EducationCity Assessments

 

Also, we have a number of different types of assessments as you can see, which we explain below.

EducationCity Assessment

Formative Assessments

These are available in maths and English and are ideal for helping you to gauge where your students are in their understanding. When your students take these, you can adjust instruction and planned teaching and learning activities to adapt to your students’ understanding.

Summative Assessments

Appearing in maths, English and science, our summative assessments are ideal for the end of the year so you can get a full picture of your students’ understanding and evidence for end of year reporting.

Unit Assessments

Unit assessments are currently available in maths and aimed at testing students’ understanding of individual concepts. These aregreat for checking whether your class is ready to move on to the next concept you plan to teach, and which students might need a bit more support to get there.

Revision Journals

When formative and unit assessments are taken, a Revision Journal is generated for a student which is ideal for addressing any misconceptions and is great for remedial work. It pulls together resources to support them on weaker areas identified in the assessment.

Revision Journal

Reducing Teacher Workload with the Assessment Report

Our new Assessment Report can be found in SuccessTracker. Let’s go over a few ways the data from assessments taken by students can help you manage individual students’ learning.

Assessment Report

Identify Gaps to Support Intervention

The Assessment Report allows you to see misconceptions and gaps in understanding at a glance.

Broken down by objective and question, you’ll be able to see which students answered correctly and incorrectly, as well as the answers they gave. This is all done in real-time so you’ll get results instantly. From here, you can also easily decide which students need further intervention, and what support they might need to master a concept.

Differentiate Learning Easily

Finding time to differentiate learning is the eternal teaching challenge, and the Assessment Report can take some of the work out of that.

Clicking on any question allows you to easily group students based on their level of understanding. It’s great for re-teaching or just grouping students together to do some peer teaching. This is a great tool if you’re using blended learning in your classroom. Particularly if you work with a station rotation model, you can support students who may need it, ask students to work on their Revision Journal or instruct your students to peer teach as well.

Rewarding Your Students for Their Success

If your students score higher than the minimum score set in Preferences, they’ll be able to print a certificate to celebrate their achievement (you’ll also be able to print one out in SuccessTracker).

Certificate

These developments are only the beginning of our journey! We’re now looking to create teacher-generated assessments where you can build your own assessments, as well as adapting our reporting areas even further to support you, and creating Revision Journals which are adaptive and support development in foundational skills.

All this with the purpose of supporting you with saving time and helping you gain valuable insights to support your instruction. Our developments help connect the dots between instruction and learning, assist with ability grouping and inform lesson planning.

We’ll be talking more about our assessment and reporting developments next year, so keep an eye out for more!

Top Tips on How Data Supports Personalized Learning

The shift in education towards a more ‘personalized’ learning approach has changed the way that both educators and students look at teaching and learning. More and more educators have moved away from the traditional ‘stand and deliver’ approach to direct instruction and have instead opted for more data-driven instructional techniques that take into consideration the varied needs of the learner(s).

This focus on student data has helped educators craft more targeted lessons that not only take into consideration the students’ individual learning styles, interests and needs, but it has also created a culture shift for many schools who now focus on how to best gather and use student data to drive classroom instruction.

I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with schools across the globe over the last seven years and I have seen this shift towards using data to support personalized learning first-hand. Throughout my hundreds of school/classroom visits, I have seen countless best practices on how student(s’) data can directly support personalized learning and inform good classroom instruction.

I would like to share with you three of the ‘top tips’ for how to use data to create a more personalized learning environment that I have seen in classrooms all across the world.

1. Use Student Data to Focus on the Future

Using student data to create unique instructional scope and sequences is a critical part of a successful personalized learning classroom. Gathering and interpreting data from your students should be done in a way that can help you as an educator not only spot areas that may need additional support, but also help you to inform what may need to be taught to your students next.

As you work to create your learning targets for the day, week and even the month, it is essential to take into consideration what data that you have from your students to inform what may need to be either taught or even re-taught next to ensure skill mastery. Many educators view student data as simply a ‘point in time’ in that students learning continuum, but by connecting those ‘points in time,’ you can start to plot a course for the future and how you want your instruction to guide your students moving forward.

2. Review Data Early and Often

Working to create a personalized learning environment is not like ‘switching on a lightbulb.’ It takes time and it needs to be informed by the students that you have within your classroom. This is why looking at relevant student data on a regular and predictable cadence is absolutely essential. The information that you can glean from formative and summative assessment data can directly affect the way that you orientate your classroom lessons. Reviewing student data is a process that can be made even more effective when working alongside colleagues or other grade-level team members.

Creating a formalized process for reviewing data such as a ‘PLC’ (Professional Learning Community) meeting can help you as a teacher gather other feedback about your students and enrich the quality and quantity of ideas on how to best leverage that data to inform your instructional techniques. Many PLC’s meet to review data on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to ensure that as they gather more data and feedback from students, they can then take that timely and relevant data and turn it into action within the classroom. Setting the expectation to review student data on a regular, predictable basis can have a dramatic effect on not only the way that educators drive instruction, but also the way that students learn within the classroom.

3. Connect Learners with Their Data

Too often I see educators working to pour over student data and make instructional decisions without involving the actual students whose data it is. Connecting students with their data is essential and can help motivate students and keep them engaged in their learning. Taking the time to not only look back at historical data with students, but also work with them to plot a course for where their instruction may go as a result of the data is in part what a personalized learning environment is all about.

Sharing data with students not only involves them even more in the teaching and learning process, but it also gives the students more of a voice in his/her learning and that degree of student agency can have a dramatic effect.

As you continue to cultivate and work towards a more personalized learning environment within your classroom, be sure to find ways to incorporate the use of student data in your teaching processes, as the end result is often a more successful and engaged learner.

Top Five Test Preparation Tips

Preparing for tests isn’t easy for students or teachers! That is why we have put together some useful tips that will help you to support your students as they prepare for their high-stakes tests.

1. Benchmark your students

Even before you start preparing students for their assessments, it’s very important to know what their strengths are, and where they have needs. A benchmark assessment can help you identify where students are individually, and comparatively against their peers. You can then use this information to help inform your teaching and the direction it needs to take.

2. Leverage your data

If you have data from your students, whether from previous exams or homework, use it! This data can be your best tool to differentiate teaching and help you prepare your students for their tests. Make use of formative assessment strategies too, to identify concepts and skills your students are struggling with and where individualized attention is needed. Online tools – like Edmentum Sensei – can be a great way to obtain actionable data.

3. Review and practice

Create a revision plan to review content. You may have to give a diagnostic quiz to identify where there is a lack of understanding. Once you determine where the challenge exists, review the material and possibly introduce other resources. Practice will not be constructive unless the students understand the content.

Simulated practice tests can ensure that your students are making the desired amount of progress before a high-stakes exam. All practice experiences should emulate the test in the style of questioning, as well as presentation. This will help them familiarize themselves with the format and become comfortable with it, so that there are no nasty surprises when the test arrives. If they will be taking the test online, then practice should be digital so that students develop the skills they will need for the exam.

Teach your students the importance of previewing a test section before starting to answer questions. It can help them pace themselves (so that they don’t run out of time and feel rushed), and it gives the brain the opportunity to start retrieving information in the background while answering other questions.

4. Prepare for next-generation assessments

Not only are next-generation assessments more rigorous, but they may be presented in a format that students are unfamiliar with. Gone are the days when pure content knowledge and a pencil were all that students would need to succeed on a test.

Below are a few things your students will need to have to be successful:

• Device familiarity
• Understanding of how to navigate the test
• Exposure to Technology-Enhanced Item types
• Basic keyboarding skills

Make sure that your students are given enough preparation and time with these items to give them the best chance of success.

5. Create a culture of positivity before the test

As Henry Ford is credited for saying, “Whether you think you can or think you can’t – you’re right.” Although some anxiety can be helpful, making students feel the urgency to prepare, it can quickly become a negative force and undermine all the positive preparation that has been done. So, try to keep the atmosphere relaxed and fun while still stressing the importance of the test.

Test taking is a skill, and knowing how to take a test correctly can improve scores dramatically. Follow these five steps, however, and you can be secure in the knowledge that you’ve prepared your students as best you can.

Tips & Tricks for Utilizing Technology in the Classroom

As more and more educators embrace the use of technology within the classroom to guide instruction and engage learners, it can become overwhelming at times for educators to find the best, most effective ways to use those tech tools with their students. There is a distinct difference between simply having a ‘tech-rich’ classroom and utilizing technology in meaningful ways to guide effective instruction that leads to successful student outcomes.

I have been fortunate to work within classrooms across the world that are striving to maximize the use of education technology to effect positive student outcomes. I consistently get asked by educators and administrators alike, “what are some of the most effective tips or tricks that you have seen when trying to best use technology within the classroom?” While each education technology implementation is different, there are some common themes that I have listed below, that I see leveraged within high-performing schools that can be easily adopted into practice in any school or classroom. These tips are really designed for any educator/administrator who is looking to refine or strengthen their use of education technology at his/her school or classroom.

1. Plan for the Use of Technology within the Classroom

While on the surface this may seem like an obvious statement, many educators who are working to integrate education technology within the classroom do not have the time necessary to define how tech tools are meant to enhance classroom instruction. Providing educators with high-quality training around exactly how the technology is designed to be used within the classroom can transform an instructor’s teaching processes.

Simply handing out a set of classroom iPads with little or no training on how that tool can be used to facilitate effective instruction is like handing someone who does not know how to drive the keys to a brand new car. It is critical to provide not only initial training on the new technology to educators, but also to provide ongoing, collaborative training that focus on topics such as “Change Management” and “Data-Driven Instruction”.

Using technology within the classroom is a process and it is not one that is learned overnight. Providing high-quality professional development opportunities to educators who are looking to enhance their classroom instruction techniques using technology, is quite possibly the most important thing you can do to ensure you are getting the most out of that technology within the classroom.

2. Use Technology to Gather Meaningful Student Data

One of the most powerful aspects of using technology within the classroom is the ability to quickly gather meaningful student data and feedback. Classrooms that relied in the past on teachers hand-scoring sometimes hundreds of assessments on a daily basis, can now use the power of technology to gather that student feedback in a matter of minutes.

Educators now have the ability to gather that student data and then interpret it to make adjustments on a daily (and sometimes hourly) basis in how they approach classroom instruction. The power and speed with which educators can differentiate instruction for students within the classroom using technology is simply unprecedented. It is really not about simply having access to a set of computers or iPads within the classroom now, it is all about how you as an educator use them to provide learning experiences that are engaging and reflective of your particular student’s skills and abilities. Gathering student data and feedback using technology in the classroom is essential and it is one way that you can quickly make an enormous difference in how your students learn and grow.

3. Educate Everyone on How to Use Technology to Support Learning

Too often, I see technology being rolled out to teachers and students only to leave one critical group out of the communication loop – a student’s parent/family. Effectively using technology in the classroom extends beyond just the school grounds, it permeates to the student’s home as well. Taking the time to educate your student’s parent/family about what types of classroom technology will be used, what impacts it can have and how parents/families can support the use of technology within the classroom is critical.

Hosting a “Parent Technology Night” is a great way to help not only educate your students’ parent/family, it can also work to start a higher level of conversation at home about issues including good digital citizenship and safe internet browsing. The more you can take the time to educate your students and their parent/families about the use of technology within the classroom, the more effective your education technology implementation will be.

A Webinar on Personalized Learning…

Recently, our very own Gavin, International Director, and Derek, International Manager, have been flying worldwide delivering a personalized learning workshop at conferences such as the AISA Educators Conference and the Education Experts Conference.

Today, we’ve decided to give you an insight into the workshop delivered, which we’ve put together as a webinar.

You can see the webinar delivered on our page here.

If you’d like to find out more about what the webinar covers, which includes a discussion on what is personalized learning, how you can achieve it, and how you can overcome any challenges, read on, as we’re going to discuss a little bit about creating personalized learning plans for students.

Let’s Begin… Personalized Learning Plans

So to start, we need to set out the fact that to really personalize learning in the classroom, plans should be created for each student. To create a plan, we discuss six steps. Although they may not be surprising, together, they are powerful and each one has the individual student at its center, which is really important.

We’ll go through the first four steps here and explore how you can create the optimal personalized learning plan for each of your students.

1. Lay Out Your Starting Point

Clipboard

To start, let’s make sure you begin at your starting point and define it. By looking at assessment results as the blueprint of your curriculum design, we are able to understand where we’re going. Also, through adaptive technology that yields reliable, fair results and enables you to have smart data you can interpret, you can put the correct assessment in place to set benchmarks which is ideal.

 

2. Set Goals

PencilNext, we’ll take a look at setting goals. It must be remembered that it’s not necessarily simple for students to set goals. As teachers, we should be setting goals with our students alongside asking them what areas they’d like to improve in, what their strengths and weaknesses are, etc. Students must be a part of this process and set their own goals so they know what they must achieve and how they’re going to get there.

 

3. Map Learning Modalities & Interests

WorldAlso, to help us develop learning plans, we need to understand our students’ preferences. Do we have visual or auditory learners? What are their interests and favorite subjects? Well, knowing these means we can accommodate students’ preferences in plans. What’s more, using Exact Path and similar adaptive technology, we can design a program tailored to a student’s needs.

 

4. Teach Students to Track & Focus

Bar ChartNow, moving onto the next step, we must consider the fact that students should be able to track their own progress. It’s important to make sure you have the right tracking tools to support your students and give them what they need. Allow students to view their own progress easily and see how they can master any misconceptions with adaptive technology such as Exact Path. Fundamentally, however, students need to see all their data and be able to interpret it verbally.

The final two steps focus on benchmarking and growth points, as well as relationship building. If you’d like to listen to the other points then make sure you listen to the full webinar.

View the full version of the Personalized Learning webinar.

As always, if you have any questions regarding personalized learning and how Edmentum International’s solutions can support you, just email international@edmentum.com and we’ll be happy to help!

Adopting a Grading or Marking System Based on Students’ Success

Grading or marking approaches differ vastly in schools and there are many different ideas to approach it. In this blog, we’re going to look at how you can apply a student-centered grading or marking strategy in your classroom. Check out our four top tips!

1. Grades/scores should reflect learning

If students are misbehaving or being disrespectful, it can be tempting to tell them that they will lose points. However, and you may already advocate this, when scores reflect behavior, they don’t necessarily reflect a student’s learning. Although negative behavior should carry consequences, it’s important to make sure that those consequences don’t alter a student’s grades.

2. Concentrate on the performance of summative assessments

Although formative assessments such as quizzes or homework assignments are important, and they give students the opportunity to practice what they’re learning, it should be pointed out that they are small-scale measures of understanding and should be weighted significantly less than higher-stakes summative assessments. Summative assessments are designed to be given to students after they have achieved mastery to demonstrate learning and formative assessments gauge understanding. The majority of a student’s grade is based on summative assessments so it will more accurately reflect their learning at the end of the unit, rather than formative assessment scores in the meantime.

3. Don’t be too hard on late work

Sometimes it’s problematic to ask a student to move onto a new concept when they struggled to master a previous skill. All students work at their own pace and sometimes, student understanding needs to take priority over set schedules.

If a student does have a valid reason for an extension on a task, they are taking responsibility over their learning and building self-advocacy skills. So it can be fair to say that when it’s right, a less strict approach to deadlines can benefit your students’ progress.

4. Allow retakes for summative assessments

Although a dividing issue, it may be worth giving your students the opportunity to retake summative assessments. You may want to give a student a different summative assessment for them to retake the same concepts. However, it may be worth telling your students that the second score then stands and by accepting their retake score, this can serve as motivation to thoroughly prepare and master the concepts they need to if needed from the new performance.

Not just judgement and punishment, grading and marking are wholly about progress. By adopting this kind of approach, you can revolutionize your classroom for both your teaching and students’ learning.

A Parents’ Guide to Phonics

Phonics is an approach to teaching reading, and some aspects of writing, which develops learners’ phonemic awareness. It is supported by a whole range of educational bodies, including the Education Endowment Foundation.

Phonics: The Basics

Phonics teaches children to listen carefully to words, and helps them identify the phonemes (sounds) that make up each word. It breaks down words into their components sounds, then asks students to blend the sounds together and sound them out aloud to create a word that is recognizable. These decoding and blending exercises help children to learn to read more quickly so that they can engage and enjoy books at the earliest opportunity. In addition to this, phonics helps children understand how graphemes (letters) and phonemes correspond, facilitating early writing and correct spelling too!

Phonics Terminology

What phonics also provides, however, is a whole plethora of new terminology relating to language, that you as a parent, will never have come across before. So, if you don’t know your CVC words from your split digraphs, prepare to be enlightened!

Our Phonics Presentation for Parents

Our presentation, entitled An Introduction to Phonics for Parents, will give you all the information you need to help you support your child as they learn. It includes:
• What phonics is
• Why it’s used
• What the three different systematic programs are called
• What is covered in each phase of learning
• What a typical phonics lesson looks like
• Ideas of how you can support your child at home

As with most things, you’ll find that practice is the key, so any activities you can do at home will undoubtedly help your child become more adept and skilled. From pinpointing words which include the target sounds, to supporting them as they read, it all helps to reinforce what they’ve learnt in class and commit it to their long-term memory.