Text of Ben Howard and Deborah Plowright - Checking for Understanding
Assessment of LearningDeborah Plowright and
Checking for UnderstandingI have come to believe that a great teacher is a great artist and that there are as few as there are any other
great artists. John Steinbeck 1955
Checking for Understanding
The bread and butter
of great teaching.
What methods do you already use?
Individually, think about how you already check for understanding in lessons.
Write one method on each piece of card; complete as many cards as you can.
Have 3 minutes do this!
Share your methods in your groupYou will have thought of a range of methods.Please sort them into two groups.1. Those requiring a degree of teacher planning
and preparation.2. Those requiring minimal or no preparation.
The good news!
Many effective techniques for checking understanding, require minimal preparation.
We will look at more of these techniques in a while.
The Big Picture
How can learning move on unless we know what
students already understand?
Identify key points to check understanding in Schemes of Learning.
The Research Graham Nuthall ( The Hidden Lives of Learners)Effective teaching is when ‘students learn what you intend them to learn’,Doug Lemov (Teach Like a Champion)‘the most salient characteristic of a great teacher is her ability to recognise the difference between “I taught it” and “they learned it.”’ Andy Griffith and Mark Burns (Teaching Backwards)Are you like Columbo or Clouseau when questioning students? i.e. Are you a great questioner that is hard to fool? Or do you question ineffectively and are easily fooled into thinking that your students have learned what we wanted them to?
Thinking again about our own practice
Look at the list of possible activities for checking understanding.Please fill in those you use or have used. Include an example of where it can be used in your subject and identify those you may want to find out