Notes and thoughts taken from Chris Quigley conference on 15.02.2017 'Learning without Lessons'
So, are we too concerned with assessment that it is leading learning rather than the other way round?
The quandary I have here is that how do we show a child's depth of understanding, their strengths and areas for development? How to move away from ages and stages/ levels / end of year expectations to something more meaningful? Detailed pupil profiles as used in EYFS interest me. Would this approach work throughout school? This is based on a continual progression of skills and understanding, whereas we are always concerned about 'achievement'. Coming back to the previous point of 'Nothing is ever achieved'. A real brain baffler and a complete change of approach would be needed in schools for this to happen. With our high stakes accountability system comes the urge/need to show that children are achieving. But what we really need is a system whereby we can show that children are continually developing their depth of understanding.
This key message of nothing is ever achieved, is also apparent in many aspects of curriculum design. The NC is designed in such a way that it prescribes some aspects of history/geography etc to learn about and have knowledge of. However, what we should be doing is using this context as the driver to develop historians, geographers, etc. Not using it as a tool to 'skim' a topic. We need to develop a depth of understanding of why history is important and not what history is. This goes for many other subjects.
My Key Questions
- How can we move away from assessing achievement or what is being 'done' to assessing understanding?
- Are schools too concerned with having a lesson objective / learning objective achieved to enable teachers to develop learning over time?
I mean, do children really 'achieve' something in every lesson? I suppose this comes down to your interpretation of a lesson.