Portswood Teaching School is focused upon high quality teaching and learning with assessment of pupils’ learning at the heart. The key question ‘Do you know enough about your children’s learning to take their learning forward?’ resonates throughout our pair of schools and is at the heart of all we strive to achieve within the Wider Alliance. With this in mind we wanted to develop some sheets to enable teachers to look at pupils’ achievement and aim to focus where they are moving towards.
The teachers start by using prior information of levels to ascertain whether children are on track for their year group, using a conversion chart and placing the children on a semi-circular chart . The aim is not to pigeon hole children, rather to allow clear learning discussions to take place, for example, where within expected is a child and what more do we need to do to support their learning.
We wanted a clear visual system whereby teachers moved away from levels to a deeper understanding of pupils learning.
This is a pilot for the year and we recognise that the initial simplicity needs to be developed further at a senior team level to ensure we encapsulate progress, high expectations and outstanding quality for all.
A tracking sheet enables the teachers to locate where the children are throughout the year, for example a child at expected in Year 3 will be aiming towards expected at Year 4, but where are they within that, are there any areas of moving towards exceeding? If not, why not? What holds them back?
Criteria for each core area (see Year 1 – Year 2 draft) have also been developed to support moderation and judgements.
These questions below are some of the issues we are currently discussing:
1. Could a similar visualisation of the semi circle be taken to show pupils making progress by attaching a points score to Emerging – Exceptional for each year group? This is not straightforward and therefore careful thought is needed about the numerical value assigned to each year, and each expectation.
2. The chart with child numbers on it may need a couple more entry point columns to track from a child’s entry point at the beginning of the Key Stage as well as at the entry to that year group. Without this, it would be difficult to pinpoint where the slow or rapid progress is occurring.
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