Sir William Ramsay School

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Teaching and Learning

At Sir William Ramsay School we have used research and professional experience to develop a rigorous Teaching and Learning Pedagogy.  At the heart of this is Thinking Hard, the idea that in order to learn students need to really think about what they are learning!

Professor Robert Coe in his paper ‘Improving Education’ states that learning happens when students have to think hard, although at heart this seems simplistic, it is what makes the difference for true learning to take place.

Thinking talk is so powerful because teachers today ask between 300-400 questions each day (Leven and Long, 1981).   “We have known for a long time that talk is essential to students thinking and learning, and to their productive engagement in classroom life…  We now have additional evidence, from over 20 major international studies, that high quality classroom talk raises standards in the core subjects as typically measured in national and international tests.” (Robin Alexander, Cambridge University 2012).

With this in mind we have developed and introduced our ESELED 'Every Student, Every Lesson, Every Day' strategy to support 'Quality First Teaching' within the classroom.  Ways in which we support this is through our 'Learning Ready' approach for students.

Thinking Hard Devices

The CORE lies at the heart of the approach to teaching and learning. 

CURRICULUM: What you learn, how you learn it and making connections.

OUTCOMES: Progress you are making during the year based on formative assessments - students, teachers and self review feedback.

RELATIONSHIPS: Having positive experiences in the class, feeling confident to risk take, ask for help, seek guidance from others.

EXPECTATIONS: Try your best, stay focused, show resilience and be ambitious in your goals.

Thinking Talk

It is through active engagement in lessons that excellent progress and a love of learning develops.

Through the IMPACT model approach staff and students work together to develop a love of the subject and a drive to do well.

INNOVATIVE: Original, creative thinking about subjects and work.

MODELLING: Study skills and learning is taught in each lesson to support learning.

PASSIONATE: Show a love of learning in the subjects through classwork, engagement and participation in lessons.

AMBITIOUS: To be determined to succeed, to have high aspirations and dreams.

CONSISTENT: Being reliable, following instructions, behaving in line with SWRS expectations every day.

TEAM: Be part of a group working towards a common goal in lessons.

Due to COVID and a loss of learning time and skill, we are focusing on 'Memory Techniques' through recall and retention to enable students to review the work that they have learned in class and online and create strong memory links to support them in their studies moving forwards.