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Classroom Fad or Fix: Do we need to look a little closer at Lesson Study?

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What is it? Lesson Study is a continuous professional development (CPD) programme, based on an approach widely used in Japan. Teachers work together in small groups – usually threes – to investigate, plan and then teach "research lessons" that meet a shared learning goal. Colleagues observe each other in these lessons, and give feedback on its effe...
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Classroom Fad or Fix? The many sides of mixed-ability grouping

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What is it? The process of putting students into classes that have a mix of abilities, rather than streaming them into sets alongside others of a similar attainment level. The practice is still quite rare in England's schools (both primary and secondary), with most leaders opting for the more traditional approach of setting by ability, particularly...
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Classroom fad or fix? Are attendance prizes a bad bet?

Classroom fad or fix? Are attendance prizes a bad bet?
What is it?  The use of rewards given to pupils who have not missed many days of school (often 98-100% attendance). The nature of these gifts varies from school to school; for some it is a certificate, while many other schools opt for pricier prizes such as iPads, bicycles and trips.  Earlier this month, writer and mother Rachel Wright's ...
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Classroom Fad or Fix? We investigate homework

Classroom Fad or Fix? We investigate homework
What is it?  ​It depends who you speak to. For some, homework is a way to develop students' independent learning skills and ensure they have understood – and then consolidate – work from the classroom. Others, meanwhile, contend that it's a largely pointless tradition that brings stress to young people and their families, robbing them of much-...
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Classroom fad or fix? The big picture on class sizes

Classroom fad or fix? The big picture on class sizes
What is it?  The belief that smaller class sizes mean better results for pupils. It's an idea that has huge support among parents, who (understandably) follow the logic that if there are fewer pupils in class, their child will get more attention and be more likely to succeed. The public are quick to jump on the bandwagon too. In his book, Davi...
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