It’s clear that if students understand what they need to do in order to improve, they are more likely to achieve. Furthermore, accurate assessment and marking is one of the cheapest and most effective ways of improvement pupil outcomes. One challenge is how to set individual(ish) targets. Although I don’t advocate every doing anything purely to satisfy Ofsted (or Gove for the matter, quite the opposite at times ), the need for students to respond constructively to the teachers comments is a focus in the new frameworks.
The question is how? At Priory Geography we developed a simple Feedback 5 session. We mark our books every five lessons, using tailored target sheets to comment on what we have been looking for and what the pupil did well (this mirrors out school’s marking policy).
The first activity in the lesson after marking is Feedback 5. Students have five minutes to respond to comments, ask questions (especially with my questionable handwriting) and, most importantly, set their own target. The targets are linked to our level sheets and informed by the improvements identified though the marking process. The following activity is then informed by the greatest weakness of the class. In the case of my Year 10 class today, this was the spelling of key terms. Here are some example resources used to support this process in the department.
What I’ve found during routine monitoring (i.e. speaking to young people) is that students confidence in what they need to do seems to have increased. That’s got to be a good thing, right?