It’s sometimes observed that children can come to see their time at school primarily in terms of day-to-day and hour-to-hour tasks to complete, preferably with a minimum of inconvenience to themselves, each task an end in itself. A bit dismal!
We think we’ve gone way beyond this at Rosendale. After almost every lesson, the children spend a few minutes reflecting on what they’ve learned or practised in that lesson and why. The idea is that this helps to make the learning meaningful and, ultimately, more enjoyable. The children become more self-aware and ambitious learners. More and more educational research is demonstrating the value of ‘metacognition’ – and from a teaching perspective, the value seems obvious.
Here, for example, are a couple of interesting reflections that Wayne has written on recent pieces of work in English lessons on UFOs. First, Wayne reflects on what’s involved in writing a balanced argument, acknowledging the help he received from classmates (through a structure called ‘give one, get one,’ whereby the children move around the classroom and exchange ideas) and from Mohammed in particular. In the second, a reflection on a formal report written for a UFO investigator, Wayne is less analytical about his writing, but instead shows how much he is thinking about the content of his work.
More on metacognition in our class assembly a week on Tuesday!