Friday, 17 January 2014

Marginal Gains Experiment Courtesy of Lemov

If you're a teacher and you've not read 'Teach Like a Champion', you really should.

After observations of some of the best teachers in America, Lemov pinpointed 49 techniques that any teacher could employ which would improve their students' learning. I've tried to employ these techniques in my own practice and have noticed clear benefits.

However, I have applied them quite haphazardly and feel like I should be more disciplined about my approach in order to get the best out of them. I've therefore decided to apply these techniques with a 'marginal gains' approach; focussing on a select few at a time and altering my practice to ensure I improve upon specific areas.

I have created an excel document where I am going to record notes on what went well and how I could improve upon the technique for the next lesson. The lessons will be reflected on at the end of each day and the notes recorded as soon as possible to ensure I'm remembering as much as I can. Only two techniques will be focussed on each week so that I have at least five recordings (and hopefully improvements!) for each technique. Some of the techniques will be impractical to implement with recorded notes ('post-it' being one as there's not much improvement I can make after putting the learning objectives in the same place lesson after lesson).

This will be quite a time-consuming exercise, but I am hoping that the focus on specific parts of my teaching in detail will provide an improvement in all my students' learning as well as save me time in the long-run. I will report back every two weeks via this blog on my reflections of each technique. If you have any advice, tips or queries in the meantime, please do leave a comment or tweet me.

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