What Makes Great Teaching? 6 Lessons from Learners by @Powley_R

Ruth Powley has collected ideas from her PLN to help teachers become great!

1. WMGT emphasised quality of instruction; students said that good teacher explanation matters

For the students, it was quality of explanations that made the difference between a good and a bad teacher.  Unsurprisingly, they liked clear, step-by-step explanations with well-matched modelling or worked examples and effective questioning to check for understanding.  This matches the Sutton Trust’s high-quality instruction which “includes elements such as effective questioning and … providing model responses for students.”  Unsurprisingly, students disliked it when teachers were ‘irritated’ by explanation.  The length of explanation was important, with overlong and too short explanations both coming in for criticism.  Teacher talk, in and of itself, was not criticised but a distinction was made best summed up as ‘are you teaching or just talking?’  The students also commented on the usefulness of constructing their own explanations, therefore unconsciously echoing Dunlosky here on the efficacy of self-explanation particularly for procedural or problem-solving tasks.  Students from the lower sets also commented on the importance of explanations being visual and left in place so that they could return to them through the lesson.

Strategies
1. Excellent ideas on explanation from The Learning Spy here and Headguruteacher here
2. How to model from Headguruteacher here
3. Using analogies in explanation from Reflecting English here
4. Great ideas on ‘talk better’ teaching from Reflecting English here 
5. Ideas on memorable explanation from Chip and Dan Heath here and here
6. Introducing hinge questions @Improving Teaching here

The dangers of poor explanation! (Thanks @meridianvale)