Quality First Teaching

Quality First Teaching

We value passion, clarity and belief above all.  We know that where teachers demonstrate these values through their practice and in their everyday interactions with students then it follows that relationships are very strong.  Quality First Teaching then capitalises on and sustains the strong relationships that we believe are the foundations of the classroom.

Expertise and planning

Teachers plan effectively and present clearly because they have deep subject knowledge and expertise1Teachers plan and share the learning journey with clarity; they actively present overviews and make the main ideas clear.
 2Thoughtful planning ensures that learning is revisited frequently and appropriately to support long term memory and enduring connections.
Teachers use pedagogy content knowledge effectively3Teachers expertly plan sequences of learning that move students from novice to mastery.
 4Resources are well selected and made accessible to all.
 5Teachers are expert in planning effective approaches for possible misconceptions and areas of complexity.
Teachers can model expertly6Teachers expertly identify and can create aspirational models. Good practice is spotlighted effectively.
 7Teachers model expertly so that students acquire mastery of language and reading in the subject.
 8Teachers expertly deconstruct cognitive processes so that students can think in a disciplined way.

Responsive Teaching 

Checking9Teachers thoughtfully and sustainably use testing as a means of checking understanding of the main ideas; low stakes assessments often achieve difficult but successful retrieval.
 10Teachers allocate time in lessons for students to reflect upon and improve their work.
 11Skilled assessment and feedback by the teacher enables learning of the main ideas for all.
Questioning12Teachers select appropriate and effective questioning techniques.
 13Teachers create an environment where all students are confident to ask and answer questions.

Monitoring of Teaching

‘Observations serve as professional development opportunities first and foremost. They are a reflective tool that support the growth of great teachers.’

All academies within the Trust appreciate that the internal lesson observation process is one that ‘develops’ practice and understanding regarding how children learn and is not used in isolation to judge the performance or efficacy of a teacher. Observation is a means of structuring professional dialogue focused on the quality of interactions and learning in the classroom. Observations allow for the identification of areas for focus or ‘deliberate practice’ that will be prioritised by teachers to enhance the quality of learning in their classroom.

Two formal lesson observations take place each year, with one of those part of the Trust Review of the Academy. Staff then participate in peer and Iris observations throughout the year to further enhance their practice.

In addition, Standards Walks take place each half term which give the senior leadership an opportunity to monitoring the climate for learning in the classroom and have a look at the learning journey in exercise books.

Weekly department meetings are used to quality assure systems and processes.