What’s the most effective thing you do in the classroom?

As a tutor, teacher or even facilitator of learning (as I have recently seen it – not very catchy!), what is the most effective thing you do with your learners?

There are a number of pieces of research which have used scientific methods to measure the impact of various methods and factors, in order to answer that question.  Some researchers such as Hattie and Marzano have compiled the results of many action research projects.

How many of these methods do you use? 

Formative assessment
Giving Effective feedback
Using similes/analogies
Using graphical/non-verbal methods
Cooperative/collaborative learning
Hypothesis testing
Attribution training – convincing learners that they have the capability to learn and improve
Sharing objectives
Using advance organisers
Activating prior knowledge
Effective questioning
Peer tutoring
Mastery learning/testing
Meta-cognition/Learning to learn

Have you ever considered one of these but not managed to follow it up?

For more information on these methods please use the links at the bottom of this page.

In the interests of sharing good practice we are looking for tutors to develop aspects of their teaching and share the results with others.   Why not try some of the ideas above?  (Some are obviously more suited to certain contexts and levels than others) See the supported experiment page here for more info.

If you would like to be involved but are not sure where to start, or would like to work as part of a group, how about working as part of a Teaching Square.

Teaching Squares (or even Triangles) :

Tutors who are interested in a similar issue get in touch, do peer observations and offer support.  A square would be a group of 4 tutors who take it in turns to peer observe and have follow-up discussions with the other 3 tutors in turn.  This has been shown to be an effective way to implement developments in teaching as it offers peer support and the opportunity to share good practice.

The other tutors wouldn’t have to be from your own provider – we can facilitate groups of tutors in different areas.  In this case it would obviously be helpful to use IT to aid communications.

If you would like to be part of a Teaching Square, please use the contact box below to get in touch with me.

New on Fenc this month!!

Questioning Techniques – find more resources and practical examples for making questioning effective here.  These are in addition to the resources from the T&L conference.


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