Yvonne McBlain and Sharon Wallace of Falkirk Curriculum Support Team recently introduced the primary probationer teachers to the Falkirk Teaching for Deep Learning Programme. During this introduction, participants experienced programme session 1 “What is Understanding”. This session explores the concept of understanding and has been used by a number of teacher learning communities in Falkirk schools. Here are some of the definitions of understanding created by the probationer teachers:
Understanding is applying and transfering knowledge flexibly as well as being able to teach others.
Understanding is achieved through repetition (perhaps in different contexts).
Understanding is transferring the skill and knowledge to another context. Embedding the skill through revisiting.
– apply and transfer knowledge to other areas of the curriculum
– be able to explain to others
Click here to access Session 1 through Glow, and here to see the power point presentation from Sharon and Yvonne’s session with probationer teachers.
Yvonne McBlain from Falkirk’s Curriculum Support team has now created a page for each of our Teaching for Deep Learning sessions here in Glow. Five of our secondary schools have used, or are beginning to use these sessions as content for their Teacher Learning Communities and working groups. Nineteen of our primary schools have already accessed at least one of the sessions – sometimes as a whole staff, and other times within smaller collegiate groups. We have 18 TfDL (Teaching for Deep Learning) facilitators who are being trained to deliver the sessions – some want to do this in their own schools only, whereas others are happy to make themselves available across the authority where needed. Four of our secondary schools are modelling a whole range of Donaldson Review recommendations regarding professional learning in their use of the programme. Most have recruited teachers interested in becoming facilitators within their schools, who then attend an information session (Click to view) on the programme from Yvonne. Each school is then deciding how they can enable staff to identify which sessions should be priorities for their professional learning this session. Once these decisions are made, teacher learning communities interested in the same sessions can be formed. The same model of distributed leadership (facilitators) and professional autonomy through self-evaluation is being taken forward by some of our primary schools “in house” too. Feedback from participants of sessions so far confirms the value of the programme as one of the ways in which we can move Falkirk schools from Good to Great.