I have just purchased John Hattie’s latest book- ‘Visible Learning for teachers- maximising impact for teachers’ and I’ve got to say… I’m already hooked. Serving as both a literature review for 50,000 educational research papers and as an instruction manual on what educational programs have worked best over the past 15 years, I have found it to be incredible food for thought. Hattie makes the distinction between ‘expert’ teachers and ‘experienced’ ones and gives checklists throughout on various moments during a lesson for inspired and passionate teaching. Pitched at a level easily understood by the layman, rather than PhD candidates, it serves as a reminder to us all as to why we are teachers in the first place, and how, by employing the ‘right’ initiatives, we can really make a difference in the learning of our students, doubling their learning compared to that of a student with an ‘average’ teacher. Who wouldn’t want that!
Without going into too much detail- the book does it WAY better than I would- it explains the research methods used and how he determines the Effect Size of the programs he looks at.
Just to give a hint as to the types of methods that appear to make a visible improvement in learning, here are a few that seem to resonate most with me in terms of what I can offer students and and those that I am able to implement easily:
– concept mapping
– metacognitive strategies
– positive teacher- student relationships
– reciprocal teaching
– use of feedback from student to teacher
As I get further into the book I will post about some of these programs and my thoughts about them. Give it a squizz if you have the time- I don’t think you’ll be disappointed!