active learning, formative assessment, assessment for learning, AFLShirley Clark : Active Learning through Formative Assessment

The latest book by Shirley Clarke where she discusses and provides concrete examples of how to integrate Assessment for Learning in a natural way where students become part of the whole learning process from planning to delivery. Active Learning through Formative Assessment follows her previous book Formative Assessment in Action, and shows us how we can take a more active and practical approach to assessment with for example effective dialogues with students, how to use questioning effectively and ways in which we can encourage students to communicate more openly – a problem for many older students!

This book has been written using primary school examples but we found it just as rewarding to use with our Secondary as well as Sixth Form students. If you want to get involved in a more engaging approach to what can be regarded as a rather dry subject matter, then this book will hopefully give you some ideas.

Thinking Skills, creative thinking, teaching toolsIan Harris, Oliver Caviglioli, and Carol Thompson

Thinking Skills and Eye Q: Visual Tools for Raising Intelligence is perhaps one of the best books available on mind-mapping and Thinking Skills diagrams. Many of the ideas you’ll come across on this website has been inspired from Thinking Skills and Eye-Q.

We first came across this book as a Newly Qualified Teacher in 2002, and began using it with a particularly challenging top set year 8. It didn’t take long before the whole class was working hard at tackling the various Thinking Skills mysteries and diagrams that we had planned for them. It worked. Since then we naturally plan lessons with the ideas from this book in mind for all our students (11-19 years old).

We have used this book during INSET with departments as it works through strategies to encourage and develop a range of skills particularly for thinking, writing, but also discusses methods to use for Gifted and Talented students, and to make speaking, listening, questioning and responding an integral part of lessons.

If you are planning to start a new Scheme of Work of simply wish to plan a series of great, challenging and stimulating lessons then this book is for you as it is packed with ideas.

If you have a chance to attend one of their workshops you will not regret it as they are outstanding!

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