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Teaching & Learning

Staff at Fakenham Academy are experienced, both in subject knowledge and classroom delivery. Teaching staff take responsibility for their own profesional development and are commited to continually improving aspect of their practice.

Currently we have four targeted areas form the basis of improving teaching and learning at Fakenham Academy and Fakenham Sixth Form. These are known as the FAN4. These areas form the framework for learning walks to review teaching and learning, which take place through a wide range of classroom lessons during the course of the academic year. The findings from these learning walks, contributes to the formulation of a programme of staff training through continuing professional development, in order to improve the overall quality of education experienced by our students.

The specific areas of focus for FAN4 are:

Pace

Lesson time is used productively, right up until the end of the lesson.

Questioning

Used to assess, gauge understanding and provoke thought, through a range of low and higher order thinking skills and techniques. Evidence of effective questioning include:

  • The teacher systematically and effectively checks students’ understanding throughout lessons, anticipating where they may need to intervene and doing so with notable impact on the quality of learning. 
  • The teacher listens to, carefully observes and skilfully questions students during the lesson in order to reshape tasks, respond to their questions constructively  and provide explanations to improve learning.
  • The teacher probes the students knowledge and understanding and challenges their thinking. Key questions are planned to ensure all students are involved.
  • Questions are open, closed, adjusted and targeted.

Challenge

Lesson tasks/activities are pitched at a level which stretches and requires students to continually work at their capacity and/or independently. Opportunities are always present to extend learning. This includes challenge that is varied for students, through effective differentiation. Evidence of challenge includes:

  • The teacher has consistently high expectations of what each individual student can achieve. They plan and teach lessons that enable the students to deepen their knowledge and understanding and enable them to develop a range of skills.
  • The teacher is determined that students achieve well, encouraging them to try hard and recognising their efforts to ensure that they take pride in all aspects of their work.
  • The teacher demands the highest quality in all student’s work, making sure it is matched to the students’ abilities so they remain actively engaged and are consistently challenged and stretched in order to secure good or better progress.
  • Students are keen to produce a high standard of work and are likely to take the initiative in extending their own work.
  • Students including those with special education needs and disabilities (SEND), most able and disadvantaged, make sustained progress and achieve well over time as work is differentiated appropriately. If additional adults are in the room to support learning, these are used effectively.
  • Students are engaged in the learning activity. Tasks are structured so that students can have a choice according to their ability/knowledge. Teachers are using a growth mindset and long term learning approaches.

Expectations

Teachers acting as role models for students, demonstrating the behaviour and expectations we require of them. The learning environment is safe, where students can take risks in their learning without feeling threatened. The exchange of mutual respect within our classes, with consistent use of the whole school behaviour management policy as appropriate. Evidence of high expectations include:

  • The teacher uses praise and reward consistently and fairly.
  • Skilled and highly consistent behaviour management by the teacher makes a strong contribution to a positive climate for learning.
  • The students show respect and tolerance of each other and the teacher.  They are self-disciplined and have positive relationships with the teacher. They are resilient and are happy to keep trying at a task. They can share their learning with others.