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Help with Lesson observations in Primary school

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by Elfassy1, Oct 8, 2015.

  1. Elfassy1

    Elfassy1 New commenter

    sometimes I find there are too many resources available and end up trying to include the best bits from each one but now my head is hurting!

    I am carrying out performance Management observations next week and I am looking for a good, easy to use observation proforma. Some of them are page after page and I feel that there is no way I can fill in all the boxes or highlight the different teacher standards, whilst in the lesson. I feel a plain piece of paper with strengths and weaknesses or what impact did the teacher have on children's outcomes is easier but then I worry that this idea is too simple and the more detail and pages the better.
    Any advice or template welcome!
    Please help!
  2. Kartoshka

    Kartoshka Established commenter

    Could you have one plain-ish piece of paper, with space to write about strength and weaknesses of the lesson, which you do during the lesson. Then a second sheet with more specific detail, targets, etc (perhaps half a side) which you complete before you meet with the teacher to discuss the observation.The other half could be space for points arising from the discussion. I don't think you need to make work for yourself or create paperwork just for the sake of it.
  3. Ladykaza

    Ladykaza Senior commenter

    My advice is to step back, stop looking at it as a box ticking exercise and think about what the document is actually for.

    My proforma is 2 sides of A4. Side 1 has boxes for recording evidence of the features of outstanding teaching ( mine is based on a definition we drew up together as a staff) .

    You want something about progress within the lesson and impact on learning, including all your groups. Behaviour and engagement, something on teaching strategies, assesment..... Etc

    Page 2 starts with a box for evidence and feedback on the main focus of the observation. In this case it would be one of the appraisal objectives and of course will have been discussed in advance with the teacher. Next is a box for recording particular strengths, and lastly one for areas for development.

    I used to make scrappy notes in the lesson then type it up, but i know the form well enough now to do it as I'm observing which cuts down the work and means I can give instant feedback and a copy of the notess straight away.

    Whatever you decide I urge you not to try using a proforma from the internet. Make it personal and specific to your school so that it's a useful document.
  4. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    And a final tip to add to those above: make sure that you start with the positives, both in the form and any feedback that you give.

    I like to start a feedback session by asking the member of staff what they though went really well in the lesson. Usually I can then say Yes, I agree with all those points, but there were some other really good points I noticed that you missed.

    I like to make someone feel good about what they have achieved, even if you go on to identify (hopefully together) areas for development. And end with a quick run down again of the strengths that you both expect to be consolidated in other lessons.

  5. Ruthiesword

    Ruthiesword New commenter

    Ours has boxes for information at top, class, ta support, lesson context etc then 4 boxes, where teaching was effective, where teaching was less effective, where learning was effective, where learning was not effective. Underneath there is a box for areas for development. Very simple & very obvious where a lesson was good or not, if the effective boxes are full then it was OK, if the less effective ones are full it was not OK
  6. Schoolcoachguru

    Schoolcoachguru New commenter

    We use a really simple system for this which will stop your head hurting! ;-) You just need to focus on collecting evidence on the 7 key features you're looking for and then provide 'coach-style' feedback. This makes it really powerful and easy to share which THREE key features they've done particularly well and which ONE key feature they need to work on next to make it even better. It means they go away feeling positive, confident, empowered and with a clear practical action step...and then actually take the action agreed!

    Happy to talk you through it if you want to get in touch?


    PS If you want to know what it's like to give & receive 'Coach-Style' Feedback you'll find some clips from teachers who have experienced it in lesson observations here: www.youtube.com/coachinginschools

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