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How to make pupils aware of stretch and challenge...

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by wassurfbabe, May 17, 2017.

  1. wassurfbabe

    wassurfbabe New commenter

    We are looking very much into Stretch and Challenge in our school - apparently many pupils/parents do not think there is enough stretch and challenge and are bored...:eek: I am focused in English and in my learning walks and observations, I see plenty of stretch, but it is delivered in ways which mean the pupils are pushed to achieve but they almost do not realise...Year 9s discussing the implications of the Golgotha quote in 'Macbeth,' some of the presentation of women/links to context in Of Mice and Men are really top level, analysis of Charles Dickens at word and sentence level with links to context in year 7.... - but the pupils see it as normal....Maybe we need more stretch - but has anyone any good idea? Questioning is our strength, but the pupils do not see that they are being stretched...
    Dodros likes this.
  2. Dodros

    Dodros Star commenter

    How do you know for sure? Some students thrive on being challenged and stretched, but don't always show it. If you are convinced that they aren't be stretched enough, try making more links to other branches of knowledge. After all, many literary greats of the past excelled in more than one field of human endeavour and they won't have seen their pursuits as mutually exclusive. I studied German at university and marvelled how a man such as Goethe could write Germany's greatest drama, Faust, while writing convincing scientific articles about the theory of light and colour and serving as prime minister of the state of Weimar! See if your students can find similar parallels in the English works they are studying, which will help them see how each subject integrates with, and contributes a particular value to the secondary curriculum as a whole.
  3. wassurfbabe

    wassurfbabe New commenter

    I know - or rather the powers that be believe - because of answers in the student voice and parent voice interviews and questionnaires. I like the ideas of linking - but I think that the pupils won't realise that is stretching - I guess that it would be easier to make that more explicit though. I did used to go over the metacognitive stuff with them - but wasn't that all discredited?
  4. Dodros

    Dodros Star commenter

    The powers that be will never be satisfied, even if a whole class of students achieved an A* in every subject. Looking back on my own education, particularly at university level, the complexity of the subject matter wasn't what stretched me. I could cope with that. What did stress me out was that there were so much work to complete within a short period of time when tacking a Joint Honours French and German with subsidiary English with all the reading requirements that entailed. Sometimes I felt overwhelmed by the sheer amount to be done. Perhaps the answer is to up the ante for your students by setting greater quantities of work with immovable deadlines until they feel the pain of being stretched!

    I don't know what the current status of metacognition is as a support to learning, but anything that helps to encourage independent study is worth considering. After all, the aim of teaching is to help students learn what's important in the way of shared knowledge until they don't need our help any more and can manage on their own.
    wassurfbabe likes this.

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