This is the key. I observed a trainee on Friday. At the beginning of the lesson, she asked them some questions and they gave the right answers. They then proceeded to put into practice what they already knew. Lovely sense of achievement for the kids; they felt clever and were engaged because they could do it. I marvelled for a minute at how this teacher had managed to get even naughtiest children in the class so engaged when I often struggled (with 8 years' experience). Then it occurred to me: she was asking them to do things they already knew. They felt great about thaat. It was an easy lesson. They all did the written work required and it was a lovely lesson with lovely relationships, a great deal of respect shown etc. But had they made progress? No.