Intellectual Output 1 – an e-suite of thinking skills assessment tools
This output is a suite of diagnostic and formative tools for assessing progress in thinking that has been trialled by experts and then by inexperienced teachers. The tools help give teachers an insight into the quality and depth of their pupils’ thinking in the classrooms and help with next steps to promote thinking. It consists of descriptions that a teacher can use in diagnosing progress in thinking and taking action to support pupil thinking.
In order to make the assessment tools live in the minds of teachers we will have an ongoing process of collecting illustrations of pupils’ thinking which arise from the trials and our work in partner schools. The illustrations are a library of resources that contain the following output categories:
- Edited videos taken of children thinking, making progress in thinking or struggling with their thinking.
- Audio clips of student thinking, talking about their thinking and discussing what changes they could make to progress their thinking.
- Transcripts of children thinking, especially where their thinking is supported by peers including transcripts of videos and of audio files.
- Photographs capturing moments of thinking and the product of thinking with annotations pointing out the salient aspects of thinking.
- Pupils’ work that shows problems they are experiencing in their thinking or the progress they are making.
- Teachers’ responses to pupil’s thinking, such as sequences of questions or videos of a teacher pupil interaction. These will have an interpretive account alongside them to make them have a deeper meaning and provide a focus for observation.
Intellectual Output 2 – promotional materials
This output provides a summary of ACTS for wider dissemination to different audiences. It also reports on the results of the ACTS trials into improving teachers’ confidence at diagnosing and formatively assessing progress in pupils’ thinking and their ability to sustain the implementation of effective assessments of this type. This promotional material guides schools and teachers new to ACTS to the partner websites and provides the rationale for its value in supporting the development of thinking skills.
Intellectual Output 3 – teacher development materials
This intellectual output provides the resources for in-service training courses for teachers as well as for preservice teacher education programmes. The materials are aimed at self-directed study by teachers and teacher trainers and promote the use of the website resources. The nature of the different national approaches and expectations of teacher development means that there are three different packages available depending on partner country. The materials have been devised within each partner country, in the relevant home language so that they fit with the culture of training that is considered most effective, the materials have benefitted from being jointly planned and collaborated on by the project partners. The value of the packages is seen in the way that they prepare the ground for long-term engagement with the development of thinking skills and support the embedding of the pedagogical approaches with the collaboration of ministries and education authorities, non-governmental bodies and teacher-training institutions.