What teachers say about timely practice

on increasing attainment

When you have a class and you know they have big gaps, but you don’t know where they are; until you’ve done a programme of pre-assessing … it gives you peace of mind, if you teach something new it won’t fall into that gap, where the previous learning from other teachers has gone, it won’t fall into that gap for me because I’m going to use the repetitive practice element of timely practice JP

This class from when I took them on, were the least able to the nurture classes, that I’ve ever taught, their targets based on their KS2 results are much lower, but they are over performing other classes with higher targets based on their KS2 results. JP

The year 7 nurture class all achieved above 75% and they were all really proud of their maths results. … They did seem extremely positive after an assessment … which I don’t think I’ve may be seen at KS3 level before, in a nurture class. KB

on improving teaching skills, especially feedback

Its been a really a good thing to work with … I think my personal development working with it I’ve learned so much … in terms of pacing, in terms of what should be delivered to these kids  … to give them the best outcomes. TW

Giving feedback teaches you so much. I almost want to spend some time sitting down over the holidays, thinking about everything I’ve learned and everything I want to do differently next year … it has taught me so much about being a teacher … and the way that I need to be teaching things. TW

on teaching smaller bites of learning on firm learning foundations

It is something that takes time to adjust to … feels quite unnatural in the beginning, it feels like “oh they are getting somewhere so I should keep going when actually you have to hold yourself back … they’ve actually got somewhere I should just stop” they adjust much quicker than you do. If you can adjust to that way of teaching and delivering your lessons, actually you soon notice the benefits. KB

The research that I’ve looked into as well … you’ve learned this layer now, I’m not going to come back to this topic for a while, until you’ve had enough time to practice it and then really cement that knowledge in your mind. TW

It guides you in the right direction, it takes a bit of the guess work out of what you should and should not teach … I found that when I’ve taught lower ability classes before … there was so much kind of misunderstanding of where the kids were and what they should be looking at next … [being] guided individually has been so massively beneficial TW

on practise-learn worksheets and workload

Although much of the comments are on the power of the retrieval practice in the timely practice assignments, let’s not forget the practise-learn worksheets.

The timely practice worksheets are amazing. I’ve just started using them for other other ability groupings, they are really particular which is really useful sometimes. KB 

Planning for lower attaining classes can be most challenging … by doing it this way I’ve actually reduced planning time …… finding some [practice questions] that don’t get too difficult too quickly was really challenging … [timely practice is] really reducing planning load. KB

on sharing and hand over of classes

It lends itself quite well to sharing the class with someone TW

It allows any teacher to view the progress of the class, hand over across years become so much easier, all you have to do is look at their previous bank of knowledge [the topic dashboard for each topic]. JP

on learners' perceptions of themselves as learners and their learning progress

My students really love getting their timely practice assignments back, after I’ve assessed them … they can see which bits they’ve memorised which bits they haven’t yet got … some of the comments I’m having from my learners now “oh I thought I’d got this but I need a bit more practice on this” … it’s amazing, it’s an amazing thing to hear in a classroom … or “oh I’ve really got this now, I hope I can get this question right a few times, so that I can move on to learning other skills” … after sharing with them the idea of timely practice with them, they’ve bought into it so much, it gives them such a tangible grasp of their learning and their progress over time, that you can actually ask them what skills they are good at now. They can give you detailed positive answers that show a great depth of knowledge about the topics they are learning, they’ve had structured for them in small chunks and they’ve been able to get a grasp of those small chunks JP

When they sat their first (year 7) test and they realised “oh my gosh - this is on timely practice” it was a realisation for them, I can do this because I’ve done it so many times … In fact from then on, if I didn’t start a lesson with timely practice, they would get upset, that obviously says something about how it made them feel and how they knew it was going to help them, …you can tell kids a lot what is going to help them … and they rarely believe you but this seemed to work for them. KB

I have had a year of students who are despondent in maths, actually see the benefit of their own mathematical skill and achievement. I think that has been the most powerful thing. I haven’t had a student reject it, and its only improved their confidence and their retention over a span of one year. IB

We had a lesson of taking the learners' timely practice assignments out of their folder and tagging them together in a new folder that they could take home. They had a look at what they did in September versus what they did now, [in July]. All of them without question, were like Miss, timely practice is so much harder now, and I was like “it’s not harder, you’ve just doing harder layers now”. It was really nice for them, especially some of the weaker ones like [Name] … timely practice has been brilliant for her … even she could look back and be like “Miss in September, I only had these questions, look how easy they are, and now look at them” It was really nice to give them that confidence. IB