|Type of paper:
|Teaching Planning Learning Research
Overview of the specific activity or resource you intend to develop and a brief explanation of your thinking about why you have chosen this.
I intend to develop and use the stretch and challenge grid in class; in a bid to know my students well and to help them improve their learning experience. This learning resource has been noted to encourage the application of higher-order thinking skills both in the classroom and in examinations (Daly, Baird, Chamberlain, & Meadows, 2012). It is also important to note that the stretch and challenge model is not easy to implement, but when applied correctly, it can yield positive outcomes from the learning process. Without recognizing this fact, there is a high possibility of setting limits on what students can do, thus causing them to underperform. Accordingly, I will scrutinize a combination of hard and soft data to enable me to make the best decisions when planning for the students' learning. After diagnosing my students' strengths and barriers to learning, I will consider various options to get the best out of their learning process. The selected options are described below and are be based on the belief that learners can produce excellent work if they are supported by the right tools and made to understand what they should do.
There will be efforts to share challenging learning intentions with the students so that they have a clear understanding of what their learning journey should be like, as well as how they can progress through it.
Questioning and Discussion:
I will enable my students to improve their quality of thinking by encouraging them to ask questions and to participate in group discussions.
Independence and Resilience:
Students will receive assistance to develop the ability to work for long hours without much support from the teacher.
Choice of Task:
There will be a range of tasks will varying levels of challenge so that all students, their starting point notwithstanding, will have their learning process accelerated.
I will create a range of resources to support learners in accessing challenging tasks but decide when it will be most appropriate to allow the students to use them.
Students will be in appropriate groups to have them challenged and to operate within an environment that will enable them to make an effective contribution to their learning process.
Knowledge of academic vocabulary is essential for developing into a good speaker, reader, or writer. Therefore, depending on the topic of study, there will be a focus on helping learners understand the relevant terminologies so that they can use them both verbally and in writing.
Learning outside the classroom is important as it extends students' ability to build on what they already learned and to grasp new content that could have otherwise been missed.
Teaching Assistants (TAs):
Collaboration with TAs will go a long way in ensuring that learners can improve their areas of weakness and receive the support necessary to challenge themselves even further.
Feedback will be framed in such a way that students will take it as their responsibility to improve their learning process and to close any existing gaps. There will be deliberate efforts to enable the learners to know what standards they are aiming for and thus seek feedback actively to reach those standards.
Details of the subject, level, course, program of study, and scheme of work your activity or resource is aimed at
The subject under consideration is for BTEC LEVEL 3 learners under the health and social care course. Based on the stretch and challenge grid resource under health and social care settings, the program aims at developing skills concerned with working and supporting people in a range of different situations; meeting people's health and social care needs/requirements; promoting a personal-centered approach, proper communication, and good practice when dealing with information; as well as developing skills through knowledge in how to safeguard, protect and implement duty of care at the workplace.
Relevant information about learners
I am working with BTEC LEVEL 3 learners in health and social care whose age is between 16-19 years. They are both males and females from different racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds.
What theories and models of learning might you investigate to support your resource? Explain how the theory links to the pedagogy and practice.
Theories and models of learning that will support my resource are humanism behaviorism and cognitivism. First, humanism is focussed on an individual as the subject and considers learning to be a natural process that will help a person achieve self-actualization. There is an emphasis on how important a person's 'inner world' is and that their thoughts, emotions, and feelings are critical in their learning process (Khatib, Sarem, & Hamidi, 2013). In this regard, the stretch and challenge grid resource can be applied through options like independence and resilience, where a learner is encouraged to thrive and leverage on personal awareness and abilities. Therefore the pedagogic resource is designed for an individual health and social care learner; to achieve higher-order thinking skills for everyone.
Behaviorism, on the other hand, holds that behavior can be explained through external factors as well as behavioral conditioning. Therefore, the learning process and behavior modification enhancements are through ideas of positive and negative reinforcement, as well as a system for punishment and reward. Nie & Lau (2009) are of the view that the behavioral theory/model of learning can be used to enhance classroom management. The teacher will be able to understand individual student behavior and thus condition them accordingly through appropriate management practices. As a result, the stretch and challenge grid resource will be easier to implement since the teacher will influence appropriate behavior among the learners and thus improve their ability to attain their highest potential.
The third theory/model of learning under consideration, known as cognitivism, is based on a learning process where students are actively involved and thus develop cognitive pathways in understanding while also responding to experiences physically (Yilmaz, 2011). Accordingly, the stretch and challenge approach to learning will make use of cognitivism by helping students to organize and relate new knowledge to what they already know. For instance, students can build on what they have learned in class and thus acquire new information through homework and the input of TAs. It follows that what is learned in class becomes the schema or existing knowledge that is the basis for the students' progress. The teacher can improve learning outcomes based on this theory/model through strategies like providing unified themes for content, making meaningful instructional material, choosing texts with a standard arrangement to meet students' expectations, asking questions to understand what how students think and paying attention to the learners' answers or remarks.
What theories of learning and motivation in your subject-specialist area might you investigate?
The humanistic theory of learning and motivation best fits my subject-specialist area of health and social care. Through this approach, learners receive empowerement to take charge of their learning process; thus, teachers will play the role of facilitator and not the controller or director of learning. It follows that every student will be regarded highly and also supported as required to realize self-actualization. In the foregoing, learners have a sense of freedom to explore what interests them and to make discoveries that will make learning enjoyable. This helps to build feelings of confidence, safety, belonging, and self-esteem.
Based on the humanistic approach, the student-teacher relationship is meaningful as it creates a positive model for the classroom. It follows that students find it easier to engage with their tutors more productively because they perceive that their areas of concern can be addressed conclusively. Moreover, students learn to express themselves better and can also exhibit a high level of independence and resilience. It is commendable that teachers understand each student's needs if they are to reap maximum benefits from the humanistic approach. Accordingly, differentiation and classroom management become critical for ensuring that learners are effectively stretched and challenged to exhaust their potential.
How might your resource allow you to assess learning?
Assessment is a critical component of the learning process as it helps determine how well a student is doing in class and also motivates them to do better. Additionally, a teacher can tell whether students are understanding the course material and thus know which areas to focus on for better learning outcomes. Bose & Rengel (2009) opine that formative assessment promotes student-centered and self-regulated learning; thus, teachers will only be guiding the learning process. Long before students enroll for a course, the teacher has to carry out curriculum planning to incorporate programs that will prepare the learners for progression into higher education, instill career readiness skills in them and enhance their employability. This planning process is guided by the learning outcomes devised by the awarding body and thus form part of the assessment criteria for the students.
Once the planning for the course is complete, teaching and learning ensue for students who have enrolled for the course. Afterward, upon satisfactory coverage of the course material, the students are ready for assessment through various methods, including computer-assisted self-assessment, peer assessment, or teacher assessment. Typically, assessment is carried out through continuous assessment tests or examinations at the end of a specified learning period.
Effective learning and assessment for the BTEC Extended Diploma in Travel and Tourism are realized by tailoring the program to meet individual student needs. Some students may not take the course as it is and may go the sub-diploma route. If this is the case, there should be proper planning to make up for the guided learning hours based on what will work best for the learner. The program must also register with the awarding body, and all the required resources must be made available. Therefore, the travel and tourism course delivery can be made as flexible as possible; while ensuring that learners meet all the criteria specified by the awarding body before their assessment. The stretch and challenge model will ensure that students are not only assessed at their current level but also at higher levels.
What English, maths, and/or digital skills might be developed in your resource?
Hugget & Pownall (2010) are of the view that the functional skills curriculum should be a direct reflection of the learner's proposed working environment. It follows that this curriculum can be integrated into the occupational subject curriculum, which, in my case, is the travel and tourism curriculum. There is a tendency of students not being willing to engage in English, Maths and/or digital skills. The reason that such subjects have been already tackled since they entered education; thus they should not be covered again under travel and tourism. Tutors have to find ways of incorporating these subjects within lessons so that students can do them without much opposition.
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