Learning walks are characterised in many establishments by their absence, or at least by the fact that it is generally just senior leaders who take part in them, and primarily are looking to see of the learning objectives are on the board! The walks should really be a primary method of free CPD for staff, ways of sharing practice through a non-invasive or pressurised method.
The focus for this term, (although in theory it really should be every term!) is looking at the quality and diversity of learning happening around our academy, and rather than this be a top down method of moderation, we felt a more inclusive method would be to offer the opportunity for all members of staff to take part in a series of learning walks around the academy.
We have created a timetable that enables staff in all parts of the school hierarchy the opportunity to take part in a learning walk if they want to. For one week, SLT will be the cover supervisors! Graham Stobart in ‘The Expert Learner’ discusses the ‘myth of ability’, that over time, those pupils who are challenged at all levels of ability can become experts’ in their own way, and surely the only way we as practitioners can consistently challenge at the correct levels is to enhance and reflect on their own knowledge of other practitioners practice.
I have attached the two versions of the learning walk reflection sheets that staff will share at our next staff meeting, one is more conceptual than the other, looking at elements of learning that we may forget/take for granted, and that some teachers have excellent command over, ensuring that learning is of a really high level.