Strategies for Reshaping Practice: The habits of the classroom #7

Give opportunities for practice

Teaching can lead to practice, rather than being kept as something that learners need to pay attention to in order to pass tests or gain information. Teachers can provide opportunities for learners to serve each other and the local community. Teaching can turn a class’s vision outwards towards the wider world, and teachers can introduce issues of justice and how we bring about change, providing opportunities to engage, for example, with fair trade and how shopping can make a difference.

  • Teachers can teach cooking skills that can be used in baking for the elderly, giving learners an opportunity to serve. Maths and cooking skills can be taught as a way of raising money for disaster relief. Teachers can use a topic as an opportunity for learners to contribute to the community by making posters for the local community day.
  • Teachers can arrange for students to practise supporting each other in PE where stronger tennis players are paired with those with a weaker serve.

Teaching in this way helps learners take learning from abstract information to practice. It does not necessarily mean leaving the classroom or adding a time consuming project; it can be practised within the school or in a class period.