Our homework diaries have been rebranded as Learning Journals. It is hoped that this will support our approach to achieving continuous profiling and reporting of pupil progress.
One of the most powerful ways of helping pupils to reflect on how they are learning is by having them compile a learning journal.
This encourages pupils to keep a record of their thoughts and feelings about what they have achieved and what they have learned. It can also help them to set short term targets for themselves which describe what they need to do to improve and how they can improve.
Each week the journal will be looked at by the class teacher to gather valuable information for progress reports. The class teacher will give a verbal or written response to what each pupil has drawn or written. Parents are welcome to respond also.
Pupils will use their learning journal on average no more than once or twice a week at most but not necessarily at the same times each week.
A typical use of the journal is towards the end of the school day when the teacher puts two questions up on the board which relate to what pupils have learned that day. The emphasis is
very much on what they have learned rather than what they have done.
Journals can be used to track the progress of individuals in the class.
The depth of a pupil’s reflection and their ability to articulate their understanding give an indication of the depth of their knowledge and understanding of a concept. This information can then be used to plan effective next steps. The phrasing of the pupil’s reflection can give an indication of the learner’s mind-set e.g. mastery of performance.
Journals can be used to probe, prompt and challenge pupils to reflect more deeply on their learning.
Information adapted from Learning Unlimited.