#1 Hattie in a nutshell

A recent study in a UK school asked students to use their mobile phones to capture images of classroom teachers when they felt they were learning effectively, and to note what was helping them learn. The Principal of the school used this data to identify effective teaching practices amongst staff and to facilitate PD sessions on equipping all teachers to be effective for their students.

Does this scare us or excite us as educators?

Check this  link on what helps students learn..strangely from students (n.b most of their comments are actually backed by research as having positive effects on student learning)

What matters to students in effectively learning in your classroom?

Interestingly, later blogs will connect this to evidence based research connecting teacher-student rapport with high student achievement.

Also – consider what we would like in a teacher…this list is pretty spot on.

These blogs will present some of the concepts of John Hatties “Visible Learning for Teachers” (2012) into a bite sized, palatable form.

Have a read, comment and engage with some highly relevant research to our profession.

John Hattie … so why the hype. (Read this: http://www.amazon.com/Visible-Learning-Teachers-Maximizing-Impact/dp/0415690153 and you can answer it yourself!)

Read this quote from Hattie and ponder:

The mistake I was making was seeing feedback as something teachers provided to students—they typically did not, although they made claims that they did it all the time, and most of the feedback they did provide was social and behavioral. It was only when I discovered that feedback was most powerful when it is from the student to the teacher that I started to understand it better. When teachers seek, or at least are open to, feedback from students as to what students know, what they understand, where they make errors, when they have misconceptions, when they are not engaged—then teaching and learning can be synchronized and powerful. Feedback to teachers helps make learning visible.

Hattie, 2009; 173

His big ideas are as follows:

1. Everything works

Almost every common sense intervention attempted in education has had a slightly positive impact on student learning (they have been a few clunkers though). Therefore, ‘working’ is not the condition on which we try an theory or intervention in class. Rather, the size of the effect is a superior measure.

2. Some things consistently work better.

Using a 0.4 effect size (his represents normal academic growth in a given year of life), lets look beyond the 0.4 ceiling to see what has the greater effects on student learning (n.b many are teacher driven).

The ‘Table’ – but be warned ! (This is not a simple input:output process…its more complex, biological and relational…this will come in future posts).

The data indicates that teachers still have the significant impact on affecting student learning in the classroom. This is both encouraging and challenging.

3. Try the things that work better + talk to other teachers + students about teaching and learning  = Visible Learning

Try the things that work (evidence based). Measure the results. Adapt if necessary and continue the process. Add a healthy dose of ‘talking’ about teaching and learning (i.e make it visible) and the positive effects will roll on in

Dare you ideas:

1. Ask your class to fill out an anonymous survey. What do I do that helps you learn? What do I do that hinders your learning?

2. Check out Jesus. I read that desired qualities of a teacher list and see Jesus in all of those adjectives. Do we put on a ‘teacher’ role that is far from this ideal?

3. Stop teaching only in our personal preferred style. What do students need? How adaptive and reflective are we as teachers? How is 2012 different to 2011?

Let me know how you go…always keen to learn + grow and listen.




2 thoughts on “#1 Hattie in a nutshell

  1. Thanks Rob for putting all of that into a nutshell. It was really interesting to read.

    Yes, how important teachers’ ‘personality/character’ traits are, keeps on being reinforced doesn’t it. Maybe instead of principals sending their teachers to professional development conferences, we should be sent to quiet, tranquil ‘retreats’ where we have time and space to reflect on what kind of people we are as teachers?! Seriously, that may actually be more effective!

    It’s great that you’re doing a blog. For some reason, I can’t stop thinking about teaching at the moment, and I’m not even being paid for it!!:) So, while I’m riding this huge wave of reflection, your food for thought is much appreciated.

  2. Hi Michelle,

    Teacher-student rapport is not only central to Christian education, it actually creates improved learning outcomes – evidenced from research…so yup, that 5 minute chat to a student about life, the interest in the person and not just the ‘student’, being authentic …etc… all matter educationally (and of course spiritually).

    You are right about being reflective as teachers…we need to be ‘mirror’ seekers of our teaching practice…from colleagues, students and our own personal study..I firmly believe this (however, its not always easy as its confronting).

    As I contemplate student feedback I am very aware that education is the one area of the working world that often ignores the opinions of its ‘consumers’ ,or better expressed, the users of its created system. Its odd.

    Great to hear you are engaging with big thoughts about our profession and calling. I think this is the process that all Christian teachers are called to embark upon.

    Kind regards,


    p.s thanks for commenting ; )

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