Teachers teaching and learners learning

Fronter and Learning Outcomes – an Introduction

The Fronter VLE is all about helping teachers to teach and learners to learn. Always has been. Always will be. So, when I was asked to write a series blog posts about Fronter and Learning Outcomes (LOs)  I thought, ‘LO LO’ ( think about it) and went back to first principles.

When I was at uni training to become a teacher in an age so distant that Noah and the Flood were still recent history, the thing the lecturers drilled into us ad nauseum was to set lesson aims and objectives. Every lesson. No exceptions. From the overarching lesson aims,  lesson objectives would flow;  together these would form the structure of the lesson and predict the Learning Outcomes  to be achieved by pupils – ie,  what we as teachers expected the pupils to learn /achieve/ understand by the end of the lesson.

These days,  lesson aims and objectives still revolve around Learning Outcomes.  Many teachers use the method of putting Learning Outcomes into ‘I can…’ statements, which works well, particularly for primary pupils, and which can apply to longer term topics or schemes of work rather than just one off lessons.

Afterwards, the teacher and pupil can look back and agree whether the pupil did actually learn any outcomes aligned to aims and objectives (or not.) This is easy to say, but often hard to do in a busy working week/term/year – and this is where Fronter comes in.

Basketball players

With Fronter, goals can be created, edited, recorded and tracked easily. So the business of setting lesson aims and objectives can be aligned with personalised Learning Outcomes in the form of goals, which may be created, viewed, commented and tracked in both the goal tool,  and / or the ILP tool.

For example; the goal tool can be managed by individual class teachers in their own virtual classrooms in Fronter:

eco room screen shot

All in the left hand nav bar: goals, portfolio and assignment tools  work together to give teacher and pupil an ongoing record of progress

Or, goals can be managed by Fronter administrators who can create a large, structured bank of learning goals, behaviour goals, ‘I can’ goals, or any sort of goals,  in the admin area and make them available for staff to draw on when and as they need them. All of these goals can be set up as Learning Outcomes and can be aligned to any curriculum area. The goals can then be given for individual pupils, small groups, whole class or year groups.  The teacher can decide where and how the pupil will see the goal, maybe with a discussion or a piece of homework, and can allow (or not) pupil comments.

create new goal

Simply tick the self-evaluation box for pupils to be able to add their own commentary to their own progress.

A goal is easy to set up, and once filled in with say, a series of ‘I can..’ statements, would look like this:

I can Learning Outcomes on a goal based Learning Ladder

An example of ‘I can…’ goals arranged in a series, to support the new computing curriculum

In the next blog post in this series, we will have a closer look at how goals can be used in various classroom situations to capture Learning Outcomes.

For now, if you want to have a look at goals in action for yourself, log into a guest (read only) account:

http://www.fronter.com/ukusers,

Primary userid: pguest, passsword fronter

Secondary userid:  sguest, password fronter

PS: As well as the exploring the goal tool, future installments will also include a look at how Learning Outcomes  work with Fronter’s Individual Learning Plan (ILP) tool,  and some examples of how teachers are using Fronter to support management of Learning Outcomes, and perhaps more importantly how pupils use Fronter to achieve their Learning Outcomes.

Jane Harris  @virtualjane
Head of Education
Pearson Fronter

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With the curriculum change around assessment – how can I monitor pupil progress?

Just because the curriculum changes, doesn’t mean you should assess differently. You should carry on as you have always done but update your targets, levels and assessment opportunities.

Monitoring learner progress in Fronter can be achieved using the ‘Portfolio tool’. It contains a results matrix that can be used as a virtual mark book where hand-ins and tests will be automatically added, work not submitted electronically can also be recorded here.

We are running an ‘Assessment with Fronter’ webinar where you can learn about how Fronter handles assessment in more detail as well as an ‘Introduction to the ILP and Goal Tool’ webinar and a ‘Using the ILP & Goal Tool’ training course which cover how to set up learning goals.

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How do I measure each child’s progress now there are no longer levels of progress to measure against?

Fronter has a number of methods of measuring and tracking learner attainment.

You can use the hand-in tool* to collect, correct, comment and grade work and the portfolio tool as an electronic work book that collates all the work and results over a period of time. The statistics in the portfolio tool give an overview of all activities, progress (results from tests and courses) and all hand-ins.

Fronter also has a goal tool for setting targets and an ILP tool (Individual Learning Plan) to specify areas for improvement and document progress.

To find out more about the ILP and Goal Tool you can attend our ‘Introduction to ILP & Goal Tool‘ webinar or the ‘Using the ILP & Goal Tool‘ face-to-face training course.

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*The hand-in folder enables teachers to upload assignments where students hand in their work individually or as a group. The work can then be corrected, commented upon and assigned a grade.

The teacher creating the hand–in has the ability to specify:

  • Timeframe
  • Hand-in reminders/notifications
  • Correction format
  • Links to learning goals
  • File hand-in type
  • Anonymous hand-in delivery