Children are leading the charge in their own learning at school as personalised learning becomes a necessary tool for students to succeed and thrive in the future.
What was once seen as a buzzword, personalised learning is now being much more widely adopted by schools across the globe as an approach that enables teachers to deliver tailored, high-quality learning based on a solid knowledge and understanding of each student.
In the past, teachers often taught classes by transmitting a body of knowledge in the hope that every student would be able to assimilate it — but these methods are slowly fading, including ‘teach from the front using a chalk board’ and ‘sage from the stage’ approaches. Educators believe that traditional learning in schools isn’t effective at equipping children with all the skills necessary for the jobs of the future.
According to the National College for Teaching and Leadership, an executive agency of the UK government’s Department for Education, personalised learning seeks to provide relevant and challenging opportunities that support children as they progress and develop. It promotes the idea that every child matters, recommending teachers pay attention to students individual learning styles, what motivates them and what they need.
Personalised learning also enables each student to surpass challenging targets they may set themselves, which helps teachers to use a continuous, in-depth assessment of students that empowers them to be stretched appropriately. This way the focus is on the learning and not teaching, and students are able to enjoy learning that’s supported by partnerships with other individuals and opportunities beyond the classroom.
“It’s about enabling every child, every student, to be genuinely exceptional,” Nord Anglia Education's (NAE) education director Andy Puttock said.
“All good schools will say that they offer personalised learning, but the sweet spot is when a teacher’s deep and evolving knowledge of a student is combined with a range of opportunities for them to explore, experiment, occasionally fail, and find their true passions, which they often didn’t have the faintest inkling even existed,” Mr Puttock said.
But what does personalised learning look like? How do students learn?