Lesson Studies from the Lowestoft Network

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As part of a school-led programme of action research in 2011-2012, groups of primary schools across Suffolk identified priority areas to develop. Lowestoft Network identified writing as their priority area. With support from Suffolk’s Learning and Improvement Service, it was decided to use a Lesson Study approach as a means of collaborative planning, teaching, observing & reflecting on learning in order to maximise progress. 34 teachers from eighteen Lowestoft Primary schools were involved in the project.

About these reports

These studies were originally published on the Lesson Study UK website and have subsequently been reformatted by Camtree. Structured abstracts and subject keywords have been added; the structured abstracts were generated using the OpenAI GPT-3.5-Turbo Large Language Model.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 7
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    Improving writing through the study of dramatic conventions in news bulletins
    (Lesson Study UK and Camtree: the Cambridge Teacher Research Exchange, 2012) Wright, Kevin
    Background: As part of a school-led action research project, teachers in Lowestoft identified writing as their priority area for inquiry. This study took place at a large primary school with over 500 pupils, serving socio-economically hard-pressed areas. Aims: The lesson study project aimed to improve writing skills through speaking and listening activities and the ability to adapt writing to different contexts. specifically by engaging them in a Tudor-themed unit where they recorded their own broadcast for a particular audience, focused on different writing styles and purposes, and received feedback from their peers and teacher. The children were interviewed as part of this process. Methods: Lesson study was used to plan and observe a Tudor-themed writing unit for year 5 children in which they wrote and recorded a broadcast for a specific audience. Observation and collaboration with colleagues were used to improve teaching practices and enhance student learning. Findings: The project improved writing skills and student confidence. Students responded positively to the clear purpose of recording their own broadcast for different audiences, and reported improved ability to adapt their writing style. Implications: Collaborative planning and observation of lessons led to improved teaching practices and learning outcomes, and a rewarding experience for both teachers and students.
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    Maximising progress in creative writing, for pupils working towards level 3, through a lesson study approach.
    (Camtree: the Cambridge Teacher Research Exchange, 2012) Reynolds, Gemma; Ward, Alison; Cable, Aimee; Ayres, Michelle
    Background: As part of a school-led action research project, teachers in Lowestoft identified writing as their priority area for inquiry. Aims: At Oulton Broad Primary school, teachers wanted to encourage children to take responsibility for their own learning across the curriculum. The main aim of the study was to improve primary school students' writing skills in Lowestoft using a Lesson Study approach. Methods: The Lesson study project aimed to improve writing skills and focused on three year 3 pupils with varying abilities and weaknesses in writing. The teacher used a checklist and prompt sheet to guide the students in their writing and provided opportunities for self and peer-assessment. The first two lessons focused on sentence structure and character development through drama. The third lesson involved independent writing with self and peer-assessment using a key features checklist. Findings: The approaches used, particularly the importance given to talk, drama and oral rehearsal of writing has extended the children’s vocabula ry as well as raising their confidence during group activities. The children gained a greater understanding of the importance of appealing to the reader. Implications: The lesson study model improved the quality of writing by personalizing learning, using assessment for learning, and creating checklists for self and peer-assessment. The approach impacted teaching practice and could be used in other areas of the curriculum.
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    Using Lesson Study to raise standards in early writing
    (Lesson Study UK and Camtree: the Cambridge Teacher Research Exchange, 2012) Parker, Lucy
    Background: The purpose of the study was to improve early writing progression for struggling Year 1 pupils by using a Lesson Study approach that involved collaborative planning, teaching, observing, and reflecting. Aims: The aim of the study was to improve early writing progression for a small group of unmotivated and anxious Year 1 pupils through a Lesson Study approach, focusing on using phonetically plausible spelling, building on familiar phrases/sentences, encouraging creativity with language, and providing opportunities for peer feedback and short, timed writing intervals to reduce anxiety. Methods: The project used a lesson study sequence and introduced strategies such as imitating and commenting on each other's work, offering specific praise, and timed writing intervals to help boost progress for students with varying levels of confidence and anxiety in writing. Findings: Lesson Study approach improved early writing progression for unmotivated and anxious pupils through strategies such as repeating structures, timed challenges, and group motivation. Pupils made progress through imitation and positive reinforcement from peers, with specific praise being powerful. Short, timed intervals for writing helped anxious writers. Implications: The findings suggest that collaborative learning and positive reinforcement can improve writing skills in students, particularly those lacking confidence or experiencing anxiety. Lesson studies can be an effective way to identify and implement successful teaching strategies.
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    Improving writing: maximising children’s progress through Lesson Study
    (Lesson Study UK and Camtree: the Cambridge Teacher Research Exchange, 2012) Constantine, Gemma
    Background: The school is a larger than average primary school situated in an area of relatively high social disadvantage. The children typically join the school at a lower than expected level for their age, but make good progress throughout the school. Improving writing standards is a main focus throughout the school. Aims: The purpose of the study was to improve writing standards in a primary school, particularly for pupils who struggle with generating ideas or writing independently, by using speaking and listening activities, role play, and story planning. The study aimed to have a significant impact on pupils' progress in writing and to benefit other members of staff through collaborative planning and sharing of ideas, both within the school and with teachers from other schools. Methods: The participants are year 1 pupils in a larger than average primary school in an area of high social disadvantage, with a high proportion of pupils eligible for free school meals and a high number of pupils with special educational needs. The study focuses on two pupils, one who struggles with imaginative ideas for writing and the other who is a slow, reluctant writer. The teachers carried out a lesson study in pairs within key stages, focusing on specific children's needs and using Pie Corbett's approach to improve story writing through role play, hot seating, and story planning. Findings: The lesson study improved writing standards in a primary school with disadvantaged pupils through storytelling, role play, and planning. Collaborative planning and sharing ideas were beneficial for teachers. The approach improved pupil confidence and enthusiasm towards writing, and progress in writing. Implications: Using talk for writing, including retelling, role play, and planning, improved writing skills and enthusiasm for writing among year 1 pupils, including those with special educational needs. Collaborative planning and lesson study could benefit teachers and pupils in the future, including through smaller-scale lesson studies with teachers from other schools to focus on individual learning needs.
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    Improving independent writing and creative thinking through Lesson Study
    (Lesson Study UK and Camtree: the Cambridge Teacher Research Exchange, 2012) Haste, Rebecca
    Background: The purpose of the study was to improve teaching and learning through collaborative lesson planning and observation, sharing of ideas and strategies, and implementation of new initiatives such as "Big Write" and "Talk for Writing." Aims: The aim of the Lesson Study was to improve the quality of written work and level of independence of lower ability pupils in Creative Curriculum lessons through promoting independent thinking and learning, while also providing teachers with opportunities to learn from each other and implement new strategies in their own classrooms. Methods: Methods used included giving pupils roles in the lesson, breaking down tasks, using visual aids, allowing time to think, group work, and listening to pupils' opinions. Case pupils were observed by other teachers involved in the Lesson Study Network. Findings: The main findings of the Lesson Study were that pupils who found it difficult to work independently were able to become more independent when given roles in the group, and when given time to think and discuss their ideas. They also benefited from visual aids and success criteria, and the use of the internet for research. Implications: The findings of the Lesson Study have implications for teaching, learning, and CPD. It has highlighted the need to break down tasks, use visual aids, and allow more time for independent thinking. It has also shown the importance of group work and listening to the opinions of pupils. The insights gained from using Lesson study suggest that it should be more widely adopted.