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Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds For example, in maths, we now move far less children on as we were [INAUDIBLE] and they stay within objectives from their own year group. But then what we do is we try to establish grades at within those. So for example, we would enter a math lesson having no presumption of who was going to advance more quickly and more slowly. We would come in and teach the same learning objective, but if children achieve the core work, we would then move them on to other mastery tasks. But other children may need some more consolidation with the core skills but we would have no presumption when we entered that lesson about which child was going to be in which group.

Skip to 0 minutes and 54 seconds We’ve talked got the power of yet, so it’s okay not to know, but then you will eventually, and it’s okay to get things wrong cuz often that’s when we learn the most. So we talk about that regularly. We have something, our school motto is believe you can, okay? So it’s always I can do this, rather than I can’t, there’s no such thing as I can’t in our school. And it really is starting to make a difference. And our school motto is living together, learning together, laughing together. And the emphasis is on that learning together, and it being a collaborative approach. And we try to work really hard on developing that learning happens when you didn’t know simply, initially.

Skip to 1 minute and 32 seconds And it might not happen the first time but you’ve got to keep going, keep going. And eventually, it’s the biggest success for them when they’ve struggled to begin with and we’re trying to really develop that. Yeah, it’s because the way where I am and the school where we are, the location, resilience is really important to the children so that’s a core value again. So they know what it means, they understand it, and they encourage each other as well, and that really helps, because we always focus back on that and they’re given awards for showing resiliences. We have achievements and then resilience is a huge thing for our children to achieve cuz that’s what they need.

Skip to 2 minutes and 11 seconds You can have [INAUDIBLE] need it to come back. And resilience is a really hard skill for children, actually. It does take teacher training and they’re gonna have knock backs and give up straight to it a bit. It’s the job of the teacher to then promote that and encourage them more and keep going, and it will happen over time, and the children will become more resilient if we allow it.

Teaching with an awareness of plasticity

If we know that the brain is plastic, and that teachers are in a position to shape their students’ understanding of what learning is, then teachers can influence students’ self-perceptions. There are many ways in which schools are supporting students to develop the belief that they can improve their own ability to learn and improve resilience.

In this video Head Teacher Mari Palmer talks about how teachers start each maths lesson with no presumption of which children would advance more quickly or slowly. Jack talks about the ‘Power of Yet’, and how his school is developing a culture where children believe that getting it wrong is not just OK, but an important part of the learning process.


We have all come across students who seem to give up easily, or not try in the first place - those students who’s doubt in their own ability has a negative effect on their not only on their learning, but also their experience of school.

What ways have you found that are effective in developing students resilience, and self-belief? Are there any strategies shared this week which you would like to try?

We’re interested in a range of perspectives here, so feel free to make multiple posts on different topics. You might like to consider grouping of students by ability and the impacts of that, or how classroom activities and ethos try to instil resilience.

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This video is from the free online course:

The Science of Learning

National STEM Learning Centre