7th Dec 2023 – Evidence-Based Learning: What’s in a name?
The term “Evidence-Based Learning” places emphasis on the research and evidence behind these skills. However, it is the learning skills themselves that are at the core of this approach. A better name that captures this would be “Evidence-Based Learning Skills” or even Learning Skills (that are evidence based). The skills are what enable students to benefit from our review educational research.
When we refer to Evidence-Based Learning Skills, we mean the specific skills and techniques that are supported by over 50 years of research into effective learning methods. Without equipping students with these essential skills, there would be little value in consulting the evidence in the first place. Ultimately, it is these learning skills that are vital for students both now and in the future. The “evidence-based” bit highlights that these techniques are grounded in extensive research rather than anecdotal ideas. But make no mistake – the skills themselves take centre stage here, empowering students to learn and succeed and have the confidence to face the future.
5th Dec 2023 – Five-minute CPD (metacognition)
This is a typical five-minute CPD activity for teachers who want to refresh, or add to, their existing skillset. Basically, there is a quote (with a source) supporting metacognition, a reflective question, eight practical strategies for introducing metacognition in a classroom and a simple action step to move forward. All in all this simple page represents Evidence-Based Teaching in action. It is at the end of the lesson entitled “A Nice and a Nasty Pirate”.
26th Nov 2023 – Hello facebook
It has taken us a while to get the hang of Instagram – evidencebasedlearners – and we like it! It has been a great way to get the message of evidence-based learning across and so we have now gone one step further and today we have launched evidence based learning on facebook. Tra-la!
1st Nov 2023 – Bulk buy discount of 50%
If you wake up one morning and decide that the one thing you must do that day is to dowload every lesson from this website then hold on! Not only will we save you the trouble of downloading all 223 lessons (or there-abouts) each evidence-based learning lesson individually because we will put them all on a USB stick and send it direct to you by Special Delivery but we will also give you a whooping 50% discount at the same time! Yes, that means every lesson is only £1 each. Unbelievable. A real win-win. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get you sorted asap.
31st Oct 2023 – Ready to print digital lessons
All lessons available on this site are in PDF format. This means that they can be used on any device and they are also ready to print as required.
30th Oct 2023 – TL;DR
In keeping with the spirit of the times – too long;didn’t read – we have tried to reduce the whole ethos of what we are about to some simple graphics. So without more ado, here goes…
22nd Oct 2023 – Say hello to the emoticons
When pupils use evidence-based learning lessons is it is an obvious point to say that they must know which particular skill they are using. So as well as, of course, actually practising the skill we felt that we needed to make it super-obvious which skill is involved. So in every evidence-based learning lesson available on this website each skill has been denoted by its own emoticon. So, drum-roll please…
17th Oct 2023 – Some evidence for each Evidence-Based Learning skill
Collaboration is the key to success in the 21st century. When students learn to work together effectively, they are better able to solve problems, to generate new ideas, and to achieve their goals. Tony Wagner
Peer assessment is a powerful tool for learning and improvement. When students assess each other’s work, they have the opportunity to develop their critical thinking skills, to learn from their peers, and to give and receive constructive feedback. James Hattie
Peer teaching is a powerful learning tool that can benefit both the teacher and the learner. When students teach each other, they have the opportunity to deepen their own understanding of the material and to develop their communication and collaboration skills. Robert E. Slavin
Self-assessment is the key to self-improvement. When students learn to assess their own learning, they can identify their strengths and weaknesses, and develop strategies to improve their performance. Paul Black and Dylan Wiliam
Metacognition is the key to lifelong learning. When students learn to think about their thinking, they can develop the skills they need to learn effectively and efficiently in any situation. John Flavell
Self-regulated learners create the maximum opportunities to learn. Self-regulated learners will focus on a task and bring to it the right thinking, attitude, strategies and behaviours to get that task done. Research Brief – Self-Regulated Learning
15th Oct 2023 – Evidence-Based Teaching in action
“teachers and leaders see improving teachers’ practice as a priority…”
Independent Review of Teachers’ Professional Development in Schools – gov.uk – May 2021
Nearly all our lessons have a five-minute CPD activity at the end of them for teachers to add to, or to refresh, their skill set. The CPD activities only take five-minutes and each one is based on an evidence-based learning skill that is in that particular lesson. Furthermore, and this is the clever bit, each CPD activity uses a formula of evidence + reflection = action step(s). Using this simple formula ensures that teachers can make a change in their classroom that is backed by research and will improve teaching practice. This really is evidence-based teaching in action.
Every lesson with a five-minute CPD activity included has a brilliant little red symbol on it so that the CPD activity can be easily identified. Here is an example:
10th Oct 2023 – Social media: evidencebasedlearners on Instagram
Of course, no self-respecting website would be complete without a dip into the world of social media! So without further ado we have dipped our toes, cautiously, and I mean cautiously, into the world of Instagram. And, guess what! We loved it. Instant feedback on posts, comments, 2,700 followers! What is there not to like lol.
We try to post something new and relevant to evidence-based learning lessons with their amazing 8 EBL skills every day. There is not room to do much on a single post so we have limited ourselves to getting the 8 evidence-based learning skills better known.
At the moment we are running a series of posts that compare a pupil with one of the 8 EBL skills to a pupil without that particular skill so, for example, a pupil with metacognition will have a range of strategies; a pupil without metacognition will rely on trial and error and guesswork. I think “without metacognition” neatly sums up our trial and error approach to Instagram posts!
7th Oct 2023 – Halloween lessons added to our Freebies page but you can download here
We had added two free Halloween-themed grammar lessons to our freebies page to bring some seasonal cheer. But we thought if you have taken the time to read our blog you can download these lessons now by simply clicking on the graphic of your choice – or even both if the mood takes you! The first lesson is for lower KS2 (years 3 and 4 UK or grades 2 and 3 US) and the second lesson is for upper KS2 (years 5 and 6 or grades 4 and 5 US). Both resources are complete lessons with no preparation required. Essentially, the lessons introduce and expans upon three key parts of a sentence – subject, verb and prepositional phrase. Students work collaboratively to make notes on the topic with the aim of peer teaching the topic to their peers.
4th Oct 2023 – Top lesson searches from Google for September
As a user (or potential user) we thought we would share some stuff from Google namely the top two lessons that people have been looking at on this site in September! So drum roll please – pull the curtain back – here are the two most popular lessons for September:
2nd Oct 2023 – Take a peek at our TES shop
If you’ve got a spare moment or two and hey, what teacher hasn’t lol we thought you might like to take a peek at our eblresources shop at tes.com. We have got all sorts of evidence-based learning reources on it that will gladden your hearts (honestly). The eblresouces shop is where we like to showcase resources that although, in the main, are not complete lessons they are still EBL skills based. Just click on the picture below and you’ll see what we mean.
1st Oct 2023 – How evidence-based learning lessons arrived on your doorstep
Hello and welcome to October! It is hard to put our story of how evidence-based learning lessons arrived on your doorstep into words without running off the edge of the page and boring the life out of everyone because the whole process was 10 years in the making! But, for all our sakes, we need to give it a go because you have a right to know where these EBL lessons came from.
Initially, we thought we could use three words – research, identify, write – to describe how evidence-based learning lessons arrived rather impressively on your doorstep but that didn’t work as well as we hoped because even we didn’t know what the three words meant after we had written them.
Then we thought we could use a snappy catch-phrase like “Evidence-Based Learning is the Future of Teaching and Learning” mmm, maybe not.
Finally we thought we would try and summarise how evidence-based learning lessons arrived on your doorstep graphically. So, here goes – see what you think. I know, I know we should stick to writing EBL lessons and leave the graphics to somebody else. Never mind, at least we tried. And, if, just if, the graphic makes things a little clearer to someone somewhere it will have all been worthwhile.
29th Sept 2023 – A huge evidence-based learning welcome
Right, that’s got the ‘we won’t be blogging every day because we’d rather go for quality over quantity’ (at least that’s what we are telling ourselves) message out of the way let’s start by giving all our users a huge evidence-based learning welcome!
However, before we start blogging in earnest we’ve had a quick snapshot of the users of the site today and overnight and while the majority of them are UK (and US) based some are definitely not and so to the top four countries that are using this site today we would like to say…
“Welcome to evidence-based learning – the home of evidence-based learning lessons.”
“Bienvenido al aprendizaje basado en evidencia, el hogar de lecciones basadas en evidencia.”
“Bienvenue à l’apprentissage basé sur les preuves – le lieu des leçons d’apprentissage basées sur les preuves.”
27th Sept 2023 – A quick word about our blogging abilities (or lack of)
Writing over 200 KS2 English lessons (which we have been doing for years) has paled into insignificant compared to writing our first real blog (which we are starting in earnest today).
First we had to ask ourselves what IS a blog? After looking at many blogs on the internet we still did not have a clear answer to that question. So we will just have to plough on and hope we get there in the end. You never know, we just might pull it off. If we don’t, we will have to sign up to a blog-writing course. Whatever happens, we can only assume that shortly we will either be the sort of people that can write a blog or be the sort of people waiting for an, as yet unknown, advance in the world of blogging that rewards raw talent for what it is – raw talent.
Once we have somehow learnt how to write blogs – entertaining and informative ones – either through our own hard work or some miracle as yet unknown to blogging science – we will be blogging all over the place.
However, the very first thing we need to insist on is that we will not write a blog every day. There are two reasons for this. Firstly, some days there is just NOTHING to write a blog about AND secondly, it is not every day you have the time. It is a case of ‘Is the dog wagging the tail or the tail wagging the dog’ – or to be more accurate ‘Is the blog running you or are you running the blog?’
We could have written a blog explaining that we have spent the last 10 years researching and writing 200+ KS2 English lessons that have the 8 key evidence-based learning skills embedded in them – but that is not what blogs are for (we think). So all we can promise is that there will be blogs on some days and these blogs will (hopefully) be worth waiting for. But be prepared that not all blogs will have tail-wagging dogs in them. So lower your expectations and be prepared to be overjoyed to see a blog on any day of the week regardless of how long it has been since the last blog or the last full moon.
25th Sept 2023 – Goodbye Canstock and hello a.i.
It seems fitting for our second blog to pay tribute to the fine folks at Canstock – the Canadian graphics company – with whom we have worked with for over 10 years. Not only did they have an excellent stock of graphics but they also had excellent customer service if anything went wrong. You might have noticed that I am using the past tense. Yes, sadly, after September 30th Canstock are ceasing trading. Costs are rising and revenue is falling. A situation many companies (and people) are familiar with today.
Canstock can be seen as a victim of the a.i. revolution. At the moment a.i. is being seen as a blessing and a curse but using a.i. and getting the best out of it is something we will return to many times in these blogs but before we go, we wish a fond farewell to all our friends at Canstock for the last time.
If you have looked at Canstock’s website and other graphics companies’ websites you will notice was something missing from Canstock that some of the other companies have – an a.i. option. If you are looking for a particular graphic say of a monkey eating a banana on a skateboard and they don’t have it their a.i. engine will generate it for you. Describe the graphic you want, click on the create button, and voila the graphic (that didn’t exist up to that moment) appears. Don’t like it – click on re-generate as many times as you want until you are happy with the outcome.
Our first blog – 24th Sept 2023
After what seems like years and years and years in a small office writing KS2 lessons, under little pressure, we have launched this new evidence-based learning website. Maybe we exaggerated when we said small – because we really meant tiny! We also exaggerated when we said little pressure. If you call having to think about what to have with ten tea breaks a day without putting on weight no pressure then perhaps this is the job for you!
Our team of researchers and writers – well there are only two of us actually – have been more than happy to work around the clock for years because to be honest what else can you do all day that allows you to drink so much tea?
Over 230 KS2 lessons and some 2,500 graphics later, the website has launched with – yes, you guessed right – over 230 KS2 lessons. To be truthful the 2,500 graphics might be an exaggeration. Some of them were doubles that we already had. Others were just the wrong graphic that did not match the text in any shape or form. At £2 a graphic, you can only imagine how quickly we ran through our graphic allowance but we wanted to make the best graphics available to you.
We hope you think that both the time – ten years – and the vast expense on the graphics was well worth it.