Activitating Students as Teachers

This is not so much a CPD session as a loosely assembled PowerPoint containing a compiled set of techniques and, to be honest, I can’t remember exactly how I ran the session.

Given that there are three techniques, it seems sensible to run some sort of ‘expert groups’ structure, where participants learn about one and then move into groups and teach each other.  I then would give them some time -having asked them to bring their laptops to the session – to include one of the techniques into a lesson for the following days.  As I have said many times before in other posts, when delivering CPD about teaching techniques, tips or strategies it is much more effective to give some planning time in the session to help avoid the CPD Paradox.

The techniques are all different ways to develop students as peer-teachers. I find them particularly useful when I have a lot of content to cover – especially factual content – in the lesson as you can get through it so much more quickly  than covering it in a ‘teacher-led’ style from the front of the room.

1) Quiz Quiz Trade Trade:

In this technique, students are given different pieces of information (being sensible, I would say up to about eight pieces overall).  They should complete a short task (often related to application of the content to some source material) to memorise this and then they move around the room, using a specific script, to share and swap information with other members of the class.

This should then be followed up with a plenary and potentially a re-teaching activity.


2) Marketplace:

This technique involves small groups becoming experts in a defined area.  You should give them a resource and then ask them to transfer this information into poster form, issuing strict rules (ten words maximum is the most important to stop them simply copying) that mean that have to think creatively about the information.  One person says behind to teach while the other group members move around the visit other market stalls before finally moving back to teach the teacher.

I genuinely think that this technique is the best group work structure that I have ever found, and I use it often in my lessons.  David Didau has written on a similar technique (Jigsaw groups) as “the ultimate teaching technique.”

3) Teacher voting:

I came up with this strategy because I felt like some students were not as good at teaching each other as I would wish.  Rather than actually explaining and discussing the material, I was faced with a room full of year 10s who were studiously – and silently – copying down each others’ posters (see marketplace above) before moving on.  This, for me, does not constitute effective peer-teaching.  The solution that I found to this issue involves sharing a ‘success criteria’ for good teaching with them:


modelling using it to teach something to them, and then getting them to practice on each other.  I got students to teach their route to school, making a cup of tea etc.,  Finally, in whatever peer teaching task you are using they have to vote on each teacher they visit, ticking off the criteria.  The tick lists get passed to you, who awards the best teacher prize (a call home?).  The PowerPoint contains a voting sheet to print off.

Pupil as teacher



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