Lesson Study

Many schools are engaging in supported Lesson Study as an extremely powerful model for building capacity in reflective teaching, subject knowledge and effective systems. They use research lessons as a vehicle for building powerful learning in classrooms. Impetus has the capacity to enable you to develop this in your school. 

What is lesson study?

Formal lesson study is arguably the most powerful, and exciting form of professional development available because:

  • The focus is entirely on learning (rather than teaching) and how decisions we make in planning for learning impact on the outcome for learners
  • Teachers are empowered to reflect on and review planning in the light of input from colleagues
  • Shared observations of learning followed by analytical reflections on learning build cohesion in approach, structures and curriculum across all year groups
  • All staff have a shared ownership in applying learning to improve outcomes for pupils.

Why lesson study?

  • Empower teachers
  • Improve subject knowledge
  • Deepen understanding of learning
  • Better teaching and learning
  • Use more cohesive approaches.

Why is it different?

  • This process is teacher led, in contract to the more familiar ‘top down’ initiatives
  • The focus is on how children learn, what impacts on that, and how we can optimise learning
  • Teachers engage with relevant research and develop their ideas through a deeper understanding of learning.

Lesson study cycle

A lesson study cycle can typically include:

  • A planning team is identified (3-5 teachers), members meet with an external advisor discuss ideas for designing a lesson to address
    that theme. They also read around the topic and decide on the research theme for the lesson, (for example, enabling learners to articulate their thinking, mastery, engagement, the use of models and images to support learning, journaling) 2hrs
  • The planning group meet to identify misconceptions and key issues, plan unit of work and decide on and outline for the
    research lesson and focus (schools may prefer to just design a one-off lesson as a research lesson) 2hrs
  • A meeting with the external advisor to review plan and reflect on possible eventualities and outcomes 2hrs
  • Plan finalised by the planning team
  • The research lesson is delivered by a member of the planning team and is observed by all staff. It is preceded by a briefing
    session (20/30 minutes), and followed by a chaired post lesson discussion (60-90 minutes)
  • External advisor writes a report summarising discussion, outcomes and recommendations.

The outcomes

The outcomes are wide-ranging and include:

  • Improved cohesion in teaching approaches
  • Stronger subject knowledge and pedagogical understanding
  • Greater levels of motivation, ownership and confidence of teachers
  • Improved teaching, leading to improved pupil outcomes.

Support and expertise

We offer face-to- face support (the equivalent of 2 days) and additional electronic support with:

  • Planning
  • Research referencing
  • Chairing pre and post lesson discussions
  • Comprehensive summative report and summary.

Other services