Staff enquiry- SOLEs

Our staff enquiry team met this week to talk SOLEs.

I highlighted some areas that we have noticed over the past 12 months that have generated something interesting to explore further. The areas we are looking at overall include pupil premium pupils and the impact of SOLEs on raising achievement, questioning and supporting staff to develop questions that encourage students to generate their own further questions and considering how we encourage independent learning so we can be more resourceful and effective with lesson and homework time.

I set the staff enquiry team a little independent task to think of some big questions (deliberately not related to any particular subject matter for now- just to think big) and to share some of their observations about their experience of SOLES so far.

Here are some of the questions the staff team came up with:

Why doesn’t superglue stick to the inside of the tube?
Why do we do sport?
Is taste genetic or learned?
Why is there no Neanderthal men or women left?
Why do we listen to music?
Do birds feel the cold?
Why is rainwater cold?
Why do birds fly?
Why don’t snakes have feet?
What is creativity?
How are words invented?
What makes things aesthetically pleasing?
Why is it important to be able to hear?
Should everyone be treated equally?
Do men think differently to women? Why?

Some of the observations:

It can be a struggle to stand back and not intervene during sessions.
Behaviour didn’t always look great inside a SOLE.
The robot was useful.
Groups could often have similar results.
I am impressed by the things they discovered.
Interaction with the Grannies was good.
I found it hard not to intervene, mainly because I was curious to see what they were doing.
It was good to see independent learning and pupils working together.
I observed that pupils need to get used to that kind of learning before it can be successful.
I’d like to discourage pupils from creating a PPT presentation to feed back as i felt they spent too long making things look nice.
The robot was useful.
I was surprised by the amount of ideas the children had generated.
Students worked well with student managers depending on who the managers were. Sometimes it caused arguments.
The grannies were excellent at interacting with pupils. The robot made them more accessible.
It was difficult initially to stand back but this became easier the more sessions I did.

This staff enquiry group (a mix of teachers and non teaching staff) are exploring SOLEs each with a particular enquiry in mind over the next term. I’m looking forward to hearing about their observations and their views and assumptions gently shifting over time.


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