The Hard Way to Elevate Classroom Learning

There’s little argument that becoming––and then remaining–– a classroom teacher can be a rewarding career. But the sacrifice of long hours, sometimes difficult conditions, and an increasing number of changes means teachers must be incredibly adaptable.

Boosting learning for every student has also been a challenge—taken on largely by the individual classroom teacher. In a few cases they may receive extra help from a student, parent volunteer, a foundation grant to purchase supplies and perhaps even some additional technology. Which one of these factors makes the biggest difference to learning––and what inhibits creating better learners?

Dr John Hattie tackled this issue decades ago; his work is titled “Visible Learning.” The body of work and his supporting research is enormous––but for the most part he answers the fundamental question: “What works best for learning?” It’s worth knowing that in our world, he uncovers many misconceptions about students and learning.

And it’s fair to say that until educational leaders––including teachers––get 100% on-board and implement his scientifically-based recommendations, elevating learning will continue to be an uphill battle.