[00:00:00] Dan: Hi everyone. Thank you so much for giving up some of your time to come and listen to me or to watch me if you're watching me on YouTube. Thank you so much for doing this. Today we're gonna be talking about giving feedback to students that actually energizes you, right? We're gonna talk about a system here where it's all about creating energy and not feeling an energy drained.
[00:00:21] Dan: But often things in teaching can be sapping of our energy sometimes. Feedback is one of those things, and today I'm gonna help you to. Create a system for your feedback that's gonna energize you as a teacher as you see results. Now, before I get stuck into this, remember you can go and grab a copy of my book, Work Less, Teach More.
[00:00:40] Dan: How to Be An Effective Teacher and Live A Life You Love is what it's the full title is. You can grab a free copy at teacherspd.net/freewltm if you're watching this on YouTube, and the link is in the description. Now we have all given feedback before that we just watch our students take. Maybe they read it, but it just gets ignored or chucked into the bin.
[00:01:04] Dan: I've seen it multiple times with students, particularly, I used to teach a lot of year 11, 12 students, and you give 'em all these feedback on their extended responses or an essay or something, and you're giving it to them and you're hoping that they're gonna read it. They're gonna pay attention and adapt what they're doing to improve their results next time, and they don't.
[00:01:20] Dan: Okay. Students generally, when they get their tasks or whatever, they just wanna see how they went and then they chuck it. Right. They're not looking for the writing that tells them how to make it better. And that can be really sucky. That can really sap your energy to what you put in the work, right? You put in a lot of work for this feedback, and then your students just ignore it and that.
[00:01:40] Dan: SAPs and drains your energy as a teacher because the end result is not what you were after. Well, I was been reading this book, I think it's called Thinking Cultures. It's by Ron Rich Richard, Creating Cultures of Thinking. That's what it's called. And I'm loving that book, right. And it's helping me to reflect more on things that could have worked better that I have done previously.
[00:02:03] Dan: And this is one of those things I wanna talk to you about, this kind of feedback. In the book, he talks about a teacher who uses this system that's described in a lot of detail. Uh, but basically what happened was that he was giving feedback and found it really frustrating. The students weren't paying attention.
[00:02:19] Dan: It consumed a lot of his time, uh, but it wasn't, it wasn't getting stuff done. And so he switched over to this new system, which I talked to you about, but it completely changed. It meant he was energized. Not only that, but he noticed that his students were energized. They were more motivat. And they started getting much better results because of the system he set up.
[00:02:38] Dan: Now, as I describe this system, it's gonna sound like it consumes a lot of your time, but I want you to note that there's lots of ways to do this system. You can do it in ways that actually reduce your time, but overall, the guy who was doing this actually said that it saved him time overall. It wasn't something that just consumed a lot of it.
[00:02:57] Dan: It was time that he enjoyed giving because he felt energized by it and he saw the students improving from it and he fell in love with it. And so let's walk through this process. There's kind of three or four steps to this. So the first thing to do, is he did one on one interviews with his students when he was doing the feedback.
[00:03:18] Dan: Now, the first interview that he did, he would meet with them, set some goals, identify where the student was, like, where they up to with their writing ability or whatever skills that needed to be developed through what he did. Now, he was doing English and we were looking at, you know, how the students were writing essays and that kind of stuff, and analyzing texts is what he was doing.
[00:03:39] Dan: But I see that applicable to so many other subjects where a student can do small tasks that they can improve on, that then helps them to improve on larger tasks, right? So you can do lots of shorter essays to help you improve your larger essays and stuff like that. So, . He would meet with them, find out where their skill level was at, how they were going with their writing abilities and all that kind of stuff.
[00:03:59] Dan: Then he would basically lay out a bit of a plan for how to achieve particular goals, and they would do that together, and he would very clearly commit to the student that he was not going to allow the student to fail. Basically, he was. Be meeting and a lot of the student was committed to, and he was committed and they were both going to achieve great things together.
[00:04:23] Dan: And he said that the students go away from that first meeting really energized to actually do the task because they can see that he is really on their side. He's coming alongside them, and he wants to see them succeed. , which I think all students want to hear, that their teachers wanna see them succeed.
[00:04:37] Dan: And so he was there, he was making that commitment and he was setting up that plan with the students. And then he gave them the first task. So to go and do a, you know, written extended response to a particular question or something like that. And the next interview is when the student would bring the work that they've done.
[00:04:52] Dan: He hadn't like pre-read it or whatever, and so he sat down with the student and he would read through it with them and give them feedback as he read it. And so he would say all the good things as he went through, and he would also tell them the things that they need to improve as he went through. And as he went through, he would also write on it.
[00:05:09] Dan: So he would talk to the student about it and write on it, and it gave the student a chance. You know, they had a conversation as they went about, Oh, how could you have written this differently? He could ask some questions and they could come up with the solutions and all that kind of stuff as he went through that process with them and that process.
[00:05:24] Dan: Going through the task, obviously depends on the length of the task, but you're looking at, you know, maybe half an hour, right? Per student that he was going through and doing that. And half an hour's gonna be a long time, possibly even less in interviewing, going through the response, giving them the feedback, and then the student was given then next.
[00:05:42] Dan: Task where here would give them really clear instructions about what to do to improve on that next task. So, you know, you really struggled in this one, for example, to use examples, right? You, you writing this lovely essay, but you didn't use examples enough. So in your next one, here's the next question, make sure you're using lots of examples as you answer this and keep going with the great things that you're doing.
[00:06:02] Dan: Like, so maybe they structure their power guards really well, but they're missing the examples. So you're encouraging them to do that and he would send them away and. They just automatically met at the same time each week. And so the student would come back with their done task and he would go through that process again.
[00:06:19] Dan: And it just constantly went through it, reading through and telling the student what to do to improve the next thing that he gave them. And so they would learn from what they were doing and they had a task to apply it to, and he was guiding them in that process. And so the interviews. Turned out to be amazing.
[00:06:34] Dan: Like all the students massively increased their results and their writing was became beautiful to read, all that kind of stuff. But he, you know, he had a plan. They'd set goals together. and they were committed to working together to achieve that. If the student didn't do the work, they didn't come to the meeting.
[00:06:53] Dan: And that meant that he wasn't wasting his time with students who weren't committed, but it meant that he was really committed to the students and helping them to get there. And he could remind the students time during class, whatever. And you know, there's adaptations to this kind of process as well, but, Essentially what he did, he used to do them during recess or lunch, or maybe if he could find a period off where he was off class and the student was off class, had a steady period or something.
[00:07:16] Dan: He could organize that. But he's been adapted at one point and he decided to start meeting with two students at once rather than one student, and they would have the same tasks, you know, and you could kind of group your students together that way. Like if you are well planned with your lessons, you could actually probably do this process in class.
[00:07:32] Dan: If you have students all working independently or collaborating or something, you can actually pull your students out, go through this process with them in class and then send them back to do whatever else they're doing that lesson. And it can be really exciting to see this kind of stuff work. And I can see so easily how, why this is gonna work for students.
[00:07:52] Dan: In multiple subjects. So number one, it's like individualized. We're getting differentiated feedback for our students. Uh, we're getting verbal feedback. In a conversation style, which is really good. It means the students are gonna receive that feedback. Uh, well, basically they're gonna receive it rather than try to say more clearly or better, but that's sound like bad English to me.
[00:08:13] Dan: Uh, but they're gonna really be more open to that feedback and receive it, and actually apply it because we've had this conversation together and you've given them a task to apply it to after. , the students also knew that the stu, that the teacher cared for them and was committed to actually helping them to make sure that they don't fail.
[00:08:34] Dan: And that is amazing that the commitment from both of them, they both. Knew that the commitment was required in order for them to improved. And so the teacher made that commitment up front and told the students very clearly, I'm committed, we're gonna do this and we're gonna get you there. Right? And that makes a big difference.
[00:08:52] Dan: So I want you to give this a go as you. Go back to school. If you're on holidays at the moment, or if you're listening and you are, you know, you're just back at school, then, you know, take a class that you're gonna do this for. Just, maybe just try it for the term, right? This is the last term of school is a term to try everything for the last term of the year, uh, and go through and do this stuff with your students to go through, set up an interview with them, find out where they're at, how they need to get to where you want them to go.
[00:09:19] Dan: Lay out a plan, get some commitment from each other. and then meet with them regularly in order to improve particular skills they're gonna need. Yeah. Particularly if you're a senior school teacher or in primary school, if you wanna really develop the student's writing abilities or even their reading, you can have them read and you can give them feedback with one-on-one reading.
[00:09:39] Dan: That's gonna have a big impact as well. Right. There's so many things that you can apply. It doesn't have to be writing. Uh, you can use it in so many other ways. So I want you to give this a go this week. Set up some interview time. Do some verbal and written feedback at the same time with the student through a conversation.
[00:09:55] Dan: If you don't wanna write, you can probably just record it for them. Even just click record on your phone, record the audio, and then send it to them. So many great ways that you can improve feedback to have a better result in terms of your students and to get your energy back. Cuz this, for me, when I read this, I was like, this is exciting.
[00:10:12] Dan: Like, to be able to do that with your students and to see the. Yeah, that excites. Every teacher, every teacher loves to see their students improve and to know that they've had that impact on their students. And so I know for me, that's something that would energize me. I would love to see that happening to my students.
[00:10:26] Dan: I know it would energize my students because they are improving and they're getting that time with you. I teach students often underestimate the fact that students like to have time with their teachers to be able to get that kind of stuff. And they're doing it in a, in a personal kind of, not, not too private right, but in a private way where the student can.
[00:10:46] Dan: You know that they're struggling, that something that's really hard for them, and it's just you and the student who are hearing that. And you can write your notes and you can help the student and you can set up their goals and just kind of keep tabs of that as you go and show the student their progress.
[00:10:58] Dan: You know, I think he even used to use portfolios so that, you know, the students could see all their work and how they've been progressing, which is all just fantastic stuff for students to see and get motivated for their learning. So if you haven't tried it yet, give it a. Give it a go this week. Set up some kind of system like this with your students to just see them improve over this term.
[00:11:20] Dan: All guys, thank you so much. If you wanna get a copy of my book, remember that's at teacherspd.net/freewltm. You can land there, Get yourself a copy of the book. It will come out to you. We'll ask you to do is pay for postage and handling and it comes out. Thank you so much. I hope to chat to you again next.