Best Practice

Adaptive teaching explained: What, why and how?

Curriculum Pedagogy
The PISA research says that ‘adaptive instruction’ is one of the approaches most positively correlated with student performance. Matt Bromley looks at what adaptive teaching entails and how to deliver it

One of my former students – I’ll call him John – contacted me recently. He wanted to update me on what he’d been doing since I last taught him nearly a decade ago.

I’ve acquired a group of students like John who get in touch from time to time to tell me how they’re getting on. It is one of the greatest privileges afforded to a teacher: to see, first-hand, the impact you have on young people’s lives and how your actions continue to shape those lives long after they leave school.

John was in a class I regularly cite on training courses. If you have heard me talk about teaching English to “bottom set boys on a Friday afternoon”, then know that John was one of those boys.

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