Mastery & Greater Depth

At Akaal Primary School learning is planned in 2 distinct layers.

Mastery Learning

It is the entitlement of every child in school to ‘master’ the objectives in the National Curriculum, no matter where their starting point is. The teacher is responsible, by using assessment outcomes, for identifying where a particular learner is working in relation to an objective and then plan a learning pathway that enables the objective to be mastered.

For an objective to be ‘mastered’ the learner must show full understanding of the concept/knowledge/skill and must be able to use this independently.

This is the approach we take for all learning.

With the children we use the terminology ‘unlocking’ in relation to the mastery level of learning and, in line with our feedback policy, we have a purple key stamp which is recorded on the work when the child has ‘mastered’ the objective. This stamp can be issued at any point in the learning journey as a learner can show that they have mastered the objective after the initial input. Our approach is to be responsive to this and, once we have the evidence to say that objective mastery has been achieve, the learning is moved on. (see Greater Depth Learning below).

Where necessary smaller or additional steps are included for learners who find it more difficult to master the age appropriate objective. This may include having access to in-class support, or receiving short-term intervention to narrow the gap. If there is a learning need which means a child mainly learns at a level lower than expected, the school SEND process will be triggered to offer further support.

Greater Depth Learning

Once an objective has been mastered, our second layer of planned learning is then accessed.

Greater depth learning opportunities are those that allow the learner to explore, manipulate, transfer, be creative, investigate, synthesise, problem solve, innovate.

There is an increased level of independent learning required and there may be as many questions as answers at the end.

If a learner makes progress at greater depth a gold key stamp is recorded to show this. This is in line with our feedback policy. A gold key stamp is not only awarded for completion of a task, it could be given for the quality of thought, level of planning, choice of strategy, level of risk shown by the learner.

By working in this way we are able to offer appropriate challenge to our most able children, without moving ahead to future mastery objectives or to those belonging to higher year groups.