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Showing Progress

In all lessons we are expected to “show pupil progress”. This is a really easy way to demonstrate massive progress – the pupils love it (especially if there is a reward), it is active (slightly), it requires no resources, it is infinitely adaptable!! YOU will be rewarded by seeing how much they really have learnt in your lesson!

I do this activity fairly regularly (once a half term- maybe more) so my pupils have got into a routine and do it really quickly! They know what to expect. The first time it will take a little explaining.

  • Two/three minutes before the end of the lesson the whole class stands up.

  • You go round the class in seating order asking each person to tell you ONE thing they have learnt that lesson -could be ANYTHING – a fact, a skill, a spelling, something about themselves, ANYTHING- the only criteria is that they MUST have learnt it in that lesson.

  • Each student must come up with something DIFFERENT……… if they succeed they sit down. If they repeat/hesitate/can’t think of anything they stay standing. You then offer them the chance to keep thinking – tell them they can put their hand up when they have thought of something and you will come back to them immediately. It is amazing how quickly they do start thinking when they are still standing but everyone around them is sitting down.

  • By the time you get to the last few pupils it will be getting difficult for them to think of something different to say – this is where the rewards come in. I usually give credits to the last three people and maybe even a double credit to the last person – especially if their new knowledge is really good!

And that’s it! …………….

I often call this “Face the Challenge”- I ask if any pupil would LIKE to face the challenge of being the last person. Many do – and of course, because you do this in seating order – they are dragging the people sitting round them into the challenge too! Always leads to a bit of “banter”!


  • Use your energy and enthusiasm to make sure the activity has real pace and excitement -it will definitely fall flat if it is laborious! YOU must make it fun and make it work!

  • Reward EVERY person with positivity, enthusiasm and a smile.

  • Don’t let the same pupils earn the rewards every time you do it.

  • Sometimes MAKE some pupils go last even if they don’t want to – they WILL think of something to say and will be really pleased with themselves

We always have a real laugh doing this activity. You can get round a whole class of 30 in less than two minutes (if you let it take much longer it will be boring and difficult to manage).

Observers are always amazed…… on one occasion – in my lesson feedback – the observer told me that she thought the lesson was really going to “fail” at that point – she couldn’t imagine how we would do it in the 2minutes we had left- she loved it!! ….“Plenary”…. “showing progress”……….. “pace”………. “every child engaged” ……………. Probably hits loads of other criteria too.

BUT – don’t tell too many people – we don’t all want to be doing it –the pupils will get bored doing the same thing in everyone’s lesson. Keep this one to yourself and definitely pull it out in observed lessons!

Do you have any tips to share? We would love to hear them!

Please send them to and we could be posting your tips!

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