27 February 2022

Image of Spring - 28th February

Whole School CPD Focus:

Purposeful Writing (Explaining and Modelling)

Walkthru Cluster:

Explaining and Modelling



Scaffolding (pg. 80)



Our ‘Brilliant Teaching and Learning Toolkit’ is founded upon Rosenshine’s Principles of Instruction.  These inclusive teaching strategies are proven to have a positive impact on learning.  One of these Principles of Instruction is based on scaffolding.  Rather than setting lower expectations for students, teachers and teaching assistant support students to reach ambitious goals using a range of scaffolding processes to guide them as they think and work.  However, Sherrington reminds us that these scaffolds are temporary and should be withdrawn when students are ready.  Scaffolding cannot be relied upon in the long term as the metaphorical building – the learning – will otherwise fall down.  This Walkthru is all about designing effective scaffolding as part of effective curriculum planning.


So what are the five stages of Sherrington’s Walkthru?


Stage One: Map Out the Components of a Task

This has been discussed at length with Middle Leaders in recent months.  Break down a task into steps that students will need to follow to achieve success. Think about the difficulties that students will face as they move through the steps.  Design resources that will support them to successfully complete these steps.


Stage Two: Provide Supports at a Detailed Level


Scaffold the components of the task.  Detailed scaffolding might include:

  • Word lists
  • Diagrams and concept maps or other forms of dual coding
  • Sentence starters
  • Useful phrases or connectives
  • Prompts for ideas e.g. elements of persuasive speech (AFOREST)
  • Knowledge organisers setting out the substantive knowledge
  • Exemplars of different elements


Stage Three: Provide Supports at Overview Level

Now scaffold the whole-task.  These scaffolds might include:

  • Essay structure strips
  • Partially completed examples: started but not finished
  • Partially completed examples: with gaps to fill in throughout
  • Checklists of success criteria
  • Checking prompts: have you checked your full stops and capital letters?
  • WAGOLLs of completed tasks


Stage Four: Provide Scaffolding Sets Offering Varying Levels of Support

Within a class, set everyone a common goal: producing work to a high standards using scaffolding appropriate to their level of confidence.  This may range from maximum scaffolding to none at all. It may be appropriate for students to select their own level but this needs careful consideration and monitoring in case students over or under pitch the level at which they are working.


Stage Five: Take the Scaffolding Down

The classic modelling sequence is ‘I do-We do- You do’.  The final stage of instruction and practice is that students should attempt a task independently.  They must understand that they are capable of doing so, unsupported. If the scaffolding has achieved its purpose, then this can be a confidence-boosting moment.  Choosing when to remove the scaffolds is an important moment…


As is so often the case with Sherrington’s Walkthrus, it is making the stage explicit to students that is so powerful.  Let the students know that they are being supported, but that this support will be removed as they need it less to complete the task.  This is a positive thing.  Teaching Assistants are also vitally important, here; teachers need to find time to share the scaffold with TAs so that all understand what it looks like to move towards independence.


Previous blogs and Walkthrus in this cluster:

  • Deliberate Vocabulary Development
  • Worked Examples
  • Dual Coding
  • Big Picture, Small Picture
  • Abstract Models, Concrete Examples
  • Live Modelling


CPD Cascade

National College

Remember that there are subject-specific watchlists available in National College.


Free Sessions – VSH



 Wednesday 2nd March 3.30pm

Understanding and Supporting Children With Anxiety

 Wednesday 9th March 3.30pm

Building Better Relationships Through Understanding Attachment

 Friday 11th March 9.30am

Communicating with Children in Distress

Wednesday 16th March 3.30pm

Understanding and Promoting Resilience in Children and Young People

Wednesday 23rd March  9.30am

Trauma-informed Working in Schools

Wednesday 23rd March 3.30pm

Supporting Children and Young People with Low Mood and Depression

Friday 25th March 9.30am

Supporting Children Following Loss and Bereavement


Posted by Rachel Long

Category: Teaching and Learning Digests

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