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Walking the Walk with OTT – Teaching Walkthrus

This week’s mid-point transition for our Full time Associate Teachers is a great opportunity to revisit key learning and discuss how their understanding has evolved since September.  In yesterday’s curriculum session I was delighted to see copies of Tom Sherrington and Oliver Caviglioli’s Teaching Walkthrus out on tables around the room.  This is a text we give to all our Associate Teachers and their Mentors as it distils elements of excellent evidence-based practice into a five step visual description, accompanied by a short outline of the teacher’s role.  They are designed, in the words of the authors themselves ‘to make teaching know-how as accessible – and attractive – as possible.  They shorten the route to understanding.’  (Teaching Walkthrus, p12)

In September 2020 Tom Sherrington met with our own Matthew Coatsworth to record an OTT SCITT Podcast focusing on the book.  There was so much to discuss in this compact guide, that the conversation had to be split into two parts, with a second Podcast released in December.  These give a great insight into the thinking behind the Teaching Walkthrus, which now include three printed volumes and an online platform, with a Learning Walkthrus guide for students and parents due to arrive in March 2024.  Each volume is a treasure trove of essential summaries – I currently have post-it notes in Walkthrus on Building a Culture of Reading (Volume 3) and Diversity – Curriculum Building (Volume 2) amongst others.

One of the key features is the emphasis on revisiting and refining teaching techniques, which is such an essential part of our spiral curriculum, as well as crucial in becoming a reflective practitioner through every stage of a teaching career.  It is so effective at showing beginning teachers that aspects such as creating a positive and attentive learning environment are not just set in stone in the first few weeks, but are a long-term work in progress.  Sherrington and Cavigliogli have brought both their own experience and the wisdom of a wide range of experts in education to create these brilliant little books, summarised beautifully by John Tomsett as ‘essential reading for anyone, at any stage of their career, who wants to improve their practice.  I absolutely love it.’ (Teaching Walkthrus, p3) The SCITT Central Team wholeheartedly agree!  

Linda Hull OTT SCITT Primary Subject Specialist