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Our approach to learning

The Crest Academy’s Guiding Principles

Our vision for learning and teaching at The Crest Academy reflects the high expectations and aspirations that all staff have of themselves and their learners. At Crest, learning and teaching is our ‘core business’, it underpins all that we do, as we appreciate that an excellent education is the key to unlocking excellent futures for the learners in our care. Our vision for learning and teaching is built on a desire to deliver high quality, transformational education to the learners that we teach; every day, in every lesson, in every classroom.

At Crest, we strive to equip our students with the skills that they need to be lifelong learners and prepare to be successful in their future lives. Our aim is to ensure that we constantly reflect as practitioners to ensure that we are seeking for the key levers to drive forward exceptional progress for the learners in our care.

With this in mind, every member of teaching staff at The Crest Academy is entitled to the following package of development and support to allow them to make their practice exceptional:

  • Opportunity to undertake lesson visits with a Senior Leader or Lead Practitioner on a termly basis
  • Access to a bespoke professional development pathway dependent on the classroom practitioners current experience and role
  • Access to E-ACT’s CPD offer, which includes two days of subject specific development run regionally with input from accredited exam board specialists

The Crest Academy Feedback Policy

Guiding principles

  • At Crest, teachers plan self, peer and teacher feedback into our schemes of learning
  • At Crest, teachers use this feedback to assess student progress and amend our teaching accordingly
  • At Crest, learners get regular self, peer or teacher feedback to develop independence and improve their learning

Feedback policy overview

Green for teacher Teacher written feedback should always be in green.
Red for student Self /peer assessment, student reflections, teacher verbal feedback and student improvements should always be in red.
Challenge question The challenge question should always address an area for development or misconception in the work that needs to be addressed by the learner
How frequently should I give written teacher feedback? Planned teacher assessments as per schemes of learning on agreed midway and end of unit assessment points. These should be clearly identifiable in student books/folders. Learners should have a clear success criteria to allow them to know how to be successful.


Formative feedback:

§  At every mid – way point every half term and at the end of every half term using your Curriculum Area’s personalised yellow marking template

§  For subjects where there are more than 2 lessons per week, Curriculum Directors will specify two formative assessments.

Crest Class feedback:

§  Once per half term for subjects with less than 2 lessons per week

§  Once per fortnight for subjects with more than 2 lessons per week


Literacy marking:

Every piece of marked work should have the first three literacy errors identified in the side margin of the learner’s book. These must be responded to by learners three times in green pen.


Sp Can you correct this spelling?
Cp Can you add in the correct capital letters?
. Can you add in missing full stops?
P Can you amend the punctuation here?
// Can you add this symbol to indicate where you should have paragraphed correctly?
Exp Can you restructure this part of your writing?
^ Can you add in the missing word?


The Crest Essentials – Lesson Structure

To ensure that all lesson across the academy are at the expected level lessons are planned according to the Crest Essentials. The Crest Essentials are a set of expectations or features that have to be present in all lessons 

The Crest Essential 10 for Learning and Teaching

Seating plan

Promote Integration, collaboration and progress.


2. Meet and greet/entry to the classroom

At the door at the start of the lesson checking no trainers, top button done up, blazers on, shirts tucked in and coats/jackets are off.


3. ‘Do now’ activity

Differentiate for: EAL/AEN learners and the most able.
Marking and feedback – building time for student response to feedback/DIRT time


4.Lesson objectives and success criteria

Share lesson objectives (these do not need to be written down).
Be explicit and clear about what students are expected to achieve by the end of the lesson.
Literacy-focus: Identify keywords for the lesson.


5. Activate new knowledge

Teacher-led – Applying/Analysing/Modelling identifying key features from the success criteria.


6. Demonstrate new knowledge – 1

Provide clear instructions about how students can demonstrate their new knowledge. Revisit success criteria.
Student focussed – Creating/Applying/Analysing/Group work
Circulate the classroom checking students’ engagement and assessing their understanding of the concept(s) and the activity.


7. Mini plenary/progress check

Check students’ progress and understanding through suitable activities that gauge the progress of all students. Where questioning is used questioning should be no-hands up.
If progress is limited and students cannot demonstrate understanding ensure that this is addressed through further teaching of the concept.


8. Demonstrate new knowledge – 2

Provide clear instructions about how students can demonstrate their new knowledge. Revisit success criteria.
Student focussed – Creating/Applying/Analysing/Group work
Circulate the classroom checking students’ engagement and assessing their understanding of the concept(s) and the activity.


9. Plenary

Provide opportunities for students to review their own learning based on the lesson objectives and success criteria.


10. Student exit

Make a positive comment to the class or individual students about their behaviour for learning and/or learning and progress.  Achievement points can be awarded as a result.
Dismiss the class, in silence, one small group at a time, checking uniform as they leave the classroom.


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