Teaching responsively, we are constantly assessing students to check on the success of their learning. These checks happen through the course of a lesson and inform feedback and future planning.

In addition students will complete at least one ‘summative’ assessment per half term, which will help to inform parents/carers of their progress through the year through school reports.


We aim for our lessons to:

  • help our students acquire, develop, and embed new learning successfully
  • support retention of learning
  • engage our students

To facilitate these aims, teachers plan and teach, responsively, based on an understanding of how students learn from cognitive science. We use formative assessment to identify what students have learnt and adapt our lessons and curriculum plans accordingly.

Lessons at George Abbot School start with a ‘Connect’ activity to commit prior learning to students’ long term memory. These activities are carefully planned to ensure students have the fundamental knowledge required to be successful in the lesson and topic ahead.

Every lesson is then taught using the following pedagogical principles, to ensure all students are supported and are able to develop their learning:

Mr Goulborn’s Assembly: how to access lessons from home and Connect activities explanation: please click here.


Teaching responsively, we are constantly receiving feedback from the students as to what they know, and more importantly what they don’t know. This is done through teacher questioning, retrieval and practice activities.

We believe that feedback given to students should be timely, useful and actionable. Because of this, most feedback will be given verbally during the lesson whilst the student is learning. We do however, give feedback in lots of different ways and departments and teachers will use feedback methods that are most suitable and effective to their subject. The key is that feedback should happen (usually) before mistakes get embedded and there should be opportunities for students to act upon this feedback before it is forgotten, or the context of the task is lost.

We also believe that there is great value in students providing their peers with feedback; this is a skill which not only serves to improve interpersonal skills but also strengthens students’ own understanding of their learning as they seek to give useful advice to others.

Sitting down and reading the work of students properly is also an important part of the assessment and feedback cycle that teachers undertake. We ask staff to do this for every student they teach at least once per half term and provide useful written feedback for the students to read and reflect on. Once per half term from each teacher means that students receive, on average, one piece of written feedback each week across their subjects. The work they read may be something from their exercise book or it may be a more summative piece of work such as an ‘assessment’.

Feedback at George Abbot (Assembly for Students – Mr Goulborn)

Teacher Development

We are are driven by this simple quote from British educationalist and Emeritus professor of Educational Assessment at the UCL Institute of Education, Dylan Wiliam…

Every teacher needs to improve, not because they are not good enough, but because they can be even better.

All staff at George Abbot School partake in regular professional development which ensures that we are up to date with the latest educational and pedagogical research. We are committed to collaborative work and sharing the excellent practice that is in place across the school.


We set regular homework at George Abbot School, through Satchel One. This homework will usually connect to future learning, or allow students to practise what they have learnt. Where students do not have specific homework tasks set, we expect students to spend time at home using the SLE to create their own retrieval resources, such as flash cards, in order to commit learning to their long term memory.

How parents/carers can support learning

Attendance has the biggest impact on student progress. Students with >90% attendance on average receive a grade higher per subject, than those with <90%. If students are absent from school, it is important they catch up, using the SLE to locate and complete the missed lessons to the best of their ability.

Most Able Provision

For information on the provision and strategies for the most able students at George Abbot please see the two documents below.

Most Able Provision
Most Able Strategies

How parents/carers can support at home though Independent Learning:

  1. Ensure students have a dedicated and tidy study space.
  2. Check Satchel One with your child and get them to show you their completed homework.
  3. If a student does not have any homework on a given night, we expect that they will be using the SLE to create revision resources on work they have completed. Parents/carers and students can learn more about how to create these resources using the “How to Revise at Home – Part 1” guide. These resources can be created and used at anytime and in any year group from Years 7-13. This means the phrase “I don’t have any homework” is now null and void! We call this Independent Learning.