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Inclusive teaching and learning Essay

Organisations working within the learning and skills sector face increasing challenges as the UK becomes more diverse and multicultural. Differences are an asset and a diverse learner body and workforce enrich an organisation. However, misunderstandings, negative attitudes, or a lack of awareness, understanding and effective communication can all lead to segregation and underachievement.

The aim of this CPD builder is to raise awareness of the inclusion challenges in organisations, and provide ways of meeting those challenges. You might like to use the Small steps – big difference tool to help you identify the challenges most relevant to you. In this CPD builder you will find a wide range of information and guidance on inclusion in the form of research, checklists, case studies, good practice advice, videos and activities. There are suggestions of how you can use each resource for CPD to ensure that inclusivity is embedded into all activities and goes further than a ‘tick box’ approach, alongside prompts to help you reflect on your current practice. The resources use a variety of pedagogy approaches but those most frequently referred to include using e-learning and technology, differentiation and assessment for learning. The learner voice is a crucial aspect in promoting inclusivity as it requires listening to learners’ opinions and involving them in planning – you should consider how the resources can help you do this.

Exploring these resources and using and adapting the ideas they suggest will help you to: ensure no learners are isolated or marginalised through language, culture or any other difference that may influence thoughts and actions or form a barrier; work towards eliminating discrimination and harassment; recognise and accommodate learners’ individual needs; ensure that all learners have equal access to the curriculum; explore how the 10 pedagogy approaches can promote understanding about inclusion and inclusive practices.
Please note: The term ‘inclusion’ has been used in most instances, however ‘diversity’ has also been used when describing actual individual and group differences, particularly relating to cultural diversity.


After using this CPD builder, you should:

be able to relate the ideas to your own experiences and inclusion challenges in your organisation;
be able to recognise how different pedagogy approaches can spread awareness and accommodate learners needs; and
be able to evaluate the usefulness of the resources to your own practice and CPD.

Skills I will need to ensure my practice is inclusive

The ability to work with colleagues to review the inclusion challenges in my own organisation.
The ability to plan sessions that promote active learning and provide assessment opportunities that are accessible to all learners.
The ability to develop materials and resources that are accessible to all learners and accommodate their needs.
The ability to identify the varying needs of learners and to provide the support or adjustments necessary.

Knowledge I will need to ensure my practice is inclusive

An understanding of the range of inclusion challenges for teachers, managers and learners.
An understanding of the strategies, tools and pedagogy approaches that support a whole organisation approach to inclusivity.
An understanding of the materials and resources that enable equal access to learning and assessment and how to adapt them.
An understanding of how learners can take responsibility for their own learning.


Support for your CPD

You can work through the ideas in the CPD builder on your own but you are likely to find it more enjoyable and challenging if you seek the support and involvement of colleagues. There are also lots of sources of further information and guidance you can draw on to help you make the most of the experience. Explore some of the options in the list above.

SLC or ALC, E-Guide or e-CPD Professional Development Adviser Your Subject Learning Coach (SLC) or Advanced Learning Coach, E-Guide or e-CPD Professional Development Adviser, or staff with a similar role within your organisation, can support your professional development. They can help you to identify the right CPD builder for you, work your way through the activities you select, and reflect on what you have learned. If e-learning is an area where you particularly want to develop your practice, make contact with your E-Guide or e-CPD Professional Development Adviser. They have a specific remit for supporting colleagues in their use of technology. It may be that your organisation shares one of these roles with a neighbouring provider.

You can also work informally with colleagues in your team. Look out for face to face or virtual networks of colleagues with similar interests to your own. Learners can contribute to your professional development. Involve them as you plan, try out and evaluate new approaches. They are the experts on their learning and insight into what works well can help them as well as you.

Supporting your CPD
Look at the activities and tools in the Supporting your CPD area of the website. You can use the CPD activity: Small steps – big difference to review your current practice and identify areas for development.

As you reflect on your professional development needs and experiences, refer to the reflective tool: Putting CPD into action. This can help you put together your CPD plan and consider the evidence you might look for.

Documents in the CPD library can help you as you try out and evaluate new ideas that you have discovered through CPD builder and record the outcomes for your CPD portfolio. You could:
devise a Supported experiment using the downloadable guidance notes and form find out more about Action research and how it can contribute to your professional development
investigate Peer observation or Teaching squares as ways of working with colleagues to develop your practice.

Institute for Learning website
For more information about your CPD and the professional registration
requirements for teachers in the learning and skills sector, visit the Institute for Learning website at www.ifl.ac.uk
You may also want to explore:
the different types of CPD activities you could undertake and how the CPD builder can contribute to your professional development plan how you can use the Institute for Learning tool REfLECT to record your activities and reflections in your personal learning space.

Support from LSIS’s Teaching and Learning Programme

Subject Learning Coaches (SLCs) and Advanced Learning Coaches (ALCs) supporting coaching activities play a central role in LSIS’s Teaching and Learning Programme. They support individuals, teams and organisations to release their potential. Find out who the SLCs and ALCs are in your organisation and ask how they can help. Coaching has been shown to have a positive and lasting impact on practice. Find out more about the Professional Training Programme (PTP) for SLCs at

Coaches participate in regional Subject Coaching Networks and other peer and community activity such as virtual networks and action research projects to collaborate, bring and exchange ideas and resources developed within their organisations. Any teacher can attend a Subject Coaching Network so ask your SLC for details of the next network in your subject area or visit the website at www.subjectlearningcoach.net/events.aspx

Managers’ Engagement and Support Programme
The support of senior managers is vital to the successful deployment of SLCs in your organisation. Find out more about the Managers’ Engagement Support Programme (MESP) at www.subjectlearningcoach.net/managers_area/index.aspx

If you are a SLC or ALC with a management role, you may want to take part in
the MESP and exchange ideas on what you can do to support CPD across your organisation.

Effective teaching and learning

Teaching effectively and facilitating effective learning requires the use of a range of different but mutually supportive pedagogy approaches. The resources in this topic will take you through the pedagogy approaches and how they can support inclusive teaching and learning, prompting you to reflect on your own practice. These resources can be used individually or within a group CPD session to explore in depth the approaches you might use with learners and to understand more about why and how they work. To develop your skills and understanding in the use of technology to enhance learning, join the eCPD programme and explore the online learning space were you will find teachers sharing their ideas and experiences.

Through using inclusive teaching and learning approaches you can support learners in overcoming barriers and achieving their full potential. By listening to learners and encouraging them to take greater control of their own learning you can support progression and help them become expert learners. This topic also provides information about using case studies effectively, which can be a useful tool in promoting inclusivity. These activities can contribute to meeting the Institute for Learning (IfL) 30 hours (or pro rata) continuing professional development (CPD) requirements and can be related to the personalised elements in the professional formation framework to provide supporting evidence of self-evaluation, teaching and learning and subject currency.

Developing the expert learner

This flexible, generic resource uses a range of learner settings, including prison and work-based learning, to illustrate different aspects of Developing the expert learner under three key strands of:

Learner voice;
Learning how to learn; and
Assessment for learning.

The video clips included in the resource provide examples directly relevant to aspects of inclusive teaching and learning, such as age and faith. Becoming ‘expert learners’ enables learners to take greater control of and responsibility for their own learning. Set up a group CPD session using the ‘learner journey’ resource in the ‘Getting started’ section. Try out the two activities in small groups. In what way might inclusion issues have an impact on the development of expert learner characteristics? How can you promote the development of these characteristics? Can you imagine any scenarios where expert learner characteristics might help to break down barriers to learning?

Use the information you have gained from using this resource to create an action plan for the coming year. When you have carried out your planned activities, log outcomes and reflections on progress.

Using pedagogy to promote inclusive learning

These three resources focus on how different pedagogy approaches relate to inclusion and can help promote an inclusive learning environment. Through using these alone or with colleagues you can review how well inclusion is embedded into your practice, and how your organisation can embrace inclusion more fully. The resources will also give you ideas for enabling learners to extend and take responsibility for their own learning.

The resources Introducing the 10 pedagogy approaches and Talking teaching, training and learning explore each of the pedagogy approaches and how they can be used. You can also download a set of cards that go into detail about each approach and include suggestions

for using the cards individually and with colleagues. The Equality and diversity quick start guide shows how the approaches can be used to promote inclusion. Explore each pedagogy approach and reflect on your own practice. What new approaches could you adopt? How could you use co-operative learning to help prepare learners for job-based team working? How thoroughly do you plan your lessons and how much do you involve learners in planning their own learning? In a CPD activity with colleagues share ideas for setting ground rules or modelling acceptable behaviours to promote inclusivity. Use the information you have gained from using these resources to create an action plan for the coming year. When you have carried out your planned activities, log outcomes and reflections on progress.

Effective teaching and learning toolkits
The Effective teaching and learning area of LSIS’s Excellence Gateway contains a number of toolkits that can support your practice.
The Planning toolkit will help you to understand how to plan sessions and courses effectively with both colleagues and learners. It also explores how to support learners’ planning skills and ways in which you can help them to develop expert learner characteristics. This toolkit will support your use of the resources in the ‘Session and course planning’ topic.

The Case study toolkit will help you explore how and when to use case studies to promote inclusive teaching and learning. Case studies help learners engage with real issues and can promote positive attitudes and behaviours.

The Effective questioning toolkit focuses on ideas to help you develop your own questioning strategies to identify learners’ needs and use different assessment techniques. The toolkit will also help you support learners in developing their own questioning strategies.

These three resources include videos, questions and activities and will help you to understand: why planning is an essential part of successful course delivery and how it can promote individual and whole organisation approaches to inclusive teaching and learning; what is mean by ‘case studies’, the
positive impact of using them and how to design effective case studies;

why, when and how to ask questions to promote learning and support inclusivity. Explore the resources on your own or with colleagues and consider how you could these

approaches in lessons or assessments to promote inclusive teaching and learning. Discuss how effective planning can impact inclusivity. How can you ensure case studies meet the needs of different learners? What pedagogy approaches do you think using case studies and a range of questioning strategies support? How can you work with colleagues and learners to plan inclusive activities and sessions?

Use the information you have gained from using this resource to create an action plan for the coming year. When you have carried out your planned activities, log outcomes and reflection on progress.

An introduction to inclusive teaching and learning

The challenges in ensuring that teaching and learning is inclusive relate largely to the complexity and the number of issues that teachers, managers and organisations need to be aware of in order to meet the needs of all learners. The resources in this topic include specific guidance on disability, learning difficulties, ethnic, cultural, religious and social diversity, gender, age and sexual orientation issues. They also provide guidance on using the 10 pedagogy approaches to promote inclusion, and putting organisation-wide policies into practice. The varied nature of the resources provides a wide range of material to stimulate your thinking and enable you to benefit from others’ experience.

Videos show teachers, managers and learners explaining their own inclusion challenges and how they are resolving them, giving you an opportunity for modelling. Case studies explain how good management and teaching practice aids inclusion in other organisations, and provide ideas you can adapt to suit your own circumstances. Research reports, checklists and detailed guidance offer a menu of suggestions for you to adopt.

Using the CPD model of analysis, action and reflection, explore individually or with colleagues those resources which relate to the inclusion issues that currently exist in your organisation. Putting these ideas into action with your learners or colleagues through a structured Action Plan and Reflective Log can contribute to your 30 hours (or pro rata) CPD requirement and can be related to the personalised elements in the professional framework to provide supporting evidence of self-evaluation, professional development and reflective practice.

Promoting equality and diversity

The Promoting equality and diversity resource offers tools to help you review how well you and your organisation promote equality and inclusion. They will enable you to find new activities and encourage your organisation to fully embrace an inclusive approach to teaching and learning.

Individually, use the Equality and diversity pro forma to examine your own practice and your organisation’s approach to inclusion. Next, set up a group CPD session with colleagues to discuss these issues and share ideas about approaches to help improve your practice. In small groups use the prompts in the Help sheet to stimulate discussion. The Help sheet is divided into:

what you should know about your learners;
the difference between differentiation and inclusion;
strategies for teachers, managers and whole organisation approaches; and terms and definitions relating to inclusion.

What strategies could you adopt? How can you ensure that you are promoting inclusivity rather than just differentiating between learners? In a CPD activity with colleagues, share ideas for inclusion-based ground rules or ways of modelling acceptable behaviours. Use the resources as a discussion prompt to learn from each other and to agree organisation-wide improvements. Use the information you have gained from using this resource to create an action plan for the coming year. When you have carried out your planned activities, log outcomes and reflections on progress.

Encouraging inclusive teaching

This seven-page OFSTED document shows how inspectors assess the impact of a school on community cohesion. The General Teaching Council (GTC) website presents research and case studies on inclusion of learners from different religious, ethnic and social backgrounds, plus further ideas for self-reflection and classroom activities around increasing inclusion. These resources will give you valuable background information on experiences in schools in multi-ethnic and multicultural communities, show you what to aim for, and prompt ideas for ways of enhancing inclusion in your organisation. Whilst these resources are school based, they include useful lessons for the learning and skills sector.

Discuss with colleagues what is meant by ‘Community cohesion’, remembering that effective community cohesion embraces all strands of equality and diversity. Consider carrying out a survey of cultural diversity within your organisation and the local community, creating a plan for

using this data to promote inclusivity. Consider what impact your organisation is making on the community. How could you use co-operative and experiential learning approaches to enable learners to share personal experiences of cultural, faith and race diversity and social exclusion? How can you ensure all learners are included in all activities? How could you promote inclusion by embedding language, literacy and numeracy?

Use the information you have gained from using these resources to create an action plan for the coming year. When you have carried out your planned activities, log outcomes and reflections on progress.

Exploring diversity in the classroom

This collection of three resources gives you tools and techniques to explore inclusion in the classroom and ensure learners’ needs are accommodated, plus suggestions for your CPD. The QCA Inclusion resource contains guidance and case studies about diversity and inclusion within the curriculum, under headings such as ‘Race, ethnicity and English as an additional language’ and ‘Gifted and talented’. There is also a ‘Respect for All’ audit tool. The Teaching, learning and assessment resource provides a number of downloadable documents including checklists and good practice guides. There is a specific section on ‘Disclosure, Confidentiality and Passing on Information’ which supports dealing with disclosure in a sensitive and effective way.

The Making SENse of CPD resource shows how schools are using CPD to meet the needs of all learners including those with special educational needs. Use these resources to audit your practice. Develop curriculum-based activities with colleagues to address inclusion issues relevant to your organisation following the guidance to help you put ideas into practice. Reflect on how well you provide differentiated support, adjustments, access to the curriculum and assessment for learners. What barriers to learning might your learners encounter? How can you use experiential learning to help learners share cultural, religious and other experiences?

Use the information you have gained from using these resources to create an action plan for the coming year. When you have carried out your planned activities, log outcomes and reflections on progress.

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