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Focus on engagement

Students are often disengaged from learning, and their learning needs go beyond the expectations for classroom differentiation, challenging the teaching skills of even our most experienced and effective educators.

The educator must remain committed to engagement for learning as a core tenet of curriculum experience for the child. In the CLDD project, teachers produced their own definition of what it means to them in practice.

Carpenter et al, 2011
  • Poster
Watch the video clip and consider in what ways you think that Ellie May shows interest when she is engaged in the activity.
The journey of engagement

Sustainable learning can only occur when there is meaningful engagement. The process of engagement is a journey which connects a child and their environment (including people, ideas, materials and concepts) to enable learning and achievement.

CLDD Project, 2011
Write an example from the children in your school that illustrates each of the five levels of engagement:
  • Disengaged;
  • Re-engaged;
  • Fleeting engagement;
  • Sustained engagement;
  • Authentic engagement.
Layers of pedagogy

In the last two decades, education in the UK has taken account of differentiated learning needs that includes learners with special educational needs and disabilities. This has led to changes in pedagogy.

Given the increased complexity of the needs of children with CLDD, we now need to move into a new phase of pedagogical development.

New generation pedagogy
CLDD project report

There are four components to this new pedagogy:

  • Re-engineering of existing pedagogies;
  • Pedagogical reconciliation;
  • A process of analysis, deduction and refinement;
  • The creation of new and innovative teaching strategies.
  • Read pages 3 and 4 of this SSAT booklet on its CLDD research project, then explain in detail the concepts of the new pedagogy.
  • Reflection: Can you think of examples in your schools where colleagues are trying to develop new and innovative pedagogy in the way described in this booklet?
Find out more

Carpenter B, et al (2011) Having new eyes: engaging children and young people with complex learning difficulties and disabilities in learning, PMLD Link, 23 (2), 69, 4-6.