Good Practices Toolkit

Introduction

The current toolkit is aimed at sharing good practices and key ideas of the GROWE approach and practical tips from the implementation by secondary school teachers in Italy, Romania, Lithuania and UK during the lifetime of the project “GROWE – Get readers on the wavelength of the emotions”, a project co-funded by the Erasmus + programme. GROWE project was based on the importance of developing and assessing  students’ literacy and social-emotional skills through authentic texts.

All teachers, regardless of their subject, should grant their students the promotion of literacy and social-emotional skills through effective strategies. Our GROWE model is a valuable approach, validated by teachers across Europe.

Why this toolkit?

 

This toolkit addresses secondary school teachers in order to:

Raise their knowledge and understanding

of what Disciplinary Literacy (DL) and Social-Emotional Skills (SES) are and how they can be developed.

Provide practical tips

in the planning and facilitation of learning that fosters the development of DL and SES.

Provide orientation for the assessment

of students’ DL and SES and their progress in the development of these skills.

Reflect on student learning outcomes

and adjust teaching to better respond to students’ DL and SES development needs

The GROWE approach doesn’t ask you further effort, but it is developed within your teaching strategy, thus allowing your students to have not only benefits on their DL and SES but also in their main subject results.

Our GROWE approach is:

Learning-oriented

It doesn’t require extra-work for you as teacher, but it gives your students to improve their learning results.

Flexible

It can be adapted to your subject and the learning objectives of your lessons.

Transversal

It can be implemented both with scientific and humanities subjects.

Our approach three main features are:

Authentic texts

Disciplinary Literacy and metacognitive skills

Socio-emotional Learning

Are you curious?

Click here below our Q&A section to have more information on GROWE approach.

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WHY SHOULD I USE THE GROWE APPROACH?

To meet the challenges of the twenty-first century: children’s ability to set and achieve goals, collaborate effectively with others, and control emotions will be critical, especially after the pandemic and its consequences of isolation. Moreover, it will give further teaching strategies to enrich your lessons and set better learning objectives for your students.

WHAT WILL BE THE BENEFITS FOR ME AS A TEACHER?

It will provide you with models of facilitation for discussing various issues related to authentic text that students will read, as well as new teaching strategies to enrich your learning offer and strengthen your students’ learning achievements. Students’ literacy and socio-emotional abilities require meaningful discussion and vivid, engaging, and dynamic talks. The GROWE approach is mainly based on learning rather than teaching: this will guarantee you to continue with your regular amount of work, but to achieve better results from the students on your subject.

WHAT WILL BE THE FUTURE BENEFITS FOR MY STUDENTS?

Through social engagement and ad hoc teaching approaches, SEL has been shown to develop an individual’s social and emotional competencies. When young people have developing relationships with their parents, educators and other adults, their outcomes improve, their risk behaviors decrease, and they are more likely to succeed in life.

Students with social-emotional learning (SEL) abilities have a direct impact on not only their school careers, but also their success and happiness as adults. Even the most experienced educator may find it difficult to figure out how and when to teach and test SEL skills. It is important to adopt strategies which increase or develop them, especially during school. GROWE approach is meant to be among those strategies. Morever, by stimulating their metacognitive skills, GROWE approach will empower their learning process.

WHAT ARE AUTHENTIC TEXTS?

One of the main feature of our approach is the use of authentic texts, which can be defined as any text written with no didactic purposes.

“Authentic text is real, living language written to engage readers and draw them in; it may entertain, inform, or persuade. It invites active reading, robust problem-solving, and deep analysis because it comprises conceptually rich, compelling ideas and language from life”

(Bridges, L. (2018), All Children Deserve Access to Authentic Text, retrieved at https://edublog.scholastic.com/post/all-children-deserve-access-authentic-text).

WHAT ARE SOCIAL-EMOTIONAL SKILLS?

According to CASEL, Social Emotional Learning is the “process through which all young people and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships, and make responsible and caring decisions”. All those skills connected to this process – such as Self-awareness, self-management, self-assessment, social awareness, emotional competence, openness to challenge, and personal responsibility – are crucial in the development of the students. GROWE approach want to strengthen this aspect within the classroom activity.

WHAT ARE THE METACOGNITIVE SKILLS?

When utilized properly, evidence suggests that using metacognitive methods,’ which encourage students to reflect on their own learning, can result in an additional +7 months of advancement. However, while these approaches have a large potential impact, particularly for underprivileged students, little is known about how to properly implement them in the classroom. GROWE provides practical recommendations to teachers and senior leaders on how to help their students build metacognitive abilities and knowledge.

“It was an authentic training (to use a recurring term in GROWE). Everything was always very interesting, very clear and full of material”

Teodora

Secondary school teacher from Italy