Christopher Geddes


Taylor High

  • Assessment For Learning

What Impact Do Show-Me Boards Have On Learning In My Classroom?


I have a keen interest in creating maths lessons that are more enjoyable and confidence building for the pupils, not in a sense that they are procrastinating and not on task. But more so to allow the pupils to have the confidence in answering questions asked of them and have a more active role in their learning. I agree with the view of McLean (2003), that allowing students to be more “autonomous” and take more control of their learning can promote their confidence and willingness to learn, which is known as intrinsic motivation, and ultimately lead to more academic achievement.

I have previously researched active learning strategies and their potential benefits towards motivation in the class, now I will focus my enquiry on one of these active learning strategies, using Show-Me boards, in order to raise levels of enjoyment, willingness to learn, and pupil motivation/confidence thereby raising pupil learning itself.

Most pupils believe maths is too hard of a subject and do not “see the point” of studying mathematics and therefore tend to become withdrawn from the learning and sometimes become disruptive. I do not think that the majority of pupils find maths this way, but instead I think they are embarrassed to answer out, verbally, in front of the rest of class. This is one reason why I chose a career in education, to try and resolve this issue and allow pupils to enjoy maths a lot more and to show them it does not need to be a difficult subject when you are confident to answer and willing to learn. From discussions with peers, pupils tend to be more lackadaisical and not try as hard when being lectured and given a textbook exercise, this is sometimes referred to as extrinsic motivation.

This stimulated my curiosity and gave inspiration to conduct my enquiry in to: “What impact does Show-Me Boards have on and their overall learning?”

My enquiry was carried out over a five-week period with my S1 class. This class was the second top section in their year group as it is common for classes to be organised in terms of ability in Mathematics while following the benchmarks of the Curriculum for Excellence (CfE), however this would not have any effect on my enquiry.

My results of the enquiry were encouraging and highlights benefits of using Show-Me Boards as a means of answering questions in class. My findings indicated a much higher willingness to learn, confidence and enjoyment from the use of Show-Me Boards in comparison with verbal responses from pupils.


The aim of this enquiry is analyse what impact Show-Me Boards have on overall learning in the classroom.
This enquiry will also look at what impact the use of Show-Me Boards have on pupil confidence and motivation.

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