There are various ways in which we can assess the progress of learners in our classrooms. For this enquiry, learner diaries were selected as the most appropriate means of gathering information and as a tool for planning the next steps for the learner. Learner diaries allow learners to discover where they are now in relation to where they want to be, and to determine how to do better next time (Stiggins, 2007, p. 2). With this in mind, the class which was selected was a particularly challenging S2 Art & Design class. Over the last few months, there has been a noticeable decline in the level of focus and retention of knowledge within the class. “Assessment of Children’s Progress” has also been a key driver of the National Improvement Framework therefore practitioners must be aware of what stage each learner in their classroom is at and incorporate this into planning to ensure that all children are reaching their full potential (Scottish Government, 2018). Learning journals are used as a ‘vehicle for reflection’ and differ from a log or a record as a learning diary should facilitate change and progress (J. Moon, 2003). There are various purposes of a learning journal but in this instance it is the idea of increasing ‘active involvement and ownership of learning’ which we are most interested in (J. Moon, 2003).
The aim of this enquiry was to observe what happens when learning diaries were introduced to an S2 Art & Design class of 17 pupils. A main aim of this enquiry was to motivate learners to complete tasks and encourage them to set their own goals and take ownership of their learning. In doing so, it is hoped that they would also begin to retain information on the given topic more efficiently.