Plenaries are a vital aspect of the teaching and learning cycle. Brown (2009) describes plenaries as being a crucial aspect of any learning experience. An effective plenary provides opportunities for children to engage in formative assessment, think critically and understand their learning in alignment with the learning intention and success criteria. Blanchard (2008) acknowledges an effective plenary is one which enables children to reflect, consider their progress and recognise how they have reached a specific outcome. Pollard (2008) asserts that plenaries should allow for engagement, participation of learners and creativity. The Association for Achievement and Improvement through Assessment (AAIA, 2006:6) further conveys the necessity of teachers implementing effective plenaries. It states “pupils should be fully involved in the assessment process so that they understand how to improve and become more independent.”
The aim of this enquiry is to investigate what happens when student-led plenaries are introduced in the classroom. The specific focus is to measure what effect student-led plenaries have in enabling children to identify and articulate their own learning and next steps accurately.