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QKLG: Intentional teaching practices

Intentional teaching is an active process and a way of relating to children that embraces and builds on their strengths, interests, ideas and needs. It requires teachers to be purposeful in their decisions and actions.

Intentional teaching extends children’s thinking, builds deep understanding and occurs in emergent and planned experiences. Teachers use a range and balance of strategies to cater for and promote all children’s learning.

offering children opportunities to extend their knowledge and skills in the context of secure relationships. Teachers gauge when to offer challenges and opportunities through provocation and reflection that will extend children’s thinking and learning.
enabling children to take the lead in their learning while working with them to contribute to, rather than dominate, the direction of the experience. This can also include involving others (e.g. family members and members of the community) who may have particular expertise or knowledge that can inform and support learning.
making comments that support, motivate and encourage children to persist.
making ideas and requests clear for children. This is useful when children want or need to understand a concept or idea.
drawing children’s attention to new ideas and topics. Pointing out things of interest may generate areas for exploration and investigation.
creating an environment in which children are encouraged to use imagination and creativity to investigate, hypothesise and express themselves. Teachers plan opportunities for children to have freedom to engage in experiences with no set expectations for outcomes, and where children can explore their own possibilities.
using explicit teaching strategies when other strategies might not be safe or appropriate.
encouraging children to lead conversations. Teachers create opportunities for shared, sustained conversations by listening deeply and thoughtfully to what children are saying and actively responding to their contributions.
Making connections
helping children to see relationships and inconsistencies. Teachers contribute to and extend children’s thinking by comparing their experiences and ideas.
demonstrating a skill or routine. Teachers gradually release responsibility so children can practise and master the skill or routine.
working with children to consider their own and others’ perspectives, and develop problem-solving strategies and solutions that cater to the different perspectives.
Providing choices and learning opportunities
recognising children’s agency by offering opportunities for children to make safe choices and experience the consequences of their actions. Provisions for choice need to be considered in the context of relationships and should not place children at risk or in danger. Supporting children to make choices encourages autonomy and independence.
open-ended questioning can be used to extend children’s thinking and problem-solving. Teachers emphasise reasoning and willingness to change thinking when gaining information from questioning.
helping children to gather information to find solutions to problems. Researching involves asking questions and using a range of sources.
guiding children to reflect on their day and their learning experiences, and to engage in thinking that helps them to build on prior learning. The process of reflection is strengthened by engaging in high-quality verbal interactions about current learning and what comes next for each child.
providing children with a supportive framework for taking the next steps or moving to a higher level of thinking. Teachers use their knowledge of children’s strengths, interests, ideas and needs to break down skills and routines to guide each child.
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