News from the Marketplace- Progress and Differentiation

Progress and differentiation

Much like Will Mays’ personalised name cards, Tony Brown’s lolly sticks allow him to target the students he needs to focus on and shows any observer how well he knows the class. These sticks, one for each student, let Tony know who is pupil premium (small coloured spot), who is SEN (different coloured spot) etc. They are also painted in the SISRA colours, so that Tony’s questioning is consistently differentiated and student centred.

Tony Brown 1

  • A good way to get to know the students
  • A tool to remind you of the importance of differentiation first thing at the beginning of the year
  • Personalised, but the students aren’t aware of the significance of the colours, dots etc.


  • Some preparation needed. Tony says that this is the first thing he does when preparing for his classes in September and that it definitely helps him get to know the students.

Progress tracker

For every lesson, Tony produces a progress tracker that allow students to review their learning at different points of the lesson, whilst simultaneously allowing him to view their understanding. Each tracker starts with key questions that will be considered throughout the lesson. Students will write down what they know (or rather that they know very little or nothing about the topic) and then these questions will be picked up and built upon as the lesson continues. The review points can be combined with questioning, ensuring that Tony is able to gauge and measure learning and progress at multiple points of the lesson.

Tony Brown 2


  • Students show that their knowledge is sustained
  • Can be used as a conversation aid between student and observer, as students are able to explain exactly what they have been studying
  • This follows similar structure to the Learning Cycle
  • The first question can refer back to previous lesson, whilst the plenary can look forward to the next part of the topic


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