The relationship between classroom observations and teachers’ perceptions

In document Final Report from the Primary phase: pre school, school and family influences on children’s development during Key Stage 2 (7 11) (Page 158-161)

Glossary of terms

Appendix 6: The relationship between classroom observations and teachers’ perceptions

In the 125 schools in which the observations took place, class teachers were asked to complete a questionnaire on their classroom practices and views of the school. This was then analysed to explore:

1 the variation in the self-report of Year 5 teachers concerning their teaching practices and perceptions of their schools and pupils

2 the relationships between self-reported teaching practices (what they do) and measures of

their pupils’ perceptions, Ofsted inspection judgements, classroom observational data, the value added measures of the primary school academic effectiveness and the percentage of disadvantaged pupils in their school and

3 the underlying dimensions of teachers’ perceptions (what they think about their school and being a teacher) and how these dimensions relate to their pupils’ perceptions, Ofsted inspection judgements, classroom observational data, the value added measures of the primary school academic effectiveness and the percentage of disadvantaged pupils in their school.

This analysis helped to triangulate data from a variety of sources to give a much more rounded picture of Year 5 classrooms (Cohen, Manion & Morrison, 2000). In earlier reports (Sammons et al., 2008d) EPPE 3-11 has reported how teachers’ perceptions related to some pupils’ cognitive and socio/behavioural outcomes. The key findings of the full analyses are reported below:

Variation in Year 5 teachers’ reports of teaching practices and perceptions of schools and pupils

• Overall most teachers were extremely positive about working in their schools. There was little variation in teachers’ views about standards and teaching quality in their schools. However, there was some variation in teachers’ reports on school resources and the environments they are working in.

• There was considerable variation in teachers’ views about pupils’ behaviour in classrooms and parental support for learning, as well as school communication with parents.

Classroom observational data and self-reported teaching practice and perceptions

Teachers’ views were related to factors, identified through the classroom observations

undertaken by independent trained EPPE 3-11 observers, to explore the relationships between teachers’ reports of their classroom practices and their actual observed practice.

• Data suggests that large amounts of extra curriculum activities were related to less positive engagement seen in classroom observations.

• Classroom observational data on positive engagement was associated with setting more and better homework as reported by teachers.

• Better Quality standards and rules and Rewards factors as perceived by teachers were

also related to less disorganisation in a classroom as measured in observations.

• Positive pupil behaviour as reported by teachers was associated with better pedagogy and less disorganisation in a classroom as measured by observations. Yet, it is interesting that Pupils’ agency and voice was related to smaller amounts of pupils’

positive engagement.

Parental support of their child’s learning was associated with less disorganisation in a

Links between pupils’ and teachers’ perceptions

Teacher’s views were also related to the views of pupils and the following was of note:

• Better resources as reported by teachers were also associated with better pupils’ views about overall behaviour in school, their own ‘Behaviour self-image’ and learning and the teaching support they receive.

• Larger amounts of extra curriculum activities were related to lower ‘Academic self-image’ and ‘Enjoyment of school’ as reported by pupils.

• When teachers reported better Quality standards and rules in their schools their learners

also reported better ‘Behaviour self-image’, learning and teaching support and better pupil behaviour. Yet at the same time pupils in those schools report more ‘Anxiety and

isolation’.

• Higher levels of reward system as reported by teachers also positively corresponded to pupils’ own views about pupil behaviour and learning and teaching support. Yet higher levels of rewards were associated with higher levels of ‘Anxiety and isolation’ as reported by pupils.

• Teachers’ perceptions of better overall pupils’ behaviour correlated with learners’ self- perceptions, that is, better ‘Academic self-image’, ‘Behaviour self-image’ and overall behaviour in school. Whereas, when teachers reported higher levels of Anti-academic ethos in their classrooms learners also reported worse pupils’ behaviour.

School communication with parents as reported by teachers was related to better

‘Academic self-image’ of pupils as well as pupils’ behaviour as perceived by pupils.

Parental support of their child’s learning as perceived by teachers was associated with

better pupils’ behaviour, but lower ‘Enjoyment of school’ as reported by pupils. In schools with high levels of disadvantaged pupils:

Teacher reports were analysed according to the levels of disadvantage of their school (measured by FSM). Higher levels of disadvantage were related to the following:

• more pupils involved in School Action/Action Plus, pupils who have been excluded from school fixed term and pupils from homes where English is not the first language;

• more pupils who receive English as an additional language (EAL) support and those who receive help because of persistent behavioural problems;

• more mixed age classes;

• higher levels of noise in their classrooms;

• pupils not having enough books and computers; poorer quality of sports equipment and playground areas as well as lower quality and cleanliness of pupils’ toilets and the quality of the school library;

• higher reported levels of teachers’ absenteeism and higher levels of supply cover staff;

• homework not being marked and returned to pupils quickly;

• more reports on tolerance of poor performance of teachers, less agreement about what effective teaching looks like and less agreement in applying rules on pupil behaviours;

• more teachers reporting behaviour problems in class and more bullying where name calling is more frequent, there were also more pupils whose behaviour in class prevents other pupils from learning and more pupils not doing as well as they could because they are afraid that other pupils won't like them.

• fewer pupils being interested in learning and willing to do well in school and getting on well with teachers. Overall teachers from these schools reported worse behaviour of pupils, less Pupils’ agency and voice as well as higher Anti-academic ethos;

• poorer attendance at parents evenings and receive less support from parents regarding their child’s learning at school as well as the overall work of a school.

Additionally the relationship between teacher’s views and Ofsted judgements were explored:

• Better school resources as reported by teachers were associated with better Ofsted inspection judgments on attendance, leadership and management and teaching in Key Stage 1.

• Larger amounts of extra curriculum activities as reported by teachers were associated with better attendance and teaching in Key Stage 1 as judged by the Ofsted inspections

• Better use of homework was positively correlated with Ofsted judgments of attendance and improvement of schools from last inspection.

Quality standards and rules in the school as seen by teachers were positively associated

with better Ofsted inspection judgements in leadership and management and better pupils’ attendance.

Reward system at school was positively associated with better grades of Ofsted

inspection on quality and use of ongoing assessment.

• Ofsted grades regarding learner behaviour and attendance were related to perceptions of better pupil behaviour by teachers. Anti-academic ethos as reported by teachers was

related to worse Ofsted inspection grades in leadership and management. Pupil agency and voice was associated with better Ofsted grades regarding attendance.

• Higher parental supportof their child’s learning was related to better Ofsted inspection

grades regarding overall effectiveness of the school, improvement since last inspection, leadership and management, learner behaviour and attendance.

School communication with parents as reported by teachers was related to better Ofsted

inspection grades in leadership and management.

Finally teachers’ views were analysed in relation to the value added measures of the primary school academic effectiveness and the results revealed:

• Significant positive associations were found between the academic effectiveness of the school in science and better use of homework as reported by teachers.

Parental support of their child’s learning was associated with better academic

Appendix 7: The Key Stage 1 Home Learning Environment (HLE)

In document Final Report from the Primary phase: pre school, school and family influences on children’s development during Key Stage 2 (7 11) (Page 158-161)