Making Education Inclusive, Engaging, and Adaptive
As we’ve been diving into the Innovative Pedagogies Project in partnership with The Education Commission and A Partner in Education, and supported by the LEGO Foundation, we’ve been seeing some ways in which teachers are teaching in ways that are inclusive, engaging, and adaptive during our school visits and observations. But before we share and celebrate some of these bright spots, we should set some groundwork. What exactly does inclusive, engaging, and adaptive teaching mean, and what does this look like in practice?
Every child has the right to learn, and every child deserves to be included. Education needs to include every child—regardless of their circumstances—so they have equal access to education and teaching in a way that works for them.
In inclusive schools, teachers provide additional support for students who are struggling. One teacher shared how they include every child in the learning process: “When I assess students and notice that students are struggling, I decide to repeat the lesson. I also use break time and lunchtime to support struggling learners.” Inclusive teaching practices meet students where they’re at and ensure they’re given the attention they need to learn effectively.
Learning should be engaging and fun—and play is a key tool in the learning process! Learning through play can help improve the intellectual, social, emotional, and physical development of children—and should be used across all subjects for holistic learning.
During a school visit, a math teacher shared how they engage students through hands-on activities and play-based learning. When teaching a lesson on money, the teacher gave students the opportunity to role-play as buyers and sellers at a store. Not only does play-based learning get students involved, but it helps lessons stick.
Rather than a one-size-fits-all approach, teaching and learning should be tailored and adapted to meet each student’s developmental needs. Teaching should be geared towards each child, and teachers should lead in a variety of ways to accommodate every student’s learning style.
One teacher shared with us how they adapt teaching to meet every student in a way that works for them; “I use different techniques to assess learners’ progress such as; verbal and written questions, group discussions, pair discussions, role play and debates.” Another shared, ”I prepare much more mixed exercises so that all learners can be integrated, and at the end of each unit, I administer end unit assessment according to each child’s progress.”
With teaching practices that are inclusive, engaging, and adaptive, learning is accessible and welcoming to all students. We can’t wait to share some highlights of teachers and leaders who are committed to seeing each child thrive.