01.02.11 Perfect Plenary?

At a recent conference dedicated to embedding enterprise across the curriculum, we bumped into one of our customers who'd just purchased the Grid to record evidence of enterprise education in her school. When we asked her how it was going, she replied - "Great, we've got all the teachers across the whole school using it to map and record the enterprise skills they deliver in their lessons". Of course - this was "music to our ears", but we were interested to learn more about the strategy she'd used to roll it out to all members of staff - and with such a positive response!

She went on to explain the method, which is so simple and effective we thought it was worth documenting and sharing...

In a nutshell, she had "sold" the Grid to the SLT and all the teaching staff as a time-saving tool that enabled the 'perfect plenary'. The actual process they were using went something like this:

  1. Lesson or activity takes place as normal with skills embedded in the learning.
  2. Teacher logs on to the Grid and displays the grid on the interactive whiteboard.
  3. A responsible student is selected to control the whiteboard and enter information.
  4. Teacher asks class to recall what they have learned and the skills they have covered.
  5. Student enters information into the Grid and ticks the relevant skills.

One of the main reasons this process was so well received by teaching staff is because it was incorporated into the actual teaching process and completed during lesson time. (Rather than being "bolted on" as an extra "after hours" audit procedure!)

When the SLT realised they could extend the grid to capture additional skills such as Thinking Skills - (even the evidence towards the SEF) in one "quick and easy" process - they were keen to make it part of the official plenary policy.

It's clear that using the Grid in this way, not only achieves all the benefits of a standard plenary - but also provides many additional advantages:

  • It automatically creates an up-to-date, cross-curriculum grid that clearly shows the SLT which skills are delivered and where.
  • It allows any member of staff to quickly generate graphs and reports focusing on coverage in their own areas or year group.
  • It provides an online, central store of valuable evidence that can be safely and securely shared with parents, partners - even Ofsted.

In a time when budgets are tight and funding is reduced - I think it's important to mention the fact that such a positive impact on teaching and learning and all these associated benefits were gained by using a simple web-based system that probably costs less than a one day conference, seminar or consultancy session.

If we're not already helping your school map, track and record all it's good work - then please feel free to give us me call on (0115) 942 8914 or email me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

*The DFES recommended lesson structure for Key Stage 3 promotes the use of a short plenary session, designed to draw out the learning and refer back to the lesson objectives. Download the DFES plenary leaflet here: http://nationalstrategies.standards.dcsf.gov.uk

. Posted in News - General

Senior Leaders

Senior Leaders

Senior leaders love the Grid because it generates a central store of valuable, school-wide evidence which they can analyse and share with others.

Teachers & Staff


Teachers love the Grid because it's so quick and easy to use! Evidence can be captured before, during or after an activity in less than 60 seconds!

Parents & Carers


Parents love the Grid because it gives access to evidence which shows clearly what their child is learning and how their being taught.



Ofsted love the Grid because it provides easy-access to "sound" evidence of teaching and management practices across the whole school.

Schools using Primary Grid for curriculum mapping and preparing for Ofsted.