I n n o v a t i o n

DEVELOPING PERSONALISED LEARNING PATHWAYS IN MATHEMATICS, BASED ON ENGAGEMENT, FOR PUPILS BORN PREMATURE WITH SEVERE AND COMPLEX LEARNING DIFFICULTIES

by Jayne Moore and Debra Ward

The research project described in this chapter was based at The Ridgeway Community School in Farnham, Surrey, from the October 2012 to July 2014. It investigated whether the use of the Engagement Profile and Scale (Carpenter et al., 2011) could increase the engagement in Maths activities of students born preterm.

The use of the Engagement Profile and Scale by class teams as a tool to support engagement was associated with a positive increase in all students’ engagement in Maths activities. The six teachers (total number in study =12) who responded to the informal feedback survey considered that the Engagement Profile and Scale were useful tools for identifying and overcoming barriers to engagement for students, even if (in one case) this was a student group other than the one they were working with. They also felt that it provided a helpful framework for their own practice, although four shared caveats concerning time implications, practicalities of implementation and the research process. Four out of the six said they would use the tool (1) or elements of it (3) in the future, and three had already embedded these within their practice.

The Engagement Project also provoked deeper discussion among school staff members about specific issues, such as the use of non-age-appropriate material. In some cases, teachers found that using resources for very young children resulted in some of the deepest engagement for learning of older students.