Teachers warn learning through play can lead to pupil disruption

The Herald reports that modern teaching techniques where pupils are allowed to learn through play can lead to poor behaviour, a new report warns. So called active learning – where pupils are also encouraged to work in groups or teach each other – have also been blamed for a lack of focus in secondary school when pupils sit exams.

The warning comes in a report by Ipsos MORI Scotland following a survey of teachers’ attitudes towards behaviour in primary and secondary schools, commissioned by the Scottish Government.

The report says schools have been encouraged to introduce a greater variety of teaching techniques under Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) to help engage pupils.

The report said: “There was a view among secondary teachers that the extensive use of active learning approaches in primary and early secondary meant that, in the senior phase of secondary, some pupils struggled when traditional approaches were required.”

“Primary school staff indicated that pupils moving out of their seats could be a trigger for disruptive behaviour.

“There was the view that this should be managed by having a balance between physically active tasks and sitting down, as too much moving around can also lead to disruptive behaviour.”

Andrea Bradley, assistant secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland teaching union, said active learning was a crucial part of teaching.

“Much sound learning is about “doing” and collaborating and co-operating well with others. Active learning approaches have been central to CfE, but clearly there is scope also for more traditional approaches too.”

Read the full article Teachers warn learning through play can lead to pupil disruption

How much active learning takes place in your school? Does it really influence pupil’s behaviour in the senior school years? Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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