A teaching and learning inventory


May 2016

AQA Exam Sentence Starters Mat

Simple sentence starters to aid pupils answers for the AQA Modern World History B Unit 1 and Unit 2 exam questions – nice revision aid and for LA students.

Please find attached resource:

Exam Question Sentence Starters

AQA Sentence Starters AQA Sentence Starters 2

Peer Assessment Mats

asseStudents can often struggle with peer assessment, especially what to write rather than simplistic comments. I use this peer assessment mat alongside success criteria and scaffolding to allow pupils to develop their peer assessment skills. Laminated it can be given out and reused whenever

Peer Assessment Sheet

Please find attached double A5 sized template

Peer Assessment Sheet

Literacy – How do great historians write?

To improve literacy across the department, we began to use these sheets at the start of this year – student’s would stick these on the back of their exercise book and use during assessments/exams/planning to develop their extended writing pieces.

How do great historians write?

Pupils’ enjoy them and they are great at building confidence amongst the weaker students.

Please find attached resource:

GCSE Literacy Back Page



Peer Marking Stickers

I have a real love for stickers, an obsession you may call it, but I find them so useful for myself and the students.

One simple sticker I created was a peer marking sticker for GCSE questions. Where students highlight the key parts of the sticker that matches the answer they are assessing – for example with AQA Unit 2 6 mark questions where students are required to simple write 3 PEEL paragraphs in their explanation answer.

Sticker Marking 1

Pupils find it really easy to mark and it helps them to identify the key components to an answer.

Please find attached sticker template, you will need the 12 stickers per page template

6 Mark Question Sticker


Lucky Dip

A nice simple idea for revision – pupils enjoy/hate it as they could get a nightmare q.

Screen Shot 2016-05-15 at 20.39.28

This is an exam where I gave them 2 minutes to quickly plan and they would answer next lesson after homework revision.

Photo 12-05-2016, 10 07 10

Please find attached resources:

Lucky Dip Questions

Lucky Dip Sheet

Lucky Dip


Nightmare before exam time

An idea alongside quick thinking was one first suggested by @littlestobbsy – getting pupils to write out and plan their nightmare exam questions.

Nightmare before the exam

Getting pupils to do this helps to build confidence and works as excellent revision. I usually get kids to write their own questions which is quite a skill – many of them struggle and they find it hard, but this is what we want!

Please find attached resource:

Nightmare before exam time

Quick Thinking Exam Questions

As part of revision, we discuss with pupils the need to plan and think about your answer within the first few minutes of the exam. The first minutes can be crucial and can get their brain into gear, therefore we have begun quick thinking exam practice.

Simply, the students write down their paragraphs they will include within 30 seconds to 1 minute. Ones they struggle with we discuss and peer share, they also can create their own for peers to complete. My Y11 really enjoyed it and I have begun to use on every topic in these last frantic weeks!

Quick Thinkin Exam Q's

Please find attached resource

Quick Thinking Vietnam Question

Quick Thinking Questions

Significance Stars

A version of the fantastic resource made by @aheadofhistory originally.

Can be used to rank the importance of factors, GREAT significance criteria or the extent of change and continuity. Simply, pupils rank between 1-5 and put a cross on the line to show this and then match them up.

I have recently used at KS4 to look at AQA 12 mark questions and then writing a conclusion.

Significance Star 1

Please find attached resource:

Significance Star

Highlighter Marking

Another favourite peer marking technique of mine that allows students’ to identify the key components of an exam question or assessment. As it’s so visual, I have found that it works well with low ability pupils.

Can be used across KS3-KS5 – I initially model with a practice example and then pupils peer assess each others.

Screen Shot 2016-05-11 at 20.46.29

Pupils enjoy it is a great different style of peer assessment that can be used to mix things up.

Please find attached template:

Highlighter Marking

Breaking down events

Students often struggle to move past the description/explanation of an event in exams and assessments – this simple tool allows pupils to delve into deeper analysis and evaluation of the importance of a single event. See instructions below:

Breaking Down

Please find attached resource:

Breaking Down


MEKAKO Source Analysis

Ever since i started teaching last year, I always struggled to get my head around teaching the AQA Unit 1 6 mark questions. I went too far into unpicking them and confused both myself and students on a question which is essentially small and simple.

My colleague  is an expert and helped team teach the class (and me) on a much simpler way to answer/structure these questions. We then decided to use the mnemonic MEKAKO to help students remember this.

Screen Shot 2016-05-02 at 15.18.35.png

Simply put, students need to ensure they use the source and own knowledge to agree/disagree with the source’s suggestion. Therefore, the MEKAKO allows students to do this!

The poster is rather simple to follow, but to aid your understanding the A means to discuss the reliability of the source. So, why would the author have this view, what is their motive or audience. Try to get students to argue the source is reliable



Assessment Feedback Sheets

Alongside developing more effective marking techniques, I have also been looking at our assessment marking and how we can improve it. We are currently trialling code marking which we will be rolling out from September at KS3, but I decided to trial assessment feedback sheets as seen by @MrsHumanities on her excellent blog

Marking sheet

Really simple – you create the WWW/EBI as part of your success criteria when designing the assessment. Highlight the feedback you wish to give, leave a comment and pupils respond with self assessment and then answer a Purple Pen Question.

The pupils find easy to understand and act on

Assessment Sheets

Please find attached resource you can edit 🙂

Assessment Feedback Sheet Final

Magnify a Source

As we have a 3 year GCSE, we started the new GCSE specification in September (eventually moving to Edexcel in January, but thats another story) and have spent the last year working on developing our source skills for KS3/Ks4.

Having seen and used laminates before for sources/questioning I feel they work well, especially with LA pupils. I have been trialling across all years, even my Y10 found it useful for some of the trickier sources as part of their current AQA course.

Magnify a Source.jpg

Also a good simple way to revise sources, wipe clean and start again!

Please find attached resource:

Magnify a Source

Tip – Cut out the circle with a craft knife and then laminate!

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