The Teaching Sprints Process

The 3 key phases of a Teaching Sprint.

The Teaching Sprints Process

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Numerous research studies confirm that teaching quality has the largest in-school influence on student learning, and that high-quality professional learning can lead to improvements in student achievement.

Teaching Sprints is a team-based process for enabling the continuous development of teacher professional practices. The process supports teacher teams to define highly specific areas of student learning to improve, design evidence-informed strategies, and to collect evidence to check their impact. Through engaging in these focused, manageable and energising Sprints, teachers have an authentic opportunity to improve their practice while lifting student outcomes. This process draws on the latest research in effective teacher learning and expertise development (e.g. see Cordingley et al. 2014 & Timperley et al. 2007, Deans for Impact, 2016)

The process has been designed to be simple, relevant and manageable for already overloaded teachers and their leaders. Most of all, it is designed to be adaptable to your school context and focused on the challenges specific to your classrooms and learners.

The 3 Key Phases of a Teaching Sprint
It consists of three phases: Prepare, Sprint and Review.

During ‘Prepare’, teams engage in rich dialogue about their practice and consider relevant research to identify a precise focus for improvement work.

They then go into the ‘Sprint’ phase, where they test out their new learning through short, manageable cycles of teaching in the classroom.

A Teaching Sprint ends with explicit ‘Review’, involving the analysis of impact evidence and consideration of how to transfer new pedagogical knowledge and skills into future practice.

Prepare Phase
In the Prepare Phase, your team determines which area of practice you want to improve. This involves engaging with the “best bets” from the evidence base, and agreeing on intended practice improvements. The Prepare Phase ends when each member of the team commits to practise a specific evidence-based strategy in the Sprint Phase.

Sprint Phase
The Sprint Phase is all about bridging theory to practice. Over 2 – 4 weeks, team members apply new learning in classrooms through intentional practise. Throughout the Sprint, the team monitors the impact of new approaches, and adapts as needed. Supported by guiding questions, the group engages in quick, focused check-ins to provide support and sustain momentum.

Review Phase
After 2 – 4 weeks in the Sprint Phase, your team meets again to close out the Teaching Sprint. During the Review Phase, you reflect on learning as practitioners. The team discusses changes to practice, considers the impact evidence, and decides how new learning will be transferred into future practice.