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Verbal feedback in primary maths

When it comes to providing high quality feedback, we need to ensure that we are teaching responsively – actively eliciting evidence about our pupils’ learning in order to inform and adapt our teaching to meet their needs (Black and Wiliam 1998). One efficient and immediate response to move pupils’ learning forward is to provide verbal feedback. 

Giving feedback verbally means that you can clarify and elaborate immediately, therefore ensuring that misconceptions are not embedded, and pupils can act upon the feedback given straight away.

As you watch this video of classroom practice, consider how the teacher:

  • Clarifies learning goals and gives pupils specific, actionable steps to achieve success
  • Praises pupils where they are successful
  • Monitors pupils in order to elicit evidence about their learning
  • Utilises live marking and codes to ensure that verbal feedback is not transient

Whether you’re establishing ways of working for the first time or reviewing your feedback approaches, take some time to reflect on what the teacher has done, how they’ve done it, what they might have done differently, and how this might influence your own practice.


Black P and Wiliam D (1998) Inside the Black Box: Raising Standards Through Classroom Assessment. Phi Delta Kappan 92(1) p.81-90. Available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/003172171009200119 (accessed April 2020)

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