Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning

Developing independence and resilience in all teachers and learners

By: Jackie Beere MBA OBE


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Products specifications
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Size: 198 x 126mm
Pages : 240
ISBN : 9781781353394
Format: Paperback
Published: February 2020

Jackie Beere's Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning: Developing independence and resilience in all teachers and learners is a practical guide full of educational wisdom to help teachers make a genuine difference to the lives of every young person in their classroom.

Foreword by Ian Gilbert.

All the evidence shows that the most valuable asset in any classroom is the teacher at the front. No matter what changes are made to systems or to the curriculum, one certainty remains: children will be helped or hindered in their learning, job prospects, life chances and, indeed, happiness by the teachers they come across during their time in the education system.

In this all-encompassing book on teaching and learning, Independent Thinking Associate Jackie Beere draws on her many years' experience as a teaching assistant, primary teacher and secondary head teacher to re-energise every teacher's passion for their profession.

She champions both children and teachers as learners, and together with expert advice on how to instill the habits of independent learning in all pupils shares great practice that delivers outstanding outcomes for all educators.

Jackie encourages teachers to embrace challenge and change, and suggests ways in which they can provide a model for their pupils when it comes to developing independence and resilience. She also offers expert guidance on how teachers can build rapport with their students and cultivate with them a sense of co-ownership of their learning journey so that they work hard, value their learning and fulfil their potential.

Essential reading for all teachers and school leaders who wish to make an impact on the teaching and learning in their school.

Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning contains some material previously published in The Perfect Lesson (ISBN 978-178135244-1) and The (Practically) Perfect Teacher (ISBN 978-178135252-6), and is one of a number of books in the Independent Thinking On ... series from the award-winning Independent Thinking Press.

Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning has been shortlisted for the
Educational Book Award in the 2021 Education Resources Awards!

Picture for author Jackie Beere MBA OBE

Jackie Beere MBA OBE

Jackie Beere, OBE is an Independent Thinking Associate who worked as a newspaper journalist before embarking on a career in teaching and school leadership. She was awarded an OBE in 2002 for developing innovative learning programmes and is the author of several bestselling books on teaching, learning and coaching. Since 2006, Jackie has been offering training in the latest strategies for learning, developing emotionally intelligent leadership and cultivating a growth mindset.

Click here to see a summary of Jackie's writings in the press - both online and in print.


  1. I love the fact that you can dip in and out for practical ideas and support within the classroom. Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning contains lots of strategies to develop students' independence and resilience, which is even more relevant under current circumstances [COVID-19 lockdowns] than ever before! It is the perfect book for teachers at all levels of their career.

    With retrieval and metacognition being two of the current buzzwords in education, it was good see Jackie's reminder that this is not a new thing to us as professionals but rather is embedded in our practice, along with some excellent tips on how to get learning to stick and grow. 

    The book boosts confidence, and teachers can dip in and out of it to refresh thinking and embed best practice. Furthermore, with training events currently not running due to the COVID-19 lockdowns, not only is this book cheaper, it's always there to hand. 
  2. In this excellent addition to the Independent Thinking On -¦ series, Jackie Beere, from her extensive practical experience in classrooms, has produced a thought-provoking text focusing on issues that impact upon learning and performance. Throughout the book Jackie demonstrates an infectious enthusiasm for teaching, building rapport, challenging and encouraging learners through setting high expectations, and showing a caring attitude - which she describes as -˜loving your pupils'. 

    Readers, in particular those in training or new to the profession of teaching, will find the tips on the use of language to develop mindset and promote resilience - based on the ideas of Carol Dweck - very useful. The overview of -˜catching them being good' is a good one to follow. 

    Overall, this is a very informative and easy-to-read book that demonstrates a wide range of strategies, practical skills and tactics, used over many years by the author, which have resulted in her -˜loving the job, loving the kids and never giving up trying to make a difference'.
  3. One of the main crucial elements of helping pupils to progress in their learning is the role of the teacher. The impact, influence and inspiration that teachers can offer in their classroom and subject will often determine how our pupils approach learning and ultimately achieve in that area. Keeping astride of the latest ideas, developments and curriculum priorities is essential for all school teachers and leaders, but also being aware of research and strategies that help enhance learning is equally important as we strive to ensure each child can progress the best they can.

    In her book, Jackie Beere champions teachers and students as learners exploring research, at an introductory and accessible level, that supports some of the latest opinions within the education sphere. As teachers, we all strive to deliver great lessons all of the time, and in an informative chapter, Jackie guides towards a template offering helpful steps to ensure each pupil achieves their full potential. At the heart of such a template is a reflective teacher who can react, change and respond to classroom situations using techniques such as deep knowledge and understanding of their subject, using questioning effectively, or providing pupils with incisive feedback that supports positive development. Other steps include setting clear objective and success criteria; offering up some DIRT, and; managing the end of a lesson to ensure that the learning sticks.

    With a quick dip into classroom management, significant attention is given to assessment, with Jackie firmly advocating that assessment is learning. Through this important chapter, strategies are highlighted that can be used in any classroom with questioning also central to help to promote and probe thinking. Building a learning community that sticks and grows is subsequently given attention with ideas on how retrieval practice strategies can be used to help reinforce learning.

    Maturing your teaching practice can only really be successful if you are part of a supportive school that supports staff development and progression. Peer coaching is one strategy that Jackie showcases in being able to develop teachers to be mindful, reflective and question practices aimed at improvement. Offering a list of conversation questions and guidance, ideas are given in how to set up peer coaching within your community to help improve at all levels.

    This book has pulled together a collection of ideas, opinions and resources that can be used across any school where the role of the teacher is central in developing and empowering everyone in the community to fulfil their true potential, providing outstanding outcomes for all educators.
  4. Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning is a very reflective piece of work that has a mixture of practical solutions and research-informed ideas. It is a fantastic tool for every teacher and school leader, and an excellent resource for CPD with staff. A must-read.
  5. Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning has the potential to be a game-changer. Grounded in reality, it shows how, through self-reflection, assessment and evaluation, educators can transform their everyday teaching and achieve better outcomes - and, more importantly, the book also recognises how pupils can help them to do just that. I shudder to think how many children might achieve more if the half a million teachers in the UK put into practice the common sense and practical advice it contains.
  6. With Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning, Jackie Beere offers a timeless guide which reflects on the elements of great teaching and learning through the lens of her extensive experience in the profession. Jackie considers the latest agendas and policies alongside previous versions, offering well-informed critiques of the best approaches to teaching and learning. The book is essential reading for entrants to initial teacher training, providing an up-to-date compendium of approaches, ideas, dos and don'ts that will serve them well on their journey in teaching.
  7. Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning is perfectly timed as we enter an era of accessible and plentiful research on metacognition, cognitive science and pedagogy.

    As time-poor professionals, it's helpful to have clear navigation to bridge the gap between research and practice, while not forgetting the emotional aspect of teaching. In Jackie's own words: -˜I have sifted through the jargon and pulled out what I believe to be the very best practice that works to help our children learn.' And this is exactly what you will find in this book. It is an incisive and comprehensive guide that draws on trustworthy research and presents it in a digestible form, supported by reasoning from classroom experience. It has lots of practical ideas to help busy teachers in any stage of their career, with each chapter being relevant for the challenges faced in modern-day teaching.

    Overall, this book is a superb addition to any teaching and learning library - and is a resource that will surely stand the test of time.
  8. Jackie has produced a book that looks at the job of teaching from numerous angles. Written with a sense of the reality of life in classrooms, it pulls together a range of theoretical perspectives and is full of suggestions for developing the craft of teaching to improve learning for all pupils. We all want to be better teachers, and reading Independent Thinking on Teaching and Learning will help us improve our practice.

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