Foundations of Good Practice: Teaching Assistants – Summer 2022

This programme will ensure that TAs are equipped with the knowledge, skills and strategies which are required to support quality first teaching and enable pupils to get back on track.

Training objectives

  • To enable TAs to effectively support learning in both English and
  • To enable TAs to effectively facilitate the learning of SEND pupils across the curriculum
  • To understand how to use questioning and formative assessment
    strategies to identify gaps and to check that gaps are closing.
  • To understand how SEND barriers to learning are manifested and strategies to use when working with SEND pupils to maximise their learning.


  • With the support of Teaching Assistants, pupils will become more
    proficient in English and Mathematics.
  • Through effective support by Teaching Assistants, SEND pupils will be able to self-regulate better and increase their readiness for and focus on learning.
  • Intervention sessions provided by Teaching Assistants will be
    sharply focused on addressing gaps in learning and will enable
    pupils to catch up with their peers.
  • Intervention sessions for SEND pupils provided by Teaching Assistants will be effectively targeted at their barriers to learning so that the gaps in learning are closing.
  • SEND pupils supported by Teaching Assistants will know more and remember more and achieve more independent working as a result of effectively facilitated learning.
  • Monitoring by senior leaders will demonstrate both qualitative and
    quantitative improvements from baseline assessments.


  • The series consists of 10 sessions, including an introduction session and an evaluation session which the class teacher and  member of SLT are invited to attend.
  • The sessions will be delivered monthly via Zoom across the year.
  • Access to a bank of useful supporting resources will be available for each unit to allow personal learning to turn instantly into professional practice.
  • Practical and experiential gap tasks will be set and reviewed with the programme tutor and peers, creating a learning network.

Session 1

Supporting Phonics

  • To familiarise delegates with the expectations of teaching word reading and spelling using the DfE Reading Framework (July 21)
  • To support TAs in developing strong subject knowledge of both decoding and encoding principles.
  • To provide TAs with an understanding of how to deliver phonics sessions which meet the need of their groups.

Session 2

Supporting Reading Comprehension

  • To know and understand the most effective ways to support reading comprehension.
  • To know and be able to use the best strategies to support reading fluency in both 1:1 reading, but also in small group and whole class teaching of reading.
  • To be provided with tips and strategies to support the teaching of reading strategies and reading skill

Session 3

Supporting Writing

  • To familiarise TAs with the subject knowledge that they will need to support the explicit teaching of NC14 Grammar and Punctuation objectives.
  • To provide TAs with a bank of strategies to support independent spelling to meet the guidelines of DfE Reading Framework.
  • Delegates understand the successful ingredients of a Live Modelling writing session.
  • Delegates confidently support the implementation of Scribed/Helicopter Stories in EYFS.

Session 4

Supporting Vocabulary Instruction

  • To be provided with a robust approach to the teaching of vocabulary.
  • Know how to use specific retrieval strategies to enable children to learn and retain new vocabulary.
  • To know how to teach vocabulary effectively in under 15 minutes.

Session 5

Assessment for Learning Strategies

  • To know and understand how to use formative assessment strategies practically across the curriculum.
  • To be provided with tips and strategies to engineer effective discussions.
  • To know best practice in supporting oral and written feedback.
  • To provide TAs with practical strategies to support lesson plenaries.

Session 6

Understanding the 4 SEND areas of needs

An overview of the 4 SEND area of needs, looking at the range of needs within each of the SEND areas, the barriers to learning associated with the needs, and strategies to facilitate access to learning within the classroom.

Session 7

CPA in Maths

  • TAs will know and understand the term CPA and know how to use each element to improve the understanding of abstract topics.
  • TAs will create their own toolkit of manipulatives to support the teaching of Number.
  • To know and understand the best strategies to support the CPA approach in their classrooms.

Session 8

Questioning in Maths

  • TAs will know how to ask a variety of questions and will understand how a specific type of question affects the responses that are received.
  • To know and understand the type of questions that enable the teaching adult to push for a deeper understanding.
  • To use indirect prompts which encourage learners to internalise their thinking.

Session 9

The TA as a facilitator to support the learning of SEND pupils in the classroom

  • To look at research on how SEND pupils can be supported to know more and remember more.
  • To understand the different roles the TA plays in supporting SEND pupils effectively, looking at EEF and DISS research
  • To explore effective questioning for SEND pupils when supporting a learning activity
  • To explore a range of interventions for SEND pupils TAs are asked to lead, and how their effectiveness in delivery can be maximised

Session 10

Supporting calculation

  • TAs will know and understand how pictorial and concrete understanding can help pupils to develop their calculations.
  • TAs will understand the progression of mental and written calculations across the primary age range.
  • TAs will understand the expectations for the children they are supporting.

Members Resources/Forum

Play Video

CPD to transform practice


Prior knowledge of delegates will be captured in advance of each session to ensure that each session meets the needs of all participating schools.


In every session, opportunities will be provided for guided practice under the support of a skilled practitioner. Gap tasks will be set at the end of each session, which require participants to practice the modelled techniques in their own settings.

Explain & Elaborate

In every session, opportunities will be provided for participants to draw upon their observations and reflections following the gap task.


Opportunities will be built into every session for participants to evaluate the success of the
modelled strategies on learners.

How do I take part?

Cohort 2 Dates

Emma Adcock

Emma is a former headteacher, system leader and advanced skills teacher. She regularly provides additional leadership capacity for schools. This additional leadership has previously included: acting head positions, part-time assistant head roles and she has worked across schools as a teaching and learning coach to support Quality First Teaching. Emma is also an experienced trainer who regularly provides training for VNET schools on the following: curriculum design, subject leadership, Reading, Writing, Spelling and the explicit teaching of vocabulary.

Jan Martin

Jan Martin specializes in working with primary and secondary schools, PRUs, Local Authorities, and independent school groups on a range of school improvement activities with a particular focus on SEN provision. Jan has many years experience as an independent SEN consultant, an Ofsted inspector, and during her time in schools as Head of School Improvement, SENCo and Manager of Special Provision in a wide variety of settings.

Becky Clinton

Becky has worked in primary education for over 20 years, teaching from EYFS to year 6 and has led a number of middle leadership and management roles. She has previously worked for Norfolk County Council (NCC) as a maths advisor and has also worked as a leading maths teacher and SLE. Becky is NCETM professional lead accredited and has worked for the Angles Maths Hub. She is currently a KS1 Lead moderator for NCC and works as an education advisor part-time for a local MAT. Becky has worked for VNET as a maths associate for a number of years and has created a successful maths professional community as well as providing bespoke maths support in schools.

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