How We Teach

The Cobden Technical School instructional model was developed by staff in 2017, and it outlines our whole school approach to instruction and learning. The approaches are evidence based and provide direction for improved consistency in instruction and improved learning outcomes for all students.

Main elements

the e5 Instructional Model This provides a reference point for teachers and school leaders to develop a deeper understanding of what constitutes high quality teacher practice in the classroom.

For elaboration of the e5 instructional model.
High Impact Teaching Strategies The HITS are 10 instructional practices that reliably increase student learning wherever they are applied. Hundreds of teaching strategies from studies of what has worked in classrooms across Australia and the world were ranked by the contribution they make to student learning. The HITS sit at the top of these rankings. 

For elaboration of the High Impact Teaching Strategies, or refer to your copy of the HITS booklet.

Model for explicit classroom instruction A lesson structure maps teaching and learning that occurs in class. Sound lesson structures reinforce routines, scaffold learning via specific steps/activities, and optimise time on task and classroom climate using smooth transitions. Emphasis is placed on providing teacher time for instruction and student time for learning and practice. Planned sequencing of teaching and learning activities stimulates and maintains engagement by linking lesson and unit learning. (HITS #2)

With such a base of consistency in place, teachers can then differentiate instruction to meet the diversity of learning needs that typically exists in any mixed ability class.

Supporting elements

The differentiation diamond

(supports HITS #10)

Differentiated instruction can be planned by ranking your students in a differentiation diamond to identify three or more ability bands across the student group. The student ranking is informed by data from NAPLAN, OnDemand testing, PAT, classroom pre-tests, and observational evidence. Differentiated instruction fits well in the guided practice phase of the lesson through the application of strategies including scaffolding and mini-lessons.


The objective is to lift the performance of all students, including those who are falling behind and those ahead of year level expectations. We are aiming for “12 months or more growth in 12 months” as per our whole school PDP goal.


Effective teachers use evidence of student learning readiness, learning progress, and knowledge of individual student learning profiles, to make (content, process, and product) adjustments for individuals so all students experience challenge, success and improved learning.

High Reliability Literacy Teaching Procedures


The High Reliability Literacy Teaching Procedures, developed by Dr John Munro, are a set of explicit teaching strategies that can be used by teachers across all domains to help students develop the strategies that good readers use to make meaning from text. 

  • Getting knowledge ready 
  • Vocabulary 
  • Reading aloud 
  • Paraphrasing / visualising 
  • Saying questions the text answers 
  • Summarising 
  • Review 
At Cobden Tech, our goal is for all teachers to use these procedures (HRLTPs) explicitly and regularly in their classes.

Learning Walks

At Cobden Tech, the Principal Class team will regularly observe the learning climate in all classes using a Learning Walks protocol. 

The focus of the learning walk is on evidence of instructional model elements and use of the High Impact Teaching Strategies.


In 2017, the focus of the learning walk is more specifically on evidence of instructional model elements and use of the High Impact Teaching Strategies #1 ‘Setting Goals’ and #8 ‘Feedback’.


Feedback to teachers will be timely and specific.

Peer / Classroom Observations

Having a colleague observe your classroom practice is a source of evidence for your professional growth and development. Observing classroom practice is therefore a powerful vehicle for you to reflect on and improve your practice. 


At Cobden Technical School, the classroom observation model emphasises a three-phase consultation process which includes a pre-observation meeting, classroom observation, and a post-observation conversation. 


For specific detail, refer to the CTS Classroom Observations manual

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