Bedrock | Webinar reflections

Boosting learner engagement: Top tips from our Customer Success Team

By Cat Stallard

05 Jun 2023


The effectiveness of a literacy tool is directly linked to how well it's used. If your students, or even your fellow educators, aren’t fully engaged with Bedrock, it might be time to try out some new strategies.

Our Customer Success Team have gathered their favourite tips to help you get the most out of Bedrock.

1. Creating a Bedrock culture - Camilla

Start with setting the right tone across the school for using Bedrock. This works best if everyone's on the same page about the value of Bedrock - how it matters, why it's important, and what a big difference it can make in all subjects.

For this culture to be truly effective, try to extend it to beyond the school gates and get parents on board as well. Parents evenings are a great place to get your learners’ parents signed up. All you need to do is gain consent from the parent and then you (as a teacher or admin) can set up their parent account. This lets them check out their child's progress and keep an eye on their engagement, which is a big help if you've set Bedrock tasks as homework.

Bonus: Getting parents involved is also a great way to encourage your learners’ to use Bedrock words in their everyday conversations.

2. Encouraging some healthy competition - Jess

There's plenty of ways to spice up your Bedrock routine with a bit of friendly competition - like adding house groups to your Bedrock system and setting up inter-house challenges, or making different year groups vie for the most progress in a term.

Our favourite competition so far has to be the ‘Bedrockathon’! It's an inter-form challenge to see which classes can complete two Bedrock lessons in just an hour, introduced to us by Harris Academy Peckham. They take it even further by running some other inter-form games alongside this, such as a story game using Bedrock screenshots and a challenge to translate local Peckham slang into Bedrock words.

Bonus: Try making termly activities like this a really big deal - maybe the winning class will be treated like school royalty and get the best seats in assembly? Or maybe they will get to have a pizza party for lunch? This generates a buzz around Bedrock and around literacy in general and you might even find learners wanting to practise before the big competition!

3. Leveraging Bedrock Leaderboards - Tom

Make full use of all those lovely Bedrock Leaderboards! Praise learners from the top of the Time Spent, Progress Made and Points Leaderboards to ensure that all types of learners are being recognised and encouraged. There's lots of ways to celebrate your Bedrock champions; give them a shout out in assembly, reward them with additional responsibilities or 'treats', announce them on social media, or even give their parents a call to share their achievement.

Bonus: Make the most of our Bedrock merchandise! We have bottles, pens, badges, notepads and more. Some schools use these as rewards, whilst others give badges to their Bedrock or Literacy Champions. Ask your Customer Success Manager what’s on offer.

4. Engaging in Our Bedrock Stars Prize Draws - Billy

Every half term, we run a Bedrock Stars Prize Draw. Learners who earn more than 20 Bedrock points per week have a chance to win a £10 Amazon voucher or even a Chromebook! The best part? You don't have to do a thing, learners are automatically entered into the draw when they hit the points target. If they win, we'll let you (their teacher) know once the prizes are ready and work out the best way to get them to you.

Bonus: Sometimes prizes can feel out of reach. Remind learners that these prizes are real - yes, they could win a Chromebook! Last year, one lucky learner from Peacehaven Heights Academy won themselves a brand new Chromebook just by doing their Bedrock homework!

5. Adopting the highlighter technique - Rich

Alongside completing their weekly Bedrock lessons, ask your learners to highlight Bedrock words when they use them in their class writing, and get teachers across all subjects to praise the correct usage. This gives learners another way to practise their understanding of this new tier-2 vocabulary. Plus, I’ve found that it’s a great way for both teachers and learners to see some qualitative evidence of Bedrock enhancing the vocabulary learners use in writing activities, indirectly reinforcing its value and encouraging increased engagement in Bedrock lessons.

Bonus: In English lessons, give learners sticky notes. When they use a Bedrock word, they can write their own definition on the sticky note and place it on the Bedrock Board at the front of the class.

Even more great ideas from our team:

  • Introduce a Bedrock Word of the Week: We post our ‘Word of the Week’ on social media every Monday - you’re welcome to use that as inspiration. Or you can download the template from the Resources section of your dashboard and create your own WotW poster to fit your lessons. Challenge your learners to use the WotW in various scenarios throughout your lessons.
  • Create Wall displays: We’re always creating awesome posters and displays that you can print off for your classroom - ask your Customer Success Manager which posters are available, or suggest some new ideas if there’s something else you’d like!
  • Introduce new prizes and incentives: Sometimes a Chromebook just doesn’t cut it. We’ve found that prizes like a movie in class, chocolate bars or a pizza party always go down a treat! Or ask your learners to vote on which prize they’d like most.

Got something cool going on in your school? We're always eager to hear more creative ways to boost engagement - feel free to share your thoughts!

Start boosting your learners literacy today

Start your Bedrock journey armed with these tips for increasing engagement and motivating your learners.