Teaching and Learning Policy

Learning is a common theme that runs through everything that is done at the Advanced Football Development Academy (AFDA) and we aim that the teaching in timetabled lessons is always of the highest possible quality.

A. Learning in academic subjects falls into three distinct (but linked) areas:

Mechanics: The knowledge and skills that form the core of the subject.
Purpose: The wider conceptual understanding and the skills of synthesis and application. Response: The ability to use time strategically to improve learning of both Mechanics and Purpose.

Learners are taught all three areas of learning in all subjects over time. All lessons will contain one or more of these elements.

B. Learners are working towards becoming experts in their learning and their approach to study. Learners have extensive and exact knowledge and exhibit scrupulous and critical thinking.

Extensive: Learners have academic interests across several interest within sport and relish learning in new areas. They are inevitably more knowledgeable in some areas than others; however, in their areas of specialism they have an impressive depth of knowledge unbounded by limitations of syllabus or curriculum.
Exact: Learners relish precision and value detail. Their knowledge is accurate and they see areas of vagueness or approximation as an invitation to research.
Scrupulous: Learners demand complete academic honesty. They acknowledge and evaluate their sources and are meticulous in making and explaining deductions. They are bold when conjecturing but do not claim to know what they only guess.
Critical: Learners challenge their own thinking and that of others. They seek out weak assumptions and poor reasoning and attack them with rigour. They recognise when their own understanding relies on accepting the word of authorities and aim to improve their foundations as they learn.

C. Key elements of outstanding lessons are critical questioning, hard thought, prepared learners and inspiring content.

Critical questioning: Tutors provide a model of questioning both the answers given by learners and
models put forward by authorities and develop questioning learners.
Hard thought: Repetitive or easy tasks in lessons are minimised. Learners have to think, reason and debate everything they do. They make and are able to justify reasoned decisions throughout.
Prepared students: Learners are given “prep” (a short, overnight task) for each lesson so that they come with ideas of their own and ready to engage with other members of the class.
Inspiring content: Tutors use their subject knowledge to demonstrate the beauty and interest of the topic studied. Students are often exposed to ideas beyond the syllabus and are encouraged to explore them further.