Nothing new in Millfield's style

19th December 2003 at 00:00
Pleased though I am to see that Millfield school is taking seriously the different learning styles of its pupils (TES, December 5), I was surprised that your article emphasised the novelty of the approach. There is nothing new in the idea that "children perform best in the conditions which most suit them", although it may well have become buried under layers of prescription and target setting.

Happily, taking individual learning differences seriously remains the essence of early-years provision and a significant number of primary and secondary schools have, for some time, also recognised that the accommodation of diverse learning styles is beneficial in terms of children's cognitive, social and emotional development. There is a tendency for schools that adopt this approach to be somewhat isolated. However, I detect an increasing amount of encouragement for systemic development in this field.

One example is provided by Creative Partnerships London East (CPLE), which has preferred learning styles as its action research focus and is supporting local schools to develop creative approaches to teaching and learning. An important feature of CPLE's support is that it brings schools together to share findings and establish stronger common understandings about preferred learning styles and creativity.

As a consultant working with CPLE, I would be pleased to hear from others with an active interest in this area of development, Paul Howard 54 Margery Park Road Forest Gate, London E7

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