Let's Think programmes for 2018-19

Is your school interested in running a Let’s Think programme in 2018-19?

The benefits to the school can include:

  • Free places on programmes for your own teachers
  • Opportunities for experienced Let’s Think teachers in your school to become apprentice Let’s Think Tutors

If you think your school might be interested in running a Let’s Think programme in English, maths or science, please do contact  



ESRC Report on Cognitive Acceleration Project’s Legacy

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) has updated its reports on Cognitive Acceleration with information about the Let’s Think project and recent research into its impact.

Let’s Think Forum and ACTS

ACTS is an Assessment Companion for Thinking Skills which we hope will be a useful support package for teachers and schools setting out to develop effective thinking. To develop ACTS the Forum has entered into a Strategic Partnership with The University of Turku, Finland; The University of Lincoln, UK; The TA Group, Latvia; Daugavpils School, Latvia; ULT, Carter Community School, UK; Kirkonkylan School, Finland.

The partnership is supported by funding from the EU. The project will provide resources for in-service training courses for teachers and tutors of Let’s Think.

The Assessment Companion for Thinking Skills (ACTS) e-suite will be a diagnostic and formative tool for assessing progress in thinking. It will help give teachers an insight into the quality and depth of their pupils' thinking in the classrooms and help with next steps to promote thinking.

We need schools and teachers who are interested in trialling the ACTS process and materials from January 2019 to June 2019. 

There will also be future opportunities for you to attend ACTS events in the UK and possible financial support to attend conferences in Latvia and Finland.

If you are interested in any of the above, please contact Stuart Twiss on

Let’s Think English KS2 lessons


Michael Walsh, LTE tutor, is teaching fortnightly lessons with a Year 6 class at Pakeman School in north London. He is posting reflections as blog posts on the LTE website

If anyone would like to visit and observe a LTE lesson, please contact Michael at:

Research and reading


Our new updated reading list shows how recent research on Cognitive Acceleration (CASE and CAME) corroborates the findings of the original research: CA makes a permanent difference to pupils of all ages, in different contexts.

A new report from the Centre for Education Statistics and Evaluation in New South Wales, Australia, unpicks cognitive load theory – the theory of how the human brain learns and stores knowledge – and what it looks like in practice.

Professor Becky Francis makes the case for mixed achieving classes by revealing the research into the potential damage setting, streaming and grouping can cause to pupil learning in this TES podcast. 

Interview with...


Leah Crawford, English Consultant and Let’s Think Tutor

I came across the Let’s Think in English programme in the Autumn of 2012. I was then a local authority English advisor, supporting schools in all phases to understand and to navigate the demands of a revised – and more cognitively demanding - National Curriculum and end of Key Stage tests. It was a chance internet search that brought me to Laurie Smith’s Let’s Think in English web-page – at that time – a sub-section of the King’s College website.

In my previous professional reading, I had often encountered references to the early CASE and CAME projects and their evidenced acceleration of cognitive progress at secondary.

Just a few emails later, Laurie Smith had invited me to a KS3 LTE taster day at King’s College. In the early part of the day, my own internal dialogue felt that there was much in the lessons that resonated with the practice of some of the best departments and particularly Advanced Skills Teachers with whom I worked. By the end of the day, I had a clearer sense of the intensity of the LT construct and the potential energy contained in the lesson plans and resources.

So – 6 years later – Laurie and Michael have supported me to become an Associate LTE tutor for schools in Hampshire. Becoming a tutor has crystallised some of my previously held values and beliefs. We need a safe and structured dialogic space to construct new forms of understanding – whether we are students, teachers, or anyone else! In English, the deliberate and structured probing of thinking through rich and problematic texts also tends to bring in social, moral and ethical dimensions. A Let’s Think lesson respects students’ thinking and gives it space. It also needs to steer that thinking through conflict to stimulate progress. That’s the tough, generative conflict that teachers wrestle with as they begin to teach through the lessons.

How do I know Let’s Think makes a difference to the teachers I teach? That’s the question I have been researching through my Masters dissertation. My latest group are connected to the Winchester Teaching School Alliance: a year in to the programme, what do this group feel has been the biggest impact on their practice so far? In their own words…

  • Creating the equitable classroom, enabling all children to contribute and take risks
  • Having the confidence to steer thinking towards purposeful lines of enquiry and think on my feet
  • Valuing talk, valuing silence and valuing struggle
  • Seeing that children can guide their own thinking – there is not always a need for teacher intervention
  • Pupils thinking more carefully about their answers and their evidence base

In the future, I plan to continue to challenge myself to be a better tutor and evaluate the impact of my moves and interventions on teachers, just as teachers do with their pupils. I need to develop a deeper understanding of what to emphasise, what to value and what an oasis of possibility a Let’s Think course can provide for busy practitioners.

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