Metacognition – written by Shannon, Sophie and Olyvia Year 5 Pupils at Claydon Primary School

Metacognition….. Meta what?!

We can all hear you …. What is metacognition? Well, we are about to tell you from a child’s point of view.

What is Metacognition?

Metacognition is when you think, and reflect, about thinking. We have weekly Metacognition lessons, that help do develop our metacognition skills that we use in all of our lessons.  It can help you to be a more independent learner and help your learning by teaching you to never give up and keep trying – no matter what.  It also teaches you that mistakes are good and that they help to learn because in the future when you are stuck or wrong you can go back to that experience and use it to help.

Learning new skills

In our Metacognition lessons we have been learning about juggling.  With our Meta Mates (our partners) we help each other to reflect and improve by asking each other questions and giving feedback.  It also develops your team working skills.  In year 4 we learnt how to sew, writing reflections about are learning to help us to keep improving. In year 5 we have continued to improve our sewing as we designed and made a Christmas bauble. In year 5 we learn how to juggle, something none of us had really done before. However, after reflecting, helping each other, watching videos and more we can all now juggle.  We know that it was ok to not be able to do it to begin with but with hard work and resilience we can keep getting better.

What is a successful learner?

A successful learner is someone who doesn’t give up and they learn from your mistakes. They can work well with others and help each other to succeed. Another way to be a successful learner is to be determined and always give encouraging words to your partner.

How we reflect on our lessons

We reflect in lots of different ways in our lessons.  Sometimes we will reflect at the start of a new topic or piece of work, saying what we know that will help us and using the colour tags.  Then at the end of the topic, or piece of work, we will reflect again and write about our progress and what helped our learning.  We also have trays for the different colour tags so at the end of the lesson we just put our books in the tray for the colour we give ourselves.  Sometimes we talk to our talk partners about how we feel about our learning and reflect on what we have done well and what our challenges are.  In year 1, they get the children to go to the colour tag posters that are up in the classroom.  There are lots of different ways to reflect and it is really important as you then know how to improve or what has helped you so you can use that experience in the future.

How has metacognition helped us?

How metacognition has helped Sophie in her learning:

Before our school started metacognition lessons, I felt as red as a tomato in a lot of my subjects. But now I feel as blue as the ocean (blue means you can coach others and red means you don’t have a clue on the subject.)


Previously, whenever I got something wrong I always used to give up and get in a mood. Now whenever I get something wrong I always keep trying and think of the learning pit.


When I made a mistakes I would always feel embarrassed and not want to do any more. But now I know it is ok to make mistakes and how they can help you –  they are an important part of your learning journey.


We think every school should be teaching metacognition as it helps everyone to be more resilient, collaborative, independent, risk taking and reflective learners.  We all feel we are now better learners, and know why.

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