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From Middle English plenarie, plenarye, from Late Latin plēnārius, from Latin plēnus (full).



plenary (comparative more plenary, superlative most plenary)

  1. Fully attended; for everyone's attendance.
  2. (theology or law) Complete; full; entire; absolute.
    • 1725, Isaac Watts, Logick: Or, The Right Use of Reason in the Enquiry after Truth, [], 2nd edition, London: [] John Clark and Richard Hett, [], Emanuel Matthews, [], and Richard Ford, [], published 1726, →OCLC:
      The method of treating a subject should be plenary or full.

Derived terms[edit]



plenary (plural plenaries)

  1. plenary session
    After lunch, we will all be in the main auditorium listening to the plenary.
  2. (pedagogy) Part of a lesson, usually at or towards the end, designed to review or evaluate the learning that has taken place.
    • 2004, Brian Sharp, Meeting SEN in the Curriculum: Maths[2], →ISBN, page 114:
      Alternatively, the plenary may be used as preparation for the next lesson, and it might support the children to discuss some vocabulary with the TA to help them prepare.
    • 2010, Caroline Bentley-Davies, How to be an amazing teacher[3], →ISBN:
      A good plenary doesn't just consolidate learning in that one lesson; it provides feedback for the teacher across a period of time and offers the chance to resolve any misconceptions.
    • 2013, Richard English, Maths and ICT in the Primary School: A Creative Approach[4], →ISBN, page 30:
      During the plenary the teacher wanted to consolidate this by getting pupils to use and apply what they had learned and also to discuss the calculating strategies they would use in different situations.


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  2. ^ “Archived copy”, in Yahoo Dictionary[1], accessed 8 December 2010, archived from the original on 2011-10-19