The Standard is our termly newsletter aiming to support and inspire our teachers to reach greater heights. This was introduced in December 2015. Feedback was fantastic from our staff and many teachers volunteered to contribute to future newsletters. Here are some of the best bits.
Pensby T&L newsletter December 2014
The use of positive language in the classroom and its effect on learning
•This session reminded us of the power of our language.
•What teachers say and how it is said will have a significant impact on pupils.
•We look at how a simple shift in language may have the desired effect.
Making your mark
Teacher - Pupil dialogue
• Sometimes it can be hard to get pupils to respond to the feedback and marking. Why not try using post it tabs?
•It reminds the student that there is something they need to respond to in their books. It also reminds you to check they have responded next time you collect their books in.
Behaviour Management -
What to do when it all goes wrong
•Don't take it personally
•It does not make you a bad teacher
•Keep being consistent. Follow up
•The long term picture - always remember; you will succeed. •Fresh starts are needed after sanctions. It's dealt with now start again.
Follow the link to read the whole article from UKEdMag
Pensby T&L newsletter April 2015
These questions are simple, but too
often they are not answered in the planning for learning.
Too often learning is pitched at too low a level and lessons do not
have high enough expectations. Every lesson should at least have these questions answered. On this sheet or in another
This is not about a detailed lesson plan, this needs to be manageable and
How to balance work with family life: a teacher's survival guide
Accept your to-do list will never end and remember to communicate. Teacher and mother Hayley Earl shares her work-life balance tricks in a Guardian article.
Click on the image to read again.
Encourage pupils to "feedforward". Before starting a new task get them to write their previous target from the teacher feedback at the top of the page.
Pensby T&L newsletter July 2015
Gender and Education - Mythbusters
Myth: Boys benefit from a competitive learning environment.
Reality: Competitive learning practices may actively disengage those boys who do not immediately succeed.
Myth: Single-sex classes are the best means to improve boys' and girls' achievement.
Reality: Single-sex classes have very mixed results, and have not been shown to be the decisive ingredient in lifting boys' achievement, but have, in some cases, improved girls' achievement.
Go to the link to read the whole study Addressing Gender and Achievement: Myths and Realities by the Department of Education.
Isabella Wallace is the co-author of the best-selling teaching guide "Pimp Your Lesson!". She developed the idea of #poundlandpedagogy as the 'poundstores' are an Aladdin's Cave for the innovative teacher!
Want to find out more about it? Go to the link.
We started to think about how we could
bring the poundland
pedagogy challenge to Pensby..........
Blank Dice- Add a colour? A letter? A bloom stem? A Higher Order Thinking Skill? Students make up their own?
Design your own bunting! Laminate them and rub them out after each topic?
Use pegs to hold keywords to create a washing line, combine key points, reference pages?
The possibilities are endless!
Student Support Centre
The new student support centre will aim to meet the needs of the individual pupils. The needs could be related to learning, behaviour, emotional, physical and/or social aspects. However, the appropriate support will be conducted and monitored in a structured way, and will by no means be on a 'drop-in' or 'ad-hoc' basis.
Pensby T&L newsletter December 2015
New look CPD - WHY?
Whilst externally delivered INSET can be useful, often it is costly and the benefits are poorly disseminated. External CPD can inform but even with the best intentions there is little evidence to show the impact of INSET over time.
For too long teachers have feared intrusion into their classrooms; felt fearful of unfavourable comparison with their peers; adopted strategies to conceal their concern that they may not be good enough. Teaching is an arduous and stressful job. No-one is excellent all of the time. We are all human beings who sometimes feel under par; at times like this our delivery can suffer. The biggest resource we have is each other. It is in this spirit that the triad coaching internal CPD has been developed
Managing Mini Whiteboards
Top tips for using whiteboards correctly
1. Do not assume pupils know how to use them! Be firm with students on how they should not be used. Remind them of the key rules and expectations.
No doodling. No comments to be written on the back of the board. No wobbling the boards to make noises.
2. Explain that they need to write large enough so when they hold their board up you can read their answer.
3. Set pupils a question to answer before you give the boards out. It will get them focused straight away.
4. Ensure that the pupils raise the whiteboards at the same time. This avoids the people who are a bit slower from just copying from what they see most people have done. A countdown 3,2,1 can help.
5. Go around the room and grab a selection of whiteboards with pupils answers on. Some correct ones and some with misconceptions. Shuffle them, then discuss key issues. That way it is not immediately obvious whose wrong answer you are discussing.
Read the whole article by William Emeny by going to the link.
The Spirit of AFL
Bringing Formative Assessment Alive in Every Classroom
AFL is always a hot topic and in our Decemebr 2015 edition of the T&L newsletter we highlighted a fantastic article which provided a series of self-evaluation statements Which were helpful in prompting us to think about own practice.
Go to the link to have another read.
Pensby T&L newsletter April 2016
No hands rule
A no hands rule has now been introduced. We have been working hard within our triads to become more confident with using this technique. Here is a reminder of what it is all about.
•The process involves choosing a student at random who provides the answer. As it could be anyone, students naturally need to be paying attention.
•The 'not knowing if it is me' scenario is
an easy way to keep most students involved in the lesson.
•We are calling on what we perceive to be high achievers or more able to get an answer whilst actually missing the high achievers who aren't responding. •Same students answering - only gaining a few students insight
allowing pupils to think because we give them the answer
What to do when they say
"I don't know"
If questioning begins with a student
unable (or unwilling) to answer a question then questioning should end with
that student giving the right answer as often as possible, even if it is only
to repeat the correct answer.No Opt Out!
No Hands Rule Help!
•After targeting questioning, say "would anyone like to develop any answers we've heard?" to give super keen beans the chance to say things or they can get really frustrated.
•Get an observer to record on a tally chart where you direct questions in the room. This can be revealing about the distribution. You could even give a pupil a secret mission.
•If you tend to question from the same spot in your classroom, try moving about. Teachers seem to ask those pupils seated in sort of "shifting spotlight" in front of them. By moving to different area of the room you are likely to ask a wider range of pupils.
•Try random name generators to add some fun to your lesson.
red, amber and green AFL cards as a visual display for the teacher to see if a
question has been asked.
Pensby T&L newsletter December 2015
Marking: What's New?
The new Pensby High School Marking Policy will be put in place from September. There have been some key changes in light of the March 2016 review of teacher workload and marking.
- Marking should serve a single purpose -
to advance pupil progress and outcomes.
The quantity of feedback should not be confused with the quality. The quality of the feedback, however given, will be seen in how a pupil is able to tackle subsequent work.
Marking should be meaningful, manageable and motivating.
Top Twitter Finds
Twitter is a fantastic way of finding new ideas for the classroom. Each edition dedicates a double page spread to highlighting some of the best ideas.
These speeding violations from @Geoisamazing are a great idea and aim to help improve presentation, spelling and grammar.
Life as an NQT: Survival tips from those who've lived to tell the tale