Posts filed under ‘organisation & management’

Getting organised – part 2

Writing my presentation reminded me of at least one more crucial thing: I need to find really effective ways to keep the learning intentions and success criteria in mind throughout all lessons. The interactive whiteboard is good, especially, as I discovered toward the end of my last placement, if you add a sound effect to draw attention to the page, but when I have another visual stimulus for the lesson on the board, the LI and SC are then hidden. I’ve seen classrooms with a separate dedicated whiteboard for the LI & SC, and I’ve heard of children copying them down at the top of any written work. I’ve also heard of teachers making laminated cards for self-directed activities. Again, perhaps my new school will have an established system, but if not, that’s another item for the list.

June 2, 2009 at 9:22 pm Leave a comment

Getting organised

Exciting times – I should be working on my presentation but can’t stop thinking about next year and having my own class. I have some jumbled thoughts on organisational points, which I’m throwing down here in an attempt to clear my head and get on with what I should be doing…

Things I would like to try next year:

  1. Personal project – simmering extension activity on subject of child’s choosing.
  2. Highland Literacy Project approach to literacy (or similar – need to find out school’s approach).
  3. Soft starts – thinking skills activities, or task related to day’s learning (challenge will be to keep coming up with these, could perhaps rotate from a menu).
  4. Personal sketch books – children to use to try out different techniques and materials and plan their artwork. Can use as extension activity, but also give time in art lessons.
  5. Reward system based on learning behaviour – I want to reward effort more than “getting the right answer”. Again this depends on the school’s system, but could include earning extra break or Golden Time for prompt settling down to listen or work? Also ‘Secret worker/walker/…’ – randomly chosen names monitored and rewarded or given advice on their behaviour at a particular time.
  6. Visual feedback on learning behaviour, eg a noise level chart as suggested by Bill Rogers, or ‘beat the creature’ as suggested on this page of classroom management tips. Actually, there’s loads on this page I want to do – will spend another day going through and prioritising – I’m guessing it’s not a good idea to try to do everything at once?!
  7. Learning logs and focus on skills of self-evaluation.

All of this needs more thought, but if I don’t get this presentation done I won’t be allowed to try any of it…

June 2, 2009 at 5:40 pm Leave a comment

Doing too much

Two major lessons from today’s lessons:

  1. I think I need to work on my ‘stage presence’, or whatever it is that you need to get 29 6-year-olds to listen to you in the gym hall. I feel confident working with individuals and small groups, but commanding the attention of the whole class needs some work. This is most noticeable in the gymn hall and other unstructured spaces. I might try some acting classes! A few more hours sleep might help too (compressing my planning time is also on the to-do list).
  2. Reflecting on this morning’s poetry lesson, I realised I had actually planned two lessons instead of one. Either one on its own would have been fine. But today I think I stressed the children with too much content and not enough time for action learning. And they in turn (quite rightly) stressed me! In the end, we repaired it by giving them more time in the afternoon, and many were very pleased with their poems. I’m still trying to find the right level, pacing and timing with this class. Next week, I think I will plan to do less, but do it better.

My head is spinning, bring on the weekend…

November 13, 2008 at 9:43 pm Leave a comment


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