The Research ED Guide to Explicit and Direct Instruction Edited by Adam Boxer – A Review

Direct Instruction has been something I’ve been intrigued by but not had a chance to really delve into both as a teacher and a leader. I first heard about it when I read Barak Rosenshine’s principles of instruction. To be honest, at first it felt like it might just be a hyper-traditional approach to teaching… Continue reading The Research ED Guide to Explicit and Direct Instruction Edited by Adam Boxer – A Review

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The Rise (and Fall?) of the Finnish Education System (2)

The Fall of Finnish Educaiton System as educational utopia: the emergent discourse in the UK Sahlgren (2014) in her report ‘Real Finnish Lessons: the true story of an education superpower’ revealed some of the recent trends that raise issues about the elevation of Finland to utopia status. There is currently very little evidence to support… Continue reading The Rise (and Fall?) of the Finnish Education System (2)

The Rise (and Fall?) of the Finnish Education System (1)

It has not been uncommon in recent years to look to Finland as an educational utopia. The main argument for this is that as a nation it has often performed very well in international rankings, known as PISA. The PISA survey began in 2001 created by the OECD in response to member countries suggesting a… Continue reading The Rise (and Fall?) of the Finnish Education System (1)

The Power of a Model (2)

*The image above is a model from an Art lesson on drawing animals using sketching techniques.  What difference do ‘models’ make to learning? First, they give them an achievable vision of excellence. Okay, they can watch the teacher model, but that’s not as achievable in an eleven-year-old’s head. You’re a teacher, they’re the pupil. You’re… Continue reading The Power of a Model (2)

The Power of a Model (1)

Since becoming a teacher, I’ve become a model curator, a model collector, something of an obsessive hoarder of top-quality pupil work. I’ve realised that this strange fixation is actually a really good thing. It’s actually raised the bar and the quality of my teaching no end. What is a model? Before I continue, the term… Continue reading The Power of a Model (1)

Template for Knowledge Organisers

A couple of people have asked me for a template for knowledge organisers. Please see attached below. Following Jon Brunskill, I think the best way to make them is on Microsoft Powerpoint; it's a much more flexible program to use. You can find it here on Tes. For how to make them and how I… Continue reading Template for Knowledge Organisers

Rosenshine’s Principles in Action – A Review

I have read pretty much every post of Tom Sherrington’s blog since I’ve started teaching; i’ve always been impressed at how simply he conveys the complexity of all the dynamic and complex aspects of school life, particularly the classroom, learning and teaching. But none of his writing is simplistic. He cuts through the multifarious web… Continue reading Rosenshine’s Principles in Action – A Review

How Learning Happens – Kirschner & Hendrick – A Review

Sometimes you read books that change things. This book about seminal works is seminal in itself. It might be assumed it is just no more than a summary of important psychological research for teachers organised nicely and illustrated in a sophisticated way. It would be good and worth your money if it was just that.… Continue reading How Learning Happens – Kirschner & Hendrick – A Review

Reflections on two years of writing…..and my top five posts.

Looking Back I am still quite blown away by the amount of people who read this blog. I still continue to write to make sense of my experiences in the classroom and as a fledgling leader, it has been wonderful to hear that much of what I’ve written about still resonates with others in the… Continue reading Reflections on two years of writing…..and my top five posts.

On wasted afternoons in the primary school: why the cross-curricular approach to curriculum doesn’t work

When I first started teaching, our school curriculum was focussed on helping our pupils learn the skills that our pupils needed to develop. The rationale for this approach was that the most important thing for our pupils was to be able to think critically, problem-solve, create and develop new ideas and products, communicate effectively and… Continue reading On wasted afternoons in the primary school: why the cross-curricular approach to curriculum doesn’t work