Thursday, 31 May 2012

60 images for sixty years

Today we have been working on the idea of showing 60 images for 60 Years to mark the Diamond Jubilee.  Pupils have selected a topic and below are examples of their work

The BBC version is here

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Socrative Quizzes

As I mentioned the Socrative quiz website on twitter yesterday.

You can make your own quizzes and import completed quizzes with a SOC number once you have registered.

A colleague has just made a quiz for Adobe fireworks, here is the code SOC-244345.

Imedia Comic Strip Unit 206

Produced by a Pupil here who was going for a level 3 in Year 11.  This work is AMAZING - and comic all entirely primary sources.  Ticks all the level 2 boxes and more.

In case you want to use it as an example.

Best piece of iMedia coursework I've ever seen.

Monday, 28 May 2012


Imagine a set of electronics as easy to play with as Legos. TED Fellow Ayah Bdeir introduces littleBits, a set of simple, interchangeable blocks that make programming as simple and important a part of creativity as snapping blocks together.

Click here

Purchase them here

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

@Year11revision user stats

infographics launches so you can create your own beautiful and interactive infographics

Friday, 18 May 2012

Project 365 – making a mosaic

Luke Robots take us through the process of making his 365 mosaic


This look like a laugh, thinking about doing with some guys from work click here.  Click on the map and have a look at the individual obstacles... Number 27 is my favourite!!!

Monday, 14 May 2012

Matthew Syed - Talent

I thought you might be interested in what Matthew Syed has to say about talent. Might be useful in your work with staff and students.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Exam Techniques, Tips and Tricks

Throughout my time at school and University, I had a friend called Mark.  We did exams in exactly the same subjects from the ages of 15 to 22. Despite the fact that Mark is quite a lot brighter than I am, as far as I can remember he never beat me in a single exam.  Why?  Well, mostly because he got interested in the subjects, and started exploring them.  I was just trying to pass the exams.  (Graham is now a professor at the Leeds University.  I'm just a teacher here at Wildern.  Which goes to show that being brighter pays off in the longer term.  However, there's no reason he shouldn't have beaten me in at least a few of those exams.)
Since then I've seen the issue from the other side, having set hundreds of exam questions and marked thousands of exam scripts.  And I must say that the standard of exam technique apparent from many students at Wildern.  It's almost as if many of you have no idea what you're doing.  This is madness - don't you want to pass?

Here, then, are a few collected tips and tricks from, if I say so myself, quite a successful campaign to do well in every exam that was put in front of me, (given the limitations of my intelligence), and to try and understand the minds of students who have written thousands of exam scripts that I have read and marked.  You might find some of them useful.
Read more here

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Keep Calm Maths

I love these from our maths department

Teaching would get boost if sixth-formers could try it?


Secondary classroom
The government needs to increase the number of more effective teachers, say MPs
Sixth-formers should be given a chance to try out teaching, to encourage the brightest into the profession after they finish university, say MPs.
More should be done to attract, train and retain top teachers, the Commons Education Select Committee says.
It says offering a taste of life at the other end of the classroom could help teenagers see the benefits of the job.
Schools Minister Nick Gibb said the government valued teachers highly, but many top graduates chose other careers.
The report, entitled Great Teachers, draws on international evidence which shows how the best teaching can accelerate learning, boost grades and even improve pupils' future earnings.
'Fantastic and Inspiring'
Committee chairman Graham Stuart said: "There is a huge difference in how much children learn depending on who is taking their class.
"It is crucial that we have an educational system which celebrates great teachers, keeps more of them in the classroom, supports their development and gives them greater status and reward."
The report calls on the government to champion the "fantastic and inspiring work" done by existing teachers - but also to do more to recruit the best graduates into the profession.
The MPs' recommendations include allowing young people to try out teaching at an early age, something they say that would give students a better idea of the benefits and drawbacks of teaching as a career, improve the quality of applicants and lead to a lower drop-out rate.
The MPs also say applicants for teacher-training should be observed taking a class before being offered a place.
The MPs welcomed ministers' plans for tougher literacy and numeracy tests for trainee teachers but said this should not be at the expense of good personal skills.

Teacher Training

  • Salaries for newly qualified teachers start between £21,000 and £27,000
  • Every 7.5 minutes someone applies for postgraduate teacher training
  • Anyone wanting to teach in England and Wales must complete initial teacher training (ITT)
  • There are many different types of ITT courses, specific to age groups
  • Prospective secondary level teachers choose a specific subject for their ITT
  • 30% more people are training to teach physics than in 2010
Source: Department for Education
The committee also raised concerns about the government's plan to use a would-be teacher's degree class to determine whether they should receive a bursary to train.
"Whilst bursaries will help attract people with strong academic records, greater effort is also needed to identify which subset of these also possess the additional personal qualities that will make them well suited to teaching," the report says.
The committee recommends the recruitment programme followed by the successful Teach First scheme, which recruits high-flying graduates to the profession.
Teach First insists on top degrees for its recruits, but candidates also undergo a day-long programme of aptitude tests, including role play, teamwork and a teaching practice session.
The committee says it is vital that universities continue to play a major role in training teachers.
"The evidence has left us in little doubt that partnership between schools and universities is likely to provide the highest quality initial teacher education."
'Outstanding training'
The report also recommends better continuing professional development for teachers and a college of teaching along the lines of a professional institute.
Mr Gibb said the government would consider the recommendations in full.
"As all the evidence from around the world shows, nothing is more important for raising standards in our schools than ensuring that we have more great teachers.
"This report supports the government's strategy for teacher recruitment as being appropriately focused on attracting top graduates into the profession and giving them outstanding training."
The teaching unions broadly welcomed the recommendations, particularly those on better continuing professional development.
But Christine Blower, of the National Union of Teachers, said: "Teaching is becoming increasingly less attractive as a profession for graduates to choose to enter and for those already in it.
"Unless the government addresses the issue of pay and pensions as well as a punishingly high workload and accountability system, no amount of 'marketing' will convince graduates that teaching is an attractive career."
Brian Lightman, of the Association of School and College Leaders, said: "The aspiration to have one of the best education services in the world will only be achieved by raising the status of teachers to a level which attracts the very best people, and this will only be done by celebrating the successes of our education service and the quality of those who work in it."

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