Unpick Stretch and Challenge so you can have real impact in class.
Changing behaviours and routines after lockdown Covid-19 will change our behaviours and our routines across every aspect of school life. After having conversations with several teachers in recent weeks I’ve […]
Retrieval practice ideas This is an easy edit for your institution resource. Simple ideas which learners who are working from home over the coming weeks can use to help them […]
This is an easy to make/deliver assessment tool which encourages learners to self assess a range of learning aspects.
“Right or wrong you can learn from the test.” Nutshell Setting regular tests for your learners and making sure you share the test answers afterwards! How to do this Testing […]
“Hands up if you…” Nutshell Allow learners to put up their hands to answer a question. Sometimes this method does have a use! How to do this This is a […]
An easy way to snapshot whole class progress and understanding.
A quick and easy assessment idea you can make use of in any lesson. Nutshell: Have learners reflect on what has gone well and what they would have improved their […]
Give learners nine elements of a topic and ask them to rank them in the shape of a diamond: one element at the top and one at the bottom of the shape.
Fact sheets This is idea No. 75 in the book! Book extract: Learners are challenged to demonstrate their existing knowledge and build new knowledge in order to create a fact […]
Give students time to interview (speed-date style) their classmates to collect ten nuggets of knowledge on a topic on their worksheet. See the online resources for a template. You might find it useful to rearrange the layout of your classroom to facilitate this activity.
A to Z of your subject This is idea No. 65 in the book! Book extract: Start the lesson by giving each student an A to Z sheet that has […]
Self-marking frame This is idea No. 58 in the book! Book extract: Challenge your learners to self-mark usingan A3 sheet of paper. Around the edge of the sheet you attach […]
Challenge your learners to create their own board game at the end of a unit of study or a term. The game can be loosely based on snakes and ladders (i.e. they move spaces based on a throw of a dice).
Throw the dice This is idea No. 47 in the book! Book extract: Challenge your learners to make a dice and accompanying game. Once completed the learners get to play […]
Challenge learners in pairs or small groups to solve the dingbats you display on your board.
Set up a Guess Who? board. Students work in pairs and pose a series of questions to knock down cards they can identify.
Memorise this… This is idea No. 13 in the book! Book extract: You need a minimum of a three-slide presentation for this. Slide one shows the things you want […]
One way to develop stronger answers is to employ the snowball questioning technique.
News Quiz This is idea No. 17 in the book! Book extract: Tutor time sometimes feels unstructured. Once you’ve done the register and sorted some of the uniform issues, you […]
Build a strong case… This is idea No. 35 in the book! Book extract: You know those colour swatches you can pick up in DIY stores? Well, here’s another use […]
This activity is about challenging learners to vocalise their understanding of topics, concepts and subject vocabulary.
This is a fascinating read, I'd recommend every teacher to read it but most certainly middle and more senior leaders!
For this you can use a visual colour scale (you might think of a litmus test colour chart or those colour swatches you see in DIY stores). Learners will then follow criteria you give them and select a colour level as their feedback to either themselves if self-marking or a peer if peer-marking.
If you know bingo you’ll get this straight away. You create a bingo card that has the answers to a series of questions on it.
A fun, engaging way of providing different challenges to each learner in a class. This works really well with Key Stage 3 classes. I’ve seen this idea adapted in many ways by wonderfully creative teachers!
Questioning to support assessment I was asked this question on twitter recently: How can one use questioning and feedback to contribute to the assessment process? @tips4teachingUK — Aqsalogic (@aqsalogic) February […]
Would you record yourself teaching to help you reflect? Do you have a mobile device with you in class? (iPad, chrome book, phone) If you do have one, have you […]
Booking a Computer room might seem like the answer to the end of your stressful week but as with all things in teaching, if you fail to plan you plan […]
Reflecting on your own practice is not always easy. When you’ve had a bad day, for example, the last thing you want to do is reflect and think ‘Where did […]
NQT/ITT programmes vary from institution to institution. Keeping on top of your standards evidence remains a worry for many NQTs and Trainees. For reference check out the Government NQT standards […]
This is a really personal episode for me, I interview my brother who is a Youth Worker for a charity in the North East of England.
Safeguarding is a critical part of what we do as teachers. It is the responsibility of every member of staff in school to report safeguarding concerns (teacher or not). Safeguarding […]
Here are 4 tips to help you develop your subject knowledge this year...
As teachers we can spend a lot of our time dealing with behaviour that falls short of our expectations, and we can actually fall out of the habit of giving […]
Using subject specific vocabulary often is key...
4 assessment tips that make use of sticky notes 1. The sticky starter Give each student a sticky note as they walk into your room; on the board have the […]
“Code your own website, app and game and develop real coding skills in this fun guide to coding for beginners” Get Coding – from Walker Books This is firstly a […]
Sometimes exciting resources grab your attention! I was flattered to be asked to run a workshop at the recent EdTech Podcast Festival and had the absolute pleasure of meeting the […]
This week is Computer Science in Education Week! Yes it’s an American thing but it promotes Computer Science so I’m all in! In my classes we’ve had a look at […]
Competition breeds creativity The Lego league competition is an international competition, students all around the world take part in this every year. Last year was my first introduction to the […]
This is a great book for girls and boys (Primary or absolute beginner at Secondary level). It introduces the reader to jobs in Computer Science
Do you know who Ada Lovelace is? Did you know she was instrumental in the invention of the modern computer? Did you know she was a close friend and collaborator with Charles Babbage?
Variables have a value which the creator can assign, meaning they can vary from program to program depending on what is needed. That make sense? When I first taught variables […]
I like to start by telling learners that this is a genius word! If you can confidently go home tonight and explain what an algorithm is people will think you’ve […]
An easy to deliver challenge for the start of any lesson. All you need are two different coloured sticky notes and a ppt slide. As students enter your room hand […]
It is always a pleasure to be invited to write for Innovate My School. My latest feature focuses on how to develop the mindset of an innovator and how to […]
In this episode of Teacher Talk Laura and Paul talk with Drew, a new Assistant Head Teacher with responsibility for the Arts ‘big picture’. Listen and subscribe now via your […]
Stretch and Challenge is right at the top of my ‘must tackle’ list this year! With that in mind I created these little Stretch and Challenge slips! I’m a bit […]
What is Mindfulness and why is it suddenly everywhere? Mindfulness is not new! I need to get that out there first because I feel like sometimes people think it is. […]
Arts in Education In this Episode Paul and Laura talk about the Arts in Education and in particular what Laura as a Lead Practitioner for Art does to promote the […]
In episode 2 of the tips4teaching podcast I reflect on my questioning technique during a drive home. The podcast becomes Teacher Talk and introduces our new co-host Laura in episode […]
In this first episode of the new tips4teaching Podcast (which gets an overhaul at episode three with the introduction of awesome co-host Laura!) I reflect on my practice, in particular […]
Last summer I started a Podcast. Don’t worry if you missed it, it didn’t last long. The busiest year of teaching got in the way! However like a phoenix from […]
Welcome to my latest 1/2 termly post! This time a quick run down of 4 stretch and challenge activities I tested last term in my classrooms. That’s in my Yr7 […]
Assessing on the go! The marking pile adds up quickly so any way to reduce that pile in my office at the end of a long day was worth […]
Questioning is something I believe is best revisited as often as possible to fine tune.
Talk about teaching I was recently invited for the second time to speak about this wonderful profession at the Ark Academies Teach2017 conference (this time in Birmingham) The staging for […]
A growth mindset is hugely important, it’s not a fad, it’s how you build resilient learners! I’m witnessing the benefit of students having developed a growth mindset and its enabling me to teach much more challenging computing lessons than I had originally thought I would!
Wellbeing is a topic so very close to my heart, the more I talk to teachers around the UK the more I’m hearing horror stories about treatment of staff by […]
A little doodle with a marker pen and the pad of A3 paper someone had left on my desk on Friday afternoon resulted in this design for a desk pad.
Peer Assessment, an easy AFL ‘win’ in any classroom! When you’re starting out in teaching ‘AFL’ seems to be a huge aspect of the job, so full of options and […]
I like to keep things simple, if something is simple and effective don’t over complicated it! Bloom’s to stretch and challenge. This image is designed to be used in CPD, […]
One of the most shared tips of mine is printing on sticky notes to help you get ahead of the feedback train! Let me say this though: THIS SHOULD NEVER […]
What happens if… One way I like to assess learners understanding is to ask them if they can predict the outcomes of given scenarios. This is useful because the level […]
Know it? Share it! One of my favourite ways to assess students understanding of a topic I’ve taught is to ask them to share their new knowledge/skill with a new […]
Welcome to the online shop with one goal: Get high impact, low cost resources into the hands of every teacher teaching in the UK! Since I designed the teaching resources […]
A new term is on the horizon, what’s your challenges? For me there is a very busy two 1/2 terms ahead, coursework and exam prep being at the forefront of […]
How do I make this easier? Differentiation is a real headache for many teachers, it’s something I see many training days focusing on and many teachers being told to brush […]
Another new video tip Hands up & then some…part of a new series designed to support assessment for learning in the classroom. From dead simple tips to the more interesting ideas that […]
New video tips for 2017 …Part of a new series designed to support assessment for learning in the classroom. From dead simple tips to the more interesting ideas that take […]
Showing assessment and progress over time on a coursework course. I teach the CiDA ICT course, the learners have to create a number of digital products. One could be tempted […]
Last week @Teachertoolkit published a fabulous post sharing his reading list for 2017 (you can read the post here) all those books on education he’s selected and put to one […]
A long time ago in a classroom now far far away from where I’m sitting now… Boy: “Miss, I want to be a writer when I grow up” Miss: (failing […]
Middle Leader unsure if you are fully prepared for an inspection? Preparing for an inspection isn’t easy, there’s a lot to pull together and plan. Everyone knows inspections require late […]
Differentiation and scaffolding These two are the closest relations in a teacher mind, so close that they’re the most often confused terms. Differentiation (to me) is providing stretch and challenge to […]
Every teacher needs their arsenal of places to go for inspiration, from colleagues to books. One absolutely fantastic source of ideas is Pinterest! It’s an international site with ideas and tips […]
I’m on a mission this year to make marking across my faculty the best in school! Want to join me? Marking I want teachers across my faculty to mark in […]
New to a school? New to a Department or Faculty? Everyone is new at some point, don’t worry about it! Six years ago I was new in a Department, two […]
Have you set some professional target this year? Have you started the appraisal process yet? Here are 2 top tips for your appraisal so you walk into your meeting […]
What’s inside the doodle book for teachers.. The book This is ‘the’ doodle book for teachers – I designed it to act both as an inspiration for improving classroom practice […]
September saw the release of Teach, Reflect, Doodle My 1st book for teachers has finally been published! Teach, Reflect, Doodle! (Available here ) It’s been over two years now since I […]
I want to say a huge thank you to the teachers out there who are buying, using and finding my teaching resources so very useful at Primary and Secondary across […]
Really short post to point teachers towards the recent feature in Teach Secondary magazine which discusses the rationale behind the design of my class room resources. Did I mention my […]
This post explores similar areas for improvement identified in Ofsted reports from schools across the country at various levels of grading.
I've helped put together this teaching and learning tips magazine. And in the spirit of sharing good practice a free copy can be downloaded here
I've been asked to present at the upcoming Bloomsbury TeachMeetBooks FREE event - info on how you can sign up to attend here ...
That time of year again – Exams for some subjects start in just 15 school weeks – it’s vital you examine current attainment data now and take smart intervention action to make sure […]
I've created this 'quick start' guide for anyone who wants to try and implement a colour coded assessment methodology in their department, faculty or whole school. Download for free.
Reflecting on term one plus - FREE ppt used in NQT CPD session.
It’s the holiday season! What are your plans? I’ll be spending the entire holiday with my family, they help me recharge my batteries, gain perspective and inspire new ideas. […]
Rationale behind new marking policy explained and FREE downloads for you to use if you want to create a similar time saving marking and feedback policy.
FREE resource to accompany Hr of CODE activities in December (great if you're in an IT room before Xmas)
This post shares how I plan (on a Sunday) for the week ahead, and a FREE download of the resource I created to help me.
This post is about easing the marking workload by using an idea that’s well known among Primary teachers but (seemingly) less so amongst Secondary.
This post covers how colouring might help calm some frustrated learners...
It's a little bit more than colour coding, but that's a good start on the road to improved productivity!
Find and view your school and others by rating on a useful map of the UK...
Did you join in #teacher5adaysketch? I did, I've shared my sketches here for you. Keep an eye out for the #teacher5aday hashtag