Back in January a friend texted me “Do you use the Teacher Tapp App”? When I confessed that I didn’t he replied “I think you’d like it”. He was right and since then I have had a daily dose of CPD. He explained “It asks you to answer survey questions at the end of each teaching day and posts the results the following day which can be quite interesting. But more interestingly it provides a suggested pedagogy article to read every day. Some of them are really interesting”. Interesting is the word. I now look forward every day to something new, something to reflect on and more importantly a whole host of ideas to help improve what I do in the classroom. My quick 5 minute fix at the end of the day to make me feel positive and refreshed. What’s particularly good is at the end of a full on day, when you can feel drained and ground down the article picks you up and rejuvenates you.
When there’s an article that really resonates I save it to my bookmarks, to look back on at a later date and inevitably the ideas and practices creep into my lessons . The Rosenshine Principles - they are now pinned up by my desk. Retrieval Practice - I’ve shared the research on how to use flashcards effectively with my students, along with the common pitfalls. Improving Memory - I’ve got some great ideas that I have already implemented to help my students improve their memory. Knowledge organisers - I’ve written my first one of these this week and my students have already put it to good use. RP - Forests! I’ve shared with my students the “walk in the woods” analogy.
One of the most positive things though is that I know each day my friend will have read the same article. So instead of just texting “are you watching the rugby this weekend”? I find myself asking him “have you read today’s article”? And what follows is a debate about how we might use it or which bits we agree or disagree with.
Just as my friend asked me “Do you use the Teacher Tapp App”? I’ll ask the same to you. If the answer is no, then I would highly recommend signing up and if you want to discuss the previous day’s article, you know where to find me.
An inspiring, free series of educational videos, Hay Levels features festival experts from a range of disciplines offering bite-size inspiration for A Level students.
Matched to current A Level subject curricula, the latest series includes contributions from mathematicians Marcus du Sautoy and Ursula Martin; lawyer Sarah Nouwen; biologist Sarah-Jayne Blakemore; professor of immunology Daniel Davis; broadcaster Gemma Cairney; Stemettes founder Anne-Marie Imafidon; astrophysicist Jocelyn Bell Burnell and space scientist Maggie Aderin Pocock; classicist Emily Wilson; historians David Olusoga and Janina Ramirez; sociologist Rehinde Andrews; economist Linda Yueh; V&A curator Claire Wilcox; geographer Emily Shuckburgh; writers Bidisha, Tishani Doshi, and Fiona Sampson; and activist Helen Pankhurst.
Videos will be released fortnightly throughout the school year on the Hay Levels YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/HayLevels) and shared across social media (#HayLevels), supplementing the growing bank of content already available online.
A copy of Dean, Sue & Cath's presentation from Friday's Independent Learning INSET. Any feedback or questions can be directed to Dean, Sue, Cath or Priya or to the 'Comments' box below.
A copy of Dean & Sue's other resources from the session can be accessed here.