Monthly Archives: September 2013

“Come up the ladder to the roof…”

Two fish swimming down a river and one hits a cement block.
He turns around and says “Oh…Damn!”

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(Thanks Caroline)

My feet have just about recovered from Thursday’s marathon. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Can’t believe that we managed to organize both JA and SA in the allotted time. A special big thanks to those straddling both! Wish I’d taken photos now. Did anyone?

In tomorrow’s CT meeting Jenny and Caroline will be talking us through strategies that they have successfully used to introduce marginal gains and critique.
As you will remember we focused on feedback for our subject review last year and I would like us to continue studying its effect and updating our practice. The most effective form of feedback is verbal. Please remember to use your verbal feedback stamps – Sarah P I have ordered you one – and photograph the comments that students make in their books following your conversations.
Here is a superb blog on Improving Written Feedback written by Alex Quigley, Head of English at Huntington School in York http://www.huntingenglish.com/2013/06/16/improving-written-feedback/
His department has also been conducting research with Year 9 into the benefits of 1:1 oral feedback. They studied two groups of the same ability. One group experienced 10 minutes of individual oral feedback halfway through the scheme of learning following a mini task and the other group did not. The students were assessed on 3 writing areas:
1) Content
2) Structure
3) Accurate spelling of complex words and range of punctuation used accurately
The biggest improvements were seen with students from the group that received the oral intervention. It would be interesting to conduct a similar study with our Year 9 especially as we have moved to mixed ability classes this year.
You may have also read Matt Bromley’s article in ‘SecEd” this week. He’s also written a blog on effective questioning that’s worth a read. http://mjbromleyblog.wordpress.com.
He reminded me that effective feedback could act as the equivalent of 8 months of extra learning. With the changes in Year 11 we are in desperate need of that additional 8 months! He also recognises that ‘the most influential form of feedback is verbal’. We need to value and build in time to have these one to one conversations – this could be our next challenge – perhaps our IAPs should reflect this. We also need to revisit and rewrite our marking/feedback policy. Any volunteers to work on this with Caroline and me?

Rainbows

Been doing a lot of analysis mixed with a spoonful of soul searching and the upshot is
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I have my meeting with DCl first thing on Tuesday morning and following that I will upload the overviews for GCSE and GCE.
We know that we can come together and raise attainment just like we did 2 years ago but it is going to take hard work, time and resilience.
Our fall in results does not reflect your dedication this year. This was evident during the many additional CA after school and revision sessions that you ran.
I feel that we need to decide on some simple key techniques that we all consistently reinforce, we need to decide on these asap and plan how to implement them together. We have all spent time considering our Year 11 classes – so what worked? We should focus on our success stories rather than berating ourselves over the students that didn’t meet TG. Bring your ideas to our CT meetings.
Share.