Monthly Archives: July 2014

Lovely Day



It’s that time of year again – have been looking through the posts of 2013-2014 and doing a bit of reminiscing whilst listening to some songs from my past. Perhaps a dangerously sentimental mix. Can’t believe that it’s all gone so fast. Can’t believe Mike and Sarah haven’t been with us forever or that we’re already saying goodbye to Sophie.

What a year. My most challenging 12 months so far and probably the year where my school eyes have leaked the most. However it is also the year where I have received the most literal and metaphorical hugs from you. My school family. ‘Special’.

This summer I am looking forward to:

Reminding my children that I am their Mum – again

Reading books without falling asleep in the middle of a sentence

Having the mental capacity to understand pedagogy and specifications first read through

Throwing things away

Writing a home action plan rather than a school action plan

Swimming in the ocean

Writing words that don’t relate to success criteria

Replying to ‘What are you thinking about?’ with a ‘Nothing’ and it being true.

Really, really smiling.

Laughing without wondering if it’s hysteria.

Being me.

Have a wonderful holiday with lots of lovely days.

All – not quite as I love my Slocombe 3 too, and there are a few others scattered about – my love



Here I go again…

Which exercise books should I use?

Year 7 – red A4 and blue vocab/spelling books

Year 8 – yellow A4

Year 9 – green A4

Year 10 – purple A4 and a document wallet to store controlled assessments

Year 11 – red A4 and a document wallet to store controlled assessments

Where can I find books, folders and paper?

Year 7 books are stored with RPr

Year 8 books are stored in the cupboard behind G21

Years 9, 10 and 11 are stored in the stationery cupboard in E1

A4 paper, sugar paper and flipchart paper is kept in the stationery cupboard in E1

Other resources?

SA glue, crayons, highlighters etc are stored in the stationery cupboard. Some items will be kept in E7. Please return. Please inform CSl, JRo or CMa when supplies are looking depleted.

Where can I find books and textbooks?

SA stock is largely kept in the tall cupboards in E1

JA stock is kept in the cupboard behind G21

Please return to the right place when resources are not being used – especially textbooks used for individual lessons – many books are used by more than one class at a time.

How do I book resources?

CMa is in charge of Yr 7 and 8 stock – the booking sheet will be on the wall in the cupboard behind G21

JRo is in charge of Yr 9, 10 and 11 stock.

Where can I find schemes of work?

We have a department site Our aim is for all schemes to be uploaded on here. We are in the process of rewriting all KS3 schemes. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

There is also an old google site which still has lots of resources – see CMa

What is the homework policy?

You will receive a copy of the whole school marking policy. Homework must be set online using

There are set timings but not set days of the week.

JA and Year 9 = 60 mins

Years 10 and 11 = 90 minutes

How often should I be marking?

School policy is that we mark books fortnightly or every 6 lessons.

Establish a rota straight away – think about coupling ‘light’ and ‘heavy’ classes.

NB: It is essential that we ensure that the marking of books of split classes is particularly thorough.

We aim to conduct work scrutinies throughout the year on a fortnightly rota.

More on Marking (MOM?)

You will receive a copy of the whole school marking policy.

But in brief:

Use WWW/EBI – stamps and yellow stickers and the school marking symbols

Students respond in green ink. Teachers mark in a contrasting colour. I like purple and pink!

Make sure that you allocate time for student response to feedback and make sure that students know how to respond. Once you are confident that they can do this it can be set as a homework task

Avoid ‘secretarial’ marking – do not simply correct – encourage students to search for errors.

Check that students have responded. Be absolutely relentless. One strategy is to stick page markers in their books where they still need to respond. These should not be removed until the response has been completed.

There should be a target sheet stuck in the front of all exercise books – one style for JA and one style for SA.

Encourage peer and self assessment – use postits and critique partners

Printing and copying

Please make this the year we can afford to buy more books!!!!! I really, really, really don’t want to put limits on individuals but…

Unless it is an emergency or an outstandingly spontaneous lesson or less than 10 use Jon Masters – email him resources or place in the tray by the copier in the staffroom.

No photocopying of poems for Year 10/11 – we have thousands of WJEC anthologies in the cupboards.

Use wordpress and showmyhomework sites to upload resources for students.


There is a new whole school behaviour policy being written.

What about if I’m absent?

Again there are detailed whole school cover guidelines that explain what to do in the case of planned absence or illness.

We have bought the teachit Take Cover programmes for KS3 and 4. These are for emergencies and so please don’t remove from the workroom.

If you can (of course I realise that this is not always possible) please let me or JRo or CMa know the night before if you are going to be away just in case we need to get into school earlier to arrange lessons for you.

I’m pretty sure that I won’t have covered all questions. Please just ask – over and over if needs be.


Claire S