Teacher agency and educational fads

At a recent conference the head of research at OFSTED, Danial Muijs warned that “There is still a big issue in education in terms of being still susceptible to various fads…“. This unsurprisingly has led to a lot of discussion about what counts as a “fad” and who should make a decision about what will…

(Not so) Splendid Isolation

Don’t want to wake up with no one beside me Don’t want to take up with nobody new Don’t want nobody coming by without calling first Don’t want nothing to do with you I’m putting tinfoil up on the windows Lying down in the dark to dream I don’t want to see their faces I…

In defense of being informed

Earlier this week I had a piece published in the Guardian entitled “How can schools use research to better inform teaching practice?” Whilst the response was overwhelmingly positive I have still spent a significant amount of time having to defend the idea that teachers should be informed about their own practice. As someone who had…

Meaningful Assessment

  Assessment is a complex beast that once seemed so simple. When I started teaching we assessed in KS3 by getting pupils to produce a piece of extended writing at the end of the topic and assessed that against national curriculum level descriptors. This created a whole host of problems. The level descriptors were never…

Marking madness and weak leadership

I suspect this is going to be quite an angry post so I will start by nailing my colours to the mast. I think that if you are a school leader who is insisting that everyone mark their books every two weeks you should resign. Here’s why.  I have written before about my love of…

The problem with 21st century problems

I really love the Teacher Tapp App. Every day at 3:30 they set 3 questions to gather the opinions, views and experiences of teachers. You can see the results that were gathered the previous day and then you get a link to an interesting blog post or article. What makes TeacherTapp stand out from other…

Life inside the bubble – Part 2

  Last week I wrote a piece suggesting that our profession is increasingly divided between “informed teachers” (who engage with discussions about education, manage their own CPD, read books, articles and blogs about teaching, tweet, reflect on their own practice) and “uninformed teachers” (who don’t). The first group are firmly inside the education-world bubble and…