As it’s a long weekend and you have just been doing some professional learning on Thursday, I thought that I might add to this by sharing three articles with you. The first two are related to the concept of change in education and will provoke you to ask questions about a variety of things from your own practice through to what is the future for schools and education. The third article is aimed again at you as an individual and is encouraging you to be mindful of self and find a bit of time for yourself every day. Thanks for all the great things that are going on at ISHCMC at the moment. I feel this holiday is perfectly placed to provide some relief from the increase in temperature that has hit us over the last week. Have a lovely long weekend, YoursAdrian
#1: The revolution that could change the way your child is taught
“On an October morning last year, I watched Doug Lemov play this video to a room full of teachers in the hall of an inner-London school. Many had brought their copy of Lemov’s book, Teach Like a Champion, which in the last five years has passed through the hands of thousands of teachers and infiltrated hundreds of staffrooms. To my eyes, the video of Hinton’s lesson was a glimpse into the classroom of an energetic and likable teacher, and pleasing enough. After leading a brief discussion, Lemov played it again, and then a third time.
Here is what Lemov sees in the video: he sees Hinton placing herself at the vantage points from which she can best scan the faces of her pupils (“hotspots”). He sees that after she first asks a question, hands that spring up immediately go back down again, in response to an almost imperceptible gesture from Hinton, to give the other children more time to think (“wait time”). He sees her repeat the question so that this pause in the conversation doesn’t slow its rhythm.
He sees Hinton constantly changing the angle of her gaze to check that every pupil is paying attention to whoever in the room is speaking, and silencing anyone who is not doing so with a subtle wave of her hand. He sees her use similar gestures to gently but effectively recall errant students into line without interrupting her own flow or that of the student speaking at the time (“non-verbal corrections”). He sees Hinton venture away from the hotspots to move down the sides of the class, letting her students know, with her movement, that there is always a chance she will be beside their desk in the next few seconds. He sees that in one particular instance she moves toward a particular student while making it look to the rest of the class as if she is simply changing her perspective, so that she can correct his behaviour without embarrassing him – and he sees that she does so with the grace of an elite tennis player delivering a disguised drop shot.”
#2: Finland schools: Subjects scrapped and replaced with 'topics' as country reforms its education system
For years, Finland has been the by-word for a successful education system, perched at the top of international league tables for literacy and numeracy.
Only far eastern countries such as Singapore and China outperform the Nordic nation in the influential Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) rankings. Politicians and education experts from around the world – including the UK – have made pilgrimages to Helsinki in the hope of identifying and replicating the secret of its success.
Which makes it all the more remarkable that Finland is about to embark on one of the most radical education reform programmes ever undertaken by a nation state – scrapping traditional “teaching by subject” in favour of “teaching by topic”.
“This is going to be a big change in education in Finland that we’re just beginning,” said Liisa Pohjolainen, who is in charge of youth and adult education in Helsinki – the capital city at the forefront of the reform programme.
#3: Why “Me Time” Matters: 5 Reasons To Treasure
“Life has a habit of passing us by; too many moments slip away without being seized. We spend the majority of our time working stressful jobs (and that’s without even counting how often we check our emails at home). What’s more, we spend a good proportion of our free time worrying about the future or lamenting the past and, all too soon, we’ve forgotten how to live in the here and now. Hours pass like minutes, days go past unnoticed, and weeks undifferentiated.
Living in the present moment is essential for our happiness and well-being. Research shows that when we are completely present – when we really appreciate our current experiences – external worries melt away. In fact, “me time” is so important for our minds, that we’re asking you to put yourself back on to your priority list…
“Me time” is a holiday for the soul and if you’re not already doing it, start learning to create little islands of solitude in your daily life. Not only will it help you to get in touch with yourself, it also has other benefits, like making us better at sleeping through the night, and enjoying the company of others more….”