Monthly Archives: October 2006

2006
10/24

Category:
Teaching

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Half time *ahem* term

So here I am, on half term. For a break, I’m moonlighting back at my old company for the week (albeit on short days) to help with the luxuries in life, like paying bills 😉

It’s been a fantastic start, all things considered; my class teacher is giving all the support I could wish for, my mentor (the school head, as it happens) is similarly positive and helpful. I’ve been observed leading numeracy “mental starters” (which, for those who don’t know are the first 5-10 minutes of any numeracy lesson these days) and I’m comfortably leading lessons (I was going to put “confidently” there, but I don’t want to stretch your credulity too far).

That’s ahead of my expectations for the first half-term. Still, there’s a looooong way to go from here – thankfully I’m really enjoying the ride.

2006
10/12

Category:
Teaching

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Book Review – How Children Fail

Well, despite a depressing start (see here) John Holt’s “How Children Fail” this is a corking book for anyone thinking of being, or training to be, a teacher. Aside from the whole range of tactics displayed by children to avoid having to learn, this sows the seeds of how to go about trying to educate children in school.

Admittedly, the author, is mostly in of educating children at home, or in “free-range” schools (my words, not his) such as Montessori schools, but the point of all his musings (and such they are, the book being a chronological collection of annotated memos and diary entries) is that children need to be in an environment that they feel is safe and secure before they can even begin to learn. Given today’s climate of school leagure tables and SAT exams for children at such regular intervals, this is definitely worth reading to remind you that there are children behind all those statistics – children who need personal attention (yes, even the gift and talented ones) in order to feel safe enough to learn.

Read it. Seriously.