“Memory is the residue of thought.”–Daniel Willingham
When considering the factors leading to pupil progress, it is tempting to over complicate the issue. Whilst teaching is doubtless a complex art (or is it a science?), can learning really be attributed to one crucial variable: the amount of time that pupils spend ‘thinking hard’? Continue Reading
As human beings we are bombarded with messages that shape our understanding of our environment on a daily basis. As a member of staff at Kennet School we can associate a pupil with belonging to a particular house in a split second, just by a colour. In our home life, through our exposure to media advertising, it is possible to associate a single letter from a logo to a particular brand or product. In an effort to increase sales, companies invest millions of pounds in product placement to get their new accessory to be associated with a high profile film. With Christmas around the corner, we associate Santa Claus as being a plump man with rosy cheeks and a bushy white beard. The key to all of these examples is the association. We see something and we associate it with something else. It is a natural part of human behaviour; however these associations can also shape our beliefs in either a positive or negative way.
At our inset day on 23rd October I spoke about each of us creating a professional development question to provide a framework for our thinking and development over the coming months (in one defined area at least). The rationale behind this is to try and make our CPD more effective by bringing it into the classroom and therefore closer to our daily practice.
Kennet Festival of Learning
Last week we hosted a fantastic inset event which we named ‘The Kennet Festival of Learning’. The aim was to share ideas and discuss the topics which matter most to us as a school. We chose three key priorities—literacy, assessment and mindset—which were the focus for the seminars and keynote talks throughout the day.
Check out the programme for the day.
The quality of the different morning sessions on offer was excellent and I am hugely grateful to those who contributed their ideas and shared their hard work. Whilst the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, the impact was also evident in the way these ideas spilled over into conversations during coffee and lunch.
During our Festival of Education inset (see post here), we hosted a ‘Learning Marketplace’ where colleagues shared ideas and resources from their department areas.
I was left feeling thoroughly inspired by the creativity and talent of the staff at our school. As is always the case on such days, I was also pleased to be able to take away some fantastic ready-made ideas to start using in my lessons.