Browsing Instagram last week I was drawn to a picture of a whiteboard and what was written resonated with every class I have ever taught during the summer months.
- I know it’s hot
- Yes the windows are all open
- Yes you can take your blazer off
- No we cannot have the lesson outside
- No, it’s not against the law or your human rights to be in school in this temperature
“The summer term is a perfect time for reflection. It is so easy to get caught in a bubble…”
Personally, I love the summer! I have a spring in my step and approach each class in such a real positive way which creates a more positive working environment in the classroom.
As one student said to me “sir you seem so chilled, I’m actually enjoying your lesson”
The summer term is a perfect time for reflection. It is so easy to get caught in a bubble, especially if you spend the majority of your working day in one classroom. The opportunity to share thoughts, strategies and ideas can be very limited.
I am very thankful however for social media. Twitter has been a real game changer for me in terms of harvesting the freshest ideas and getting on top of the best practice both nationally and internationally.
Some of you may be already heavily involved in this, but if you are not then I recommend following these teachers on Twitter:-
@opogoeducation – First stop for Educational resources, blogs and videos.
@teachertoolkit – Ross Morrison McGill, auther of the Teacher Toolkit and Plan, Mark Teach
@ictevangelist – Mark Anderson, teacher, consultant, blogger and author
When I observed a colleague last month, I was astounded by her passion, enthusiasm, breadth of knowledge and the sheer volume of resources she had produced. She had a secure understanding of the content within her subject and also the scheme of work. She knew exactly what was coming next, was able to answer questions and effortlessly prepared her students for their next stages in learning.
“…switch off, do nothing, relax, celebrate the end of the school year.”
From this I have set as an objective to ensure I have the same depth and breadth of knowledge ready for September. It will not happen overnight but having downloaded the specifications, sample questions, mark schemes and examiners reports, I have each day dipped into the materials and I will be in a much better position come September.
Observing colleagues and rather scarily allowing others to observe you in a non-judgemental way is critical to further your understanding of best practice across the school.
Now I know what you are all thinking, that’s all very well but I have 2 weeks booked somewhere hot and all I want to do is settle down to a good book and a glass of something cold, switch off, do nothing, relax, celebrate the end of the school year.
Do all of this as you deserve it. Really.
There are some fabulous books out there though which you might want to accompany you onto the beach.
- Teach Like your Hairs on Fire – Rafe Esquire
- I am Malala – Malala Yousafzai
- The Teacher Toolkit – Ross Morrison McGill
- Legacy – What the All Blacks can teach us about the business of life – James Kerr
- Fat, Forty and Fired – Nigel Marsh
- How to win friends and influence people – Dale Carnegie
- Why don’t students like school? – Daniel Willingham Make It Stick – Peter C Brown,
- Henry L Roediger and Mark A McDaniel
Enjoy the summer!
About our Community Expert
Career Development Lead
Richard is a history Teacher by Training and for the last few years been head of sixth form. His specialism is leadership and career development in the classroom.