The key to re-thinking GCSEs is to consider their fundamental purpose. GCSEs, and their predecessor O-levels, were designed as an end point summative assessment of young people’s academic subject based attainment, at sixteen. However, young people are now required to stay in full-time education, start an apprenticeship/traineeship or spend 20+ hours a week working or … Continue reading
A curriculum breathes life into a school’s or teacher’s philosophy of education; it is purpose enacted. Different philosophies of education – personal empowerment; cultural transmission; preparation for work or preparation for citizenship – place different emphasis on aspects of curriculum design. Curriculum design involves seven key principles which operate in tension with each other.
Cognitive Load Theory is increasingly influencing people’s thinking and hopefully will also influence their approach to teaching. At its heart, it is a theory about instructional (teaching) design. I find it useful for the classroom; it chimes with me as an ex-Science Teacher.
Over the years, Ofsted has consistently claimed that schools working in deprived or challenging areas – their pupils, staff and leaders – are duly recognised for the quality of work they do. Often, using a graph very similar to the one below to justify their comments, they state how inspectors contextualise the inspection process. My … Continue reading
It has taken time but I sense some of the fog is clearing in the post-levels World. The title is a simple statement I make when speaking at various conferences about assessment; you could almost see the penny drop with attendees. Far too many schools replaced levels with something that looked like levels and was … Continue reading
The title is a statement; arguably it should be more of a question. These would be the 5 key papers I think all teachers – from ITT to Headteachers – should read. Others may disagree; feel free to suggest alternatives. Having read them there is a a need to discuss with others; collaboratively develop your … Continue reading
Schools don’t usually group all disadvantaged pupils together and deliberately teach them badly. A lack of progress by this sub-group maybe a result of more generic issues across the school; disadvantaged children are just impacted on more.