Sheldwich Primary School, Kent

| March 3, 2009 | 0 Comments 

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 A great second day with the Rural Swale Partnership in East Kent.

Sam Fenn, Head Teacher of Ethelbert Road Primary, had these thoughts on yesterday (and also, kindly, wrote her reflections on today as we spent time at Sheldwich Primary school):

When my staff returned to school I have never seen them so ‘buzzy’ about a training day – they were truly inspired.

This buzz is not simply about using Myst in literacy lessons. Oh no. SO many other elements and ideas.  Tim has opened our minds, and desire, as to how we can use ICT to support our creative approach to teaching and learning. 

Tim Rylands works his magic in Faversham

My name is Sam Fenn and I am the Head Teacher of Ethelbert Road Primary School in Faversham. I have been asked to contribute to Tim’s blog.
Yesterday I attended a training session for a group of local schools led by Tim and Sarah. I was hoping my staff and I would gain some ideas on how to further develop our children’s writing skills but I was totally overwhelmed by what happened …

(Year 2s, today, wandering in Edanna…)

We sat in a large hall ready to listen and take on ideas but what actually happened was that we were mesmerised by Tim and Sarah’s presentation. As a staff we were captivated by Tim’s approach of using Myst to support children’s language development, stimulate their imagination and encourage them to write. However, we did not only focus on Myst we also learnt loads of really practical ideas of how to use ICT to support our teaching and help us to make really stimulating resources – some real little gems which will be so helpful.

Year 3’s, bubble collecting and exploring the mysterious wooden machines in Revelation…)

When my staff returned to school I have never seen them so ‘buzzy’ about a training day – they were truly inspired. This buzz is not simply about using Myst in literacy lessons. Tim has opened our minds, and desire, as to how we can use ICT to support our creative approach to teaching and learning. 

Our learning continued today when we had the opportunity to see Tim working with a ‘class’ of children made up of children from several schools. Today has been a magical and awe inspiring experience. Watching Tim with this class of children was fantastic and the best ‘training’ I have ever seen. He brilliantly demonstrated to us how to stimulate children to write. Most importantly I think he showed us that we all, unintentionally, put barriers on children’s learning by expecting less able children not to be able write.

(Year 5’s, wrapped in dark thunderous clouds and swirling, floating rocks!! A scientist, lost in the mists of time, and his assistant, tell wonderous tales of intriguing experiments…) 

Tim clearly demonstrated that if we motivate children and have high expectations of them they will rise to that challenge – not perhaps the first time but they will get there.

Tim reminded us that when you are encouraging children to be creative there are no wrong answers. We can give children ideas but we need to remind them to polish the idea and make it their own. Most importantly there are now a group of teachers in Faversham who have now remembered that their purpose is to fill children with the joy of learning. Thanks to Tim’s fabulous teaching demonstration they now also have a wide repertoire of techniques to use too!

This has been the most useful, positive, inspiration training we have ever had. Thank you Tim and Sarah for a brilliant time which, I know, will have a massive impact on teaching and learning in all subjects throughout my school – not bad for two days training!

(Did I mention we used the Myst programme?)

Category: 1) Events and Training days

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