After a fast paced, full on, and fizzy day of technology yesterday, it is time for a whiz through the wonders of the world of words. Some analog (and digital) explorations in to some mysterious virtual worlds, to inspire talking, wittering, writing, inventing and So much more.
“So why are we here”? we asked, as we always do, to make sure our visits fit well in to the story, and progress, schools are making, and where they are aiming to head next. Kate Davies, headteacher at Worsborough Common, shared these thoughts:
To inspire the inspirational; I am blessed to have a truly inspirational team, I am in awe of their drive, creativity and commitment to the learners in their care. This year four of my seven classroom based staff are NQTs, they are a truly inspirational bunch who have taken on board so much, reflected on feedback and constantly striven to improve their practice. They have of course been well supported by the whole team but also by my Deputy and Assistant headteachers, who are quite simply the best teachers I have ever worked with. But I believe that it is critical that we continue to look for inspiration around us and share it when we find it. There are a number of people that have ‘truly’ inspired me and Tim is one of them.
To play; I’m a great believer in play! As adults we simply do not play enough. And yet play offers us the opportunity to experience ‘learning’ in its purest form. Think of our youngest children in school, who have their learning facilitated by highly skilled practitioners who provide them with ‘learning’ opportunities. The interactions, distilling, reviewing and perseverance that go into building Lego towers or the concentration, balance and reflection that occurs when walking across a wooden log. They are afforded time and the freedom to explore and investigate approaches; they have no fear of failure uninhibited by the social norms of wrong or right. I’m looking forward to having some time to ‘play’ and explore new tools for learning with my team, time to consider how we can adapt them and use them, safe in the knowledge that there are no rights or wrongs.
To stand still; Watching Tim this year at the NAHT conference I was struck by a key phrase he used ‘It’s about standing still’. Really effective teachers understand that using ICT to support learning does not mean that we use it constantly or that it is about bombarding learners to the point of sensory overload! Tim really understands that ICT is just one tool that supports teaching and learning. Throughout his delivery he models the traits of highly effective teachers, using thoughtful questioning, think time, appropriate differentiation, modeling and scaffolding, creating intrigue and high levels of engagement all delivered with palpable passion and enthusiasm. So I’m also looking forward to standing still and watching a great teacher in action and being given the time to reflect on my own practice.
Picking up ideas, and juggling them, is the aim as ever. And, what well done to all of our fellow voyagers today. Some wondrous, inventive ideas, and word play, sprang forth (and fifth. And sixth actually!)
Thanks, too, to Nicola Fitzpatrick (@blamehound) for her thoughts on the two days:
I lead Early Years at Athersley South Primary School in Barnsley and we have just been on a journey over our two INSET days, a journey into inspiration.
It’s really easy to get there, just turn left past wittering, straight on towards the ripple and hold tight to your scribbly sticks!
Using brilliant combinations of ICT and tech ideas, role play, skillful questioning and great behaviour management ideas, Tim and Sarah have engaged and enthused staff and pupils. It has been a pleasure to see teachers and children laughing, sharing, playing, learning and writing together without a success criteria in sight!
Tim and Sarah introduced us to the seemingly endless possibilities of PowerPoint. A big WOW for multimodal writing frames- I can’t say it but I now know how to create one!
Tim furnished us with endless ICT ideas but constantly reminded us that we, yes we, the amazing, talented, passionate and caring adults were the real key!
The children won’t remember our displayed learning objectives or our success criteria, but they will never forget a dynamic, creative and fun teacher who takes them on a journey into inspiration.
Thanks Tim and Sarah- my toolkit just got bigger and I had a ball!
Nicola Fitzpatrick- Wittering from South Yorkshire
Category: 1) Events and Training days