Top Tips: Applying for Jobs

Even if you have been teaching a while, writing an application for a new role can seem just as daunting as when you wrote your first application all those years ago. Here are some tips for writing applications: Action with impact Make sure everything you include in your application also includes the impact that action had. Delivered intervention to a small group? Include information about the progress they made, with data if possible. Supported the school concert? Make sure you mention how this developed student relationships, school-to-home relationships or your understanding of health and safety. Be specific You have to … Continue reading Top Tips: Applying for Jobs

Making Marking Manageable

I read an article recently about a school that had stopped teachers from marking altogether. Instead, every two weeks, the teachers had a one to one with pupils to discuss their work… Can you imagine how liberating that would feel? Unfortunately, most of us aren’t lucky enough to work in a school like that and marking becomes one of the most difficult things to manage as a result. Until your school stops marking entirely, here are some of the things I find helpful to make it manageable: Strategic speaking and listening units: I always look at my year as a whole … Continue reading Making Marking Manageable

How Can You Tackle Lesson Observation Anxiety?

I always hated lesson observations – not because I wasn’t a confident teacher, far from it in fact. I simply couldn’t stomach the nerves that came before them, even when I felt ready, prepared and everything was in order. So, what can you do to beat observation nerves? Don’t Overthink It! In my early teaching days, I often made mistake of securing the tablet trolley, printing QR codes, planning oodles of group work and hoping to dazzle the observer with a song and dance of a lesson. It should come as no surprise that this stuff often went wrong. The … Continue reading How Can You Tackle Lesson Observation Anxiety?

#SpeedPD: Remembering Names is Hard

If you’re anything like me, remembering the names of every single student you teach can be a challenge. Here are some handy tips that you can use to remember them! Icebreaker games! Have each student introduce themselves with a memorable fact before recalling as many as you can or ask each student to describe themselves an alliterative adjective and try to use it for the first few lessons! Look up during the register! Put a name and a ‘here’ to a face by looking up and making eye contact during the register. With a smile, obviously! Hand out the exercise … Continue reading #SpeedPD: Remembering Names is Hard

The Best Things about Being a Teacher

It’s no secret that teaching is hard work and, at times, stressful. When the stress gets the better of us, it’s easy to forget that at its core, teaching is one of the best jobs out there. If you’re having a particularly tough day, here are five of the best things about being a teacher. No One Day Is Ever the Same Sure, your timetable won’t be changing and the bells go off at the same time every day but the fact that you have the opportunity to try new ideas, teach new content and chat to your students about … Continue reading The Best Things about Being a Teacher

#SpeedPD: Love Those Phone Calls Home?

You’ve had a tough day, students have been kicking off in class, it would be easier to just mark some books; but contact with parents can be a vital means of improving relationships between home and school and often helps to iron out behaviour management issues. Here’s some top tips for receiving and making phone calls: Let the parent / carer  tell you what the problem is (if they are aware of it). Getting it off their chest often helps. Ensure you return phone calls as soon as you can, preferably the same day. Leave a message or log your … Continue reading #SpeedPD: Love Those Phone Calls Home?

Impostor Syndrome: Why Do Teachers Second-Guess Themselves?

I remember my first ‘outstanding’ observation – An English Language A-Level lesson with a class of eleven students. I recall the self-doubt and the onset of impostor syndrome that told me my lesson was poorly planned and headed for a … Continue reading Impostor Syndrome: Why Do Teachers Second-Guess Themselves?

NQT Year: Seven Top Tips for Surviving

Your NQT year is perhaps among the most challenging of your teaching career and there are plenty of teachers willing to offer advice that’ll help you survive it.
Here are seven top tips for your NQT year that I found particularly useful – based on my own experiences in the classroom. Continue reading NQT Year: Seven Top Tips for Surviving