One very useful task we have been asked to do early on in the CTeach programme is to write a Professional Development Plan (PDP). It involves identifying the Professional Principles that we feel we need to develop, stating what our end aim is for developing this area, demonstrating how we are going to develop in that area and evaluating why we have chosen specific ways of doing this.
I have decided to share the areas I am working on in this post as I think it not only enables me to reflect further on this choice but also to help me to connect with others who may be working on these areas, or have knowledge and experience to share on them.
1) Has a critical understanding of a wide range of subject-specific pedagogical approaches, knows how to deploy these effectively, and builds this through engagement with a community of specialists. (2.1)
I want to be able to justify the decisions I am making in planning and teaching and feel like I have something to really back them up. I have that for some things now, but more often than not I think I'm just teaching how I was trained to, or the way I've got used to without enough reasons behind it other than 'it seems to work ok'.
2) Has up-to-date knowledge of theories and research from the field of cognitive science and understands how these can be used to inform practice in education. (3.4)
Something I've heard a lot about and I think could have a lot of benefits for language learning if used in the right way. I need to read a lot more about it and see what I can start to do based on the findings.
3) Understands how to design, implement and evaluate a range of assessment types (4).
I want to have a range of assessment methods available to me and to know what to use and when. I'd like to be more consistent in my assessment methods and be able to use them for targeted intervention. This is an area that I think there is probably a lot to learn in.
I am going to do these things hopefully via reading (book suggestions welcome), attending relevant events and interacting with the relevant networks online and in person. I'll test them out and hopefully survey students and ask colleagues to look at resources/observe parts of lessons to see what they think.
I'll be getting started as soon as I can so any pointers in the right direction would be greatly appreciated.
Today was the launch event for the Chartered Teacher programme. It was a great day, other than the rain that drenched my whilst my phone insisted I had arrived at my destination - UCL Academy was nowhere to be seen. We were greeted as we arrived by Dame Alison Peacock, a small touch, but appreciated on a miserable Saturday morning.
The day started with an inspiring introduction by Dame Alison which included hearing about her personal experience and her hopes for the programme and the College more generally. Then Laura McInnerney talked about ‘How to handle the beests and the birds’, having heard Laura before I was looking forward to what she had to say. The analogy she used to describe immediate threats as wildebeests and issues on the horizon as birds made sense and got me thinking about my knowledge of education policies and trends and how I need to become more knowledgable about what is going on.
After this there was a carousel of sessions. I started with Sarah Harrison talking about the CTeach and what we should expect over the coming 14 months. I was impressed at the amount of preparation and research that has clearly gone into the design of the programme and the new ideas it brings with it. She was keen to emphasise that we are the pilot cohort and are key to helping shape how the programme will work in the future. Whilst I won’t talk too much here about how we are going to be assessed I’ll give a rough idea of what I know. There are a couple of assessment days later in the year which include things like simulated tasks (think roleplay but not?) and a short written exam. There are also reflective journals, an impact portfolio and a research project. Whilst it will certainly be hard work, it does seem to have been set up to work alongside our normal teaching and to help that as opposed to adding totally unrelated work. It also seems that there is a lot of scope to fit the focus of the programme to what we individually want/need which is great.
We also had sessions by Ben Ward and Stuart Kine about what makes good professional development and how to self evaluate. These two sessions were both really interesting, gave me lots to look at and really made me think about what it is I need to work on in terms of the professional principles that guide the whole CTeach programme.
Finally we got to meet our mentors and spent a good amount of time just chatting and getting to know them, discussing the day, next steps and our hopes for the programme.
I’ve left feeling much more confident about what is to come and excited to really get started. I know it’s going to be tough, but I’m convinced it’ll be worth it.
I had a minor flap this morning when I realised that for all I know there could be a year 9 assembly tomorrow, my first one, and I can't find the rota... So I've prepared an assembly which I'm now looking forward to when the time comes. The assembly is on JOMO - the Joy of Missing Out and was inspired by this article on the TES back in November.
In the powerpoint, attached below, I've spoken about what FOMO is, how social media makes it worse, and what JOMO is. I'll emphasise to the students that adults can be just as bad for this, and to prove that I'm sharing my plans for JOMO with them. I'm encouraging them to share theirs with me too. It's all on the slides more or less, but obviously it'll be backed up by what I say.
I'd love to know if anyone is doing anything similar, and feel free to use mine.
Unfortunately I'm struggling to get the ppt to upload. I can share the pdf but that seems the best I can do for now...
I wrote my Teacher5aday pledge the other day, but I haven’t set out anything specific that I want to focus on professionally this year as of yet. I think this will be a useful exercise and posting it serves as a way of holding myself accountable for the resolutions in a way.
1) Focus on my subject-specific pedagogy.
I’m going to focus some of my reading on MFL specific pedagogy. Attending the Chartered College of Teaching Languages Network event made me realise again just how important this is. I don’t think this is something I’ve really given myself the time and space to focus on until now.
2) Try our new ideas, stick to them and properly reflect on them. I have a tendency to want to try new things but not implement them effectively and they end up passing me by. I need to focus on one thing at a time, give it a really good shot and then if it goes well, integrate it into what I do and don’t let it disappear.
3) Get to grips with my new role and how to manage my time. I have been pleased with the balance of hours I’m spending at work and what I am willing to do at home and I’m hoping my new role won’t completely throw that out the window. I’ll have to work hard to do this now that I am both Learning Manager for year 9 but also Second in MFL (Curric lead for Spanish). My HT and DHT must believe I can do this but I need to prove it to myself!
4) Use the Chartered Teacher programme to help me achieve the above, and more. I want to make sure I use the CTeach as a tool, not extra work. It seems like it will from the look of the assessment but I need to make sure this happens.