the importance of the beginning…

I cannot overstate how important the first few weeks of the school year are. A focus on the deliberate planning and time for building relationships, behaviour and routine expectations can set you up for a great year.

Below are 5 links that can get you thinking about how to approach the Positive Start Program we use here.

Ms Fintelman Teaches is a new blog I have been reading and I would suggest you read Why I Hate Classroom Themes before How to Let Your Students Set Up Their Own Classroom.

Cult of Pedagogy is a favourite of mine. Two posts that have some great links to the ideas of Michael Linsin are When Students Won’t Stop Talking and Classroom Management 4 Keys To Starting The Year Off Right.

The last link is from Vicki Davis and her The Cool Cat Teacher Blog, it is a podcast with Linda Kardamis about the Five Mistakes Teachers Make The First Week Of School.

Make the most of your first few weeks this year!

the place of feedback…

Finding efficient and effective workflow habits and tools to give feedback to students, and receive feedback from them can be an elusive goal.

Mindshift is a favourite professional reading blog I like to use. Recently Katrina Schwartz posted thoughts about feedback that are worthwhile reading and thinking about. There is a link to a very short video where John Hattie again talks about success criteria being more important than a learning intention.

I still think the time spent thinking about and designing both learning intentions and success criteria provide you with a reference to focus your feedback.

thinking about why…

One of the benefits that planning together can provide is the opportunity to ask each other… ‘why are we doing this?’.

The balance of making every lesson count (see my previous post) and where building relationships and having fun is important and valid is perfectly illustrated in the post ‘Is Your Lesson a Grecian Urn?’. These are the thoughts of Jennifer Gonzalez from her blog, Cult of Pedagogy.

Make her blog one of your regular must reads by subscribing. Start by looking at her About page, it has a link that explains the purpose of the blog and guides you to some suggestions of what to listen, view and read if it is your first time visiting her blog.

Cult of Pedagogy will provide more than enough reading and thinking, as well as opportunities for sharing and planning to last you for a whole PDP cycle!

...this links to the post!
…this links to the post!

 

tight but loose…

The idea of ‘tight but loose’ was something I was able to revisit while reading the Class Teaching blog through the year. Shaun Allison, one of the three authors of this blog, has also produced a book called Making Every Lesson Count.

I think the concept of making every lesson count is important for the mindset of planning and teacher talk. You can link to the post on the image below, where the authors explain how having a structure for a school can complement the idea that teachers thrive on being creative.

Making every lesson count - how it came about...from the Class Teaching blog.
Making every lesson count – how it came about…from the Class Teaching blog.