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Revision Game

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Revision Game (with Magenta Principles!):

You play in teams (3-4 probably works best) and each student writes down 3 different things on separate pieces of paper – this could be keywords, characters, themes, topics. These pieces of paper all get put into one central bowl (so if you have a class of 20 students you’d have 60 pieces of paper in your bowl, you need a few in there but depending on ability of class you could adjust this by saying write down 2-4 instead).

For round one the bowl gets passed to the first team who have one minute to pick out and describe as many of the pieces of paper as possible – only thing they can’t say is the name or spell it out. They can only pass one, at end of minute count up score and that team keeps hold of the ones they have successfully described, bowl gets passed to next team for another minute and so on until bowl is empty. Scores are tallied for each team and then all papers are put back in bowl and whichever team finished round 1, the next team along starts round 2, where they now have a minute to describe the thing on paper but only using one word – so they will have to choose carefully but if they have a good memory should remember some of what’s in bowl. Round 3 all papers back in bowl again and this time teams have a minute to act out the words in a minute. Thought this would transfer well to classroom as everyone has to listen and try to remember what’s in the bowl.

Faye

T&L Hubs 2014-2015 – Revision Skills

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Monday’s T&L Hub meeting was dedicated to revision skills. We all understand the importance of revision. Most pupils work hard at it, but they don’t always work well at it so the session looked at how we could adopt a 4 step approach to scaffold pupils’ learning and give them time to practise. We discussed the need to demonstrate, model and explicitly teach revision skills to our students and shared several quick ideas which force pupils to do something with the information they have (knowing vs understanding) and engage with and reflect on their notes. See ppt for ideas. T&L Hub Meeting Revision_Skills THW KS4 REVISION SKILLS

Ideas shared at the meeting:

let's share

  • Carousel – different questions
  • Rotate & improve exam questions
  • Checklists (Red, Amber, Green)
  • Revision cards
  • Breaking down tasks/topics
  • Flip learning
  • Create your own questions
  • Relay questions
  • Jigsaw/tarsia/wordloops
  • Analysing markschemes & answers
  • Identify types of skills in exam papers
  • Vocab fan
  • Hot seat
  • Taboo
  • Teach one another
  • Put it to music / mime etc
  • Speed dating (1 minute to tell as much as possible)
  • Word “table tennis” starter
  • Group take a different topic and they create an A4 fact/info sheet on that topic
  • Split paragraphs between a group and they reduce and feed back
  • Past exam questions: practise, practise, practise!
  • Bare bones: key words around a topic: displayed in a very reduced format (colour, diagrams, sketches can be used)
  • Asking questions (person who answers to ask another question to another pupil. Pupils must know the answer to the question they ask)
  • Phone Apps, revision websites
  • 12 days of revision – plenaries, starters, whole morning session
  • Get students to amend their own revision timetable/plans as they go…
  • Help them get the basics right and be realistic – plan in breaks etc
  • Involve students who are good at revising – get them to model/explain to others.
  • Subject specific practical activities in tutor time – meaningful rather than theoretical
  • Encouraging familiarity with exam paper (layout, wording etc)
  • Seven monkeys (see T&L blog for examples)
  • Plan revision activities/practice into SOW lower down the school
  • Start revision techniques early in year 10? All the way through school right from year 7? Revise as we go along?

 

John Hattie: 10 myths about student achievement

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John Hattie: 10 myths about student achievement (excellent post on the Iris blog)

John Hattie: His 10 myths about student achievement

John Hattie’s 15 year meta-analysis of over ¼ of a billion students worldwide has enabled him to identify what really aids student achievement. In an interview with Sarah Montague for BBC Radio 4, he dispels some popular myths about what does and doesn’t matter in your school.

Factors affecting student achievement – Hattie’s take:

1. Class Size – Reducing class size does enhance student achievement but only by a marginal amount. Our preoccupation with class size is an enigma; what’s really important is that the teacher learns to be an expert in their own class, no matter what size it is.

2. Types of Schools – Academies, grammar and state schools don’t actually differ too much inside, what’s more important is good leadership within your school; look at who has control over how teachers are chosen and how they progress after being selected.

3. Uniform – Conversations about school uniform are distracting; it doesn’t matter if uniform is compulsory or not as it makes no difference whatsoever to student achievement. Your school should decide whether you want to enforce a uniform or not but waste no further time debating it.John Hattie on extra curricular

4. Homework –Homework has been found to have no effect on the progress of primary school children. To get it right without getting rid of it, children at primary level should be given less projects and more activities that reinforce what they learnt in the lesson that day instead. Whilst homework does make more of a difference to secondary schoolchildren, too much emphasis is placed on it; 5-10 minutes of practising what was taught that day at school has the same effect as 1-2 hours does.

5. Extra-Curricular Activities – These are powerful in terms of helping children learn. The best predictor of health, wealth and happiness in adult life is not academic achievement at school but the number of years schooled; extra-curricular activities can be a fun and inviting way to get children to enjoy school and want to spend more time there learning.

6. Home Environment – Does TV have a negative effect on a child’s progress? Not directly, suggests John. The problem with a child watching too much television is that it stops them from spending that time learning in more productive ways, such as by reading or developing their communication and relationship skills.

7. A Child’s Birthday – John has found that where a child’s birthday falls in the school year has an effect on their progress initially, as there is a big difference in the ability of a child who is 5 years 1 month and one who is 5 years 11 months. However, no difference is found after 2-3 years of schooling. What has a more dramatic effect on a child’s academic achievements, he claims, is whether a child makes a friend in their first month at school.

8. Streaming and Teacher Talk – John insists that whether your school is streamed or not, what must be recognised is that children learn better from their peers than from the teacher or a book. If a child is struggling to grasp a new concept, they are more likely to understand it if another students explains it correctly.

We teach children to be passive and listen in the classroom, whilst a great teacher does the opposite: letting their students be active both in what they know and what they don’t. Effective learning is about exploring ideas, making mistakes and adapting to them; not just sitting and listening to explanations from the teacher.

john hattie student achievement blog

9. Testing – John has no problem with testing per se, but he does advocate that tests at the end of the year aren’t beneficial as by then both the teacher and the student have moved on from that particular topic. If tests are to be used, they should be done to practice and reinforce what has recently been taught.

10. Student Expectation – John Hattie claims that telling a child ‘do your best’ is the worst thing a teacher or parent can do. A successful teacher establishes a student’s expectations of their abilities but then dispels those expectations by telling them they can do better. What a student achieved yesterday should never be okay tomorrow.

How can we improve the UK education system?

When asked what the UK education system needs to learn, John answered that we need to get rid of the mentality that if a student doesn’t succeed, it’s because they were incapable, and replace it with, if a student doesn’t achieve, it’s because they didn’t put in the effort or weren’t properly supported.

What John wants to make clear is that a student’s ability to achieve academically primarily comes down to teacher expertise. How teachers think and make daily decisions and judgements is the most important thing within a school. To learn more about this attitude, have a read of ‘6 Traits of Successful Teachers’ and ‘25 Things Successful Teachers Do Differently’.

John Hattie 10 Myths on Student AchievmentJohn finishes the interview with a clear message: schools need to stop thinking about things that don’t really matter and instead talk about teacher expertise, passion, diagnosis and practice. This then, might help us to reach his goal for the UK: to make all our teachers more like our top 20-30%.

You can find out more about John and his work on his website.

What do you think about John’s responses to these school issues? Do any of his findings surprise you, and why?

 http://www.irisconnect.co.uk/john-hattie-10-myths-about-student-achievement/

 

THW TeachMeet – CPD

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teachmeet logo

Our first TeachMeet CPD was dedicated to literacy. Many thanks to all staff who shared an idea.

Jess – spellings with tutor groups : students who struggle with learning spellings could learn 5 instead of 10 / challenge pupils to pick 2 words out of the list and use them in a sentence. Jess also shared how she has used a spreadsheet to record her tutees’ scores and how this has helped her to create some competition within her form group. Template Spelling Results with class average and pupil weekly average

Becky – literacy starters : which one is the odd one out? (have multiple answers to promote discussion) / boggle / sort words into categories Quick literacy starters

Chris – 4 corners : 4 words on the board, one in each corner. Students make a sentence with it. For example in maths,

4 Corners

printed prompts for 2 stars and a wish to ensure pupils give better feedback to their peers & literacy mats to reinforce subject specific vocabulary Music Key Words Final

Deb – 7 Monkeys example

definitions:

  • Pupils come up with their own definitions of key words
  • Compare with another pupils
  • Come up with a definitive definition
  • Be able to justify why their definition is the best one within a group

“think outside the box”:

  • Read back through work/passage/information
  • Link to an analogy/real life context/draw a picture or sequence of pictures to represent
  • Explain their drawings to partner/class/group depending on activity.

Ana – scaffolding writing: 1 / mind map key vocabulary (for example in French opinions / connectives / quantifiers) 2/ give pupils more vocab to add to their mind map 3/ always use the mind map as a tool box to improve quality of writing & speaking. 4/ write in a triangle as a way as building up a quality answer. 5/ when pupils have used words from their mind map enough times, they can highlight them on their mind map in order to show that they are confident with them. 6/ they can then focus on new vocabulary.

pyramid

Merun – literacy games COUNTDOWN  UNO card game present tense irregular verbs

Use http://www.teachit.co.uk (under the “whizzy things” tab) and http://www.classtools.net for more literacy games and templates.

– definitions to match up with words as a way of expanding pupils’ range of vocabulary Hay que estudiar sobre los tiempos pasados y sobre las guerras y las personas famosas de antes subject names

Rute – using a template to encourage KS5 students to take better notes during lessons

Claire – “fun fan” to practise accuracy in spellings Fun Fan hola vocab cabin crew dialogue

– using a checklist to ensure students produce complex and sophisticated pieces of writing checklist write an answer likes and dislikes

– using animations on Word to focus pupils’ attention to particular aspects of literacy Blinking background and Las Vegas lights

– literacy plasters to save time correcting some of the most common mistakes! French literacy plastersFrench literacy plasters (2) French literacy plasters (3)  literacy plasters 1 literacy plasters 2

Thanks for a great session. Please let us know if you have tried any of the ideas shared after the TeachMeet.

 

THW TeachMeet – CPD

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teachmeet logo

 

Last week during our last TeachMeet we celebrated all our T&L achievements of the year.

Cathy explained how she’d used the plastic eggs that she won at a previous TeachMeet – “pass the egg” for speaking & listening work in Frencheaster eggs

Sukhi – differentiation work in Textiles Differentation resources

Louise – use of class display to promote independence (what do you need to do to achieve L4, L5, L6? with examples). G&T students are asked to model and lead on the evaluations

Rute – use of writing frames to build up quality writing Little Red Riding Hood

pirihgnlv

Have a look at the incredible end product!

Sakiko – use of generic starters starters

– RAG marking (teacher annotates work, Red = NO!, Amber = OK but have you thought about…?, Green = Good, Purple = spelling)

RAG marking

Inma talked about how she has used the bell she won at a previous TeachMeet – “ring the bell” whenever spontaneous target language has been used

Claire – takeaway homework (see previous post for explanation)  nandos-takeaway-homework1

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Thanks to all the staff who have contributed to and attended our THW TeachMeet CPDs this year!

t&L celebration

Exam Revision Technique

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My year 12 lesson today for exam revision:

I broke down their food anthology (exam texts) into themes and asked the pupils to make figures out of playdoh of what helped them best to remember their particular chosen text. They then had to talk through and justify why they had created the shape in such a way.

Then, they had to link their idea to a particular theme and physically place it on a piece of paper with the theme attached and explain why they had placed it there.

It seemed to work really well!

It linked into their exam practice, and how they need to think about a theme and how they can link it into the exam question, rather than just shoe-horning a text they like into a theme.

Becca

playdoh 2

Key Stage 5 T&L Strategies – CPD

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This CPD session was a follow-up to the WCSF training we had at the end of last year and looked at taking some tips further to positively impact on the T&L of low ability learners at KS5.

The following strategies were shared:

– Comment-only marking: minimum input – maximum impact!

The amount of marking at KS5 is often very heavy yet so important in helping students understand how to improve. In particular, marking essays  and writing detailed feedback can take forever! Here’s one simple way to remedy this whilst ensuring that students get the guidance they need to further improve.

1.Students list features of good/weak essays
2.Turn comments into ‘codes’
3.Use ‘codes’ to mark
4.Students re-write one passage in class
comment only markingcomment only marking 2comment only marking 3
Here’s another example developed by the MFL department after the session 2 stars and a wish AS writing Marking Grid
– Making connections:
This activity is based on the principle that if students have to do something with information (ie, reduce, connect, assemble, sequence it), then their understanding deepens.
6 of separation
Six degrees of separation is the theory that anyone on the planet can be connected to any other person on the planet through a chain of acquaintances that has no more than five intermediaries. The game “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon” was invented as a play on the concept: the goal is to link any actor to Kevin Bacon through no more than six connections, where two actors are connected if they have appeared in a movie or commercial together.
– Retention, Analysis & Evaluation:
For some of our weaker students, remembering subject specific content itself can be a challenge. Try the following to boost their subject knowledge:
* ask students to keep a glossary of key terms
* encourage students to underline key terms in their work
* encourage students to “do something” with the information they take in (highlight something surprising… / highlight something interesting… / highlight something you agree with… / highlight something you disagree with… / highlight something you do not understand…)
* use post-it notes as a recap
* use quizzes or games to revise subject knowledge (see templates below)
To help with the skills of analysis and evaluation, give them examples, vocabulary and writing frames.
– Peer-assessment:
The following prompts can be really nice not only to give peer-assessment a bit of a makeover from the traditional 2 stars and a wish but also to refine and improve pupils’ learning.
* Write down four key words that your partner has used. Suggest one word that they could have used but didn’t.
* Write down the best sentence/quote from their work and explain why you chose it (ie what is good about it?).
* Write down one sentence/quote that doesn’t make sense to you (ie it lacks clarity or isn’t fully explained).
* Add one sentence which improves the essay.