Endless possibilities

Photo Credit: Gemma Stiles via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Gemma Stiles via Compfight cc

There is so much I would like to try to implement in my final project but for many of them they need infrastructure changes that my current school don’t have to offer.  Fortunately I have been offered a job next year in The British School in Bratislava (the capital of Slovakia) so I hope to have more enlightened approach to technology in the new job:

In the long term I would like to:

  1. Rewrite literature schemes at all key stages to incorporate approaches and ideas from challenge based learning as I suggested in my post Are We Asking the Right Questions?
  2. Redesign the (I)GCSE curriculum in the form of online portfolios – with the trend in higher education going towards students presenting evidence rather than grades to show learning I predict schools will go towards portfolios.  In this case students will need to manage issues of plagiarism and integrity, but might also be able to have feedback from a wider audience, with scope to incorporate quad blogging. I have begun to plan how this might look like but intend to save that until next year.
  3. Flipping exam preparation – using flipped classroom methods allowing for supported timed practices in lessons and also student lead to deeper discussions and opinions about texts as suggested in my post Flippin’ Fantastic

Short term:

Instead of putting the cart before the horse I realised that I needed to make the final project fit the curriculum changes that were most urgent in my current school.  The UK curriculum at KS3 is in a time of change and teachers are currently planning how to incorporate these changes. I feel it is my moral duty to ensure the school use all the tools in the toolkit to approach the new focus, rather than simply tinker at the edges of how it has always been done.

The biggest change there is is outlined in a TES article:

a new, fourth area: “Grammar and vocabulary”. As presented, it appears to have equal weighting with the other three areas. (Currently, aspects of SPaG less prominent within the PoS.) In addition, “Grammar and vocabulary” also feature quite significantly within the other curriculum areas of “Reading”, “Writing” and “Spoken English”. As with the current PoS, students will still study “other varieties of language” but now the focus is on “using standard English confidently”. Applying” and “extending” SPaG knowledge from primary PoS.

Whilst I don’t have to like the changes (including the change of emphasis away from listening as a skill – but I digress) there has a been a real shift in balance towards SPaG which is also an area I hate teaching.  The student teacher in our school is doing her final placement study on the teaching of Spelling in the school, I intend to piggyback on her reforms with a little modern technology.   With new school investment into a class set of Ipads and a small set of Kindles, I want to investigate using apps and e-readers to extend vocabulary and support spelling as well as ways to teach grammar in a more interesting way.  It would be interesting to be able to reflect on the motivations of students in relation to their learning.

Photo Credit: Sammy0716 via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Sammy0716 via Compfight cc


on “Endless possibilities
2 Comments on “Endless possibilities
  1. Being in transition yourself can make for a difficult project. I love your idea of flipping exam prep for IGCSE and transitioning into a more integrated forum using online portfolios. Your students will have a more relevant experience. Love it Ninja!

  2. Interesting indeed….would love to look at the motivation of student reading when it comes to a kindle vs a traditional book. That’s the type of research we need. 🙂

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