Teaching A level science by @stuartteachphys

Name: Stuart Hayward
Twitter name: @stuartteachphys
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): Science
Position: Teacher
What is your advice about? Teaching A level science

  1. It’s a cliche, but at the start they really are year 11s in mufti. Spend more time than you expect on routines, how to do basics and monitoring in the first term. You will make the time up later.
  2. A good overall GCSE grade can hide big gaps (especially if their GCSE includes controlled assessment). Do diagnostics on individual topics.
  3. The core / PAG practicals are not the only experiments they will need to know in the exams. Look in the specification for “describe the methods to…” statements (or similar).
  4. If you can, avoid using past paper questions for assessment the first couple of terms. Students will need to build up from paragraphs to full essays, or single calculations to full problems, and it takes time.
  5. If you are teaching physics or physical chemistry, use http://www.isaacphysics.org. It’s great.
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Teaching KS3 History – Things To Avoid & Require Pupils To Avoid by @grumpyteacher17

Name: The Grumpy Teacher
Twitter name: @grumpyteacher17
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): History
Position: Teacher
What is your advice about? Teaching KS3 History – Things To Avoid & Require Pupils To Avoid

  1. “It’s a primary source, so it’s reliable.”
  2. “In History, there are no ‘right’ answers.”
  3. “History is written by the winners.”
  4. The use of “we” or “us” for the inhabitants of this territory or the members of this nation, or something loosely approximating to it, at some point in the past.
  5. Introductions that ‘set the scene.’ [adopts sonorous tone] “Winston Churchill was born…”

Top 5 books that an English NQT should read by @teach_smith

Name: Daniel Smith
Twitter name: @teach_smith
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): English
Position: Teacher
What is your advice about? Top 5 books that an English NQT should read

  1. Making Every English Lesson Count
  2. Reading Reconsidered
  3. The Writing Revolution
  4. Elements of Eloquence
  5. Shakespeare on Toast

A Level History by @grumpyteacher17

Name: The Grumpy Teacher
Twitter name: @grumpyteacher17
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): History
Position: Teacher
What is your advice about? A Level History

  1. Read about the topic you’re teaching in depth. Then read ‘around’ it – the century before, the century after, the surrounding countries.
  2. Get your pupils into the primary sources well before you try to get them answering source questions.
  3. Just ‘cos they’re in the Sixth Form doesn’t mean they’re somehow ‘above’ short factual tests. They’re not, and knowing those facts is essential, so set lots of them.
  4. The best use of a lesson is to pump the pupils full of information. And if you have to teach ’em how to take notes, teach ’em.
  5. But always try to integrate argument into lessons. History is, as Pieter Geyl memorably said, argument without end; and as almost any series of events is relevant to some argument or other it helps keep the classroom vibrant.

Lunch Time by @TeachingAngle

Name: Teaching Angle
Twitter name: @TeachingAngle
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable):
Position: Teacher
What is your advice about? Lunch Time

  1. Make sure you eat something! The students are often more hyper after lunch so you’ll need to keep your strength up through the afternoon!
  2. Take the opportunity to speak to colleagues in your department and around school – it’s a valuable and often rare chance to share/offload/learn
  3. Volunteer for lunch duty at least once a week – you see the students in a different light + build relationships and usually get paid + a free lunch out of it
  4. Make sure your afternoon lessons are ready to go so you can hit the ground running as soon as the students come in from lunch.
  5. Don’t be afraid to do something completely unrelated to school for some/all of lunchtime – it’s your break so feel free to switch off and recharge your batteries for a short while.

Dealing with bullying incidents with children by @621carly

Name: Carly Waterman
Twitter name: @621carly
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable):
Position: Deputy Head
What is your advice about? Dealing with bullying incidents with children.

  1. Always remember there are two sides to every story. Don’t be tempted into believing the first version you hear – no matter how convincing it seems.
  2. Children/teenagers’ perspectives are highly subjective and emotional. It doesn’t make them liars, it makes them human.
  3. Always seek advice from other professionals who know the children/family well before making a judgement about consequences for children. Be prepared to accept that your original inclination towards harsh punishment might not be the right approach.
  4. Situations of bullying in school are rarely black and white (especially with girls). The complexity requires an adult (who is not emotionally involved) to unpick it and strive towards a resolution.
  5. Don’t lose your faith in children as you learn that they can be horrible to each other. They are not the finished product yet; they are making mistakes, learning what’s right and wrong and finding their place in the social stratosphere.