Work/Life Balance – in teaching

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged about anything, mainly because I’ve been trying to achieve the illusive work / life balance which is so often dreamt of by us teachers.  However, since returning to work in September, in my eighth year in the profession I have managed to achieve something I only dreamt of – reading three books (non educational and for my own enjoyment) in a half term, seemingly working harder than previously and getting all my work completed!  I didn’t want to blog until I had things to share that I knew worked for me, so hopefully some of the things I suggest can help us weary teachers or at least guide us onto a path what is right for us.

Things reflected on in this blog

  • What do we mean by ‘work / life balance’
  • What is our motivation working
  • Why teaching can become all consuming
  • Quick wins to achieving work / life balance
What do we mean by work / life balance?
Typically as I was writing this blog, @teachertoolkit published one with one of his #5min plans about the same topic ( http://teachertoolkit.me/2013/10/23/the-5minwellbeingplan-by-teachertoolkit-and-leadinglearner/) .  Work Life Balance seems to be something everyone wants who is sane as most of us have family and friends who want to see us, and we have hobbies and interests which just don’t fit into our busy lives, meaning that we feel unfulfilled in some way despite our best efforts.  I guess it comes down to us knowing our heart, and knowing what is important to us.
When we know that, we can begin to unlock the mystery of how to achieve this ‘chasing after the wind’.  I am defining work / life balance as achieving a level of work that both ourselves, pupils and employers are happy with, combined with the happiness of those around us, as well as us having time for our own interests and pleasure.
I guess we first need to reflect on this big question – do we live to work, or work to live? I am really addressing the readers of those who, like me, fall under the work to live category.
What is our motivation working?
From what I realise, every person who teaches has a different reason for doing the job we do.  Below are some reasons teachers give – and there are many more as well.  We may do what we do for a combination of these rather than just one.
Why we work
Why teaching can become all consuming.
I found it really difficult to believe that teaching does not have to be your life until recently.  Being honest, there are many reasons why teaching can become our lives.
• There is always something to do – if we care about our work we always want to do the best we can
• We want to be the best we can be (if we didn’t we wouldn’t read blogs like this!).  We want to be effective for the pupils we serve, ew want our subjects curriculum and school to be success and we want to feel we’ve done a good job
• Emails never stop – or so it feels.  We can send them to our mobiles, tablets and laptops. When we are away and connect to mobile internet we can be in contact with our school life.  It’s very difficult to switch off!  However I once read of someone who did an auto-reply over the holidays that stated they were away, and any emails that were sent during that time period would automatically be deleted and not read.  If it needed attention please send it when they had returned to school.
• Outside agencies – working with outside agencies is essential to school life but these meetings and arrangements may happen outside of our normal teaching timetable which puts time pressures on us.
• Internal meetings – The hours in meetings that happen around schools must be scary.  If they are purposeful and have solid outcomes that is great, but there is nothing worse that being in a meeting that feels it is has little point of end in sight.
• We probably have unique roles and responsibilities in our schools – and it is also unlikely we’d meet other people from different schools with the same tasks as us as each school is different and has different pressures.
• We want to meet targets and be proud of our work
Quick wins to achieving work / life balance
Our first thoughts need to be our priorities – what really needs to be done.  I found making a list of all of my roles and responsibilities, compared with what I actually do, and then sorting them into an order of importance (Red Amber Green (RAG)) really helped.
Meetings – Why not email out key points before the meeting so they don’t need to be gone through during the meeting.  It may take time to type them up but this would be done for the minutes anyway, so only the action points need to be discussed or try to use the  #5 min meeting planner (http://teachertoolkitdotme.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/the-5min-meeting-planner.ppt)
Every teacher needs a To do list.  Personally I use mine electronically, it means that I can access it on my phone, tablet and PC. There are loads available depending on your operating system, but personally I use 2Do.  http://www.2doapp.com/ I know it’s more pricey than some on the market, but it interfaces both with iOS and Android well, and done everything I want it to, from recurring tasks to being able to tag code them, adding locations and copying and pasting emails into the notes section.  It also links to the amazingly useful Toodledo website meaning I can access and edit my to do list anywhere even if I don’t have my devices!  http://www.toodledo.com  There are loads of apps that interface with toodledo.
I also considered what was the most time consuming tasks I faced then tried to do think of ways to reduce thee times.  My main time consumer was marking.  See my blog about different ways to mark just as effectively but in less time by clicking here.  Typing up lesson plans also took time – but http://teachertoolkit.me/the-5-minute-lesson-plan/ helped here.
Sharing resources with other teachers – I created #RE:Share, but there are loads of subject specific drop boxes set up – which saves time going through tesresources – http://www.classroomtm.co.uk/teaching-dropboxes/
Getting other people involved to help you.  Not only will this help you get some of your tasks done more effectively it shares the load, and helps other people’s professional development.  There are a number of things I am involved with that I would truly struggle to get done well if I didn’t have others support.
Having a date night.  Rob Parsons, founder of Care for the Family once suggested that couples should have a planned date night with their partner.  No laptops, mobiles turned off, tablets away etc.   When my wife suggested this to me I didn’t think it was achievable as there was always things to do, but after a painful few weeks my work seemed to fit in around this event.
Forward planning.  It’s not difficult to see that things come round time and time again, year on year. Why not just keep a log of what need to be done, and forward plan?
Conclusion
I know this blog (ironically) has taken time to read but I hope it’s been useful.  As ever, please feel free to post a comment, follow me on Twitter (@sheltont101) or read over some of the other articles in my blog.  If you do have anything you can share to help others please do so! I know I rarely get it right, but I’m working on it.
Additional edit – ‘For Singleton’s’
After writing this blog, I had a comment on Twitter about how work/life balance can be achieved for singletons.  That has made me think as for some it’s not easy to be a singleton whereas for others its great.  What is likely is that unless you are very disciplined you may work all hours with no one to stop you – and if you are like me the time just passes you by.  One primary teacher I knew of frequently worked until 1 or 2 in the morning each day.  It’s difficult unless you are really disciplined, but my thoughts (and they are only thoughts)…
  • make sure you have a hobby – if you don’t find an evening a week that you can start one off – anything at all from learning a new language, keep fit, art etc.  This will help you keep contact with ‘normal’ people as well educationalists.
  • give yourself a cut off time each night and stick to it
  • make sure you watch a film one evening week or read a book – whatever is your interest outside the Twitter world and the educational one!
  • apply what you can from the rest of my blog – the main principles still apply!

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#5Pledges for the New Year

As I mentally prepare for next academic year, I am forced to consider what will I do differently next year? If I think back over the last one I had no idea of the opportunities, cpd and training I would be given. Equally I would never have thought my teaching and learning strategies would have changed so much. Sure I made many mistakes, and since pupils I still never mastered effectively, but over all out was a good year.

So what if next? Like new year resolutions are set on January what five pledges can we realistically make? That’s my challenge to all of us hard working professionals. Let’s share them with #5Pledges

My five are

1 To ensure that my marking stays effective and helpful for pupils, ensuring they know how progress and have DIRT time in lesson to show this. This will lead to better monitoring of pupils, thus hopefully better lessons!

2 To try one new teaching idea a month, doesn’t sound like a lot but I’m trying to be realistic as it involves lots of twitter research and blog monitoring!

3 Offer high quality CPD training to 3 members of staff, and hopefully provide it to 2!

4 Get to know 1 thing that my pupil’s like personally for those pupils I struggle to form a positive relationship with and develop this to help form good relationships.

5 Build in personal time-read one book a month – not based on education!

Why not tweet me yours @sheltont101 or share yours #5Pledges

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Quick and Easy Effective Marking

Over the last few weeks I have engaged in many tweets with people over marking. Love it, hate it or neither, marking is an integral part of any teachers job. But who do we mark work for? Our pupils? Ourselves? SLT? And what is effective marking anyway?and should it really take us hours?

Well, these are the kind of points I hope to address, they are not definitive and may not be right for either your, or my context but they are practical ideas, hopefully ones which may usefully support practice.

Ideas in this post

  • What makes good pupil feedback
  • Stamps
  • Who do you mark for?
  • Label making
  • A-Z coding
  • Easy marking homework
  • Absent peer-assessment homework

Firstly, rule one of any teaching job, do what your school tells you. If you have a whole school marking policy, use it.

Who do you mark for?

Depending how you answer this will depend on your style of marking.

Formative Comments – pupil focussed

If you are marking for your pupils, your comments must be helpful for pupils to understand how to improve and what they’ve done well. They must also have DIRT time in the next lesson to. DIRT is an abbreviation for Dedicated Improvement and Reflection Time. Also giving grades is not useful as this seems to be the only focus pupils have. I’ve tried a few things this year, and this was my first pupils progress marking stamp.

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Pupils liked this, but struggled to be original in their replies, for example to “make sure you know about…” they may reply “I now know one thing” so more of a question was needed like “Write one extra thing you know about….” as this checked or furthered pupils thinking.

Recently we’ve moved to these stamps… (pictures from wingdings font).

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The advantage is that the idea is the same, one thing I like, a question or something to take forward and pupil response. It highlights clearly that pupils need to do something in DIRT time.
By having them reasons to your comments created a very clear demonstration of both marking being a conversation between teacher and learner and that the progress comments given have been acted upon and this more progress made.

Label Making

As you have probably noticed in the image, my handwriting isn’t the best, DIRT time was generally spent explaining my handwriting. I’ve recently bought a second hand label maker, which chops continuous labels into appropriate length labels. I now type my comments and pupils, in DIRT time now act on them or ask for the answers to the questions I’ve posed. These are then written down to show clear progression and conversation during marking.

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The danger of using any ICT based technology, like auto cutting labels, is a mass print run at the start of marking results in every book have the same target and comment, regardless of the appropriateness of it. That, in my opinion, is not effective marking. There are some stock phrases we may use regularly, ie “Well done Luke, you’ve met the objectives, now please underline your title.” clearly, where appropriate these are useful and may save some time being stored. But irresponsible marking is just as unhelpful as no marking, leading to pupils not reading comments or making progression.  Label’s have saved me about a third of my time, but my handwriting is so poor that is understandable!

SLT marking

If you are marking, with SLT inspections in mind, you need to be reflecting what they want in books looking at whole-school strategies.  What does you school focus on?  Literacy?  Citizenship?  Reflection? PLT’s?  If you are marking with them in mind, your marking may look somewhat different than pupil focussed as you may be looking at ticking boxes depending on the school.

Your own assessment

If you are marking for teacher assessment, pupil progress marking (as suggested above) may be unhelpful as it’s difficult to record in mark books, so you need to work out what assessments are really important and what information you want to record to track.

A-Z – Marking Letters

A-Z version 1

But what of even more abbreviated marking, leading to effective formative feedback?  I have taken this idea from the REToday magazine, about 8 years ago and used it well at one school I worked at.  Pupils are given an A5 sheet of the letters A-Z.  (Click on the image to get the full A-Z list).  Next to each letter is a comment.  When marking, you simply record the letter in the pupils book as appropriate, then given them time at the start of each lesson to record the comment next to the letter to check they have read it.  You could also write the letters in your mark book to see if there is an ongoing pattern.

From this, I suggested to the school a more progression driven one, where letters from each section would be taking, leading to pupils needing to make a change to their work as instructed (again click on the image for download).

A-Z Version 2

Easy marking homework

I have worked two alternatives to homework marking in the last few years.  Firstly I have worked with others to develop ‘long and thin homework projects.’  Pupils are given a choice of projects throughout a range of methods over a unit and have the unit to create the project.  This means light-touch checking throughout the unit, then only really marking at the end of each unit.

The second is working on self-marking VLE homeworks.  Using programs native to VLE’s or HotPotatoes means that when pupils complete them they are recorded on a markbook on a VLE done anyway.  If you need a start, it’s a pain to set up, but Moodle does the job brilliantly.  Homeworks may sent time to set up, but if your unit stays year on year, the time spent will return big time to you.

Absent Marking

Of course, there always comes a time when teachers are off, and pupils work in books needs marking.  When I was off on paternity leave recently once class had written 8 pieces of classwork – all of which needed to be formatively marked.  To do this, on my return, pupils swapped books and checked and highlighted each others spellings and wrote one comment about each piece of work to improve it. Pupils then swapped books back, and acted on each others comments.  Is that just a cheat – or is it effective marking leading to them reassessing their own work?

I hope you have found this post helpful and thought provoking. Please feel free to comment or reply or follow me on twitter @sheltont101

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Reaching out to all

I write this blog in response to @betsysalt who raised some excellent questions about the tenancy of we bloggers in teaching who write blogs about best practice which makes it seem that we never have a bad day or bad class. Can I start by dispelling that myth-  at least for me! My blogs are useful to me as reflections for the things I managed to get working in lessons;  hopefully they help others-but I know I am not a polished outstanding teaching, just a weary traveler.  I’m sure many will agree.

As part of my role as a secondary teacher I help mentor and coach PGCE students. I have two bits of advice for them on the first day they meet me. 

  1.       Your relationship with the pupils is key to everything
  2.       Teach the class, not the plan.

With those two bits of  information in our mind let me address the questions @betsysalt raised. The original blog is in italics.

Dear Many Teacher Bloggers (& yes, ‘Gurus’)

Thank you for your awesome blogging. I love reading about your ideas.  I want more please! But I think the fab teachers I work with need more than what seems to be on offerCan you answer these questions:

How you engage a severely autistic child in your classroom?

In the school I work in we have an extremely good range of pupils ability, from pupils who will struggle to get Gs through to straight A* pupils. We also have a large Additional Need contingent including pupils on the ASD spectrum, and it’s hard to always engage them. Often their attitude is set prior to coming into the room due to external factors. And it doesn’t take much for them to feel afraid and thus close off. When we are trying to make all pupils progress this is really hard. It comes back to my two rules again, relationship and teaching the pupil. If the pupil likes you and your lesson you stand half a chance. I find that prepping the TA attached to them prior to the lesson means that if they need to leave with the pupil for whatever reason, the pupil still makes progress. Catching up with them both afterwards is essential though to keep the positive relationship up.

How do you cope with a child who refuses to learn, no matter how engaging your lesson, or effective your pedagogy?

I certainly know the type. Some pupils just don’t seem to respond to anything. Detentions don’t work- even if they do come to them. No matter how effective or exciting your lessons are they just fold their arms and refuse to partake. I guess firstly it’s relationship, but quite often it’s a negative one. Then it’s how good the school systems are. Quite often these pupils are the same across the board but if you find a teacher they do work well with, mine them for ideas. Also could you shift them from your group into another teacher’s? if so, that may get them away from the group of peers they may be acting to, which may help.

How do you teach a child who can’t read, or perhaps can’t write, in history? In science?

Differentiation?  We all need to present information in alternative formats for different learning styles.  If a pupil is illiterate it’s unlikely they will be targeted a C+ at GCSE, so get them to do something they can do – ie draw, work on a laptop.  Give them in the information in an audio-visual way – as teachers it is our job to be creative – it surely takes a lot of time, but when pupils engage, learn and make progress, there is no greater thrill.  

When school is the only safe place, how do you ensure children learn despite their internal and external wounds?

Relationship.  There are a lot of broken children out there, and they break our hearts if we care.  But IF we care, then we know that school is the safest place for some of our children, so it is our duty to look out for them, to have good systems in place to pastorally support them and give them the best start in life.

When a child has no English how do you include them?

Difficult one, I once had 2 pupils who had moved straight from Poland.  I used Google Translate for my worksheets.  I’m not saying it was good, but it was better than not doing anything.  Pupils with no English really need extracting to do English, in my opinion, as without specialists teaching them they won’t be able to access any work in any subject.  As a non-English-subject teacher it is my job to model the language, and seek advice from the EAL coordinator.  And where possible, try to have them access the content – by  translating worksheets etc.

How do you make the curriculum relevant to a Somali child?

Deep question – but I think we’d ask the same question about any children.  How can we make the Black Death relevant to a 21st Century, 30th generation English pupil?  We just need to be creative.  It depends on the lesson, but all humans have the same basic understanding of Emotions etc. If we can tap into imagination, nothing is impossible, it just may take a lot of time to sort it out!

 @chocotzar said in her staggering blog tonight: ‘ It’s the people who always matter the most to me, not the pedagogyhttp://chocotzar.wordpress.com/2013/05/29/why-im-no-longer-a-pacifist-and-why-im-a-teacher/

 For me, she captured it just right. Yes I need my teachers to keep learning and to develop their practice, continually learning, growing their own pedagogy. But children come first and I want the staff to see each child as an individual, with a home life, time in school only being a part of who they are. Many child have massive barriers to be overcome before they can even begin to learn. How do we enable children to do that? What is it about us as teachers that means we can do that in a lesson. There is excellent blogging about teaching and learning out there, but I would find it more accessible if it was directly related to children –what worked ? What didn’t? Which children have you tried this with?

I’ve been fortunate, I’ve made lots of mistakes but I’ve had the opportunity to learn.  I am still learning.  All I can do, is to keep trying with the pupils I have.  Some I need to work with other staff with, some I can win round, some don’t need winning as they are already on side.  I’ve had eight years of teaching , making different mistakes and learning from them each year.  I’ve been fortunate this year to have learnt a lot, and experimented a lot, and learnt a lot from these experiments.  Not every teacher has this opportunity, but my pupils are a lot more engaged now than what they were because of this, and I would strive to encourage everyone to try something new at least once a week!

Age? Ethnicity? Language? Class? SEN? Behaviour? Autistic? Should some of these ‘classification’ matter? No. Do they? Yes. How do you make sure the carers in your class get support to do their homework when you know they don’t have time to complete it at home as they are looking after someone they love?

Pass….  Knowing the pupil and relationship I guess.  Is homework that important?  Or is the pupil more important?

How do you encourage a child who gets no encouragement at home, in fact where school is a place reviled because of a parent’s own experience?

By caring, by a drip drip drip approach.  By showing them that there is another way.  By investing time with them.  We can do a lot over 5 years at secondary, or 8 years at primary.

And perhaps most of all, can we hear about your mistakes. We all know failure is a vital stage of learning…when did you fail? What did you learn?  So you fantastic teachers out there, yes you, you who inspire your class most days, make them laugh, keep them safe and engage them in that staggeringly complex process of learning…can we have less pedagogy and more people.

I fail every day in something.  But I learn as well.  So hopefully I get to be a better teacher.  However, this is something I will include in my blogging from here on  in.  And maybe there is a challenge to all of us bloggers.

In fact, more children. What worked? What didn’t?  I’m all for learning, I’m all for developing practice. But can you put pedagogy in context please.  So it’s not people v pedagogy. ’s pedagogy for people- Children: that’s who we want to impact on.

That’s all. Thanks.oggers (& yes, ‘Gurus’)

Thank you for your awesome blogging. I love reading about your ideas.

Please keep challenging us to do what we can, to the best of our abilities – because as great as it is to share good practice, we are here to serve our pupils, and being honest and open may make others not make the same mistakes we have.

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June 2, 2013 · 8:35 pm

Why BIG is sometimes beautiful

Idea’s in this blog for teaching

  • Life Size labelling
  • Totem Pole
  • Big Banners with open questions
  • Class Mindmaps
  • Human bar charts
  • 3D Cities

Sometimes it doesn’t take much to inspire me.  for example, the NQT I’ve been mentoring this year, Nicki (@07004417Nik) caused one such moment when she said

“Give a piece of paper to a pupil with lines on and they’ll think it’s work, give them a plain piece of paper and they’ll think it’s creative and do it a lot better”.

I then thought, how would they approach work if they were given an A3 page and then told to research and collaborate. Then @CaldiesTandL showed a picture of an outline of a pupil on a massive piece of paper and suddenly there I was.

Big was beautiful.

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Admit it, we walk past huge, tall buildings and think Wow. We go past normal houses and think nothing as it’s normal. We go past mansions and get jealous. And why is that? Because you can do stuff with big, but small, you’re limited.

So why do we give pupils A5 books to work with? If it’s for notes they are great, they can go in big pockets or small bags but what about learning using super size posters?

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This is an example of a pupil in year 7 who was drawn around with information added about the affects of smoking and alcohol. Nicki did this one in a PSHCEE lesson. Pupils had stimulus information around the room to read, then they had to label and draw the affect on the drawing of the pupil. She’d taken my idea, which I’d taken from @CaldiesTandL on puberty. As a plenary, after doing the back ground work on changes in boys and girls in puberty the plenary was the boys labeled and drew the changes that happened on their volunteer boy outline, and the girls did the same on theirs. As a cruel joke I suggested the pupils did the opposite the gender… the fireworks works were amazing, but so was the evidence of their learning.

imageAnother example was the totem pole I did for revision, each pupil added a bit of information onto rolled up backing paper. When it was completed it looked amazing. More about that in my earlier blog (http://wp.me/p3kpaf-13).

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Massive 2 metre high banners were this weeks idea. In groups of 5 or 6 pupils were given a big question on my lesson topic of marriage. “What’s the point of marriage?” “Is marriage out of date?” and “what happens in a marriage service?”. Pupils were then given information and text books and given 6 mins to answer the question. Big questions rotated each 6 minutes and they couldn’t repeat something already said.

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Another idea, class mindmaps. Thanks to @ASTsupportAAli for this concept. Do 10 mindmaps, 10 pupils. Each pupil adds information or answers a question on the one in front of them. After 30 secs they move on. Suddenly mindmaps become exciting. Each pupil can have a different colored pen so you can increase accountability. Makes a good display afterwards too!

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Another idea, human bar chart. Ask pupils a question, ie “Abortion is wrong”, give pupils a postit note to write a number on to show what they think, btw 1-10 (1 being strongly disagree, 10 strongly agree). Write 1-10 on the ground. Pupils then screw them up post it notes with numbers on and throw them in middle. All pupils then take one- they probably won’t get their same number. They then stand behind the number on the ground in a human bar chart (one behind another) and need to give an argument from there new perspective. Nicely is big and includes numeracy.

Another idea from Nicki was to create a model town, not content on pupils drawing a town she gave then materials to create a 3d model town, on the top of their desks. Innovative and memorable, and packed full of living geography.

All you need for any of these is roll of backing paper or old wallpaper.  And felt tips or markers.

In all of this, and my experiments in teaching and learning over the last two months, I have truly learnt one thing:

Sometimes BIG is beautiful.

Please follow me on twitter for update and regular photos on ideas, also please tweet me your teaching and learning ideas, I’d love to try them! @sheltont101

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Showing progress through revision: Totem Poles

Now I am teaching my GCSE subject over three years instead of two,  I have a lot more mid- and end of unit tests to go through. This means is I have a lot more revision lessons to plan so need a much wider variety of approaches to enage the pupils in my lessons.  I have three Year 9 classes, all of who were revising on the same day for the Is it Fair? (Religious Studies) end of unit test.  There were eight lessons in the unit, so it was necessary to revise all eight lessons in one lesson.

Asking for help on Twitter and following various conversations, someone suggested a totem pole and from that this lesson appeared in my head!

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The completed revision Totem Pole

To prepare the lesson I needed a role of wallpaper backing paper which was about two metres high and rolled together and taped to become a cylinder for the Totem Pole.  My lesson plan and 5 things worksheet is available by clicking here.

As an overview the lesson at the start, pupils had a ‘5 things’ sheet – where they needed to write down 5 things they could remember from each lesson. Naturally they struggled to get two or three.

Pupils were put into differentiated pairs, and given one lesson to research in more detail.  They had their class notes and I dug out the information leaflets they used during their original lessons.  One person  was asked to create an information poster with 5 things on about that one lesson whilst the other used A5 coloured paper to draw a picture and add a sentence or two about the content of the lesson.  This coloured paper was then cut into a shape, and stuck on the Totem Pole.  They had 10 minutes to complete the task.  After this the posters were stuck on the whiteboard, and the coloured paper put on the Totem Pole.

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A close up of the information on the Totem Pole

Pupils then went back to the 5 things sheet and added more information to their one section.

They then repeated the whole process for another part with each of them taking the opposite role.

After this, the class used all the information on the Totem Pole and the whiteboard to complete their 5 things sheets.  They ended with writing one thing they had learnt that lesson on a postit note and putting it on the whiteboard on the way out.

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The information posters on the whiteboard

If you have any revision strategies that you are able to share, an idea you haven’t tried or if you would like more information please feel free to tweet and follow me @sheltont101.  For other blogs I have written look at https://sheltont.wordpress.com/.  Thanks to @ASTsupportAAli who encouraged me to write this blog.  His excellent resources are at http://bulmershetoolkit.blogspot.co.uk/

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RE Teacher – RE Share

UPDATE #REshare has been running for four years, and now has over 100 active users and over 600 resources – sharing #reteacher resources. Thanks to all collaborators for their input.

To sign up please email re_share@ymail.com and I will send you the link to access it.  Please upload as well as download!

Many thanks


Original Post on launch in 2013….

Further to a post on Twitter earlier from me (@sheltont101) I wondered if there was any appetite for RE teachers to share resources online for free.  There are some sites similar to this, however they often charge money, when facilities (like google drive) offer free file hosting. TES is great, but it’s massive and I find I often don’t know where to start!

As a trial then, I have launched RE:Share.  The idea of this site is that however many files you upload, you can download.  Now there are no restrictions on proving you have done this, however due to the way that google drive works I will need to add you as a shared user.  I’ve started off putting some of mine on.

Why not ‘sign up’ for free, by emailing me your email by direct mailing @sheltont101 on twitter or emailing me with your email on re_share@ymail.com  It uses googledrive so is accessable anywhere – so all you need to know is how to use it!  It seems quite intuitive. When I have your details I’ll send the link to you for the site – please let all the RE teachers know you know – the more the merrier.

Please could I ask though that we don’t share anything copyrighted or anything with photo’s of pupils on to help with the old safeguarding issues. Let’s be creative.

If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact me and I’ll try and get back to you.

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