Yesterday, I was one of the lucky ones. I got to take part in what can only be described as the best CPD day i've ever seen. It seemed like The whole country merged into one school for www.independentthinking.Co.uk big day out. And what a day it was!
From juggling with balls to Little Miss Sunshine and meeting many tweechers I have come to know online, the day had everything. I left feeling inspired, it renewed my belief that humour, laughter and trying to be 'out of the ordinary' are the key to great classroom practice.
Using Dave Keelings speech i've rearranged what he called RING to make this theory of outstanding teacher practice.
If you can't make children laugh, well it's time to buy a joke book. Laughter released the same chemical in our brain that exercise does. It makes us feel good and when we feel good we are happy. When we are happy we learn more. Nuff said. Get giggling!
Is what you are teaching relevant to your children? If it is, well that's bloody fantastic. If, however, you are still teaching QCA unit 8 tudors to a bored class of 8 year olds, you are doing something wrong somewhere. How can you make it relevant for them is what you need to consider here.
Are you interested in what you are teaching? Are you still interested in being a teacher? If not it's time for a change. Lessons (and yourself) must be interesting. Share stories of yourself with them. Take them into your world. Make them see the world for the interesting place it is. Putting it simply, if kids don't find it interesting, they'll be bored, if they are bored they are not learning. If they are not learning, you are not doing your job properly.
Not naughty as in having a glass of wine at lunchtime or knicking someones stapler because it winds them up, but naughty in the sense of adventure. Taking risks, what I have termed explosive learning. Explosive learning because you know the starting point but you have no idea what will happen next. Letting the children lead the learning. Not being afraid to fail and to make mistakes. You should be making mistakes everyday! If you are not, you are too safe! You are not using explosive learning.
Smile at every child everyday. It may be the only smile they get. A smile also forms the basis of the teacher student relationship. If you ain't smiling, you are miserable. If you are miserable, it's likely your kids will be miserable.
Smile. You are on stage.
Most of all, make the difference.
You only get one childhood. Do you want it to be memorable? Or miserable?
I'm a deputy head in Scarborough, England and love using media and tech to develop writing. I'm also a keen advocate of Learning Without Limits and believe in a games based approach to developing mathematicians.