Show Me: Maximising the Use of Mini Whiteboards in Lessons

Mini whiteboards can be an excellent way to gather information about class ‘understanding’ quickly and efficiently. When used badly, however, they cease to be an effective responsive teaching tool, and they can get in the way of learning and become a distraction. This post draws upon some of Doug Lemov’s ideas in Teach Like aContinue reading “Show Me: Maximising the Use of Mini Whiteboards in Lessons”

Wasting time on silly questions

I ask questions of my students all the time. Most of the time I love questioning; I think it is real art form and one of the markers of what make a great teacher great. This post is about questioning some of the questions we routinely ask, and thinking through what kinds of questions weContinue reading “Wasting time on silly questions”

Teaching knowledge through vocabulary: or why tier two words may not be enough!

There are many great posts on how to teach vocabulary, including this one by Katie Ashford and this one by David Didau. Doug Lemov’s forthcoming book promises to add even more practical advice to our understanding of the best ways to improve students’ language fidelity. Whilst I commend these wonderful ideas and very much lookContinue reading “Teaching knowledge through vocabulary: or why tier two words may not be enough!”

Mr Benn and the Anatomy of Extended Writing

  Me and Mr Benn I was born in 1975, and the cult children’s animation Mr Benn was part of my childhood. I must have watched re-runs, since the only series made (which consisted of a paltry 13 episodes) was first aired in 1971. For the uninitiated, Mr Benn employed a recurring plot sequence. TheContinue reading “Mr Benn and the Anatomy of Extended Writing”