Jon Tait is an experienced senior leader and current deputy headteacher working in a large and diverse secondary school in Middlesbrough. As a classroom teacher, he has experience of working in 3 different North East schools for over 15 years. He's also an author, speaker, coach, and consultant, with an impressive list of contributions to the education sector. Joining us as a keynote speaker for Lead LIVE Darlington, we caught up with Jon to discuss his work and new book, "Bloomsbury CPD Library: Senior Leadership".
I am guessing many of us remember at least one teacher who really stood out from the others, someone who has made a real impact on our lives. I am often tempted to define a brilliant teacher as one who passes the thirty year test: when you catch up with them thirty years later, you want to go up and talk to them, because they made such a difference to your life. The thing about making a difference is that you can never unmake that difference. Once you are "that" teacher for a child, you will retain a special place in their hall of fame for ever.
As part of its ‘Learning Rooms’ approach, which addresses many aspects of the learning and teaching environment, STAGE’ modular systems manufacturers Gratnells is offering schools a variety of mini staging formats which can be easily used and stored in the classroom.
Leading a school is a privilege, and a tremendous opportunity to have a positive influence – to lead in the way you think it should be done, to focus on the priorities you believe to be the right ones and to create an environment where it is possible for those you lead to be their best selves. You have the chance to make a difference to the lives of students, and of staff, on a scale unlike any other you have ever known. There’s huge reward and satisfaction in this, and, in my experience, joy.
My name is Ira Cross, Jr. and I am an elementary school teacher in Columbus, Ohio in the U.S. I am ecstatic to have recently finished my first year of teaching! I am very humbled and excited to have the opportunity to write this article, and have been told I have this fiery energy about me that fits teaching so perfectly, and it is rewarding when my excitement is noticed. I am always looking for, and thinking of, ways to show my passion and enthusiasm. One way that I love to share this energy with my students is by hosting game shows and other activities to review information taught and discussed.
Teaching in Japan has given me a plethora of new experiences, but I didn’t expect to see such a fundamentally different style of education. Tokyo Drift lied about schools in Japan. The students don’t use laptops or phones in school. They use pencils and erasers, they grade their own assignments, and can be trusted to sit in an hour of study without adult supervision.
As recently demonstrated in Richard Spencer’s Boogie Biology article, students have a blast shimmying their way through different subjects. Composer and educator Brian Madigan discusses the opportunities given by a classroom foxtrot.
I was lucky enough to spend the recent half-term break with my family and some friends on the beautiful Pembrokeshire Coast in Wales, which I can heartily recommend for its stunning landscapes, friendly welcome and abundant wildlife.
“How do you motivate your students?” - this become a popular question amongst teachers all across the UK, and where I come in. I have been travelling the UK motivating and inspiring students to achieve their dreams and improve their academic results; I’ve found a various amount of tools useful when it comes to motivating students to do the things which they need to do. Over the last 4 years I’ve seen a huge growth spurt in the area of schools turning to different resources in order to provide motivation for their students, whether it be through speakers, videos and other means. I will share an insight to what has personally led to my success when it comes to motivating students.
No matter what stage we have reached in our lives, no matter what age we are, it is never too late to have dreams and realise them. When children and young people are given the opportunity to systematically explore values, as an integral part of their education, they get fired up because the process makes so many aspects of learning meaningful and relevant, expanding individuals’ horizons while also developing and strengthening their inner qualities. The effects can be surprising!
Our mindset is key to unlocking our potential. The study of values is an engaging, holistic process that not only builds and strengthens participants’ mental capabilities but their physical and spiritual attributes as well. It appeals because the exploratory process and the activities to reinforce learning are expansive and experiential. Children and young people enjoy feeling empowered as they gradually develop essential emotional and social skills that enable them to better manage and control situations. This is particularly rewarding when, rather than being swamped by negative influences, such as fear and perceived limitations, they can draw upon diligently mastered tools that help them realise their hopes and aspirations.
After reading 'An Ethic of Excellence' by Ron Berger I was inspired to try and use his core principles to make a difference in my own school.
One of the core principles that struck me from Berger's work was his strong belief that 'to truly engage learners, there needs to be a real audience for their work'. This really rang true for me and took me back to a comment that Julia Skinner made about her fantastic work with the 100 word challenge. During a TeachMeet presentation, Julia asked us all 'how an audience of one person (us, the teacher), can be that motivating'?
If the work always stays on our desk and never goes any further, we are only just scratching the surface in terms of student motivation to do their best. Julia continues to organise a weekly 100 word challenge to engage students in writing, knowing that they'll receive 'real comments' from 'real people' through the power of blogging – hence the increased motivation coming from having a real audience.