Your child comes home with their report card or at parents evening you are informed that they are working at level 3 in Mathematics. You are ask yourself, what on earth does that mean? Well it means that in Mathematics lessons they have been assessed to be able to do the majority of the following;

·       Say what each digit stands for in numbers like 725 and 1974

·       Use decimals in money questions

·       Use negative numbers to describe temperature

·       Remember addition facts up to 20

·       Add and take numbers like 18 and 37 in my head

·       Add numbers like 184 and 359 on paper

·       Know my 2, 3, 4, 5, and 10 times tables

·       Draw pictures to represent fractions

·       Know when two fractions are equivalent

·       Find symmetry in 2D shapes

·       Sort 2D and 3D shapes using their properties

·       Measure things using units like centimetres, litres and minutes

·       Find information in tables and lists

·       Draw bar charts

·       Draw pictograms

·       Interpret simple charts and graphs

Parental involvement in education

Many parents ask the question how involved should they get with their child’s learning and the answer is clear and simple, VERY! Parental involvement in education is paramount for any successful learner. Learning does not stop as you leave the classroom, ideas and concepts need to be revised, applied and practised, and this is where Parental involvement in the education process is key.

How to ensure my child makes progress and learns effectively at school?

If you are a parent and you want to get involved in your child’s education the question above is a tough question to answer. However, in a recent study the following ten characteristics were most commonly associated with students who made good or accelerated progress during secondary school, the students;

  1. Were determined and focused in their approach to their work;
  2. Accepted and often enjoyed high levels of challenge presented by their teachers;
  3. Analysed their own strengths and weaknesses;
  4. Were prepared to work independently without direct supervision;
  5. Were resilient and did not become disheartened when faced with disappointments;
  6. Had a clear long-term goal in mind, either in terms of a career or further education, which acted as a significant motivator;
  7. Were good at getting the most out of working in a pair or group;
  8. Displayed other talents and interests (e.g. music, sport, etc) which they developed alongside their school work;
  9. Readily sought and received help from home;
  10. Formed productive and effective ‘learning partnerships’ with their teachers based on mutual respect.

Comments are FREE, If you have any points or advice you want to add, feel free to add a comment below.

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Teaching and effective classroom practice

Effective classroom practice is very important to deliver successful lessons. It is very important that you make the time to investigate your school’s polices and processes. Also it is highly advised to observe your fellow practitioners in the school to learn from good practice.

Having had the opportunity to observe and feedback on hundreds of lessons I have found  that there are number of factors that effect good classroom practice;

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  • Have good preparation and planning for each lesson. This includes marking homework and have resources readily available and in working order.
  • Developing personal relationship with class and have good behavioural management.
  • Good lesson structure with objectives and aims clearly defined, i.e. starter main and plenary.
  • Appropriate questions should be given, with clear instructions and explanations delivered throughout lessons.
  • Exercises and activities should be varied and relevant to the subject area.
  • Be dynamic and vigilant in the classroom environment. Prepare for pupils with all abilities and ensure that you are ready for problems arising.
  • Time and effort should be placed on making sure that lessons deal with appropriate topics and activities
  • Lessons should have pace and emphasis should be made on maintenance of momentum.
  • Conclude lessons with good evaluation tasks so that lessons can be measured in terms of successful learning.
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There is no one solution to this and success will depend on school, class, pupil, environment, your mood and a whole host of factors!

It is important that you analyse your school’s behaviour management policy but the following discipline policy sanctions can be highlighted;

  •  Give extra work to be completed after school or at home.
  •  Verbal chastisement after lesson or after school.
  •  Form Tutor’s detention with 24 hours notice.
  • Subject Teacher’s detention/with 24 hours notice.
  • Departmental detention with 24 hours notice.
  • Faculty detention with 24 hours notice.
  • School detention. This can only be issued by the Senior House Tutor/Head of Faculty or by a senior member of staff and must have 24 hours notice.
  • Head Master’s detention. This can only be issued only by the Head Master or a senior member of staff with 24 hours notice.
  • Use of individual daily report sheets issued by Senior House Tutor. This is then overseen by Form Tutor or Senior House Tutor.
  • Use of class report sheets which is issued by Senior House Tutor.
  • Exclusion from a lesson.
  • Fixed term exclusion. In the case of exclusions exceeding 2 days, work should be set.
  • Chairman of Governors’ warning.
  • Permanent exclusion, involving the Governing Body and the School Attendance Panel

Feel free to add your own points in the comments section.

Assessment for learning: a powerful way to improve learning and raise standards.

Assessment for learning involves using assessment in the classroom to raise pupils’ achievement. It is based on the idea that pupils will improve most if they understand the aim of their learning, where they are in relation to this aim and how they can achieve the aim (or close the gap in their knowledge).