Pastoral leadership: purpose, positivity, prioritisation and progress

What does it take to be described as a “great Head of Year” by colleagues, in only your second year in that role? We asked Susannah Meersand, who works at a school in the West Midlands, about the challenges that responsibility for Year 10 has brought her, and how she has approached them. Susannah’s students…

“Questioning is a powerful tool”

Many teachers spend a substantial amount of their lesson time questioning students. These questions have many purposes: checking student understanding, challenging them to think more deeply and ensuring that they can express ideas articulately in speech – a helpful precursor to doing so on paper. Well-used, questioning goes a long way to ensuring that students’…

“The most successful lessons have a purpose – even if it’s a silly purpose”

Most teachers hope to offer students both academic success and personal development.  Many struggle, however, to identify ways to incorporate broader aims alongside the curriculum’s content and skills.  How, for example, can reading Jack and the Beanstalk engender ethical reasoning?  How can complicated concepts be introduced to young children? Lizzy Price (’13 Ambassador) has come…

Resilience: retaining sight of goals in the face of adversity

Our ‘Outliers’ study sought to explain the success of twenty-five Teach First participants who had thrived in the most challenging schools. Every one of them was described as ‘resilient’: this post examines teacher resilience, exploring the trainees’ underlying determination to succeed and the actions which helped them persist from day to day. Underpinning resilience: a…