This much I know about…”Progress in my classroom? How it is made and how I know it.”

#Blogsync post number 4. http://share.edutronic.net/

I have been a teacher of English for 24 years, a Headteacher for 9 years and, at the age of 48, this much I know about, “Progress in my classroom? How it is made and how I know it.”

This much I know. My blog on how I taught disengaged 15 year old boys to write http://wp.me/p2wufC-9X details quite nicely how Tom and his mates made progress, how I knew they made progress, the details of classroom action, my reflections and how we measured the impact. I have nothing better to offer this month’s Blogsync on Progress in my Classroom according to the rubric laid down by @Edutronic_net.

Students’ academic progress is a key concern when I interview teachers for posts at Huntington. I ask candidates to, Tell us about a student you have taught who made great progress. (How did you know they had made progress?). Every individual student candidates have referenced over the decade I have been asking that question has made progress because s/he has found a teacher who believes in her/him, connects with her/him, and has inspired her/him to break through the self-imposed glass ceiling of achievement.

You need a bit more than love, but without it you’ve little chance of your students making the progress they have the capacity to make. I ended my blog on teaching the boys with this, which I will always stand by: fundamentally students need to feel loved. It’s that simple and that complicated to convince colleagues of such a truth.

Sometimes you find nuggets of gold when panning the river of new recruits to teaching. This is the opening to a candidate’s letter of application which gleamed at me amongst the mud and gravel: I would not have studied ******** if it were not for the teachers that I had at school.  They were not amazingly cool or clever, but what really inspired me was how much they cared.  They cared about the subject, and they cared about their pupils.  They cared so much it was contagious, and we started caring too.  And now, there is nothing I would like more than to pass this on to the next generation. Did we appoint the author? What do you think…?

About johntomsett

Headteacher in York. All views are my own.
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