I came across a useful video clip on the ‘Teach like a Champion’ blog. The clip is entitled ‘A Masterful No Opt Out by Denarius Frazier.’ It is a recording of a teacher using the ‘No Opt Out’ questioning technique very effectively. It might be an idea for teachers to try and use this technique as a form of ‘deliberate practice’ within lessons. Continue reading


I came across a useful article on the VESPA Mindset twitter feed entitled “Strategies for teaching metacognition in classrooms.” Metacognition is thinking about thinking and can be used to improve student learning. The following is quoted from the article “Recent shifts in pedagogy have emphasised the importance of encouraging students to figure out how to be independent, self-regulated learners. The teacher cannot be there to hold their hand beyond school. This demands that students reflect on their learning in meaningful ways. It also requires students to be critical analysts of their own thinking in order to overcome complex or unexpected problems.” Continue reading

‘Magic Whiteboard Sheets’


In the past I have used ‘Magic Erasable Whiteboard’ sheets in the following way:

  1. I set a past exam question
  2. I break the question down into separate sub categories
  3. I split the students into groups of four or five and give each group a sub category to work on, asking them to make as many points as possible.
  4. Once the group have made as many points as they can do on their sub category, they move onto another sub category and see if they can add anything to it.
  5. All of the groups work their way around the separate sub categories.
  6. Ultimately, they end up back to where they started and complete a presentation for the rest of the class based on their sub category.

Continue reading

Mindset – motivation during exam period

I came across a short clip on the Ted Talks site entitled ‘8 secrets of success.’ I am planning on showing it to my students in order to encourage them to remain motivated during this stage of the year, as it may be difficult for them given the pressure of exam revision etc. The video ties in nicely with the mindsets work they’ve covered in College and seems to be pertinent, given that the exam period is imminent.

Should you wish to watch and share the video, I have included the link below.



March TeachMeet: Literacy and Numeracy in unexpected places


There was another good turnout for TeachMeet, with about 15 teachers representing Business and Economics; English and Media; Humanities; Psychology, Philosophy and Law; Physics and Computing, and Visual and Expressive Arts curriculum areas plus Academic Support.

The topic under discussion was how to develop literacy and numeracy, particularly in areas where the connections are less obvious. Continue reading