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Talk me down!

(18 Posts)
DontEvenPoint Wed 10-Dec-14 19:31:41

Starting to get stressed about my lesson ob by HT tomorrow. Not being very rational, I get anxious about things generally. I'm going over and over it in my head and it's becoming counter productive. I've been teaching 12 years and I always get 'good' or 'good with outstanding features', but I'm in a new year group and I had a slight difference of opinion with the HT last term so I'm worried! Just need to relax really...

Asleeponasunbeam Wed 10-Dec-14 19:34:06

Tell us about your lesson. I'm sure it'll be fine. Horrible time of the term to be having an obs though! We're no better - we have 'pupil progress meetings' next week, in which we have to explain why we're so crap that some of our pupils haven't made a sub level's progress in the last six weeks (and yes, we're still using levels and 'sub-levels').

Good luck.

DontEvenPoint Wed 10-Dec-14 19:41:17

It's in Early Years so I'm doing a role play and outside investigation, lots of talking and questioning and exploring. I think it's a nice lesson, and I know the class will enjoy it. Its just that Early Years is harder for me to judge in terms of what's been 'learnt' IYSWIM? I also don't think HT is particularly into EYFS ideology, I think she'd have them all sitting in rows learning their numbers and sounds and behaving impeccably...

Asleeponasunbeam Wed 10-Dec-14 19:49:32

Sounds perfect. Head sounds... Not so!
They will be learning loads. How will you show this to head (if she decides she can't work it out for herself)?

DontEvenPoint Wed 10-Dec-14 19:58:23

That's the trouble, I'm not sure how to show the learning! I mean it just seems so obvious that they are learning, but there's no real product in the same way that you get in KS1 (where I was before). I mean I have their on entry assessments, so I could compare observations I make during the session with those? I find learning through play very hard to quantify actually.

Asleeponasunbeam Wed 10-Dec-14 20:06:44

And so it should be. It shouldn't be something we can assess, tick off and move on from, should it? But you know that.

Your questioning, at the beginning and end of the lesson, will help show learning. Make the most of incidental opportunities, as you doubtless always do. Think about what learning you want to take place, from the role play and the outside experience, and then look for it happening. And point it out to headteacher! In case she hasn't seen it. Tell her how important the play itself is, that there needs to be no product.

DontGotoRoehamptonUniversity Wed 10-Dec-14 20:08:00

This is so depressing! It is obvious to me as a parent (and secondary teacher grin) that my DC would have learned loads in your class and would have come home fizzing with enthusiasm and new stuff that they would have come out with at random moments, to our delight. And, precisely it is after it has percolated and been processed in their little brains that they come out with it - not to order after 20 mins to fit in with SLT data requirements! OP, sorry this is not what you asked for, but my DC gained so much from their lovely primary teachers that I ma grateful for, but which show up nowhere in 'data' ...

Littlef00t Wed 10-Dec-14 20:09:51

I'm not a teacher, but is it the done thing to somehow summarise at the end what they have learned, or ask them, directed at being able to tell parents not just what they did but what they learned?

Guilianna Wed 10-Dec-14 20:13:43

I SOOO sympathise! EYFS here too, and my HT sounds just like yours.
What I'd do is give her a printout of the EYOs beforehand, if you use those to assess against, and a copy of Characteristics of Effective Learning. You can demonstrate learning against those statements. It's very difficult being the voice in the wilderness! all the other teachers in my school have KS2 experience, and continually try to impose top down stuff that will be slated by Ofsted or the LA, and useless for getting results from 4-5 year olds. Exhausting!

Guilianna Wed 10-Dec-14 20:16:10

and you are assessing termly, right? so you CAN show progress. Point that out too, with any areas you plan on developing/targetting next term.

Guilianna Wed 10-Dec-14 20:17:27

In fact the only way you can show learning in play is to contextualise it and if the HT is too inexperienced/dim to work that out you have to do it for him/her.

fatterface Wed 10-Dec-14 20:38:06

What's your aim/objective for the session? Could you use questioning to elicit from the children whether they have achieved that aim?

DontEvenPoint Wed 10-Dec-14 20:42:32

Thank you all. Yes I do feel we have a very 'top down' approach, KS2 is really the only key stage that counts TBH. Yes we assess termly, and the children have already made huge progress in the prime areas especially, but it's maths and literacy that count around here! I'm actually going against the grain slightly by making my focus a C&L and UTW one, instead of the usual phonics/maths one we always end up doing, so god knows what she'll make of that! I think I'm feeling a bit rebellious!

Guilianna Wed 10-Dec-14 20:55:58

Good for you!
I've just been told I have to switch to teaching cursive handwriting IN JAN! complete change in policy - and no doubt some very confused 4 year olds. Never mind the fact that I am being whipped to increase the %GLD, with Lit a particular focus. I despair, I honestly do.
However, that's bye the bye. Hope it goes well for you tomorrow and well done for flying the flag for standards. The more of us that speak up the better it will be for our younger children!

CheckpointCharlie Wed 10-Dec-14 20:56:01

Good luck!!!!!

Lots of open questioning; how do you know, tell me more, what do you think. Is there a chance to introduce some new vocab? And then encourage the chn to use it too if it's related to a topic?

What's your learning intention?

CheckpointCharlie Wed 10-Dec-14 21:00:29

C&L is soooooo important, so many skills there!! Is it based on a book?
I am terrified of reception, don't know how any of you do it!

DontEvenPoint Thu 11-Dec-14 18:36:24

Thanks for the words of wisdom and support folks. Went ok I think, hard to tell. Feedback next week. There was lots of talk and questioning and the kids were really engaged so from my point of view it was good. We shall see! I'm just glad it's over and now I can just enjoy being with my class. I'm on a clipboard amnesty for the last week of term!

Asleeponasunbeam Thu 11-Dec-14 18:38:24

Sounds like it went well. Shame you have to wait for feedback though. That's a bit rude!

Enjoy the class until Christmas.

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