Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Being The Boss?

To me, there will only ever be one Boss. However, it's undeniable that part of our role in the classroom is be in charge of learning, discipline, toilet issues...

As part of my schools' ACE working party (that's for another post), we decided to try and target the habit of many of our students who tend to put their hand up very quickly as soon as they encounter a problem. This runs from Y7 to Y13.

We decided to adopt Jim Smith’s idea from “The Lazy Teacher’s Handbook”,C3B4ME. We are using a student designed poster, see left, and decided to leave off 'Me' (or the Boss as I have also seen it). This was conscious as we wanted students to really focus on the tools available to them before asking for help.

It is designed to be a point of reference for the teacher and a reminder to students to take a minute, and see if actually they can tackle the problem on their own, or with the resources immediately to hand.

A poster has been put up in every classroom around the school at the start of this academic year (download <here>). A Y7 student designed the poster as part of a competition designed to help give ownership to pupils.

Measuring the outcome will be difficult. This is just one small part of a far wider strategy to make our students more resilient learners, less dependent on the teacher to take them every step of the way. It's also important to be concious that the teachers' role is far from redundant, there is a constant need to stretch the students and this will never go away.

I did think it was important to explain why this blog was called TDRE Boss Blog though; it's a Springsteen reference. I think as teacher, often you need to take centre stage as The Boss, but equally "nobody wins unless everybody wins" and it's important to constantly reflect on how that can happen in your classroom.

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