Tom Sherrington (@teacherhead) is a good ‘education guru’. I like his straight talking and common sense approach, informed by a realistic approach to teaching and education research that really connects with what I think is important in education.
He recently wrote this post about the PD needs of teachers (Teachers’ CPD needs are massive: it needs more time and more flexibility) which contained a great overview of what we are asking teachers to ‘develop’ in. I am copying the list here so that I remember to return to this, because that is the purpose of this blog for me, a personal and professional notebook about teaching and learning. So here is Tom’s list:
|General curriculum concepts: coherence, spiralling, core-hinterland|
Subject concepts: the heart of the curriculum – the details of what should be taught in the subject; the best way to sequence them.
PCK: pedagogical content knowledge – how to teach/explain concepts within a subject alongside knowledge of those concepts.
Cross-curricular connections – a wider knowledge of how one subject connects to others in order to make useful links between them.
|Cognitive science concepts: – eg memory, metacognition, fluency, cognitive load theory, learning as generative, retrieval practice. |
General responsive teaching practice eg modelling, questioning, checking for understanding, guided practice.
Feedback: effective forms of written and verbal feedback, workload-saving methods for communicating feedback.
|General principles: quality and difficulty models; formative and summative assessment; the inherent comparative nature of standards.|
Assessment design: in the context of the subject, how to assess knowledge, test design, comparative judgement.
Knowing the standards: moderation, levels of difficulty, progression through the curriculum; the meaning of assessment data.
|Behaviour management techniques: how to run a room; using school systems; safe and appropriate restraining methods;|
Safeguarding: responsibilities and the law; signs and symptoms; appropriate responses; school procedures.
Equalities Issues: attitudes and responses to LGBT+ equalites; anti-racism; disabilities; approaches for Pupil Premium students.
Trauma-Informed Practice: something that’s gained currency recently: agreed approaches to potentially traumatic events in children’s lives.
|Specific learning issues.|
|SEND: a raft of very specific knowledge to deal with the various SEND categories including social and emotional, physical impairment and various specific learning difficulties.|
Literacy: universal principles for teaching reading and writing; addressing learning difficulties with literacy – eg dyslexia
EAL: strategies for teaching students for whom English is not their main language at various different stages of fluency
|IT systems: the data system; logging behavioural issues; the school network.|
Classroom technology: using the IWB or visualiser, using googleclassroom; specialist equipment
GDPR: data protocols in principle and in detail of school policy.
Health and Safety protocols: universal areas such as fire drills, specialist issues in high risk areas (science, DT, PE), school trips…
|Specialist Curriculum Areas.|
|Sex and Relationships: very detailed sensitive knowledge plus personal confidence to deliver it.|
PSHE eg Drugs, depression: specialist knowledge needed to deliver the facts and give the appropriate messages.
Citizenship: again – knowledge content and ethos messages.
“This isn’t even a complete list. It’s huge isn’t it! The problem is that, relative to the volume of knowledge and understanding teachers need to develop, there usually just isn’t enough time to do it all properly through standard CPD delivery modes. In general, it’s still the case that CPD time often feels like it’s begged and borrowed, eeked out rather than generous and often vulnerable to incursions from external demands. I’ve written elsewhere about how time can be wasted: 10 ways the gold dust of CPD time is wasted.“