Connecting teachers to develop together.
Every NQT is required to record a number of lessons using IRIS Connect which they then reflect on with another member of staff, either a fellow NQT or their mentor.
This is something that has worked extremely well. We introduced it at the beginning of this year and it has meant that a lot of NQTs have gone above and beyond what is expected of them. Several of the NQTs have performed above the recommended 3 recordings and gone ahead to create 6 or 7 because they have found it so valuable.
One area we’ve found it particularly useful for is practical lessons, like PE. It’s been used in many settings from the playing field to the school hall and it’s worked incredibly well.
Gareth Walsh, PE Teacher and Pedagogy Leader.
2. Teaching and Learning Communities
Within the school there are 5 Pedagogy Leaders. Each leader looks after a Teaching and Learning Community (TLC) focusing on 5 different areas for school improvement. Within those TLCs, triads are set up so teachers from across different disciplines can work together on an area of their CPD that they want to concentrate on and formulate strategies to drive school improvement. Those teachers then record themselves trying out the strategies and share them with colleagues.
IRIS Connect works particularly well here for staff who have full timetables but still want to observe other teachers implementing the things that they’ve been working on in their TLCs. It gives them, and us as Pedagogy Leaders, the ability to monitor what’s working well and what perhaps isn’t and to modify it.
Chris Blakey, Geography Teacher and Pedagogy Leader
3. Behaviour Management
Teachers are encouraged to watch lessons back in order to reflect on why behaviour was particularly difficult or disruptive. From there they can work out how to respond to it next time in order to improve the learning experiences for all students. Whether that’s through altering the seating plan or using different language to explain a task.
Rebecca Conway, Senior Head of House, has used this frequently with new teachers who have come from different areas and not experienced some of the challenging behaviours we see. She’s been astounded at the progress some of these teachers have made just from watching the lessons back. It’s helped to improve teachers’ relationships with certain students and create a more positive attitude towards teaching those more challenging students.
Next year the school plans to let the students get more involved with IRIS Connect.
‘We’d like to start showing some of the children their behaviour in class and seeing what affect that has on how they conduct themselves in the future,’ says Chris.
‘We’d also like to use IRIS Connect to get students opinions on what they think works well in the classroom. This sort of feedback would be invaluable for our TLCs and further developing CPD, explains Gareth.
‘We’ve now got easily 60-70% of staff using IRIS Connect consistently, we’re just generally interested in exploring other ways that we can use the system for CPD.’
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