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Tes 6 August 2021

Tes is dedicated to supporting the world’s teachers. Our mission is to enable great teaching by helping educators find the tools and technology they need to excel, supporting them throughout their career and professional development.

United Kingdom
Tes Global Ltd
51 Issues

in this issue

3 min

Mrs Blake stayed positive. I had not got the grades I needed for my university course, but she’d “make damn sure” they took me anyway. I had no reason to doubt her: she was on my side, this was a team effort, she had got me this far. So I sat in her office and I watched her turn a missed chance into fulfilled potential. It’s a unique feeling, that coming together of teacher and pupil. It’s a type of trust that has no edge, that is born from hours of joint endeavour towards the same goal, that is formed with the knowledge that each has the other’s back and that the end result is just as important to both. It feels like it is the two of you taking on…

2 min
is failing to have a planner really planning to fail?

Teaching is a profession dominated by many uncontrollable variables, so it is no surprise that those within it seek out methods for forcing unknowns into knowns. And the primary tool they have used to do that over the decades has been the humble planner. These artefacts of teaching prowess are far more than diaries. “Planners will contain beautifully colour-coordinated timetables, carefully pencilled-in class lists and directed time meetings,” says Shabnam Ahmed, head of Year 13 at a secondary school in Suffolk. But are the days of the school planner numbered? Ahmed used to be a planner devotee, but then she began to see that they weren’t actually as useful as she once thought. “I came to realise that my planner wasn’t right for me,” she admits. “In fact, it was paradoxically both too much…

2 min
self-regulation strategies to support learning (rainbow breath, anyone?)

It’s hard to manage your feelings when you are 4 years old, so a big part of early years teaching has always been to help young children self-regulate. Now, though, evidence from recent studies into metacognition and mindfulness is finding its way into classrooms, and this is helping teachers to hone this part of their craft. International teacher Jess Gosling says this is positive news. “Without self-regulation, young children will not be prepared for learning pedagogies that take place in primary school – and, as they continue through school, they will struggle with following instructions and, therefore, learning effectively,” she says. So, what does this new research look like in practice? One example, Gosling says, is providing a clear code for learning behaviour. “For younger children, establish a maximum of three core rules to…

2 min
philanthropy sets students up for a post-covid world

As a result of successive Covid lockdowns, our reliance on our local communities has increased. Being there for one another has never been so important. As our lives slowly start to return to normal, I believe it is important to keep this feeling going through philanthropic work. Educating students in philanthropy prepares them for the real world, exposing them to the struggles many go through. We already conduct these lessons, in which students compassionately explore the challenges facing their community and are tasked to put their beliefs into action. In dealing with difficult subjects, students are challenged to operate outside their comfort zone. They develop their interpersonal skills as they are invited to cooperate, mediate, listen and organise objectively. We conduct much of this work through programmes such as the Youth Philanthropy Initiative (YPI).…

6 min
grade expectations: the exam debate

When GCSE and A-level results are published next week, it is highly likely that they will be higher on average than last year’s grades, not to mention vastly different from the typical spread of exam results seen before the pandemic. Last year – when the use of teacher-assessed grades was eventually approved – it resulted in more than a quarter of GCSE entries achieving a grade A/7, and the proportion gaining a top grade 9 rising to 6.4 per cent. At A level, following the government’s U-turn on grading, 14.3 per cent of entries were awarded an A* in 2020, and 38 per cent were awarded an A grade or higher, compared with 25 per cent achieving an A grade or higher the previous year. This year, when teacher-assessed grades have been awarded…

6 min
10 questions with… martin roberts

Martin Roberts is best known for presenting the perennially popular BBC One TV show Homes Under the Hammer as well as appearing on I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! and numerous other TV and radio shows. He’s also written a series of children’s books called The Villes, including one titled Sadsville (designed to help children process feelings of sadness), copies of which he sent to every primary school and public library during 2020 through his charitable foundation. He chatted to Tes about a wonderful former teacher, a school trip to York that included a seminal rite-of-passage moment, why he almost became a teacher himself and about his work with the NSPCC to help children understand and process their emotions. 1. Who was your favourite teacher from school? In the second-year [of secondary school],…