Exploring what matters

Welcome to the IRIS Connect blog space where you can join conversations and discover free resources, tips and summaries. We hope you find something useful for your professional development and learning.

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guide to improving teacher happiness and wellbeing

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Alexandra Spalding

Recent Posts

How to teach remotely: 10 resources

Posted by Alexandra Spalding on 19 March, 2020

With the news that UK schools will be closing due to coronavirus, we’ve put together a list of 10 resources that provide great tips on how to teach remotely.

We know there’s no quick fix and one size certainly doesn’t fit all, but these tools to teach online could be a great place to start. Keep up to date with all the resources we're sharing over on our Twitter account @IRIS_Connect

Please share any resources you’ve found to be useful in the comments section below so that your fellow readers can benefit. 

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How to encourage reflective teaching in your school

Posted by Alexandra Spalding on 14 January, 2020

“We do not learn from experience…we learn from reflecting on experience.”- John Dewey

As the Lifelong Learning UK Standards make clear, reflection is a core component of effective continuing professional development (CPD) and key to becoming a skilled teacher.

Meaning a teacher’s ability to reflect on what, why and how they do things, and to adapt and develop their excellence in teaching is the one quality above all that makes them good. 

 

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10 of the best educators and #EdTech accounts to follow on Twitter in 2020

Posted by Alexandra Spalding on 5 December, 2019

Following educators on Twitter will help you to keep up-to-date on the latest advice and research in education, as well as find and share resources, and be part of a passionate, international community of professionals.

If you’re not sure where to get started, here’s 10 educators and #edtech accounts we recommend following right now (list in no particular order):

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How to identify and share successful teaching practice

Posted by Alexandra Spalding on 21 November, 2019

How did all of the students of 3rd grade teacher Mary Dunbar Barksdale in Brazosport, Texas achieve remarkably high scores on the statewide test, despite the fact that 94% of her students lived in poverty?

How did a handful of schools in Argentina’s Misiones Province achieve a graduation rate of 75%, when the overall completion rate for the province was only 50%?

How did the students in one school district in Mason, Ohio achieve very high scores on achievement tests and other outcomes when their peer districts performed so poorly?

What’s their secret?

 

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6 challenges of teacher reflection & how to overcome them

Posted by Alexandra Spalding on 1 November, 2019

There is one quality above all others that makes a good teacher - the ability to reflect on what, why and how they do things and to adapt and develop their excellence in teaching. As the Lifelong Learning UK Standards make clear, reflection is a core component of effective continuing professional development (CPD) and key to becoming a skilled teacher.

But teacher reflection is not just essential for teachers. According to research by Prof. John Hattie, developing excellence in teaching has the single most powerful influence on student achievement.  Read more about the benefits of self-reflection >

Here are some of the challenges that teachers face when reflecting on their own practice and, more importantly, how you can overcome them.

 

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11 ways to ensure you provide better support for your NQTs this term

Posted by Alexandra Spalding on 23 August, 2019

Retention is our problem, not recruitment. Research states that nearly half of all teachers in the maintained sector leave the profession within 5 years of qualifying. 

This clearly indicates the importance of providing effective support to help develop teachers in their first few years. The loss of a new teacher is more than an inconvenience. It’s also a serious drain on your school’s precious financial resources. 

So with that in mind, we’ve put together 11 ways you can support your NQTs when they need you most.  


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