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.

If you have a topic you'd like us to cover or if you're interested in covering one yourself in a guest post, please contact us.



guide to improving teacher happiness and wellbeing

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TeacherTales:  What is oracy and why does it matter?  How to help pupils find their voice

Posted by Paul Coffey on 12 September, 2019

Guest blog by Paul Coffey, St John Bosco Arts College

What is pupil Oracy?

It means that pupils are able to break down complex tasks; create and then implement possible solutions, and then convince others of them. It allows our pupils to articulate complex ideas and gives them confidence in themselves and their abilities. It provides them with the tools they need to compete and thrive in the world. 

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Prep learning - my journey into implementing metacognition and self-regulated learning

Posted by Neil Williams on 8 July, 2019

What is prep learning?

Prep learning is a learning method that promotes the teaching of metacognition and actively supports independent learning, mindfulness and self-regulated assessment.

Pupils using the prep learning method access a teacher-made website which allows them to study exemplary work, both written and visual, to develop a deeper understanding of their qualification curriculum.

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3 ways teachers can use video for better exam preparation

Posted by Alexandra Spalding on 20 May, 2019

Half term is over, May is quickly passing and ensuring success for all your students in the upcoming exams and tests, I'm sure, is rarely far from your minds. Here are 3 ways video technology can not only support exam and test preparation, but enhance it for both you and your learners.

 

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Marking vs. Feedback:  how video [IRIS Connect] has helped

Posted by Emma Turner on 23 April, 2019

Guest blog from Emma Turner, Deputy Headteacher and Leader of Teaching and Learning at Springwood Primary School - @MrsWelshTurner

In Education, there is always one certainty... marking!

There has always been marking: marking that identifies what pupils have done well; marking that celebrates and marking that moves pupils learning on. It’s the one thing that all teachers expect, lugging home that huge pile of books for an evening or a weekend.

However, ‘distance’ marking has been proven to be far less effective at helping pupils to improve, or motivating them to try harder, than immediate feedback given verbally in the moment. We’ve known this for a while. Yet many schools still insist on their teachers marking in detail every piece of work that every child does.

 

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Teacher confidence (efficacy): Why does it matter and how can SLT increase it?

Posted by Kate Herbert-Smith on 21 January, 2019

 Efficacy - or a teacher’s level of confidence in their abilities - can be highly influenced by past experiences or your current school culture. For example, a bad classroom experience or negative work environment can quickly diminish a teacher’s confidence.

Interestingly, seeing students grow and working in a collaborative environment can boost a teacher’s belief in their ability and improve performance. Research also suggests that teachers with a strong sense of self-efficacy tend to be better planners, more resilient through failure, and more open-minded and supportive with students.

 

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Developing independent learning skills that improve outcomes

Posted by Christophe Mullings on 7 January, 2019

Encouraging students to be independent learners, not only has huge benefits for them, but it's also a proven high impact, low cost way to improve progress.

The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) found that self-regulated, independent learning has a high impact on pupils’ progress for a very low cost. They learnt that the average impact of self-regulation over 8 months’ progress was found to cost under £80 per pupil per year.

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