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Improve Your Teaching | DareDevils

nicoleponsford | Tuesday August 09, 2011

Categories: Hot Entries, iTraining, Improve Your Teaching

Dare to be different, make mistakes and shake things up in order to improve standards of teaching and learning.

This is quite a statement to challenge staff at an INSET. Let alone your first meeting with them, but I have done it. And you know what? It worked. Staff blooming love this, as so SLT groups. Why? Well, we have a lot to do as teachers. We have marking, and lesson preparation, and new specifications and meeting after meeting… who has time to keep shaking things up even if they want to. Well, that has been my job. As an AST, you get to pick your own road. This is mine. Daring people. It’s pretty good.

What is a DareDevil?

If you look at Wiki, then it will refer you to a superhero; I don’t think it is too far from reality to be honest. A DD in my eyes is someone who is willing to take a risk with their teaching, their curriculum, their environment all to help learning. A DD is someone who is daring enough to try something, not worry if they make a mistake but see it as a learning opportunity for them.

Can you be a DareDevil?

In short; yes. I have created cross curricular groups, so feel free to get this set up in your school. You want teachers who aim to be, or are good-outstanding. They need to be happy to share ideas with everyone (I normally set up a blog like http://ushdaredevils.blogspot.com/) and can share with all staff (including tutors, teaching assistants and all support staff). The idea is to play around with things, which will keep both you and your students on the ball.

How does it happen?

I normally give missions in sealed envelopes, but you may have a better idea. There is a theme. This could be teaching and learning, techno teaching or future learning spaces. Each theme has ‘missions/dares’ to go with it. The ‘leader’/ facilitator of the session gives out the missions; these can be shared or kept private until the next meeting. Two weeks is a good time frame to allow people to slide them into...

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