Latest articles from the Innovate My School community.

All throughout February, our content will be centred around the theme of The Disruptors. These are the visionaries, stories, tactics and resources that will ensure your school stays ahead of the curve.

“Engaging students of any age is hard,” says George Hammond-Hagan, CEO of Studytracks. “From the start of anyone’s educational journey all the way to the end, there’s a battle - internal and external - for their mind’s attention.

“This is why disruptive teaching methods are important. The educators included in this month’s theme are ones who have shown that they will do things a little differently to get the result. Personally, my own path has led me to using music to power teaching and learning. Music creates an environment that we’re instinctively attuned to, as it modifies our mood, opens our mind, demands attention and transforms anywhere into a focussed sphere of influence. The brain is ‘hacked’ by music."

Don't let your teaching and learning grow stale.

Hot on the heels of this year’s Alcohol Awareness Week (13th- 19th November), alcohol education charity Drinkaware is highlighting the benefits of alcohol education in schools. Research from the charity’s Drinkaware Monitor 2016, in conjunction with Ipsos Mori, found that only one in four young people have received helpful information about alcohol from teachers, and 56% of young people who were drinking said that they drank alcohol to fit in.
Does good leadership and an inclusive ethos benefit a school’s whole community? It is my view that headteachers and governors who lead the way when it comes to those pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), who share their practice and continue to champion SEND, see the benefits across their school.
Christmas for our very special children has to be the most magical time that we can possibly make it. Some of our children are so poorly that they may not be able to celebrate when Christmas day finally dawns. In other families, parents and carers may be so tired from the constant regime of looking after their profoundly poorly children that they may not have enough energy left to celebrate ...
In May of this year, Guilden Sutton Primary School in Cheshire found a new way to remove headaches from residential trips, school meal payments, sporting events, and even the school disco! One of the school administrators had used management app eeZeeTrip as a parent at a neighbouring school, and was keen to see the benefits for Guilden Sutton.
When we asked our Twitter followers whom we ought to interview, ​Jean-Louis Dutaut threw his and Lucy Rycroft-Smith’s hat into the ring. Self-deprecatingly referring to this suggestion as “shameless self-promotion”, it quickly became evident that their project - Flip The System UK - was something our readers should know about.
As more teachers have been leaving the workforce before retirement than ever, school leaders are currently facing a difficult time when it comes to filling up vacancies. In September, the National Audit Office (NAO) released a new report which highlighted that 67% of school leaders identify workload as an important barrier to teacher retention. A Department for Education survey found that middle leaders and classroom teachers work on average 54.4 hours per ...
This article will look at my transition from UK Secondary SLT to becoming an international school educator. Having spent over 10 years working in UK education, with a wide experience-base of whole school, pastoral and SLT responsibilities in different school contexts, as well as two concurrent school governor roles, the following outline pattern may paint a familiar picture to many other senior educators out there:
There is no perfect way to lead. An effective school leader adjusts their leadership style to improve results within their school. A leader with a breadth of pedagogical knowledge, who provides hands-on support, will often win the respect of their staff. On the other hand, a relaxed school leader who delegates tasks and mentors individual teachers can also create an amazing teaching and learning environment.
“To become a leader, you must first become a human being.” Confucius I started this post just as we awaited the announcement of the Nobel Peace Prize winner 2017. Nobel Peace Prize winners are leaders who, through their passion, determination and influence, fight for causes close to their own hearts - with much wider societal and global benefits. They are inspired and moved enough to insist and persist, leading a cause ...
It is a truth universally acknowledged that teachers are under pressure to produce value-added results, follow an ever-changing curriculum and teach to inspection standards with limited amounts of planning and preparation time. With multiple lessons planned for the week, short-term, mid-term and long-term it is easy to fall into the same pattern of activities: the worksheets, the interactive whiteboard presentation that isn’t always interactive, and the card sort that ...
If you’re a subject leader, you have to make friends in school strategically. If you’re the head of English like me, you firstly need to befriend whoever guards the gate to reprographics needs the bounciest, sunniest, most dribblingly sycophantic version of you that you can muster. We’re talking bottle of wine at Christmas, chocolate egg at Easter, flowers on their birthday. Because they can do something that ...
A good timetable is a key to quality education for pupils and to an ergonomic working environment for teachers. The task of creating a balanced schedule for everyone is difficult. The cloud-based application Skolaris produces timetables that bring high level of satisfaction to both students and staff.
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