Tuesday, 24 November 2009

objecting to learning objectives

Ok, so I am going to be a bit controvertial today. Basically, everything to do with teaching a good lesson is centered on the idea that children must be aware of what they are learning. Every since I began my journey through education I have been told that at the beginning of the lesson we must tell the pupils what the learning objectives are and at the end of the lesson we should review the learning objecties to find out if they were achieved. No one in my three years of education has been able to tell me why this has to be done, and no one has been able to show me any statistical evidence as to any positive effects this has on the childrens learning.
This is extrememly frustrating seeing as we have to go throuigh this palava every single lesson, ever OFSTED insist that they should be able to ask a child in their lesson what it is they are learning and the child should be able to say.
To me this is totally ludicrous, and I will explain why.
I believe that children do learn even when (shock horror) they are not being told what it is they are learning. This concept of giving learning objectives is rediculous not only because children learn much more in a lesson than what the teacher writes up on the board (usually just three or four objectives) but also because it gives children the improssion that they are only learning the things that they are being told they are learning.
This is not only stupid, but also damaging because the children begin to believe at times other than lessons, or when taking part in other activities, they are not learning.
I am yet to find any evidence to back up my theory but intend on doing some research and perhaps writing an essay on it for my MA in Teaching and Learning. I think the state have got it very wrong.
I really need to concentrate my thoughts on this matter better, be more articulate with it, and try and find someone who agrees with me and has written about it.
For cinc children to address what they are learning

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

a mockery of a mock exam

First day of the year 11 mock exam today.
The day didnt start very well, my form had been re-located for registration to another room with a cover supervisor, unfortunately the room they were meant to be in was in use. I went off to find out what was going on, but then decided just to take them into my classroom anyway because the exam had not yet started and the year 11's were getting registered in their forms. When I got back to my room, my form was already there and the cover supervisor was there was well. She asked me if she should stay or not, and I said she might as well go because I could register them myself. To my sadness my form wanted the cover supervisor to stay and said some rather nasty things after I had gone such as that she was much nicer than me. I was actually quite upset by this, not that they care, and I mumbled something about her not having to register them every day and check planners etc. It really hurts my feelings when they are like this because (dispite what they believe) I really make an effort with them, giving them activities to do in the morning, chasing absences, checking planners etc. I actually do care. There is one boy in particular who is quite nastly to me. I shouted at him once and recieved a letter from his mother basically telling me what an angel he was. I was writing his report yesterday and was generally putting that his behaviour was good, that was until I checked his behaviour moniter on the computer which showed that he had a lot of behaviour points. This was really disappointing, but also confirmed in my own mind what I had thought before which was that he is not an angel at all but actually a rather horrible boy.
Well after form I had my year 11's in for their exam, they actaully are a lovely class and the first day of the mock exam went really well, most if them knew what to do and didnt need much help.
However I was supposed to teach my year 10 class period four and someone was supposed to come and do the invidulation of the exam only no one came! I had to phone the office while my awful year 10 class were running riot. It turned out the person who was supposed to be doing the invidulation (a senior member of staff) was on a course, so after some confusion about what was going on I ended up doing the invidulation and a teacher who had a free had to go and look after my year 10's who I obviousely hadnt planned a cover lesson for because I thought I would be teaching them. Irksome, but more importantly an indication of the disorganised and badly run nature of this school.
Generally a good day overall especially as my head of department said she was going to try to negotiate a leadership point for me.
Only other thing was some discussion with the teacher I share photography with, we just discussed the pupilbut later on there was some frustration about the mock exam and how they had done very little work. My head of department sopke to him and she came back and told me he had some ideas, but she wouldnt tell me what. Now I am just worried about what he has planned.