This blog is managed by Shaun Allison, Chris Runeckles Fran Haynes & Andy Tharby from Durrington High School, West Sussex, England, the lead school in the Durrington Multi Academy Trust. Shaun is also an author – details of his books can be found here. His most recent book, ‘Making Every Lesson Count’, co-authored with Andy Tharby is available here.
The purpose of this blog is to find and share the good practice that exists within our own school and others – the bright spots…
We value CPD very highly at DHS and have developed a variety of ways to support and encourage teacher collaboration and the sharing/development of best practice. These are some of the ways we have done it in recent years – and the inspiration for many of the blogs on here:
- 15 Minute Forums – These are weekly meetings (brief – 15 minutes, every Thursday) where staff showcase and share effective strategies and ideas on a specific area of pedagogy. The topic will be posted on Twitter by @shaun_allison at the beginning of every week with the hashtag #15mf, so that ideas from outside DHS can contribute to the discussion by people posting their ideas on this Padlet page. The schedule for the year can be viewed here.
- Subject Planning and Development Sessions – once a fortnight, subject teams meet and discuss what they are teaching over the next fortnight, and how to teach it most effectively. Further details here.
- Making every lesson count – Teacher Development Programme – based on the book by Shaun Allison & Andy Tharby, this is a 9 month professional development programme for teachers, from all schools. Details here.
- Subject Pedagogy Development Sessions – During INSET days, subject teams will meet to discuss best practice in their area, with a specific focus e.g. teaching difficult topics & misconceptions; modelling; feedback etc.
- EduBook Club – All classroom based staff are a member of a EduBook Club who meet during INSET days to discuss their book – and how it has impacted on their practice. More here.
- Bright Spots – Very simple – walk around your school, go in classrooms and look for effective teaching strategies. Then share them. See here.
- Research Bulletins – Research & Development Leader Andy Tharby produces a half termly digest of recent updates from educational research. Archive here.
- Research Forum – A group of staff meet to discuss a specific educational research paper.
- Learning Development Groups – Cross curricular groups of teachers who meet six times a year to discuss and share good practice, around a specific pedagogical theme. The idea is that after each LDG meeting, each teacher commits to trying out at least one new teaching strategy – and then reports back at the next meeting. A development of Dylan Wiliam’s TLC (Teacher Learning Community) idea.
- Practitioner Research Projects – Teachers who receive a paid bursary to carry out a school based enquiry project on an area of pedagogy of their choice. Further details here.
- The Big Idea – At the beginning of every staff meeting (or INSET day), all staff have to write down one good strategy they have used (or seen used) on a particular aspect of pedagogy. These are then collated into a booklet. See here.
- Marginal Gains Board – in the staff room (by the photocopier) – a board where staff write down and pin up good strategies they have used. See photo.
- Learning walks and talks – many of the best ideas are picked up when simply walking around the school and talking to staff.
- Teach Meet – held annually, in June. A great way to hear excellent ideas from other schools. DHS TeachMeet website.
- Professional Learning Visits – On one of the INSET days in 2012, all teachers went to visit another school, to gather best practice. This was the starting point for a great deal of cross-school collaboration work. Similar visits are still encouraged throughout the year.
- Blog of the week – Every week a noteworthy teacher blog post is distributed by email to all teachers at DHS – to inspire and share the good practice from other schools. Archive here.
- IRIS remote observation technology – We have been developing the use of IRIS connect within our school, as a coaching/reflection tool. We are now keen to develop this further and work on remote coaching with other schools.
- CPD Events – we host a number of CPD events that colleagues from other schools are welcome to attend. Details here.