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How much planning have you done?

Discussion in 'NQTs and new teachers' started by LincsBren, Aug 23, 2010.

  1. I've had a bit of a nightmare with my classroom - words cannot describe how much work I have had to put in to turn it from a jam-packed dumping ground back into a classroom (taking over from a retired teacher who was lovely and had loads of resources - sadly every one from the last 30 years was crammed into my room!) and as such I've spent any/all spare time doing that and not planning.

    Now of course I am panicking that we go back in a week and I haven't got much done! The school didn't / doesn't have any long-term plans nor use schemes of work (just plan from the NC) so I am doing it all from scratch, which fortunately doesn't worry me as I appreciate the flexibility. It does however mean that I'm still pulling my long term plan for the year / outline medium term plans for the term together!

    How's everyone else doing?
  2. Hi Bren,

    In the same boat, I've taken mine over from someone retiring and haven't done any planning yet. I have subscribed to the Hamilton schemes though, which look to be a great resource.

    Apart from that, nada. Does your phase meet and plan together during phase meetings at all?
  3. I'm in a tiny school - 4 class total - so there's only 2 of us covering the whole of KS2! We've had a brief meeting and put together some blank planning formats for everyone to use which is great because I've had significant input so am comfortable with that side of things, and we have agreed to have the same 'themes' across the key stage on a 4 year rolling programme. But beyond that.... no meetings! The other KS2 teacher is my induction mentor though so we will end up working fairly closely together, and she is 3/4 and I'm 5/6 so she also knows my class well and will advise.

    Still feel I should have done more - I've also joined Hamilton - I really like their literacy stuff and when I used it in teaching placements I found it easy to adapt for the themes within each school. I think the NC will become a permanent fixture next to my laptop while I'm planning!
  4. I'm in a 4/5/6 class so have no partner teacher, but I was lucky enough to spend the last couple of weeks of term in and out of my new school. I spent quite a bit of time with the lady I'm replacing, who is moving to 2/3, and we put together a long term plan for autumn term, so at least I knew by the end of summer term what topics I was teaching in each subject.
    Over the holidays, I've planned the first few weeks for each subject- but for some of them we use LCP and other schemes, so all I've had to do is tweak MT plans and resources. I have planned my maths for the first week back - some problem solving and group work to get to know them a bit, but no proper literacy until week 2. Having said that, I haven't planned the literacy yet, or the first "proper" week of maths - I seem to keep putting it off! I've planned for mixed age classes before, but not three year groups, and I'm finding it tricky to know where to start.
    My other stumbling block is seating plans for "base table" places. I've worked out maths and english places, but I don't know where to start with base table places. My mentor in my GTP school used to let the children decide on their own places on the first day, and I'm tempted to do that, but I wonder if it will give the children the wrong impression of who's in charge? It's hard to organise it myself beforehand though, because I don't know who is friends with who, or who not to sit together.... what's everyone else doing about this?

  5. I haven't done any planning yet. I'm 2 form entry so want to wait to see how my year group partner wants to work with me. I've also got files from the past two years in my class so I hope to use the previous years' planning as a starting point for my own. Also, I want to do a few assessments in the first week so I know where to pitch the planning for lit and num and for foundation subjects I'm hoping to do a KWL (know already, want to know, learnt) so that I can plan those based on what the children want to learn, as well as the NC, eg for my Romans topic.

    I previously read on here to plan in detail for the first few days and then expect the evenings and first weekend of the to be very very busy whilst you do the planning based on having met the pupils and your team properly.
  6. Forgot to say. Re. "base tables" I've done them mixed ability and have put more or less 2 above average, 2 average and 2 below average pupils per table and an equal number of boys and girls. I want to start strict and thought this would show them I was in charge but I might swap people once I get to know them more.
  7. Very little - I have no class lists, just names of year groups that I will be teaching. No indication of ability, other than set number.
  8. Snap!
    Sum total of planning has been to draw a template for seating plans (weird room layout that can not be changed [​IMG]. Now going in to sort out room and inherited 'stuff' and trying to make it my own. Good luck to one and all!
  9. I've just redrawn my timetable on Word in big squares and colours (easier to see what I'm doing when it's late at night). Will draw up a template for seating plans later: going in next week to sort out tables. Might even get some class lists!
  10. reddhedd

    reddhedd New commenter

    Pretty much same here - very little except to get my clasroom free from the last 8 years of junk build up and create a nice new colourful display or two!
    I have my timetable but no class lists yet so cant do seating plans or plan for ability etc as not known. Im an ICT secondary teacher NQT and will be teaching mainly years 9 and 10 and a few post-16 so not sure what to do about seating as they most likely already had a seating plan in place from last year. Do I re-seat them or let them sit where they like for the first few weeks and see how they get on?
    I was thinking it would be more helpful for me to learn their names with my own seating plan (like in alphabetical order or something) but I dont want to start off on the wrong foot with the kids by causing problems. I know - I dont wanna be too soft!!
    Trying to find that line is hard!
  11. This topic has calmed my nerves quite a bit. I'm starting on a 12 month contract on Wednesday at one of my placement schools, so I'm lucky in that I already know the staff and pupils. In December I take over at HoD while the main teacher goes away on maternity cover, until then I'm doing a mishmash of lessons. I'm quite excited, but I've only been given one SoW to do for a GCSE and nothing else for KS. No class lists either, just a timetable. I've bugged the main teacher for stuff to do, but I still really unprepared!
  12. Hi LincBren
    I know how you feel. I popped in for the exam results and was told to avoid my drama studio. Naturally I went to look - large space so it has become the dumping ground for old computers. I'm assured it will be moved before next week but I'm not holding my breath.
    Good luck with the start of term.

  13. greengirl57

    greengirl57 New commenter

    Good luck all you NQTs with jobs! At least you have a job, thats the biggest hurdle to overcome...Im still looking and will keep doggedly on. Im networking and trying all avenues...surely my lucky break will soon come. Ive read so much good advice on here, about supply, agencies, all sorts, and have an interview tomorrow..so perhaps I wont have much longer to wait. Good luck all! [​IMG]
  14. suzychoosy

    suzychoosy New commenter

    you must do your own seating plans, you have to show that you are in charge of the space. Register order boy girl boy girl is easiest until you get to know the class.
  15. Hi All
    I was an NQT last year and i was like you all - got 1 week to go and was panicking. Dont! It will all come togeather and you will be able to share resources.
    Best thing to do - write a list - that way it is out of your head so you cant forget. Then put it in order - do you have to know what you are doing long term right now? Or can you just have the topic in place?
    I try and have my medium term plan done - so for all my groups - i know what i am doing to half term and then each week i try and do 1 week after half term so that by the time it gets to half term i know what im doing up to christmas.
    Your first year is a challenge but i found aslong as you are organised it makes life so much better.
    Tip - have a break - i know you have a million and 1 things you would like to have done but be realistic. When i felt like you i had a day off cleared my head and then got organised. Make sure at the weekends you do not spend all weekend planning -i have Saturdays off and then depending on workload i do some on a Sunday.
    Good luck to all doing their NQT this year!
  16. Hello everyone - Im in a similar position - NQT at a high school though, no real solid lesson plans in place and no 'full' longterm plans, just vague topics to complete (which is something!) Tried to pull together medium terms plans till October - so at least I know a sequence of lessons, but don't know how far to go with it, and whether I should bother resourcing them all yet, as no class lists or timetable!!
    I'll be teaching two subjects Ive not taught properly before and that worries me, as I dont know if my subject knowledge will be upto scratch (not done them since alevel!) and no sort of 'wing it in the back' type activities like I have for my main subject.
    Feeling stressed and chaotic, and starting on wednesday with an inset - planned my outfit - gone for smart/casual as its inset?!
    This teaching malarky is a right minefield!!
  17. I've done lots of planning. As an NQT going into my 'next' year at a boy's grammar school I've done a plan for each lesson in my first week back plus an SoW for this half term for each class (Y7, 8, 10, 11, 12 (3 modules)) and done all the exercises for my new Y13 'til Xmas. Its a 'high expectations' school - and I like to be well prepared! I've also just read the 'Lazy teachers Handbook' (talking less so that they learn more) - thoroughly recommend it.
  18. Hi Sounds like we're working at the same school, mine's tiny and i have the 5/6 class too. I have set my classroom up but haven't done a seating plan yet as i don't have any ability groups. am planning on getting these on the non pupil on wed. my school doesn't have a topic map or anything and i was given a rough list of what the yr 4 and 5s did as their topics so i could plan my topics but everything else it up to me. I've roughly planned the first two days games and tasks etc and have an idea of what i'm doing my first week, going to work my butt off tomorrow trying to firm it up. Dont' panic though, i don't think there much use in planning past the first week anyway as you have no idea what your kids can do yet. Just have a few days up your sleeve!
  19. Hi Elizabeth, Over the years I have worried about the same thing but in recent years I have given the children a 'secret vote' on the first day back. I give the a slip of paper on which they write 'I work well with . . . ', 'I don't work well with . . . '. They have to name 1 person they'd like to sit NEAR (next to not guaranteed!) and then the names of children they shouldn't sit near. I give them the benefit of the doubt, use the slips to plan the seating after the first day and let them sit near their chosen friend as long as they prove they can work well. There is no lee way if they misbehave - they are moved straight away. This way you can show mutual respect and trust and the pressure is on them to showhow well they can work in their preferred place. It is amazing how the children reflect on their learning and are honest. It has worked for me - hope it might help you.
  20. Hi, as far as 'base table' places go, I give the children seats. Choosing where the sit is a reward given when they've shown that they can behave appropriately and only for art or craft activities and never before Christmas!! I think you have to show them you're in charge and that they have to prove that they can be 'trusted'. I use reading ability to seat them to begin with, until I get to know who can mix with who - a LA child next to a MA helps the LA to access shared texts in topic etc. Hope that helps.

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