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Observations

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by Betamale, Feb 11, 2011.

  1. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    Apparently not CG!
    I guess you don't have the subject specific issue in primary. How to you train people to observe without applying a set of rules about group work, time spent on independent work etc.?
     
  2. Nazard

    Nazard New commenter

    Noooooo!
    Please take the bickering back to the ATM Conference thread. It was working well there.
    The rest of us were happy out here.
    Please.
     
  3. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    The problem in primary is more " cross phase". A good y6 teacher might not necessarily know what to look for in Nursery or FS2. It's a training issue really. We operate an open door policy at my school. I teach to release staff for a morning every half term to visit other classes. Not a formal observation but an opportunity to drop in. We started by asking staff to look for 1 thing in each class which they'd like to take back to their own. No criticisms.
    By creating a collaborative ethos like this we've moved on to team teaching, so staff now have a greater cross phase understanding.
    I'm always dropping in to classes too and we have an open dialogue in the staff room, it's quite common to walk
    in at lunch time and hear staff talking about things they've seen in eachother's lessons.
     
  4. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    Before anybody thinks the staff are a complete bunch of saddoes, it's equally common to walk
    in and hear them talking about Children's misdemeanors, strictly, sex etc.
     
  5. Nazard

    Nazard New commenter

    I like this lots. In secondary we get non-contact time (which is always used very well - preparing, marking, phoning parents, etc), but there isn't an ethos in my school of people "just dropping in". It would be great to introduce it!
     
  6. Becka
    Please dont post in my thread.
    (i) I don't respect your opinion personally or 'professionally'
    (ii) I find your personality repellent
    (iii) I think the way you interact with people is laughable bordering primitive
    I want to talk to teachers about this topic, not have another list of stories/links and BS theory that sprials into abuse.
    You do not have to respond to this post either in the thread or by polluting my inbox
    Kind Regards
    Bob
     
  7. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    We have attempted to have this non-critical ethos in my school. The theory is a ratio of at least 3:1 positives to suggestions for improvement. When the person in charge sends round comments in the reverse ratio but just writes a covering e-mail saying "most of the comments were positive" it rather undermines that.
    With some more work on that collaborative ethos we could get something really good going.
     
  8. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    I thought about this long and hard before I introduced it. Seriously failing school and staff just not used to having anyone in their clasrooms. The only obs came from ofsted ( 3 years previously).
    If your only experience of observation is critical, you're bound to view observations in a negative way. That's why we brought in the " no criticism" rule for these drop ins. Now it's just a normal part of our practice and staff feel comfortable enough to discuss things they've seen without feeling like they have to defend themselves.
    To me the best observations result in both parties learning something.
     
  9. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    Sounds like your SLT are paying lipsevice to the " positive experience" ethos, rather than truly believing it.
    That's the reason we took the approach that the observer was there to learn from the person being observed. It really helped. We're feeling brave enough to swap classes now ( and that's scary for a y6 teacher to go into Fs).
     
  10. Karvol

    Karvol Occasional commenter

    Is this really how you manage your classes weebecka, because your insinuation from early on has been that you are treating this forum and its inhabitants as one of your classes?
    Really, weebecka, are you this bad at classroom management? It is not difficult to get on in a forum. Why do you have problems with it?
     
  11. Sorry Bob,
    Seems Karvol disagrees with you and is requesting my comment. You really should coordinate you know.
    That's the insinuation of others Karvol. I don't see it that way.

    I have substantial experience in settling very challenging classes in circumstances where others struggled/failed/wouldn't go.
    You could ask me how I did that if you like.
    Or you could explain the ways in which I could change my posts which would allow me to access the universal spirit of peace and harmony which usually exists here.
    Or we could talk about the interaction between beween observations and inspections and behaviour.

    But perhaps you prefer just to be generally derogatory and to create a catch 22 situation where I'm damned if I do answer (because betamale asked me not to) and I'm damned if I don't (because you asked me a direct question which I would then be ignoring).
    Ever get the impression that someone's texting in the background demanding you be abusive because she can't handle it herself?
     
  12. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    Just to clarify with more experienced observers this year about my experience this week. There were two errors made with the subject matter.
    Students did make progress with the main concept being covered.
    Would this deserve a satisfactory or does an error with the subject matter mean an automatic unsatisfactory?
     
  13. i share the maths room with the dep head, which menas he pops in when he needs to sort stuff - now these are in no way observations, and i really don't mind him doing this - he's quick to be complimentary if it's going well, and short of one child murdering another, nothing would go down as a point against me, but even so, if it isn't going well, it's a bit nerve-wracking
    i'm sure i wouldn't cope well with n unannounced official drop-in obsevationa
     
  14. bombaysapphire - sorry- have cut across your point
     
  15. Karvol

    Karvol Occasional commenter

    This is the bit where you are having problems. What you don't have is experience of dealing with highly intelligent classes who have it in for you and want to see what you are made of. That is a completely different type of classroom management and you don't appear to be very skilled at it at the moment. You may very well get there - it is only a skill after all and not an innate talent, but you have to realise what the state of play is and you don't seem quick on the uptake.
    Couldn't care less about this.
    Why not? That is what the thread is about.

    Seriously, try and get some experience of dealing with highly intelligent classes that are not belligerent or abusive. You will find a whole different experience of teaching.
    Grow up. You are not dealing with children here. Start learning from what is happening and from the dynamics of this "classroom". If you cannot cope here then you have a long, long way to go.
     
  16. Nazard

    Nazard New commenter

    If these were small slips then not a problem IMO (ideal to avoid, obviously, but everyone makes errors at some point). If fundamental errors in the understanding of the maths then yep, that would make it unsatisfactory.
     
  17. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    I think that it has to be taken in the context of the while lesson.
    I don't use ofsted grids when observing, I make notes. When I go back to the criteria ( I have to, it's my job) I highlight areas covered on
    my ofsted grid.
    We go with best fit. Feedback is more of a discussion though and I always ask the people I'm observing to use a grid and highlight it themselves. The abiity to be self aware and self evauate is essential
    for a teacher.
     
  18. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    Whole, not while. Nazard's right, it would depend on the error.
     
  19. Students with extreme behavioural issues are not stupid Karvol. Usually quite the opposite.
     
  20. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    We had a no notice ofsted at my last school. We were part of the pilot for the new section 5s. An inspector just turned up at 8.30 one Monday morning and said "I'm here to inspect your school"
    I can honestly say I've never felt so sick in
    all my life, I spent the first 20 minutes of the PIB meeting trying my hardest to make mental lists of what needed to be done, who should be called etc. Very scary.
     

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