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Outstanding revision lesson ideas

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by misspswatt, Mar 19, 2018.

  1. misspswatt

    misspswatt New commenter

    Hi All,
    I have just been told I am being observed on Thursday with a year 10 class, I was planning a revision lesson for a test they will be having at the end of the week. Has anyone got any tips or fun activities I could do to help this be a good (maybe even outstanding!) lesson? The behaviour in the class is poor, so although I know questioning is very important I don't want to rely on this to see progress,
    Thank you so much in advance!
  2. needabreak

    needabreak Star commenter

    While I would be tempted to follow my plan to do a revision lesson in order to thoroughly gauge progress I would consider teaching another unit of study with a variety of differentiated group/paired/individual activities and worksheets indispersed with Q&A and feedback.
  3. tb9605

    tb9605 Established commenter

    Do all members of the class need to revise/do the same thing? If you can demonstrate that you are helping each member of the class to target their own weaknesses/knowledge gaps, that would show amazing differentiation.

    For example, you could offer three different tasks with clear success criteria and students select/are guided to select one to do based on their past performance/current targets. Other students could then peer mark their efforts in order to give students feedback and formative targets. This also then allows for automatic extension tasks for HA and fast finishers ("Ok, choose another one of the tasks").

    If you want to see what this looks like in practise, I have a FREE resource available (AQA Poetry Anthology revision materials) that offers students a multitude of different tasks that they can self-select from. You wouldn't need that many - three should do it!

    Good luck.
    needabreak likes this.
  4. misspswatt

    misspswatt New commenter

    Thank you! The idea of different tasks is a great idea, as they have just covered a topic with a number of sub-topics within, so I am sure there is something that they will all need to do.
  5. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    Sorry, but I think it sad that anybody should have to plan a different lesson for a group that needs to revise because it is being observed. If you can find soemething that is better for the class than what you had planned, then go ahead, but otherwise, could you explain to the observer why you need a revision lesson? Our OFSTED inspections always came in the middle of summer exam revision time. One year, I planned some different stuff, and explained to my GCSE class that we would switch to it if the inspector arrived, but could go back to normal revison when they went. The next OFSTED, I didn't bother - an inspector came to a bog standard AS level revision class, watched me interact with students for a while, spoke to a few of them and then left, happy with the lesson.
  6. Stiltskin

    Stiltskin Star commenter

    Agree with @Piranha and I also hope your school isn't grading individual lessons.
    A_Million_Posts and Eflmeister like this.
  7. meggyd

    meggyd Lead commenter

    Sadly I was once told that a lesson can only be outstanding if it introduces new material. I don't agree by the way.
  8. needabreak

    needabreak Star commenter

    Ditto although I'm not bothered about being outstanding it's not sustainable... just getting by would be fine by me
    gravell likes this.
  9. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Try giving them some pre-written answers in need of improvement. They mark the question, then do an "even better if" or a model answer.
  10. Eflmeister

    Eflmeister Occasional commenter

    Now I’m definitely not trying to be an a*** here, but, playing devil’s advocate, why are you worried that what you’ve planned wouldn’t be good or outstanding? If it’s what you would do normally and you’d be happy delivering your original idea when not observed, then you should be happy delivering it in front of an observer.

    Back to bizarre UK education land, I totally understand why you feel the need to do a show lesson, but you really should do what’s best for the students and if you already know what that would be then do that.
    PersianCatLady and Piranha like this.
  11. needabreak

    needabreak Star commenter

    Perhaps it depends on who is observing and why, sometimes we simply do not want to hand over ammunition together with a stick to be turned on us so it's simpler not to take the risk than deal with the fallout of being the next target after a less than tip top lesson observation expecially if you are expensive and budgets are tight, a visit to workplace dilemas will illustrate how quickly the tinder box gets set alight.
  12. Eflmeister

    Eflmeister Occasional commenter

    I understand completely - I used to do the same. It’s just I find it all so sad that the focus shifts to “what will please the observer” instead of us doing what we’d normally do.
  13. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    In every other job I have done, the purpose of assessment was to look at how I did from day to day, and how I could improve and develop new skills. I was astonished when I started teaching that people were expected to prepare and deliver one astounding lesson per year. And that teachers (sometimes on these forums) would announce "I am an outstanding teacher" because an observer decided that the one, specially prepared lesson, was outstanding. Or (even worse) a school would base pay decisions on that one lesson.

    Surely, as far as lessons are concerned, the school wants to be confident that their staff are producing lessons almost all of which are of a decent quality and appropriate for the class and situation. The odd disaster should be acceptable - I think it happens to many of us, if not most. The production of special lessons for observations should be banned!

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