Review by Debra Kidd

21 May 2017, 5:00

Debra Kidd’s top blogs of the week 15 May 2017

Our blog reviewer this week is Debra Kidd, an author and former teacher. Here are her top picks from the education blogging world this week

 

Working collaboratively in the classroom
By @imagineinquiry

Group work has come in for a bit of a bashing in recent years and it’s easy to see why. We’ve all experienced the impact of poorly constructed and ill-conceived group activities and it can put new and inexperienced teachers off quite quickly (not to mention some pupils). But Tim Taylor is one of the most thoughtful and rigorous teachers of group inquiry and in this blog post he offers a useful and intelligent exploration of the importance of collaboration, as well as tackling some of the misconceptions surrounding the pedagogy of his book, Mantle of the Expert.

He takes us through the benefits of collaborative inquiry in the classroom and the life-long skills that children develop when they work in this way. It’s hard to see how anyone could argue about the importance of honing these vital interpersonal and critical thinking skills.

 

White knights and imaginary dragons
By @suzyg001

I was alarmed to read Tom Bennett’s article in The TES last week describing dyslexia and ADHD as “crypto-pathologies”. In this well-written post, Sue Gerrard deconstructs the argument, acknowledging many of Bennett’s concerns while outlining the difficulties in overstating his case. It’s a balanced and thoughtful response to a very provocative article.

 

Making mistakes
By @BLC_Head

It’s been a feisty few weeks on Twitter. I’ve found myself growing vegetables in an attempt to get away from the bickering. So Keziah Featherstone’s post is timely. She makes the case for us accepting that we all make mistakes, sharing a few of her own along the way. And she ends with a message that we all need to bear in mind – a plea for kindness.

 

SEND, parents and the word “SOME”
By @Claireyr123

Meanwhile, @Claireyr123 reminds us of the importance of using language to include and not alienate parents of SEND children with the simple inclusion of the word “some”. She lists common statements she hears about parents that she feels drive a wedge between them and the professionals, when we should be working together with the child’s needs in mind. It reminds us that behind every SEND child is a family, battling to do their best for their child – and that the best outcomes are secured in a spirit of collaboration and co-operation.

 

Context is king
By @teacherhead

In this short but punchy blog, Tom Sherrington writes of the importance of context when applying sweeping generalisations to the school system. Looking back on how his own contexts have shaped his perceptions of possibilities and expectations, he urges caution on generalising and reminds us that some contexts are easier than others. In a week in which Ofsted has begun to acknowledge that it is harder to achieve high outcomes in areas of social deprivation (while paradoxically refusing to accept that expectations should be lowered), this is a timely blog post for us all.

Debra Kidd is  standing in for Emma Hardy who is a candidate in the general election.



More Reviews

Review: Breaking the News at the British Library

Potentially a great starter for teaching digital literacy, a few aspects should give teachers pause for thought before booking...

Find out more

Ruby Bhatti’s blogs of the week, 13 June 2022

This week's top blogs are about school vision, SEND governors, safe LGBTQ+ spaces, improving workforce diversity and a journey...

Find out more

Closing the writing gap by Alex Quigley

Despite wishing for more on its underpinning principles, Robbie Burns says this book has transformed his teaching of writing...

Find out more

Robin Conway’s blogs of the week, 6 June 2022

This week's top blogs cover grade inflation, live marking, policy implementation, highlighters as a study tool and empowering others...

Find out more

Penny’s podcasts, 23 May 2022

Four pocasts to mark International Coaching Week. What does the practice look like when it's done well - and...

Find out more

Review: Britain’s Strictest Headmistress

I was prepared to love or hate this documentary, writes Adam Boxer, but for better or worse it made...

Find out more

Your thoughts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

One comment