First day back teaching tips

Teaching tips to ease you into Academic Year 2016

We have pulled together some top tips to ease you back in to school following the summer break.

For many of you exam results from IB, to GCSE and A Level will no doubt dominate the conversation. Of course teaching wouldn’t be teaching without changes to the curriculum, and measurement of individual and school achievement.

First day back; exam results

First day back; exam results news

Which leads us on to a quick review of the changes that are being made to A Levels; with many subjects losing the halfway A/S Level assessment and becoming linear. The midway assessment was beneficial for pupils as they could gauge progress, and also supply grades to universities as part of the application process. But the additional exams for some meant a distraction from a deeper understanding or specialism within subject. Definitely if the learning style is an independent one, the reversion to ‘old’ A Levels may suit, but for those who prefer a nurturing style the removal of the mid-exam might damage potential. Then of course there’s the whole question of examination bodies, and we understand that Ofqual are watching with an eager eye for any marked increase in re-assessment requests.

Back to our focus on the first day of Academic Year 2016…

…the main thrust of welcoming pupils and teachers into an ideal learning environment rests on your core message. Each school will of course have a different message or messages to highlight, but consistency of communications shows that you are united in your endeavours. Despite a dreadful damp squib as regards weather expectations over the summer holidays you can show renewed energy in how you communicate your messages; from use of colour, and visual displays to art-work and projects that have been produced by your cohorts.

Though ideally start plans are prepared before the summer holidays it’s not too late to confirm a set of activities so that the transition from 2015 to 2016 is a smooth one, you could make use of your INSET or professional day to do this.

Build into your start plan and core message time for teaching and learning staff to adjust, and of course the same is true for new intakes and their parents and carers. Perhaps a ‘Welcome’ session could form both part of your core message and your start plan.

Over to you,

Here’s wishing every success for 2016.


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