10 tips for First Year Teachers

1. Don't talk over the kids If there is one piece of advice I could give you, it is  this. Never talk over the kids.  You might have to wait a long time for their attention and on occasion you might have to stop and wait. Be patient. Allowing the kids to talk over you... Continue Reading →

Weekly Reflection – Saying goodbye well

Intermediate schools are strange beasts. The students only attend for Year 7 and 8 yet it is a major transition points. The kids arrive fresh from primary school swimming in uniforms that always seem a size too big. At the end of the next year the same kids leave as teeangers bound for high school... Continue Reading →

Singapore bound – so long NZ and thanks for all the fish

Next year sees a change for me. I'm off to teach at an international school in Singapore. My current school has been really, really, really good to me. I've been afforded some incredible professional development opportunities and had a lot of autonomy to do some cool things with my class. Nevertheless I found myself feeling... Continue Reading →

Thanks to all those who made the path to Teacher Registration more awesome

Last week I passed a significant milestone in my teaching career, I became a fully registered teacher. In New Zealand Newly Qualified Teachers go through a two year-induction and mentoring process. At the start of the process I decided that I wasn't going to keep a PRT folder in the traditional sense.  Out went the dull meeting... Continue Reading →

Weekly Reflection: A pain in the asTTle

The end of the school year comes with rituals. Prize-giving, leavers dinners, writing reports and end of year tests. Even though I know that standardised tests aren't completely accurate at measuring students learning growth, there's something reassuring - dare I say gratifying - in seeing those numbers going up. It backs up your judgements and... Continue Reading →

Weekly Reflection – Gone Quiet

It's been almost a month between posts. Over the last few weeks of term school production gradually took over my life. By the end of term I could barely think much less write something resembling a coherent blog post. This is not to say that production was all bad. I enjoyed teaching dance, finally got... Continue Reading →

Weekly Reflection: Minecraft, MLEs and Quadblogging! Oh my!

I've become a huge quadblogging fan. For those not in the know quadblogging is when a group of four classes take turns to read and comment on individual blogs. The quad can be international or national. After a few false starts, the quad I've been involved in this year has been nothing short of awesome.   I... Continue Reading →

Weekly Reflection: The value of connections

Over the last few days I've seen a few pleas for help about the value of being a connected educator. I define a connected educator as one who uses social media to connect with other educators in their field. The platform for connections is actually relatively unimportant. blogs, twitter, pintrest, facebook, ning, google+, bulletin boards,... Continue Reading →

Something to teach, something to learn: why #educampakl still rocks!

A bit late in posting this but as always, better late than never. I've lost count of the number of educamps I've been to since @fionagrant gave me a lift up to Educamp Tai Tokerau 2 years ago.  But suffice to say it's been a few. The beauty of educamps is that each one is... Continue Reading →

Weekly Reflection: A new principal

I never sleep well the night before the start of a new term. There's lots ticking over in my mind. how will the new classroom set up go (answer, a few remarks about more space and then business as usual) suddenly remembering a job on your to do list, a wake up jolt from an... Continue Reading →

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