Sharing Good Practice

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As Teaching and Learning Assistant Co-ordinator at my school I am tasked with taking over the SGP program our school. Sharing Good Practice is obviously a process that happens naturally in all good teaching, but we’ve set time aside to allow teachers to talk to each other about an area of their teaching that they’d like to improve and focus on. I love this idea, as it has so many benefits: a few quiet moments in the school day to reflect, a renewed focus that can be based around an area of teaching, a specific class or even an individual student, and it’s really re-energising and inspiring talking to teachers from outside my department that I don’t always get a chance to chat to. I hope that the teachers involved feel that sharing good practice is a little re-boot to their motivation, something we all need from time to time.

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The way it works in our school is that we meet three times in a cycle and teachers are emailed a personal target beforehand that is based on observation feedback and whole-school focuses. Meeting one is for sharing and planning. Meeting two is for reflection and sharing evidence and the third meeting is back in departments to spread good ideas within the department so that they make it into the shared schemes of work and don’t fade away into the recesses of our busy minds. We use forms like the one below to record the process

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I like to think of the whole process using the comparison of the butterfly effect: the idea that the flapping of a butterfly’s wings can cause an earthquake on the other side of the world. Or, in other words, we are looking for small changes in our practice that make a big impact on our students. When we have so many demands on our time and attention, I know that feeling as a teacher of being pulled in a million different directions.

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