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Steve Illingworth

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About Steve Illingworth

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  1. Steve Illingworth - Teaching & Learning Consultant for the Foundation Subjects with Salford LEA. Formerly Head of History in two different schools. Co-author of three textbooks in Folens’ ‘Specials!’ series.
  2. Self Assessment in History Features of a good piece of work Well-structured, in clear paragraphs Detailed information is used to back up the points being made Explains clearly how some events cause others Explains how some causes are linked Other questions include: What I have done to achieve this What I could do to achieve this
  3. PRODUCING EFFECTIVE CONCLUSIONS A suggested plenary activity In the main part of the lesson, pupils may have produced some writing in which they weigh up two alternatives; e.g.- Was Cromwell a hero or a villain? Should this product be made from metal or plastic? Should hunting be banned? Ask pupils for suggested answers to the question – Why do we need to have a conclusion? Some useful answers could be – To make it clear what your answer is To show that you are aware of alternative answers To leave the reader with a memorable idea/phrase/image List some answers on board, for pupils to bear in mind when they attempt their own conclusions. Modelling a conclusion It would be useful to show pupils an example of an effective conclusion and to examine its main features. It is better to show an example from a different piece of work from that which the pupils are going to attempt, to avoid giving too much ‘scaffolding’. One model is to concede that the weaker argument has some strengths but then to make it clear that the other argument is stronger. So, in answer to the question – Is David Beckham a role model or a bad influence?, this could be a conclusion:- In some ways Beckham is seen as a bad influence, especially when he has lost his temper on the field.. However, he should be seen mainly as a role model because of his hard work and efforts for charity. Overall, parents should have nothing to fear if their children try to copy him. The structure for this conclusion is therefore:- weaker argument – example – stronger argument – example – memorable final sentence Using this model, pupils can attempt to construct a conclusion for their piece of work. This could look something like this for the ‘Cromwell’ example. In some ways Cromwell was a hero, especially in the way he led Parliament’s army to victory in the Civil War. However, he should mainly be seen as a villain because of his cruelty in Ireland. Overall, he was not somebody this country should be proud of. If they want to argue that Cromwell was a hero overall, they should concede that he did some things wrong, then finish by extolling his virtues
  4. HOW WELL DO WE WORK AS A GROUP? Put a tick in the column on the right which describes best the way your group has worked when discussing ideas together. 1. All the time 2. Most of the time 3. Some of time 4. Not at all We encouraged everyone to speak We backed up our ideas with reasons We shared all the information we had We all felt free to disagree if we had a good reason We were wiling to change our minds if a good argument persuaded us We treated each other’s ideas with respect We tried to come to an agreement
  5. Which rules will your group use? 1. Ask everyone in turn for their opinion 2. Discuss all the alternatives before deciding 3. If you hear a good reason, you should be willing to change your mind 4. Stick your fingers in your ears and make up your own mind 5. Members of the group should try to agree before making a decision 6. There should be a leader and the group should do what the leader says 7. All relevant information should be shared among the group 8. Look at and listen to the person who is talking
  6. REFLECTIONS ON THE LESSON – TEACHERS’ NOTES Purpose of the ‘Reflections’ sheet One of the concerns about ‘Thinking Skills’ lessons, or any lesson involving a substantial amount of group discussion, is that pupils have no written record of their learning in that lesson. This sheet is designed to address those concerns. The idea is that pupils complete the sentences on the sheet, either at the end of the lesson or for homework. Doing this task will have two benefits. First, pupils will be able to reflect on the effectiveness of their group work strategies, helping them to understand their own learning better (metacognition). Secondly, they will have a written record of the main subject learning outcomes from the lesson. This will reinforce the oral learning they have done, will help the teacher to check on that learning and will provide a lasting record for revision purposes. ‘One thing we found difficult at first was….’ Here pupils should choose the part of the task which they found the most difficult, or at least the one they had to think about the most. In writing about how they overcame this difficulty, this should build up pupils’ self esteem and also give the teacher an insight into which activities may need extra support in future. ‘The main things we learned from this lesson were….’ The points listed here could either be subject-specific learning outcomes (e.g. ‘Blackpool declined in the 1970s because foreign holidays became cheaper.’) or they could relate to the learning strategies used in the lesson (e.g. ‘You should read all the cards first before you try to sort them out’). Pupils will need guidance on the different answers they can put into this final section.
  7. REFLECTIONS ON THE LESSON Our task was to…. The way we approached the task was to…. One of the things we found difficult at first was…. We tried to solve this problem by.… The main things we learned from this lesson were…. 1. 2. 3.
  8. Plenary Ideas ‘Show Me’ – all pupils hold up coloured cards to answer a question, enabling teacher to assess their knowledge instantly Reflections on how a task has been approached, especially where group work has been used Human line/washing line to show sequence of events, order of importance, individual positions along a continuum of divergent opinion Bingo Visual representation of the lesson – mind map, cartoon strip, sketch from a different angle Know already/Want to Know/Have Learned – 3 columns, first two filled in at start of lesson, third at end Interim self or peer evaluation – discuss work so far and then set a target for improvement for next lesson/homework. Comment on work put out for next class Group discussion with coloured hats Hot seating – pupils take it in turns to be questioned on their work so far Picture from memory – castle, peasant’s house, street scene Individual whiteboards to answer re-cap questions ‘Taking Sides’ – pupils debate a controversial issue in pairs, in role, then change roles Odd One Out – perhaps with whiteboards Tableaux – create a scene from the lesson
  9. Inspection evidence suggests that the plenary is often the least successful part of the lesson. This workshop aims to help history teachers appreciate the benefits of taking time to plan an effective plenary. It will consider strategies to make the conclusion of the lesson more successful and provide lots of practical examples which could be adapted to several historical topics at Key Stages 3 & 4. The focus will be on activities which involve as many pupils as possible and which help them to reflect not just on what they have learned, but also on how they have learned it. Steve Illingworth - Teaching & Learning Consultant for the Foundation Subjects with Salford LEA. Formerly Head of History in two different schools. Co-author of three textbooks in Folens’ ‘Specials!’ series.
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