I was privileged to be part of an LSC-funded programme a few years ago (via Action for Inclusion) to improve transition to college for young people in alternative education such as Pupil Referral Units, medical settings or other special schools. Young people who are unused to a mainstream classroom can very often drop out of college by the first half term.
Part of the project was to involve those youngsters who were making the transition. Rather than giving them some standard college information, with the co-operation of colleges in the County, we asked them what they wanted to know and the colleges answered their questions. It is essential to remember that these young people were at risk of becoming NEET and their questions were prudent.
The results were summarised in a short booklet which was handed out to subsequent year 10 and year 11 students from 6 colleges in the region.
An article in Guardian Education about recent changes to Ofsted's framework struck a chord http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2012/jan/16/children-wellbeing-schools, stating that "…..the word "wellbeing", which ran like a river through the previous Ofsted framework, has disappeared".
Although I don't believe that Ofsted has consigned children's happiness to the bin, it's impossible to escape the fact that observations and grading are moving further away from the 'experience' and ever more towards the 'results'.
Some pupils and students will never be able to show how much they know when they are tested in controlled conditions. Exams are not always the way to measure success, which is why vocational learning suits so many young people whose behaviour has lost them a place in education. For those, the learning 'experience' has been stressful and intolerable and has left them feeling angry and resentful that they can't be like 'normal' learners.
Let's hope it doesn't get any worse than it is. ...
Yesterday I shared a document I recently found which summarised points from a training session with college LSAs. We were examining how our own behaviours can have a real impact on the behaviour in class. In particular, we discussed how some of our own actions can actually create conflict or defuse conflict. Those who believe that we all have the power to bring incidents from hot to cool are those who are most successful at it. Gaining knowledge and skills are all part of securing that belief.
The activity, shared with me by a former colleague who had previously attended some behaviour training from Dave Vizard (www.behaviourmatters.com), was contextualised for the classroom.
Summary points from the activity: List 3 ways in which you could defuse conflict
I’ve just found a document from a training session with college LSAs. We were examining how our own behaviours can have a serious impact on the behaviour of others. In particular, we discussed how some of our own actions can actually create conflict. Sometimes we can bring our own brand of inappropriate behaviour to a situation, and then wonder why things become heated.
Summary points from the activity:
Activity: List 3 ways in which you could create conflict
I love Tuesdays. It's the day when I know exactly where I'm going to be and with whom. As a freelance consultant that's quite a luxury, but on Tuesdays I spend all day at a large Further Education college where I work with learners who face considerable barriers to their ongoing education.
Having 'stepped off the edge' in 2010 from a life of teaching and managing a behavioural support department, I spent very little time with learners for 6 months. On it's own that might not seem to be a problem, but spending time in classrooms with learners who have their fair share of behaviour issues has become a way of life, and one which I missed.
Mostly I work with teachers and classroom assistants, sharing strategies and pedagogy for a positive and calm classroom. ADHD – Teaching and Support Techniques in the Classroom | Can Do Courses
So in between this...