Thoughts This Week…

A compilation this week…

Learning and Revision
It’s still revision time with public examinations coming up and for our school we can add the younger students too as they will have school exams. Certainly resources that I will use with Year 7 (UK ages 11-12) include the spot the mistake type activity. I recently used the Transformations AfL activity for rotations successfully with Year 7 and also with Year 10 as part of their revision.

Reading Make it Stick (The Science of Successful Learning) which discusses the use of testing as a learning tool convinces me even more that mini-tests are a good idea! This week each of my three Year 10 lessons started with one which seemed to work very well and I was very pleased when two students who had to be somewhere else in the first part of one of  the lessons asked it I would send them the mini test for that day! Students need to recall information and the evidence suggests that testing is a better way of doing this than simply rereading material, a method often favoured by students. I am planning more plenary mini-tests, with the students I’ll definitely use the name I know they like, ‘Self-checks’ which I hope helps them realise they are as the authors suggest a learning tool, not something to be stressed by.

Aristotle apparently wrote “exercise in repeatedly recalling a thing strengthen the memory.”



Select image for problem on Brilliant

I do like the problems on Brilliant and looking at a problem recently, it struck me that these are an ideal sources of starters. Further details on Mathematics Starters and Plenaries.

In the news
The current UK system national curriculum levels have been removed so schools have the freedom to design their own assessments against the new national curriculum. Further details are available on the Assessment Without Levels – KS3 page.

A TES article ‘The revolution is coming, so what should you expect? suggests that the new ‘pass grade’ is to be 5 (even though a 4 is comparable to the current C grade). Equivalent grades are given by TES as follows (TES source JQC)
GCSE gradesGCSE grades chart

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