Thursday, 25 October 2018

Penalty Angles

Going back a couple of months, we came across 'The science behind Eden Hazard's FA Cup winning penalty' on Facebook. We watched it and, of course, it gave us an idea for a lesson...

It was the video's thumbnail (above) that caused our minds to begin thinking 'school' and 'maths'.

Like you, we imagine, one of our biggest tasks is the 'how do we get them engaged?' question. Football is usually quite successful!

Here's a photo of Messi taking a penalty. Similar to us, you could search the internet, or screen capture penalties being taken (remember to check copyright laws!). 

If you attend football matches, you could take your own photos:

Perhaps, even better. Get the children taking and photographing their own penalties. 

28/10/18 Update: See here for numerous examples!

Finally, whichever you choose, give the children example shots of the penalties being taken. Get them to put on the '0 degree line' and measure the angle from there. If using your own photos, is there an angle that guarantees scoring?

Got some examples? Do share them...

Friday, 14 September 2018

What Peer Marking Can Tell You About the Marker

Peer Marking:
-time saver
-gives children the opportunity to see each others' work
-allows pupils to receive feedback from people their own age

Here's something we've recently learned to use better...
- Pupil A completes their work
- Passes it to Pupil B
- Pupil B reads the work and leaves a peer assessment 
(This does all the points above)
- Teacher reads the assessment and gains a better understanding of Pupil B's grasp of the task

Some examples:

Above: peer used 'story' - we were writing a recount. 'Describing more' is ok, but describing what and how - does the peer assessor know?

Above: 'Nothing' - really? A piece of writing in Year Five (or at any age) with no scope for improvement?

Above: Tense identified. What 'sentence types' and why?

Look at your peer assessments more closely. What does it tell you about the pupil carrying out the assessment? What do and don't they know?

Sunday, 9 September 2018

Plant a Conker!

I was in the park with my three year old daughter. I found a conker on the floor. "Look," I said. "What's that?" she replied.

I explained, it's a seed, grows into a tree, you can play with it, it's spikey, but brown and shiny inside. "What?" she replied!

So, we're going to plant it...

So, right now, it's about 'Conker Season'. Grab one. Plant it. Share it's journey with this class. And, your next... Then, plant it in the school grounds. 

Talk about how it grows and remember where it came from and what it will grow into.

In fact, as the year goes on, plant the odd seasonal item and have it there in class as an ongoing experiment that can be referred to.

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

What is the Purpose of Success Criteria?

Earlier this year, Ross (of Teacher Toolkit fame) ran a twilight session at UCL. It was entitled 'Effective Classroom Differentiation with @TeacherToolkit'. It was on Wednesday 7th March, but we were unable to attend, but as we subscribe to UCL's PLN, we were sent a copy of the slides used by Ross in his presentation.

Much of what Ross had presented looked useful, but we were particularly impressed by his piece on Success Criteria. It really struck a chord with us. 

Here's the basics of it (and it really is simple): Get the children to design, draw, make, write something with only basic instruction. Get them to mark this against success criteria that they only see after they have finished. Then, repeat this, but with the success criteria shown in advance. Then, discuss which was more successful and why...

We've put together some examples here (Currently as .notebook & .pdf)

NB: unrelated to any of the above, but from the same presentation we also picked up the following;
- Refer to No Hand Up Policy as 'Cold Calling'

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Colloquial Imperatives

Want to help your children find, identify and remember where imperative verbs are used in instructional writing? 

Try making the imperatives a little less formal!

Saturday, 16 June 2018

#Taskmaster - Obscure [Noun] Miming Task

So, here's how the task went:
- contestant was handed an envelope. In that, it said to write down as many obscure animals as possible;
- once the list was written, they were handed another envelope. This envelope disclosed that they needed to mime the animals for their team-mate to guess.
- result, amusing TV!

The clip below shows one of the attempts and comes with a language warning:

So, how could this be used in the classroom?

- Name obscure adjectives, adverbs and so on...
- Name features of a topic, eg rivers, space, Egyptians
- Name cities in the UK
- It's endless...

But, you can't do it too often. It relies on the person writing the list not knowing the next bit is coming.

Taskmaster used this as part of a comedy program. We're certainly not looking to mock or ridicule children. The skills here are: deep thinking to make the 'obscure' list, quick thinking when the task develops, ability to communicate without words and the ability to interpret - and, this person must also have the knowledge to know what's being described! 

Give it a go.

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Sporting Number Bonds

Last month, I was at a football match. The team I support were winning, for a change. As a result, I was clock watching for most of the second half. As time went on, I realised that my Number Bonds to 90 are pretty good.

Too often in school, we focus on Number Bonds to 10 and to 100. This is all good and well, but it's not enough. The children need to know their Number Bonds WITHIN 100. This then aids their addition and subtraction greatly. They need to know all 288 X and ÷ facts, and in the same way, they need to know these sum/difference facts within 100. For example, 5 and what make 13? 15 add 7 is? 23 added to 19? 44 subtract 17?

Here's an idea. 
Like I was, use the scenario of a sporting event to help:
Football: Number Bonds to 45/90
Basketball: Four 12 minute quarters
Cricket: Number Bonds to 6 (overs), 40/45/50 (game length)
Netball: 60 minutes, divided into 15 minute quarters
Ice Hockey: 60 minutes, divided into 20 minute thirds
Rugby Union: Number bonds to 40/80