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Saturday, 21 January 2012

Evaluation Lessons

I am a great believer in reflecting. Hence the blog. One of my favourite parts of mt GTP was my weekly training in plans in which I would reflect on my teaching experiences over the week. I try to deliver a good period of reflecting in all units of ICT that I teach, especially at KS3. Lately I have started to wonder if there will be a place for Evaluation in the new ICT curriculum.

If reflecting and improving was really regarded highly by the department for education they may realise that bring back logic and programming to the curriculum could potentially be a step backwards. I have already overheard ICT Teachers talking about going back to flowol, databases and HTML to meet the needs of the changes. How is this going forward? How is this improving ICT? I call on the more creative ICT teachers on the school to collaborate quickly to think of something new, and more engaging for all, before it's hijacked by laziness. Let's reflect on what we know. Logic is good, lets teach it in a fresh way. Flowol is out of date. Scratch is too babyish for older year groups.

On Monday I have a planned a lesson for Year 8 to reflect on the websites they have designed and created. I am going to use peer assessment to guide their reflections. In this 50 minutes lesson I need to teach the students how to evaluate, and produce evidence of it. Sometimes in ICT it seems like the skills we teach don't always match the lesson. I need my students to preview their websites in an internet browser, screenshot them, and paste them into powerpoint before receiving feedback, implementing the feedback, and taking more screenshots to paste into powerpoint to demonstrate the changes. Is all this a little too confusing for 13 year olds?! As well as learning the skill of reflecting and improving?

Plenaries are a time for reflection. What have we learn't today? The honest answer on Monday will probably be "how to print screen" and not "how to improve my website based on feedback from my peers".

I have to ask myself at times like this... Is what I am teaching still worthwhile?

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