Tag Archives: Behaviour

Blog of the Week: 16 October 2020 – Front-loading

A Chemical Orthodoxy

Scene: it is 3.02pm and 8Sc2 have been working well throughout the double lesson. The bell goes at 3.05pm

Teacher: ok year 8, well done today. In a minute we are going to pack up and stand behind our chairs, but I want you to make sure you havewritten down the homework from the board. Dave and Charlie please stay at the end and can you all remember to put all papers in the bin.


As a set of instructions, this looks pretty clean. The teacher praises the class, uses economy of language (as few words as possible), doesn’t get bogged down in details and gives directives that are clear and easy to follow. And yet, as any teacher will know, it doesn’t work. As soon as the teacher is a few words in noise starts to build as students pack away their books and pencil cases, start…

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Blog of the week: 19 June 2020 – Rebooting behaviour after the lockdown

No one would have believed in the last term of 2019 that a microscopic enemy was gathering speed against us. ‘With infinite complacency men went to and fro over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over matter,’ as H G Wells said. Suddenly, a meteor landed in our schools and abruptly playground sounds – almost – ceased. 

All schools suddenly became special schools, serving the children of key workers, the vulnerable and the disadvantaged. Almost every student in the UK was sent home on what was effectively a fixed-term exclusion. Even the default model of the physical classroom experience was replaced by emergency remote learning. The effects of this earthquake will be impossible to understand fully for years. 

And now, or at some point in the future, schools will be thinking about opening their gates wider to more groups of pupils. Whenever that is, and in what sequence, is for others to decide. But whatever the shape and timing of this awakening, schools …

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Blog of the Week: 1 February 2019 – Forming good habits, breaking bad habits: what works?

Changing behaviour is hard, even when it’s life or death.  Patients undergoing heart bypasses risk another bypass – or death – unless they change how they eat and exercise.  However, just one patient in ten is behaving differently two years after the operation (Deutschman, 2005), because much of our behaviour – at least 40% (Wood, Quinn and Kashy, 2002) – is habitual: our breakfast, commute and start of the work day may not change for years.  The elusiveness of change is therefore “not surprising”; programmes may:

successfully educate and motivate people, especially in the short run. However, when push comes to shove, they often fail at changing actual behaviors and long-term health habits (Wood and Neal, 2016).”

We know we should eat better, exercise more and so on; we do, at least briefly.  But old habits reassert themselves.  For students, sustaining success requires habits …


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Blog of the Week: 28 March 2018 – ResearchEd Blackpool – 30 things to go and tell your colleagues from @mathsmrgordon

Teach innovate reflect

This was my first Researched and I left with my head spinning so this is a great way of reflecting and getting ideas down on paper. It was great to listen to and meet some of the people who inspire me to be better and keep my brain ticking over constantly. I have tried to summarise what I learnt as well as add things that I think are useful.

ResearchEd is a movement but will only become a force if it changes practice throughout the country. The conference acts as the lightning and we are the thunder that must open dialogue in our schools, particularly as/with leaders to affect change.

Thanks to Tom Bennett and the team, the speakers and all involved at Blackpool Research school, particularly Simon Cox, Phil Naylor and Stephen Tierney for a fantastic (hopefully annual) event!

Sessions visited:

  1. Tom Bennett – Creating a Culture – what evidence…

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