Written by Jess Hancox, Secondary SCITT trainee
This week, I taught my full timetable for the first time, including my first year 10 lesson! I think the most nerve-wracking thing I did this week was when I went into my placement school’s sixth form to talk to the year 13s as part of their teaching enrichment day. I talked about why I wanted to become a teacher and how I went about doing that. I told them how much experience I gained working as a TA and why I thought the ELSCITT was a great route to choose. Being in a school from the start of September is definitely a huge benefit and we get great Friday Conferences to improve our teaching practice.
This week's Friday Conference saw the return of Amjad Ali who gave a thought-provoking session on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) and how we might all alter our practice, in work and in life, to do better. It is an area of education where all teachers need to work hard and think about, both in what they teach in their curriculums and how they teach it.
For the second part of the day, Amjad focused our thinking on special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) in the classroom. We looked at the many different barriers affecting students with SEND and how we can tweak our lessons to be more inclusive. Things as simple as slide backgrounds, fonts and spacing can be a huge help to students. As Amjad says, if it helps some and benefits all, why shouldn’t we do it?
Having Friday Conferences with Amjad has been inspiring and hugely important to our teacher training. He has encouraged us to make changes in our classrooms and given us all ideas to use in the future, some simple and instant, such as putting subtitles on videos, and some that will come with time and practice. The important thing, as he keeps telling us is constantly to TRY new things, REFINE them for our teaching and DITCH those that don't work for us and our students.