Making SHAPE standards assess-able Part 1

S1.E24.5 – Strikes an object consecutively, with a partner, using a short-handled implement, over a net or against a wall, in either a competitive or cooperative game environment.




N-eeds I-mprovement

italics are added by me

M – Student strikes an object consecutively (10 or more hits), with a partner, using a short-handled implement, over a net or against a wall, in either a competitive or cooperative game. The student also varies their shots.

P- Student strikes an object consecutively (minimum of 6 – 10 hits), with a partner, using a short-handled implement, over a net or against a wall, in either a competitive or cooperative game.

D – Student strikes an object consecutively (2 – 5 hits), with a partner, using a short-handled implement, over a net or against a wall, in either a competitive or cooperative game.

NI – Student cannot strike an object consecutively, with a partner, using a short-handled implement, over a net or against a wall, in either a competitive or cooperative game. Or Students gives no effort.


Quality Teacher Talk

Teaching with props?

Full On Learning

In this typically engaging short video piece from Hans Rosling, the world-renowned data visualisation and data-entertainment guru (see his brilliant TED Talks for more), identifies the power of explaining using props. He emphasises that although video can be used to explain some concepts, (see Ted-ED for examples to use if you’re looking to implement some flipped learning in your lessons), nothing replaces the teacher and their ability   to make learning fun through the explanations they can offer. For teachers and presenters alike,  being able to draw upon a vast repertoire of explaining is fundamental to being able to meet the needs of all learners/ listeners. As a result, there’s a great opportunity to keep refreshing ‘explaining techniques’ and consider the many ways we can employ quality teacher talk to differentiate, challenge and encourage learners to understand new concepts and think in new ways.

I’ve included a screen shot of an observation format I use very…

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Education evaluation

Education evaluation

Even though I do think it’s important to see how countries are doing in their respective jobs of Education, I agree with paragraph 5 whole heartedly.  Creating an educational evaluation system that has grades as only ONE aspect, and not the entire aspect is a wonderful idea.  Although it’s not exactly a novel idea, but an essential one that I think needs to be pursued more.

Drive. We Need Motivation.

Drive, what motivates us?

Teaching. Learning. Thinking.

Note: This is the first post in a series on professional books I’ve committed myself to read over the course of the year. Twelve books–one for each month of the year–that’s my goal. This post is a short account of my impressions of the book, from an educator’s perspective.

Book # 1:  Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink.

DriveI can’t recommend this book enough. Does increased motivation sound good to you? I read this book this past January, but the topic is even more relevant now that we’re at the end of another academic year, a time educators are searching for any motivation that’s still left in them. My first exposure to the book was by means of RSA’s entertaining animation of Pink’s work. This short video addresses the main ideas covered in the book. If you haven’t seen it yet, you should…

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The Question, Waiting to be Answered

Creativity and asking questions


The crux of the pivotal paradigm shift to which we constantly refer comes down to this: questions, not answers. Once you make the shift to this new pedagogy, everything else will shift with you. And once you start asking questions, those around you will feel the ripple effect and begin asking too. We may not see where those ripples end, but we will have helped make the shift simply in how we look at and discuss education. If your reference point is still within four walls, break them down by asking what you can find beyond. There is no more “outside the box.” Standardization, identifying acceptable answers, is dead. Innovation, seeking new answers, is the new norm.

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What great schools do.

Why do you do what you do?


A few weeks ago I read an article on the BBC website written by Mike Henson entitled – ‘Inside the cult of Saracens.’ The article explores how the English rugby team Saracens has built a culture of togetherness that has enabled the team to perform better on the pitch. If you haven’t read the article please spend five minutes reading now!

After reading the article one section struck me as an excellent vision statement for what successful schools do. If you replaced ‘Saracens’ with the name of your school you have an extremely powerful statement of intent…

What successful schools do - taken from What successful schools do – taken from

From reading the above statement you would never be in any doubt of the WHY behind Saracens. They know WHAT they do and HOW to go about doing it. What gives them an edge over their opponents is an extremely clear sense of WHY they do what…

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give-thanks1 This time of year I tend to think a lot about gratitude. I’m grateful for Alethea’s help this year. I’m thankful to all of the individuals and teams that allow us to do our good work. I’m grateful for Christine and her cafeteria team for keeping us well fed and happy with cookies during long meetings. I’m thankful for Barbara’s hard work. I’m thankful for Elizabeth who cleans my office each evening. I’m grateful for all of the acts of kindness.

Barbara Fredrickson, a psychology professor at the University of North Carolina, has studied the effect of positive feelings, including gratitude. Research tells us that cultivating gratitude can actually undo the effects of negative emotions, such as anger and anxiety. Her team has also found that feeling grateful can broaden our thinking, which in turn builds optimism. They have found that gratitude can broaden people’s mindsets and inspire future…

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Beliefs, Fromage Frais & The Pygmalion Effect

high expectations?

Class Teaching

DHS drama teacher and occasional guest blogger Lesley Graney is back, thinking about beliefs, fromage frais and The Pygmalion Effect.  Read on……


What do beliefs, fromage frais and the Pygmalion Effect have in common? Where is she going with this?  Well…..I read a blog and watched a clip on ‘The Pygmalion Effect’ on the same week that my beliefs were shattered about a certain brand of … fromage frais.

This week I may have found out that I could have been a bad mother due to my beliefs!  I have been giving my children this certain brand of fromage frais, REGUARLY!!  Like every day, regularly.

Well, ‘What’s wrong with that?’, I hear you ask, surely you are saying, ‘it’s a healthy, fruit based yogurt providing one of your children’s 5 day; you should be applauded.’

No, it’s not.  My belief was shattered this week as I read in a national…

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