Currently deputy head at Reading School and a Methodist minister, I have also worked as a Prison Chaplain, Youth Worker, with young offenders and young people not in education, employment or training. In this report I look at the influence of leadership on student outcomes, and explore the notion of what effective education really is.
I was asked to write a scheme of wok to replace one that had become out-dated by the passage of time and the changed intake of my Bristol secondary school. I have produced a set of lesson plans and resources that have already been run with year eight classes, and should be adaptable to many other schools from year six to year nine. The resources take account of the enormous variety of ability and motivation within my current school. Additional information: All the resources are available as Word, Publisher and PDF files and there is a data DVD version […]
As subject leader for RE in my primary school, I noticed that neither the children nor the teachers were particularly enjoying the subject, which was being taught by following the local syllabus for the Wirral. We needed to improve the profile of the subject as well as the learning for the children. I knew from my Literacy lessons how well children respond to stories and could develop skills in English by approaching texts in different ways. I wanted to see how I could use stories effectively to improve RE lessons with my own class and then across the school. In this […]
The ITT RE Ambassador Scheme, implemented by Learn Teach Lead RE North West, has been an exciting and motivating initiative and has given many students an added dimension to their experience in learning about and teaching RE. This study explores how the historical marginalisation of RE in the curriculum led LTLRE to create this necessary vehicle for leading the way in adequately enthusing and training students in many aspects of religious education and its place in our primary schools. The experiences of our ITT RE Ambassador show how she was able to learn how to effectively teach and plan lessons, […]
Philosophy for Children (P4C) was founded by Professor Matthew Lipman and has developed over 35 years and is practised in approximately 60 countries. It has been influenced by educationalists and philosophers such as Vygotsky, Piaget Dewey as well as the tradition of Socratic dialogue. Through a stimulus such as a story, video clip or image, the children are encouraged to develop philosophical questions, learn to listen to each other to explore differences of opinion respectfully and to value the ideas of others. I have shared my experience of teaching P4C within RE lessons and produced resources to support the teaching […]
I work in a school for children and young people who have severe learning disabilities. My first Farmington scholarship (2017-18) was an exploration of sacred singing in different faiths, and how, in a special school, children might access spirituality and experience something of those faiths, through singing. This time I wanted to take that further and see whether, through singing, we can tap into the energy, or current, that underlies all faiths When we strip the singing of religious references, what remains? Not, as some might imagine, something secular, but instead something deeply sacred, that leads us into experiencing and […]
My research was inspired by my increasing concern for the knowledge base and varying views on the importance of RE. I studied The Commission on Religious Education (CORE) (2018) to review the recommendations made and to address any gaps in teaching at my setting. I knew through experience as a teacher, the many benefits that RE can have but as I reflected on the suggestions in The CORE, national and local events occurred which gave me a clear direction my research needed to take. We are in the midst of a global pandemic, COVID-19 and following a racist attack, we […]
My Farmington project examines effective strategies that can be employed in school, at a departmental level, to enhance non-specialist teacher confidence when delivering the key stage three RE curriculum. I demonstrate that, within my school context, the ‘teacher as learner’ technique of shared reflective thinking did improve non-specialist teacher confidence. Furthermore, this technique allows non-specialists to draw upon their specialist skill sets and fosters greater pupil independence.
The aim of my Farmington journey was to discover and explore good teaching practice in Religious Studies that could be used to appeal to, and engage pupils from predominantly secular backgrounds., both on the Isle of Man (where I teach), and in the UK. I work with young people living in a postmodern world full of contrasting and sometimes competing views from the setting of an island where there is mainly minimal exposure to world faiths beyond what can be seen on a screen coupled with some very general traditional views of Christianity with a dash of Manx Celtic lore […]
Much has been done in schools on devising frameworks for professional development of staff. Much has been done within Church of England schools to help them develop their unique identity as ‘distinctively Christian’. Likewise, much has been taught in the Church to interpret the ‘Words and Ways of Jesus’ as a framework for discipleship and leadership development. I am interested in the interface between the two. I would like to explore what would happen if we were to take some of the best learning in discipleship from the Church context and use it within a Church of England school setting […]