Students filtered into RuTC tutor Danny Volovsek’s classroom looking particularly disillusioned. Earlier that day, he had taken them for an art lesson where they were asked to do quick sketches of various objects in just 30 seconds. They complained to Danny that they didn’t like it and didn’t want to do it again.
A few years ago Paul Hadjipieris, a History teacher at RuTC, found himself feeling stagnant in his teaching. He was being plagued by a feeling not uncommon to the teaching profession – the feeling of disillusionment – a result of teaching the same material, year after year for 10 years.
There is a lot of strong opinion among teaching and learning practitioners, policy-makers and managers that teacher-led learning is passive. In her brilliant book Seven Myths About Education, Daisy Christodoulou suggests that Ofsted reports that praise student-led learning far more often than teacher-led effectively discourage the latter to the detriment of education.
‘For teenagers who are busy finding their identity, choices are respectful and give them independence,’ says Katy Parnell, Supported Learning teacher at RuTC. Her approach to teaching is to always offer students choices rather than giving them orders. This is a valuable lesson for all teachers.
'Better than one thousand days of diligent study is one day with a great teacher.' This Japanese Proverb sums up perfectly why we decided to dedicate an entire blog to teaching and learning and to celebrating exciting and progressive practice. On this blog we will highlight some of the ways teachers at Richmond upon Thames College are excelling at teaching.
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