Tuesday, 19 February 2008

Inservice day

I was really chuffed at the end of yesterday's in-service training day for staff, when several sought me out to say how much they had enjoyed the day. How often do you hear staff say that they enjoyed a whole staff training day? It was certainly a first for me!

We will of course look at the evaluations and feedback in more detail but I thought I would take a few minutes to recap on what really was a most stimulating and thought provoking day. We started off at 0830 with refreshments and bacon rolls for everyone. The first item on the day's programme was mine gave me the opportunity to update staff on progress with our Improvement Plan and to say a little about what we need to focus on in the lead up to next weeks HMIe visit. I was pleased to say how far we are on wit
h this session's plan and to see how positive staff feel about next week. Next Carol Brown (DHT) demonstrated electronic period by period registration ahead of today's launch. This was followed by Carol briefing staff on recent changes to child protection guidelines.
Following a break for tea/coffee and croissants, an hour and a half in departments and a sumptuous buffet lunch (provided by staff on a 'bring a plate' basis) we moved into the afternoon session.

The afternoon session
(superbly organised by DHTs David Russell and Drew Macrae)was focussed on learning and teaching. The opportunity was taken to showcase some of the best practices at Liberton High. All staff were encouraged to share and steal good practices from around the school. Each department was requested to contribute at least one item each to a display of materials arranged around the hall. Pleasingly, many departments elected to contribute several items. The hall was an Aladdin's cave of teaching and learning treasures.

  • We had three different departments showing us how they used Studywiz, an online learning environment, to engage students in on-line learning. (I now know much more about Henry Moore, Sculpting and Maquettes!).
  • Social subjects staff showed us how they had developed some innovative teaching approaches in line with those recommended in the Assessment is for Learning (Aifl) initiative.
  • Members of the PE department demonstrated the use of 'Dartfish'. This is software that is used to edit and analyse images and footage gained through video photography.

  • To close the day's proceedings Graham Crawford gave us a very stimulating overview of how Science Teaching at Liberton has been influenced by research and developments in thinking skills.
What really pleased me most about the day was that all of our presenters and contributors were from our own school. The amount of talent and range of expertise on our staff was really inspiring and gives me great hope and confidence for the future.


OllieBray said...

Really like this idea of showcasing good practice around the hall. Also really pleased to see that you are using Dartfish – it is something that I have been thinking about investing in here. I would be interested to come and see this being used with Children at some point?

Anonymous said...

No problem Ollie - the teacher driving through this initiative is a new recruit in the PE department by the name of Stuart Robertson. (Stuart is another East Lothian protege!). The PE staff are at the stage of recording pupils' performances onto DVD so that they can take the DVD home and analyse their own performance based on past SQA questions. The response from pupils has been great! Will be in touch sooon so that you can come out to see this in action.


OllieBray said...

Donald that would be great!