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Tagged: katie ashford

Misconceptions of a new teacher - Staying up until midnight makes you a better teacher

tired_teacherAs the new school year approaches and over 30,000 new teachers begin their career in the classroom, Katie Ashford gives us the first part in her three part series.

Every teacher knows that things will never be as bad as they were during the first term of the first year. Gosh, you couldn’t pay me enough...

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Misconceptions of a new teacher - Inspiring kids is easy

teach_lead_inspireAs the new school year approaches and over 30,000 new teachers begin their career in the classroom, Teach First participant Katie Ashford gives us the second part in her three part series.  

At the end of summer institute, the prospect of entering the classroom was pretty frightening. However, I tried to put this to the back of my mind and...

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Misconceptions of a new teacher: You can always rely on ‘science’ to tell you how to teach


As the new school year approaches and over 30,000 new teachers begin their career in the classroom, Teach First participant Katie Ashford gives us the final part in her three part series.  

The last two posts in this series have talked about some of the challenges new teachers face in their first term in the classroom. If we aren’t careful, we can end up spend grueling hours planning, fearing lessons with...

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ResearchED 2013


Standing in the staffroom, clutching cups of coffee and chatting over toast is a rare but precious past time in the average school.  When we aren’t frantically running around juggling the fifteen million little jobs that often need doing at break time, we may enjoy a brief chat with fellow exhausted colleagues. During such times, it’s really easy to slip into...

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Blog: The Seven Stages of OFSTED Preparation

ofsted_logoSchools and teachers have a habit of getting rather panicky when an OFSTED inspection is on the horizon. Staffrooms are abuzz with speculation about when they will come next, the bosses start getting even more obsessed with data and monitoring, and pupils spend hours memorising their target grades and repeating...

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Ofsted: don’t lose any sleep over it

ofsted_outstandingThe school had been languishing in stage 7 of the Ofsted preparation cycle for a while. SLT were trying to keep everyone on their toes and we were doing our best to maintain standards and to retain the will to live. And then, on a sunny Tuesday afternoon in October, we were all finally put out of our misery. We got the call. 

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Blog: What can we learn from good and bad school leaders?

mahatma-gandhi-3.jpegPut your hand up if you have ever moaned about a school leader... Thought so.  Standing at the bottom of the hierarchy looking upwards, it’s very easy to point fingers, it’s very easy to point fingers and blame leaders for doing a poor job. Constant monitoring, OFSTED obsession, low staff morale and pointless paperwork take their toll on the best of us, making the odd management moan inevitable. 

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Blog: How can we give kids over a hundred hours of extra teaching time each year…for free?

clockLessons begin at ten past the hour. Or that’s when the bell goes, at least. By the time the kids have arrived from their last lesson, have caught up with their friends and faffed about with their lockers, it’s nearly quarter past. After they have come in to my classroom and are eventually sat down...

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BLOG: Why do teachers burn out?

burnoutHello everyone. My name is Katie Ashford and I am a workaholic.

Giving up working insanely hard was more of a challenge than giving up smoking. The threat of yellow teeth, empty pockets, lung cancer and premature death was enough to make me pack in that filthy habit over a year ago, but working harder than is necessary and healthy, for some reason, is much tougher to quit.

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Blog: Should we be afraid of teacher talk?

blablahI remember the first few times I was observed as a trainee. Most things in my training year were utterly horrendous, and observations were no exception. But what I remember perhaps even more than the lessons themselves was the bizarre thought processes I seemed to go through when planning for them. I was always a complete bag of nerves, and spent more time...


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The Festival of Education top 10 - Education Supergeeks, Celebrities and Saviours

wellingtonThe biggest annual event in any edugeek’s calendar came around once more this weekend. Held in the beautiful grounds of Wellington College in leafy Berkshire, the 2014 Festival of Education was the biggest it has ever been. As someone who spends a disproportionate amount of time thinking about and discussing education, I was more than a tad excited to get in on the action...

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Blog: Ten Tips for New Teachers

10-tipsThe frivolity of summer already seems like a distant memory as teachers and pupils across the land begin packing their bags and readying their nerves for another year in the classroom. Every year, around 13000 new teachers enter the profession and begin learning how to do the best job in the world. But it can seem more than a little overwhelming at first.  Here is Katie Ashford's 10 tips for new teachers...

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