Lightbulbs for Learning

Lightbulbs for Learning are the little bits of fantastic practice that are seen on Learning Walks across the school.  The idea is that this creates an opportunity for others to visit those classrooms and see great practice for themselves.  This is the premise behind ‘Open Classrooms’, which I will introduce this term.

From the 2014 archives:

Year 9 English

Last week I was in Mike Newell’s  Yr 9 English class. A resource that he used that sparked off a conversation afterwards in his feedback was a musical recording based on Wilfred Owen’s Anthem for Doomed Youth, by School of Ambience

The students were engrossed – they were reading a copy of the poem while watching eerie and fragmented visualisations of the horrors of WW1 – very effective. It got me thinking about the uses of music in the classroom – not just to engage certain behaviours (calmness, thought-processes, ‘waking up’) but to help reflection about a particular theme or issue. Nina Jackson, who has written The Little Book of Music in the Classroom ( see here) has written about how music can benefit learning and motivation and is worth a dip into.

Yr 7 Maths

In G22, Alex Jenkins’ class was buzzing with competitive activity. Students had designed their own questions based on Dan Meyer’s Pyramid of Pennies – see below.

This is Act 1 of Dan Meyer’s Three Act Maths lessons – after looking this up I could be convinced that had Maths been taught like this when I was at school I wouldn’t now get panic attacks when faced with a spreadsheet. THEN I looked up Dan Meyer’s methods. Maths by storytelling – see his blog here. Meyer uses the three part story framework to create opportunities for three act mathematical tasks, which he believes are prescriptive enough to be useful and flexible enough to be useable. I’m definitely going to do some more Learning Walks when these are going on in Maths. Please send invites Maths team!


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