All wrapped up?
Sunday 9th of December 2012
It’s that time of year again when the streets are thronging with shoppers. You know what it’s like – people everywhere, pushing and shoving, with a determination to get their Christmas shopping done.
And have you come across the type of shopper who just stops suddenly in front of you? Or backs into you as they look at the shelves? Or bumps into you with all their bags as they try to make a U-turn in one of the aisles?
As someone who has played sport all my life, I often ... read more
You know what you should do....
Sunday 4th of November 2012
How many times have you heard someone say, “What you should do is…”? Or maybe they said, “If I were you I would…..” Or even “you need to….” Or “You have to…….”
Sounds familiar? Can you remember the context? You probably weren’t even asking for advice, but someone was very willing to give it and to tell you what you should be doing.
I heard and saw it a couple of times last week. In a coffee shop a couple of friends speaking, “You need to do s... read more
Training v Facilitation
Tuesday 11th of September 2012
Ever taken part in any professional development? Was it a course? A workshop? A seminar? Maybe a conference?
You know the type of thing where a trainer or speaker stands on the stage, you watch their Power Point presentation and you listen to what they tell you - about how they’ve been there, done that, written the book, been in the video? And every sentence has them in it – “When I was in charge of……. when I had to…… when I was at your stage…&... read more
3 Top Tips for Writing Effective Recommendations for LinkedIn
Thursday 30th of August 2012
Ever wonder what to write when someone asks you for a recommendation on LinkedIn? Where do you start? Do you click on the LinkedIn example or do you look at what other people have written? Or maybe you have your own template of how to write recommendations? Or do you just get stuck in – don’t think about it too much, just get on with it and get it out of the way? A recommendation on LinkedIn is just another form of feedback. And whether you’re giving feedback in person, face to fac... read more
Get On Board the 'More PE & School Sport' Bandwagon
Friday 10th of August 2012
Are you old enough to remember the Double Decker’s song?
“Get on board, get on board, come and join the Double Deckers”. This was the theme tune to a children’s show which was around in the 70s, and I find myself singing it a lot at the moment - every time I see another Tweet or TV news article or hear a radio interview about increasing the amount of PE and sport in our schools.
Everybody seems to be ‘on board’ the bandwagon – Boris Johnson, Kelly Holmes, Stephen T... read more
Another gold medal for Team GB in Knee Jerk Responses
Sunday 5th of August 2012
Who remembers Olga Korbut? I was inspired by her performance in the 1972 Olympics to become a gymnast, and for those of you who know anything about me, the word on your lips at the moment is probably an astonished ‘What?’
I’m not a gymnast and never managed to make any progress along the gymnastic pathway. Not because I wasn’t inspired or determined or willing to work hard, but because I couldn’t find a local club or coach who had the capacity in 1972 to take me on. And although one c... read more
Snog, marry, avoid
Wednesday 30th of May 2012
Ever seen this programme on BBC3? If you’ve not watched it, or even heard of it, then you might count yourself as one of the lucky few. So here’s a short summary for the uninitiated – it’s a crude ‘judging’ show where a heavily made up young lady is paraded in front of a range of men who are asked whether they would “snog, marry or avoid” her? And although it’s not a show I watch regularly (honestly), it’s concept has made me wonder about what type of words I would ‘snog, marry or avoid... read more
What's the best?
Monday 12th of March 2012
What’s the best? If it’s a sporting competition then it’s the person who travels the fastest, jumps the highest, throws the furthest or if it’s a team it’s the one who wins the league, the cup final or the championship, or generally beats all the other competition. But if it’s not sporting competition, then how do you decide who is better than all the other competitors? If it’s a shop or goods, is it your personal preference based on the quality or range of the items, the value for mone... read more
Whats the best advert for what you do?
Thursday 23rd of February 2012
Is it your pupils? Your school? Your staff? Or the achievements of your pupils? And how would I know? Does your school have a voice? And if it does, who hears it? Is it those who are ‘in the system’, your parents, staff and governors or do you project your voice and let the local community or even the wider community share your good news?
For all too long, ‘teacher bashing’ has been a popular hobby for the Great British public. Everyone has been to ... read more
Outward facing or navel gazing
Monday 16th of January 2012
What is an outward facing school? What does it look like? How would I recognise one?
I’ve heard and read the term ‘outward facing school’ a lot recently, especially when I’ve been at The National College for School Leadership in Nottingham. It’s also been mentioned frequently on the Twitter conversation #ukedchat, with teachers commenting that schools should be more ‘outward facing’ in order to convince the public of all the good work that goes on i... read more
Final Clearance all stock must go.
Thursday 29th of December 2011
Has anyone been to the sales yet? I don’t know about you, but I wonder if some of the shops have trawled through their depositories and put out all the old seasons clothes, shoes, electricals and furniture; all the stuff that hasn’t sold in previous years, re-packaged and put back on the shelves again.
You know what its like; you head to the post Christmas sales, which have been given such a big build up and all you see is old familiar stock, which ... read more
What are you giving for Christmas
Sunday 4th of December 2011
It’s that time of year again, when most people feel they have to rush around spending ridiculous amounts of money to buy presents for all and sundry. Are you feeling the festive spirit or are you feeling the pressure?
Can you remember what you gave your nearest and dearest last year? What did you buy for your child’s teacher? Was it last year you bought your friend that bottle of wine, or was it one of those silly gifts that are meant as a joke? Did... read more
Monday 28th of November 2011
Who else read the article in The Telegraph on Friday 25th November entitled ‘Getting tied up in knots over great school uniform debate’?
Lots of different and valid arguments were put forward by parents, teachers, psychologists, pupils and Headteachers about the advantages and disadvantages of having a school uniform. I’m not going to go through them here because I dare say most of you reading this wi... read more
Can teachers learn from Hairdressers?
Saturday 19th of November 2011
What’s your 'customer service' like?
I was recently in a small secondary school for an event that they were hosting. And I was looking forward to it because I hadn’t been there in a while, knew that the facilities were superb, and wanted to see a school in action, instead of just writing about them.
I was meeting some colleagues there as well, not educational colleagues, but professionals from all sorts of different walks... read more
School v Business
Sunday 23rd of October 2011
What's the difference between a school and a business?
I can already hear the sharp intake of breath and the loud tutting – “does she not know, schools are not businesses, we are here to educate pupils and that's not about money.”
It may not be about money, but I bet you most headteachers wouldn't turn down more money, so why shouldn't we think of schools as a type of business? If you dissect both business and schools, there are lots of parallels.
All businesses have... read more