This week Paul explains the importance of going ‘over and above’ in behaviour. Pivotal made the offer to review behaviour policies for free recently and Paul has been offering lots of advice on how to tweak policies by making small changes. These changes ‘ripple out’ to make a really strong change in the culture of the school or college. Whole schools and colleges, individual classes, 1-to-1 work and even parents and their children can benefit from this small change:
Whenever positive recognition is used, it must be for learners who go over and above.
Learners immediately try to stretch – to go a bit further to get their positive recognition. In the classroom, expectations are instantly raised. Instead of praising children for doing the basics, think about thanking learners for minimum standards but praising them for going over and above. The effect of this simple tweak can ripple through the whole institution if everyone’s focus in now on going over and above. All praise including positive notes and phone calls can use the phrase. A natural progression is to start applying this approach with staff as well. Praise members of staff who go over and above – those who arrange drama productions, sports events or extra revision classes.
We also welcomed Garth Smith back to the podcast for the third time. Garth is ‘our man on the inside’ – he is in the process of becoming a teacher and has reached the stage of taking the ‘skills tests’ which he needs to pass before be can begin his PGCE course. There are two tests – in Numeracy and Literacy at GCSE ‘C’ level. Garth tells us the story of how he is getting on in taking – and re-taking – the tests. It’s well worth listening to his experiences. If a candidate fails the tests three times, they are not allowed to take a teacher training course for another 2 years.
Garth recommends http://www.numeracyready.co.uk/ which helped him a lot in preparing for the numeracy test.
He goes on to describe the literacy test…
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