New Years Resolutions

The new school year has just begun! And with the turning of the year, many new primary supply teachers and teaching assistants have taken to Facebook and Twitter to share their new year’s resolutions for the start of the teaching year.

positive-300x225Often New Year’s Resolutions can be a pain to stick with, however if you work hard and try at it, you may find yourself pleasantly surprised.

It is funny to think of teachers across the country setting New Year’s Resolutions in September, but as with any profession, goal setting is important.

Some of the most popular resolutions we have seen floating around are short and sweet such as ‘Find the Balance’, ‘Be Creative’ and ‘Stay Positive.’

With more pressure being put on teachers it can be hard to find the balance between work and life, and it can be hard to stay positive. However the rewards of teaching are far superior, and through perseverance you can really help your pupils to shine!

Facebook Posts Affecting Employability?

In today’s world everyone loves to post a “selfie” picture online. Facebook and social media is a great way to document your life and share it with your friends. However it comes with a price of privacy.

The idea of sharing things on social media is pretty simple but people tend to forget that once you’ve posted something online it is there for everyone to see. If you’re full name is listed on Facebook potential employers can Google search you and access all the incriminating pictures of you!

fbEmployers are more frequently looking at their interviewees Facebook pages to get the inside scoop as to how suitable they will be to their company. It can be sneaky, but statistics have supported the idea that employers are less likely to employ someone because of things found on their Facebook Profile.

Of course that doesn’t mean you need to methodically remove any and all traces of fun or frolic from your Facebook page, just be careful about what you post or what you make available for public viewing. You can also slightly change your name as it appears on Facebook so that employers cannot search for it, or use a ‘business’ profile for employers such as LinkedIn.

Fun ways to end the School Year

As the end of term and the end of the school year approaches, many teachers will find their pupils getting restless with excitement. Sometimes it is better to take a step back and introduce a few fun final lessons to ‘wind down’ before the summer holidays start!

There are a number of fantastic ideas shared by other teachers who have encountered similar problems, with great ideas being thrown around such as creating their own Fashion Dolls, a number of engaging quizzes covering subjects such as Ecology and Adaptation, Music, and  History and even an exercise or two helping children to better understand Microsoft Excel.

However you decide to end the school year, make sure to go out with a bang! Your pupils will leave the school year feeling better about themselves and will have memories for life!summer

Act Up Act One Acting Courses

confidence actingFacing a classroom of new students with expectant faces can be very daunting. As teachers, we focus our efforts on building self confidence of our class, and we forget to focus on our confidence. We have found that taking acting classes can boost our own confidence and make us more ready to face the day.

Presenting ourselves with confidence can help build great relationships with our class and can engage the children in learning.  It is also a great way to bring fun and humour into the class and in turn receiving great energy.

The company Act Up have recently announced a beginners acting course which helps with vocal exercises, improvisation and assistance in public speaking. The course is 2 hour sessions over the course of 8 weeks. Lessons will be taken in small classes with a maximum of 14 people and there is also the option of a trip to the theatre, although this is not compulsory. For more information check out the Act Up website.

At Red Box we are always looking for ways to help our teachers and teaching assistants to improve themselves, so Act UP is a fantastic opportunity for those looking for a little help with their confidence. Happy acting!!

Failing is Not a Bad Thing

As teachers we understand that not every child will be able to solve a problem the first time or will be able to take in all the information in the lesson. However, a lot of pressure can be put on the child to do so, therefore, we often overlook the process of learning and only focus on the results.

stepsSociety has persuaded our psyche to have a deep rooted fear of “failure.” This way of thinking impacts us from childhood through to adulthood. Children who struggle with learning often have low self confidence and feel like they are “failing” most of the time.

This can often lead to boredom and disruptive behaviour in class.

We need to emphasize that fast learners are not always the best learners. Children learn in many different ways and we as teachers have to ensure that we are using as many methods as possible to assist the whole class. This can be a difficult job but positive feedback is a great way to build children’s confidence in learning.

Teachers also need to educate children that “failing” is part of learning. Failing can aid our learning as through the process of elimination we can find the right answer. It also builds our determination and encourages us to expand our thought process that can aid us with future tasks.

If you love teaching and are looking for a supply teaching position in and around the area of London, Red Box Teachers has a huge range of different options available for substitute teachers and teaching assistants.

Teachers’ Pay linked to Performance in Bristol Schools

[redbox] school news blog

Schools in Bristol have announced that from September 2014, newly-qualified teachers will have their pay linked directly to classroom performance. To an extent teacher’s pay will depend on the performance and growth of their pupils.

Many parents and teachers are in favour of this, particularly those who feel they go the extra mile when it comes to teaching their classes, and why shouldn’t they be? It is thought that this will be a direct incentive for teachers to put more effort into improving pupil’s willingness to learn performance in examinations.

On the other hand, this new system could drive NQTs to teach outside of Bristol as the criteria for pay may be inconsistent. In addition, the new system could also see a reduction of teachers willing to teach at tougher schools as performance of the pupils and their engagement may not be as good as other schools.

However, how easy is this system to implement? How would the efforts of the teacher and the pupil’s growth be measured objectively? Will this be a reliable and valid system? Would this be putting more pressure on pupils as they would be partly responsible for their teacher’s pay? It is not black and white when it comes to the education of children. Certain examples are as follows:

teacher pay perf

“If a pupil does well in an examination subject is this the result of the work done by his or her Year 11 subject teacher or his or her primary school teachers who taught the pupil literacy and numeracy? Which teacher should get the credit for examination success?”

Quotation taken from article: http://www.bristolpost.co.uk/Plan-link-teacher-s-pay-pupils-results-branded/story-21210185-detail/story.html

Plus there is also the issue of how to measure a pupil’s ‘level of success’. An individual may feel that they have made substantial progress over the year; however they may still be falling slightly short of the ‘average’ performance level for their year.

Red Box Teachers is always on hand to provide great opportunities for supply teachers and teaching assistants in and around London. What are your thoughts on this new scheme? What do you think this means for teachers in Bristol schools? Let us know on Facebook or in the comments!

Be Engaging and Exciting

At Red Box Teachers we understand how important education is to our children. Children can often resent going to school and hold this resentment throughout their adult education. Therefore, we need to ensure that school is a supportive and fun environment to learn in from the beginning.

fun learningAll children learn at different rates so teachers need to ensure that each level of learning is clear, exciting and engaging. We can often remember more information if we link it to an interesting memory or if we have actively engaged in that memory of learning.

Using a variety of different activities will help you to understand how each child learns and it will also break up the day into more interesting and engaging sections. Try to include stimuli that the children can relate to e.g. a cool cartoon character or a character from a famous book. Creating a story with your lessons lead the children down an action packed journey of fun and learning.

Remember it is not just the end result that counts!

Correcting Wrong Answers in a Positive Way

When teaching a class of children, particularly younger children, it is important to steer your students in the right direction while still allowing them to find things out for themselves. When it comes to giving incorrect answers, there are a few ways you can rephrase your response to their answers. This will help to guide them towards the right answer, without discouraging your students from attempting to answer questions in class.

Move onto another person

question

If you happen to pick on a student who doesn’t know the answer or who gives an incorrect answer, don’t dwell on them as it can discourage them from offering answers voluntarily. Acknowledge the wrong answer but give encouraging feedback which will minimise embarrassment such as “You’re on the right lines” or “can anyone build on what George has said”.

The aim for encouraging your students to ask and answer questions is not always to get the right answer every time, but instead to build their confidence in asking for help when they don’t understand something. Answering and asking questions is also crucial when building up communication skills, particularly in younger children.

Reward the right answer

tick

This works well in group question and answer sessions. Don’t ignore wrong answers but instead reward right answers with stickers, possibly a chart reward system or even a word of positive praise. This positive reinforcement will both reward the child who answered correctly, and may encourage other children to step up and attempt to answer another question later on in the discussion.

At Red Box we focus on relationships, whether it be a relationship between a supply teacher or a teaching assistant and the school, or the relationship between the teacher and their students. We can offer a new level of support for qualified primary supply teachers and teaching assistants looking for part time and full time jobs throughout the UK.

Find us on Facebook!

Social Media is incredibly important for staying connected with friends, distant family members and even business connections. This is why we have jumped on the bandwagon with our new Facebook page!

We will be updating it regularly with insightful news about local and international educational news, blogs and job offers in London.

[redbox] facebook blog

Every teacher has their own stance on teaching. Red Box tries to find you the best possible position to develop your growth and encourage your teaching style.

Red Box will try to help as much as possible with the move to working with an agency. We will help you find accommodation, find the best umbrella company for you and ensure you can start working to your timeframes.

We are looking for all qualified teaching assistants, nursery nurses and teachers who are happy to teach primary, this does include secondary trained teachers. We have many opportunities available, especially if you are looking for special needs experience.

Keep regularly updated on the latest job offers and educational news by following us on Facebook. We are proud to announce the launch of our new Facebook page and hope that you will join us on the Social Media networking site.

Teacher Feedback – Always Welcome!

If you want to know what it is like to work with us please read the below feedback we received from one of our teachers.

[redbox]thumbs up blog

“I am NQT and have now had 2 terms of supplying in London. I was told in my training year that supply would be so hard. I love it! I’ve probably had only 3 dodgy days. I love seeing how different schools do things. I stick to year groups I am confident in.

I go armed with stickers and I get there usually at 8 so no panic to check plans… And there are always plans and mostly a smartboard prepared. I ask what usual stopping signals etc are and as I work with little ones I don’t go in all strict…. after all I’m the stranger in the room. By the end of the day I usually feel exhausted…

There’s a lot of thinking quickly needed. But you walk away with lots of tips. I have enjoyed working with Redbox and I feel more confident as a teacher than I could have imagined after a tough training year. Yay to supply!”

Whether you are a teacher or teaching assistant looking for day to day or long term supply work, please contact RedBox Teachers.  We are only a phone call away!