Curricular thinking has made me a better teacher

There’s been lots said in recent days about curriculum. Is it of utmost importance to what schools do, or is it the latest phase which will pass only for us to look back and wonder why we thought it was so important? My belief is that curriculum is fundamental to what schools do, and that … Continue reading Curricular thinking has made me a better teacher

Part 3: Developing and Deploying Subject Knowledge

Parts 1 and 2 of this series discussed the knowledge teachers need - knowledge of the curriculum and ‘teacher knowledge’, or PCK - and the importance of a knowledge rich curriculum. Here, we consider how to develop this knowledge and apply it in planning and teaching. What is subject knowledge? Subject knowledge is often broken … Continue reading Part 3: Developing and Deploying Subject Knowledge

Subject Knowledge and a Knowledge Rich Curriculum – Part 1: What knowledge do teachers need?

In a few week’s time I will be leading a session with trainee teachers introducing teacher subject knowledge and a knowledge rich curriculum. Reviewing my notes from a similar session last year, I thought it might be helpful in refreshing my thoughts to write a summary which has ended up as this series of posts. … Continue reading Subject Knowledge and a Knowledge Rich Curriculum – Part 1: What knowledge do teachers need?

Teaching Structure and Bonding (Part 5): Covalent Structures

When teaching bonding, I used to start with covalent structures, now I leave them until last. This is because I think covalent bonding presents particular challenges which can be mitigated by teaching at the end of the topic. Three main reasons for this are: Why covalent bonds exist at all is less intuitive than for … Continue reading Teaching Structure and Bonding (Part 5): Covalent Structures

Teaching Structure and Bonding (Part 4): Metallic Structures

Having introduced how I approach teaching the KS4 Structure and Bonding topic, I’ve described the teaching sequence I use for ionic structures in detail. These posts give a clear indication of the journey through each structure type which I take students on, from the macroscopic properties they are familiar with, to the sub-microscopic structure - … Continue reading Teaching Structure and Bonding (Part 4): Metallic Structures