So what do you want to know about me? I’m a science teacher (another biologist!) who has been working in schools with students for over 20 years. I started off in a mainstream science department (and I have dabbled in ICT teaching as well) where I started to learn my skills and develop my own ideas of what education should look like. Whilst working in my first school I started to pursue my interest in special needs, developing strategies and resources for students who were left to sink or swim and learning strategies that might help these students make progress.
As I looked for a permanent job I wondered if primary teaching might allow me to follow my interest in special needs, and I was keen to adopt a more holistic approach rather than focusing on a very narrow curriculum subject. I retrained as a primary teacher, but I realised as the course progressed that although I enjoyed teaching, I was passionate about science education and wanted to teach science in more depth.
I accepted a job in a secondary age special school teaching (mostly) science to children with special needs. Having never even stepped foot in a special school before, the first few weeks were challenging but I soon found my feet. I enjoy the mixture of students we get – it’s like teaching hybrid primary and secondary pupils, and I get to focus on both the child and my subject. I’ve been there for many years now and I’ve passed up countless opportunities to move on because I love what I do, and because of the more intimate relationship we have with both students and their parents/carers.
I was an Advanced Skills Teacher (AST) for 8 years and am now the deputy head but I still teach science and think of myself as a science teacher rather than a school leader.
I have been fortunate to meet and work with many departments and teachers across the authority and further afield doing a variety of things such as:
- Working across the county to provide science specific training for teaching assistants
- Writing SATs booster programmes (this shows my age!)
- Providing training and mentoring for NQTs and trainee teachers
- Providing SEN guidance for Science leaders
- Collaborative planning and writing schemes of work
- Sharing resources and strategies for teaching students with SEN
- Carrying out lesson observations and coaching work
- Working to support individual teachers in under-performing departments or individual teachers experiencing difficulties
- Leading CPD across the local authority’s special schools consortium
- Providing advice/consultancy both within the LA and further afield
- Writing for commercial publishers
I’m passionate about science education and being an AST gave me a chance to focus on both my subject and leading in teaching and learning across a school. I also have my NPQH (the main recognised qualification it is desirable to hold (in the UK) to be a head teacher).
I’m also a member of the Association of Science Education (ASE) and sit on the regional committee for the East Midlands (I’m the regional secretary). I’d recommend ASE membership to science teachers of all phases regardless of experience or length of service.
On this site you’ll find ideas, information, advice and photographs relating mostly to science education (and a slight technology focus) taken from my day to day classroom practice. I also share all of the resources I can – feel free to use these in your own lessons but do read the copyright information first.
Feel free to Contact Me if you have any questions or just simply want to say hi – it’s always good to hear from people who visit my site.