Session 152: What makes a good observation for observer and observed?

Date: Thursday 23rd May, 2013
Host: @HoDTeacher
Session Title: What makes a good observation for observer and observed?

Session Summary

[pullquote]Observers are just part of the audience. Put on a show. They have to put their pants on one leg at a time every morning too.[/pullquote]The theme of the week seemed to appeal to a wide range of practitioners: from HoDs & SLT commenting from the observer’s perspective to classroom teachers giving the view of the observed. There were many examples of good practice, including the inegration of videos as part of a coaching/appraisal cycle, parents as observers, learning ‘triads’ and peer-pairing.

On a more topical note, there was some discussion of whether observation will have a crucial part to play in the calculation of Performance Related Pay (PRP). It was here that we seemd to reach the nub of the issue: namely how to fulfill the requirement for formal/summative appraisal administered by a senior colleague with a more peer-level, informal, reflective system. As far as I can see, there is no reason why two separate systems cannot sit side-by-side.

And on a final note: has an observation ever changed your life?
Well it has for the following tweeps:
@mrpeel
@HoDTeacher #ukedchat  in previous profession.  made me so angry I got my shit together and had good career. constructive criticism

@brownh1971
@HoDTeacher Achieving “”outstanding”” during Ofstedcn 2009. Huge boost to confidence.

?@wallythebus
@HoDTeacher Super question. I was asked to think about ‘social impact’ of sum assumptions I’d made as NQT. Resulted in plenty of reflection!
?

@LPerformance
When an old teacher (who I despised) said “”You did everything I would never do.”” And I thought, Yes I’ve made it! #ukedchat @HoDTeacher

Notable Tweets
@JamesJMatthews
Observer should always ask the cdn about what they’re ‘learning’ – not what they’re ‘doing’ #ukedchat

Honest, positive, constructive criticism from the observer so the teacher can develop without feeling downtrodden!! #ukedchat

?@MissDCox
#ukedchat the outcome of an observation should ‘benefit’ the observed not the agenda of the observer

@mrpeel
#ukedchat observation should not be adversarial, should be reflective and diagnostic, not simply summative.

@kayedog30
They should also happen more frequently to make them less threatening and practice more ‘typical’. #ukedchat

@HYWEL_ROBERTS
@ukedchat as observer, pls don’t ask observee ‘how do you think it went?’ Raises anxiety whilst they want to know what YOU think #ukedchat

?@TeacherToolkit
@ukedchat #ukedchat What makes a good observation for observer/observed?

1.Agreed focus
2.Supportive
3.Non prescriptive
4.Evidence based

?@tmeeky
Insist observer sees full lesson. I did this rec with Ofsted. Didn’t want 10 minute snapshot. #ukedchat

@LPerformance
Will observations eventually be used for performance pay?! #ukedchat#
Observers are just part of the audience. Put on a show. They have to put their pants on one leg at a time every morning too. #ukedchat

@LPerformance
When an old teacher (who I despised) said “You did everything I would never do.” And I thought, Yes I’ve made it! #ukedchat

Tweet of the Week
Kerri Hastings @Kezmerrelda
#ukedchat have another parents invited in to observe morning in couple weeks. Usually get around 10-15 parents in. Do others do this?

About your Host
Head of Maths based in the North East. I aim to share practical ideas and resources with middle managers: ideas for department training, mentoring, observations are particular interests. You can follow me @HoDTeacher and @RGS_maths for Maths tweets. I blog at https://hodteacher.wordpress.com/

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About @ICTmagic 669 Articles
Martin Burrett is the editor of our popular UKEdMagazine, along with curating resources in the ICTMagic section, and free resources for teachers on UKEd.Directory

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