This is the second part of a blog post that I have written on having high standards in the classroom (the link to part one is here). Just for the sake of clarity I just want it to be clear that I believe there is a difference between high standards and high expectations. High standards are all about primarily aesthetic elements of teaching, such as appearance. This may appear pernickety, but I truly believe that following these principles has helped my teaching, and the pupils learning. Whereas high expectations relates to the work the pupils produce, and this is a theme I’m sure I’ll come back to at some point (who knows when though…).
This is a re-blog post originally posted by @MrHistoryUK and published with kind permission.
The original post can be found here.
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In the school I currently work in we run a two book system. We have one book which we call the ‘draft book’. In this book we get our pupils to complete their classwork and, perhaps unsurprisingly, we draft our assessments prior to writing them up in our other book, which we have imaginatively called the ‘assessment book’. We do not mark the draft book, so we say to our pupils that they are free to use that book in a manner in which they will find the most productive. Once the work has been drafted the pupils then write it into the assessment book. When using this book the pupils are expected to present their work in a far more formal manner (the exact style varies depending on what assessment is).
This is where we have high standards of presentation. If a pupil does not present their work in a neat manner (at least as neatly as they can, giving for the variations in handwriting) then they have to come back at lunch time and complete it again. At first this caused us a few issues, but now, one term into the system, the formatting and standard of work has improved because the pupils have had our high standards imposed on them. I feel that this is extremely important because when our pupils leave us to enter the professional world, or higher education they will be expected to present their work in a defined way and if we introduce them to this early then it can only be of benefit.
I am very keen to hear what opinions others have on what I have said, and even more excited to hear about examples that other have which I could use to improve my practice.