At Regents, I was first and foremost a Science and Biology teacher with an outstanding passion for my subject.
In this role, I led aspects of the Science Department Development Plan to include the formation of a Marking Policy Working Group focusing on Assessment is for Learning strategies in Science and on developing an improved model for monitoring and tracking of student progress.
I liaised with my colleagues in Support for Learning and English as a Second Language in planning and implementing a time-line for departmental targets and ensuring the sharing of good practice in assisting ESL students in mainstream education.
Please see here for more information on this project.
It was my responsibility to embed the Round Square philosophy into the Science curriculum as Cross-Curricular and Primary-Secondary Liaison Coordinator. In this role, I developed an environmentalism course for Key Stage 3 Science with over 150 students gaining practical experience of the curriculum in agricultural activities outside of the classroom.
I developed resources for teaching and assessment of the IB Biology course and am currently designing an effective online file sharing and management system using ‘Moodle’, ‘Wordpress’ and ‘Dropbox’ to improve the delivery of the IB curriculum in Science.
Based on feedback given by the IB, I was integral in promoting improvements in attainment in internal assessment by organizing a Biology-Geography Fieldtrip to Koh Chang Island where students engaged in cross-curricular ecological investigations. I developed a package of resources for teaching a new project-focused curriculum for lower secondary environmental science, designed to give Year 9 students a flavour of the IGCSE Science course.
I was also an Extended Essay Supervisor in IB Biology to 6 candidates over the 2 years of my tenure.
In my role as IB CAS Coordinator, I assisted in developing and leading the revision of the IB curriculum and training staff in the IB philosophy. My main role was to improve the profile of the CAS program in the school, as advised by the feedback of the last 5 Year IB Review. I designed and led numerous staff training sessions on CAS during Year Group meetings and staff INSET days. In addition, I led question-answer sessions during Parent’s Evenings and Induction Days which has promoted and ensured increased parental involvement in CAS. More detailed information on this role and examples of the resources I created and utilised can be found here.
Please have a look at the following presentation for the Regents 2010 IB Induction Day. It will give you a flavour of how we aimed to integrate CAS across our curriculum at Regents – it was designed to introduce students, staff and parents to, the sometimes overwhelming, world of CAS:
I also developed an excellent working relationship with our Sixth Form Tutors in utilizing their skills and roles as first line Pastoral Care, involving them fully in the progress of their tutees through encouraging an open and transparent line of communication. I revised and updated many of the administrative systems for monitoring and tracking student progress in CAS, to include the development of a unified and user-friendly ‘WordPress’ blogging facility and a school CAS ‘Moodle’ intranet.
These measures led to a less stressful experience for our students and CAS activity supervisors. Students demonstrated increased engagement and motivation to record quality reflections of their CAS experiences. The quality of student self-reflection in CAS was recognised throughout the school and many teachers are now employing the same techniques in their own classroom practice. It was also my responsibility to develop the CAS ‘Moodle’ intranet, an online file sharing and management system to improve the delivery of the IB curriculum. This was a huge success and is planned to be embedded school-wide in the following years as part of the School Development Plan – already, the pilot that was conducted in the last term proved very popular in its efficacy in streamlining communication interdepartmentally, leading to excellent cross-curricular programmes and staff collaboration.
I also established an annual CAS Trip to our school’s outdoor centre on Koh Chang Island where students participate in a variety of physical team-building activities and critical thinking challenges, incorporated into a program of service work with the local Thai community in such places as schools, community centers and temples. The Reflection Workshops that I designed introduce students to this often confusing aspect of the CAS Program.
Due to the success of this trip, I was requested to help organize and coordinate a Sixth Form Academic Excursion that focused on preparing students for the all round IB experience with workshops in Extended Essay and Theory of Knowledge skills, the University Applications process, CAS, internal assessment and the Group 4 Project.
In my role as Sixth Form and Year 10 Student Tutor, I was front-line Pastoral Care and confidant for the young people in my care. I liaised with the Pastoral Care team, the Sixth Form management team and Boarding staff over issues including Support for Learning and physical, social and mental health. I was responsible for monitoring university and employment applications, student personal statements and curriculum vitae, and for writing references which have assisted in gaining some of my tutees interviews for Oxford and Cambridge. I took part in the organisation of House Assemblies and Student Guild meetings.
I value the professional dialogue I can have with my colleagues concerning cross-curricular issues and was involved in numerous initiatives to include the development of an IB ‘curriculum map’. I was responsible for organizing whole year group academic excursions to our school’s outdoor centre on the island of Koh Chang and liaise with outdoor centre staff, forest rangers and village elders in designing programs where students conduct social and environmental studies as part of their internal assessment. I also successfully utilized the school grounds and local outdoor spaces in teaching and learning of the science curriculum.