It’s very hard to change your practice. We’re all so busy, very often it is difficult to create space to fully explore a set of ideas and to deliberately adapt our teaching routines to absorb something new. At the same time, we’re often bombarded with initiatives and issues to address. It can be overwhelming. I’ve been thinking about the possibility of stripping down each initiative or development area to something very simple; one idea that captures the spirit of a wider set of strategies. This would be the thing where you could say if you do just one thing, do this. A Silver Arrow is one that you allow to penetrate your armour; it changes what you routinely do.
There isn’t a definitive research-informed list; I’m presenting a set of ideas that I think make good Silver Arrow contenders based on my own teaching. You will have your own set of arrows that carry that message: if you do just one thing, do this. Here is mine:
1. Behaviour Management: Signal. Pause. Insist.
Effective classroom management is multi-faceted but if you can do this, you can do anything. A class is full of students talking – on entry or after an activity or discussion: