Online Education Trends
Increasing numbers of people are making use of online learning platforms to educate themselves, but getting representative data on online learning is a challenge!
On teaching to a question – but what question to ask?
For teachers, ‘teaching to a question’ is often the most efficient way of organizing a lesson, and it’s something I found especially useful when I first began my teaching career, 146 years ago. In this post all I’m doing is re-visiting this basic strategy in preparation for teaching the next block of theories of crime…
‘Station’ based lessons for A level sociology
Station based lessons are those in which the teacher sets up a number of different (and differentiated) tasks on different tables in the class room and students spend a set time at each table, moving from task to task. I find these are most useful at the very beginning of the Winter and Easter terms,…
Learning as a Product Versus Learning as Process
Many of the theories of learning that were developed during the first decades of the twentieth century tended to conceptualize learning as an end product or outcome – most often as a distinct change in behavior. Students and educators who subscribe to this notion of learning-as-product tend to see learning as consisting of the following:…
Problems with the increasing involvement of technology companies in education
There are four main problems of the increasing role of large technology companies in education, all of which stem from the incompatibility of the values of Silicon Valley Digital Capitalism and Public Education: The algorithmic approach to education cannot take into account the social and moral complexities of real world education. The idea of ‘learning…
Asking Questions about Theories and Concepts in Sociology
My weekly ‘Monday teaching and learning’ post: I’ve been thinking about questioning in A-level Sociology recently,* in particular I’ve been asking myself ‘what are the best quick-fire questions to ask students about theories and concepts’ and ‘what’s the best way to present these questions’? By ‘best’ I mean what kinds of questioning style will most…
Ranking Exercises in Sociology
‘Ranking is an academic exercise; through the exchange of opinion thinking is exercised and personal understanding is achieved of key issues and concepts. This results in deep rather than shallow learning.’ (1) Ranking research methods, concepts, or even simple value-statements against some pre-set criteria is (IMO) one of the most efficient and useful* ways of…
Sentence Sorts for Teaching A-Level Sociology – How Useful Are They?
Matching exercises or ‘sentence sorts’ simply involve students matching the concept/ sociologist/ perspective/ method to a definition/ statement. Simple example: Decide whether the sentences are below are Functionalist or Marxist – simply write ‘F’ or ‘M’ next to the sentence. 1. Education reproduces inequality by justifying privilege and attributing poverty to personal failure. 2. The…
Seven Transferable Skills Teachers Can Take to Other Professions
Producing engaging written and audio visual resources Emotional sensitivity Evaluation and decision making based on standardized criteria Presentation and communication skills Facilitating participation Simultaneous independent and collaborative working Reflexivity, which incorporates flexibility. Seven transferable skills which teachers can take with them to kinder careers Given the depth and breadth of skill which teaching requires, combined…
How I Structure A-Level Sociology Lessons
Below is an overview of broad structure I use to teach every topic in the A-level sociology syllabus, and it’s my first post directed at sociology teachers rather than students. I typically stretch the structure below over four hour long lessons in a week (I think the norm is 3-4 lessons in most schools and…