Richard Downes

Richard Downes is training as a secondary PGCE teacher at Upper Batley High School and he attended additional CPD at Spen Valley High School.


Friday CPD with Hywel Roberts the ‘travelling teacher’

Hywel Roberts based his presentation on a key theme of the made up word ‘botherdness’. A key part to the presentation for me was when he reflected on how being bothered can change the perception of children’s relatedness towards a subject. In other words painting a bigger picture to achieve an end goal that has meaning to the pupils.

He used the anecdote of teaching a scheme of work on vikings being the vikings themselves, allowing the students to use their imagination as to why the lesson is relevant. For example within ART the lesson was still on Vikings, but the relevance for the lesson was to make ‘shields to kill the dragon’. This made the lesson relevant to the scheme of work and for the children’s engagement thanks to the teacher being bothered. On the other hand, the same lesson was taught and the reason why was because ‘it was week 6 for art and design’. This idea stuck with me that in order to get children engaged within the curriculum, each lesson needs to have some relatedness to the pupil. Within my subject of secondary PE, this can link well to learning the skills within a sport to week by week with the end goal of being able to play a game situation.

The full presentation was insightful to me as it showed how different people can have different teaching strategies that can work as well but there is still different ways to improve and tweak how you teach to suit your classes. It was also interesting to see different peoples reactions to what Hywel was saying as there was a variety of teaching backgrounds such as teachers with lots of experience and myself just starting out, that most people agreed with what he was saying.