Dipping my toes in- SOLO resolutions

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    I thought I might as well make use of this snow day and get started on one of my two resolutions.

    First- let me introduce myself. I am a secondary English teacher (KS3/KS4) in an inner-city school in Birmingham, currently in the position of Lead Practitioner- Interventions. I still feel a bit unsteady and unproductive in this role and I hope that interacting/collaborating with other professionals here and on twitter, @mrsmdatherton (another toe-dipping experience), will allow me help improve the results of pupils in my school, while faced with limited resources.

    Following the ‘suggested approach’, I will start with what I want to achieve through using SOLO in my lessons.

    What do you want to achieve?
    I want my pupils to feel confident in extending their ideas- understanding how to take what they know and make something new with it, or to use the analogy in @ilovemathsgames Lego introduction to solo, help pupils ‘own’ their ideas.

    Why do you want to achieve it?
    An issue I see with my pupils is that they seem unaware of how to move forward. There seems to be a lack of confidence in how to develop and extend ideas, and how to organise ideas. This leads to apathy in some cases, frustration in others. I want to develop more confidence in the way my pupils express their thoughts in the different arenas of English.

    What would success look like from the pupils’ perspective?
    From the pupils’ perspective, I think success would appear in different ways- better grades, yes, but more importantly, pupils would have a clearer of idea of how to move forward on their own. There would be more resilience and confidence and hopefully more creativity.

    How do you intend to make the change?
    I have slowly been introducing SOLO to pupils in Y9-Y11. I tried it with my Year 10 in September, but failed spectacularly, throwing too much at them without understanding what SOLO is about. At the moment, I have been adapting ideas from Pam Hook’s ‘SOLO TAXONOMY and MAKING MEANING’ series of texts (http://pamhook.com/, @arti_choke) with my classes.

    What difficulties might you encounter?
    At the moment, I suspect most difficulties will be personal- planning time, researching the taxonomy in more detail. When it comes to sharing this work with others, it may be difficult at first to get others to try it, again because of time, and because of the various initiatives being thrust upon us by SLT as we head into OFSTED mode.

    What would help address these difficulties?
    My goal is to test out the SOLO waters on my own, for now and have resources developed/prepared, so that if and when I share it with others in my faculty/school, they do not feel bombarded in any way.

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