Teachers becoming trainers

A huge thank you to all those who came out in the rain tonight for the Autumn St. Helen’s Local Network Meeting. Was lovely to see you all and share resources and ideas and thanks to Carmelina, was great working with you!

One of our associate teachers posted the quote above on our JLN Facebook page just after her shared leadership of a local network meeting in St Helens. It caught my eye because I know exactly how thrilled she is- her fourth network meeting and she shared the load with Carmelina, one of our colleagues in St Helens. Together  they have worked through and planned their CPD session on reading and writing using training notes, advice  and resources from myself. The very important fact is that together they are developing their training skills! It is so important to celebrate and congratulate the new young teachers who are willing to step up to the plate and learn how to become a trainer of peers. This is the first of 10 local network meetings, nearly all of them except for one led by myself, will be led by my wonderful colleagues just like Claire and Carmelina! 

My colleagues have come such a long way! It is a delight to see! Take a look at the photo below and let's wind back one year......

September 2014

September 2014

It's a photo from of our associate language teachers in 2014 at our annual CPD day. Emilie is sharing her presentation from the annual conference in July 2014, where she had shared her work in the classroom and simple activities using ICT with our network members.At our training day in September 2014 Emilie (ICT), Joanne (Drama, games and song) and Claire (role of the subject coordinator) all shared activities and experience with the associate group. I am not sure at this point that the group realised how bit by bit over the course of the next couple of years so many of them would be asked to step away from being just the primary languages classroom teacher to becoming a trainer. And what a difference a year makes! Here is Emilie at the annual conference July 2015, sharing activities, giving key information and setting up opportunities for teachers in the audience to explore for themselves....! (For those who might recognise themselves in thie photo above and below -I hope that some of you may also be working as trainers too in the near future! Christine B looking forward to running Warrington ALL hub from November with you too!)  

Ana, Emilie and Barbara have all up-skilled colleagues in their first languages - Spanish, French and German. Emilie has shared her IT knowledge and growing IT in primary language teaching skills.Joanne has engaged with me in training ITTs and working with our network colleagues to develop their drama and creative skills in the classroom.

Catherine and Claire have supported subject coordinators and schools to develop realistic achievable programmes of learning. Emilie and Joanne have become trainers in unfamiliar staff rooms at staff INSET - always to great effect and praise! And in the background other associates are learning the ropes. attending staff CPD with me in their associate schools- watch this space! 

The DFE project "Language Learning for Everyone" asked us to develop "Teacher Led CPD" in the local areas here in the North West.This funded programme has allowed me to support local teachers to develop their trainer skills and coordinate and  deliver the CPD at local network meetings. This half term, nine colleagues are leading local sessions. What is amazing are the skills that I think we almost lost when previous funding and support disappeared,  but that we  are being able to find again and further develop thanks to the DFE funding.In the group there are three former primary language leading teachers, two ASTs, and high school primary language link teachers and coordinators. Each one is pivotal in the momentum and dynamics of this project. Each one is now making contacts and sharing with others.  

Alongside the local network meetings, we have established transition groups and in these groups are hidden gems! Last year I had the pleasure of supporting a local colleague as she developed her own knowledge of primary by both teaching once a week in  a primary school and also going out to observe and discuss with colleagues primary language teaching and learning. I am thoroughly enjoying bringing teachers together to share their knowledge and grow in their own confidence that they can support each other. I am certain that amongst them there is another dynamic group of trainers in the making - and maybe not all of them are linguists but they share the common determination to try to make language learning work for everyone!

Our teacher led CPD is  allowing teachers  to become local  trainers, supported by some or all of the  steps listed below:

  • having the opportunity to attend CPD delivered by national trainers - last year we had the wonderful opportunity to work with Joe Dale,Julie Prince and Elaine Minnett
  • observing an experienced trainer deliver in school staff INSET
  • working alonside an experienced trainer or consultant at planning meetings with a school subject coordinator or coordinators
  • delivering language upskilling or pedagogy alongside an experienced trainer
  • feeling yoour opinion is valued
  • having the opportunity to plan parts of CPD 
  • feeling able to ask questions and to make mistakes
  • reflecting on own delivery and practice 
  • becoming a facilitator
  • reflecting on how much colleague have learned and taken away from a CPD session 
  • identifying strengths and building on these
  • stepping out of  personal comfort zones and applying teaching skills appropriately to presenting , training or working with adults