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Physics wow and how

Published: 27 October 2020

Last week, The Ogden Trust launched a new year-long coaching and mentoring programme for recently and newly qualified science teachers at our partnership schools. Over 80 teachers from across the Ogden network have signed up for the programme which will support NQTs and RQTs who will be teaching physics at any level in the 2020-21 academic year.

This new annual CPD programme will comprise six half-termly sessions delivered to small peer groups by regional mentors; each session will include a topic-based element covering misconceptions, challenges and classroom suggestions. The topics covered will include: Earth & space; light; sound; forces; energy; and electricity. Time for reflection, questions and planning will be built into each session to ensure teachers can take their new learning straight to the KS3 and KS4 classroom.

Each mentor group will comprise of approximately 10 people, led by an experienced physics teacher, and will take place each half term (currently online). The regional, small group delivery will encourage discussion and means that any local questions, concerns or approaches can be built into the sessions. The participating teachers can build a valuable support network with their local mentor and with the other teachers on the programme. Ongoing coaching and support will be available from the mentors throughout the year.

“We have developed this programme to help support new teachers who may need to boost their confidence and their physics subject knowledge, especially following the disruption last year,” explains Jackie Flaherty, Teaching and Learning Lead for the Trust. “The topic-based physics input will give the teachers the ‘wow’ and the ‘how’ to deliver inspiring classroom physics; each session will then include time for structured reflection, planning and questioning to help the teachers introduce the new ideas straight into teaching practice.”

“Our mentors will share their experience and expertise,” continues Jackie, “coaching the new teachers and helping them to develop their confidence and pedagogy so they can deliver lessons to inspire the next generation.”

At the national (online) launch event, teachers were given an overview of the programme and introduced to their local regional mentor and their peer discussion group. A physics session on Earth & space included some practical demonstrations designed to address some common misconceptions.

“I really enjoyed the sessions yesterday and I finished the call ‘buzzing’. It has been a long, hard half term full of difficulties and doubts. To have people acknowledge it is hard and to offer so much help is absolutely brilliant.

“It is good to see different ways to demonstrate concepts and to be given ways to tackle misconceptions. Today at College I have felt calmer than I have for a few weeks, knowing that yes, I am doing a good job, and yes, I can teach.”
Gavin Hopley
Exeter College

Physics coaching & mentoring for newly/recently qualified science teachers. A national network with half-termly local meetings: session 1 earth & space; session 2 Light; session 3 sound; session 4 forces; session 5 energy; session 6 electricity. Ongoing mentoring and individual support.

Not part of an Ogden partnership? Applications for new partnerships open annually between September and February. Visit our partnership pages to find out more.

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