Duncanrig Secondary

Professional Development Newsletter

Issue 3 - Starter Activities

Welcome to issue three of the Duncanrig Secondary Professional Development Update. The humble starter activity is the opportunity to do two things. Firstly, it captures the attention of the pupils as soon as they enter the room. Well-crafted starters allow you to use up every available teaching minute. They open up the possibilities for great learning to happen, leading to focus and engagement. Secondly, they can settle a class and avoid any unnecessary messing about. Used properly, they can be the most important part of your lesson for those reasons. This newsletter provides some more information which might allow you to find out what others are doing in this area.
Ian Gilbert "Thunks"

Starter Activities

The above clip features Ian Gilbert and his idea of Thunks - thought bombs which get kids thinking and can lead in so many directions. Starter activities don't necessarily have to be linked to the content of your lesson although of course that helps. The purpose is to grab attention as soon as possible and get brains working. In the Staff Shared Area I will be gathering examples of things that are already being used in Duncanrig. Most of them can be used in any classroom. Have a look and add your own.

Next Issue

Issue four will be the last one before summer. It will be about questioning techniques so if you have any suggestions, resources or thoughts, then send them to me and I'll include them. Send me your thoughts for future issues and, as always, comments are welcome.

Credits and sharing

Edited by Kenny Pieper, English Teacher at Duncanrig Secondary School in East Kilbride, Scotland. Articles sourced via Twitter and the internet and reproduced with permission of the authors.