Who is The Quill Guy?

He is an English teacher of twelve years who writes about teaching in classrooms and beyond. Inspired by the rigour of Michael Marland’s The Craft of the Classroom, backed by the credibility of Geoff Petty’s Evidenced Based Teaching, and amused by the irreverence of Mr Keating in Weir’s Dead Poet Society, he writes about the mechanics of what he does.

What does he not do? He does not talk about the politics of teaching, and he does not dwell on systemic principles. There are excellent blogs that do this with more veracity and vivacity (and volition) than him.

So what does he do? He writes about training to be a teacher, and middle leadership. He writes about planning, marking, assessments and reporting. He writes about managing classes, and about inspiring students. And, underpinning it all, what makes him enjoy what he does.



Who should be reading this?

Anyone who is interested about the mechanics of teaching, both students and teachers.

Why bother?

Having taught for twelve years with a raft of ‘Outstanding’ observations from all sources hanging around my neck like an eager albatross, I feel that what I do has some credibility.

So tell me, Mr Quill Guy. Isn’t this all just a bit ambitious?

Of course, you have already read some of my vague teaching ambition. The lived truth of the job is different. Teaching is hard. It aspires, yes, but it deals daily with inadequacy, ill-health, and doubt. I’ve worked inner-city Hull, plush-city York, rural Yorkshire, and international Asia. I know that my ambitions to aspire to more than manage my classes to pass exams may appear lofty and misplaced to some. If I read this, I would perhaps think such ideas painfully earnest. Therefore, all my work is tempered with this fact:

I am actually living these ideas. I invite colleagues, parents and authorities into my classroom freely to see what I do, and why I do it.

I’m in the classroom day-in, day-out, performing, planning, and marking. Everything I write about has a pretty realistic acid test: Friday afternoon last lesson. Or boredom. Or a windy day. Or a person who has hardly slept. If my teaching doesn’t work, then I’d soon know about it, largely because I’ll be there as I’m doing it.

Simply put, I do not write about things that I wouldn’t try myself.

Therefore, it should go without saying that those who wish to offer opinion on what might work in a current classroom might have little truck within the walls of my words if they do not teach themselves.

So, on that note, enjoy! Any comments, collaboration or criticism please direct to the comments bar or speak to me in school.

So I’ve made it all the way down here? What’s my reward?

The gift of time! I have plenty of free resources available on the TES, and paid resources specifically designed to save you time. They focus on systemic planning methodology, not just one-off lessons unconnected to anything before or since (ahem… most of the internet it seems!).

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