Moving to a new school has meant that I have missed my previous Medium Term Plans. I knew exactly what I was doing, and when, and felt the space to experiment with new sequences of work whenever I wanted.
My new school has been tremendous in providing a variety of schemes of work that have tied me over in the meanwhile. They have provided details, resources and a variety of activities. However, I have wanted to create schemes of work in my image: from criteria rather than content. There are many arguments being made right now about about the (false) discrepancy between knowledge and skills. Learning knowledge of something requires honing of skill, and metathinking is deemed dubious by gurus like David Didau (although not entirely debunked).
To this end, I made the distinction between five different types of Medium Term Plan:
Fiction/Class Reader MTP
Exam Preparation MTP
Creative Writing MTP
Each of these has a particular quality. Before, my MTPs consisted of the rubrics specific to that class, and a list of of learning objectives. Resources would be placed inside and used as necessary. Now, each of these MTPs does not need to focus on the rubrics, because my rubrics are:
a) Shared in their entirety at the start of the course (I know!).
b) Provided in a rubric booklet available each lesson so they can be seen by students.
c) Shared on the board via my Planning for Students.
Instead the MTPs find a happy medium by balancing the content with the criteria. To this end, each of the MTPs has the following qualities:
Poetry MTP – each poem is matched to another poem thematically, and the techniques across the two are matched also. AFs are allocated according the the prevalence of technique (e.g. structural or word-based).
Literary heritage is addressed. Students aren’t just doing more ‘stuff’ – they are guided to truly understand the concept of poetic technique.
Fiction/Class Reader MTP – the average amount of time needed to read a page is recorded. Each chapter is read, with notes made via a highlighter and comments. .pdf is exported, and 3-5 points in the lesson students stop reading to reflect. Work completed is based on the AF allocated. Currently all AFs are used (as this is reading).
Exam Preparation MTP – perhaps the most arduous type of MTP. This simply matches the lessons with the skills necessary. Practise, mark, repeat .
Non-Fiction MTP – Materials are found, matched, and then compared. Techniques are applied.
Creative Writing MTP – Generally speaking, I have a WebQuest SoW which is really Quest Writing.
In due course I will post up these templates when they have been road-tested. However, distinguishing between the types of MTP, and the formatting that follows, has helped me take that one step closer to bridging content and criteria.