Before the Christmas holidays, I mused on why I was feeling anxious about the GCSE Controlled Assessments (Panic? Moi?) in which I set out an outline for an attempt to help both teachers and pupils feel a little more confident.
Well, that day was last Wednesday, and I’m pleased to report that it was generally regarded as a successful venture. We ended up having to be a little flexible with some of the timings, but for a first attempt, I was pleased. Staff appeared to be smiling on the day, which indicated things were going reasonable to plan. No pupils were sent to me for non-participation, which was a delight. And pupil feedback so far has identified the following:
- pupils feel more confident about tackling their actual Controlled Assessments when the time comes (little do they know, but the first one isn’t that far off!)
- they also feel more confident in their language lessons as a result
- pupils enjoyed working with people from other groups with whom they wouldn’t normally work
- for several pupils, it was their first viewing of a film in a foreign language
- the majority of pupils enjoyed seeing the film, and wanted to see more in a foreign language
On a personal level, I do feel more confident myself now with the Controlled Assessments; having had to prepare the plan for the day, it really made me think about the structure and sequence of the tasks, and my teaching methods. Although the final written task was not the most important thing for me, for the most part I was delighted with the work which was produced, with some pupils achieving a better standard that I had thought they would have done. And finally, I think I have a better relationship with my class now, and feel that we are all heading in the same direction, which is an added bonus.
I’m happy to share the day’s resources if anyone would be interested – just let me know.
To keep morale up, a lot of tea was definitely consumed during the breaks – and the major criticism from pupils seems to be that they wanted chocolate whilst watching the film. Ho hum, sometimes you just can’t win …