- The Friday Mindset
- Friday Mindset #104
Friday Mindset #104
Helping students get better at studenting
We’d begin with a witty remark or amusing observation, but we’re just too damn tired so let’s do away with the flim-flam and dive right in.
Something to try...
We were doing a session with staff about environment design recently - boosting students’ levels of focus, concentration and ultimately, exam performance, by paying close attention to the spaces they work in.
We’ve written about this before in The GCSE Mindset, but thought we’d look for some more up-to-date studies that explore study-space environments and their impact on student performance.
We found this superb paper on the topic. It’s the most thorough and detailed investigation into classroom spaces and their impact on student performance we’ve ever seen. If you’re at all in control of designing or redesigning your classroom spaces, give this a read before you dive in.
If you just want a student-friendly powerpoint that summarises - very simply - three important findings from the study, we’ve built one for you here. Now we’re not suggesting you show them this to ferment some sort of rebellion about the crappiness of their current classrooms. We’re suggesting they apply the principles when they choose the spaces they work in.
Something we're reading...
We’re diving into 80,000 Hours’ Career Guide.
If you’re not familiar, here’s the story. 80,000 Hours are a UK-based non-profit whose mission is to resource and enable good conversations about careers. If we want to make an impact in the world, they ask, which career should we pick?
We have no link with these guys at all, no affiliation or anything, we just stumbled across them and recommended their website a few issues ago. They offer a free book in exchange for your email address. We tried it, and the book arrived promptly within a few days and is really interesting and useful stuff - particularly given its price! We’ll be using it with year 13 students for sure.
Interested? You can get yours here:
I recently ran a revision webinar for Yr11 students in Reading. Part of our session was about the importance of considering both physical and digital environments when planning revision; I conducted a poll with the students at the start of the session to establish how many had access to quiet, distraction free, revision spaces. It’s fair to say that both myself and the staff at the school where surprised at the results:
19% of students reported to “Rarely” or “Never” having access to such a space, while only 17% of students “Always” had access. It’s easy to forget that such a basic requirement is not always available for the students we teach, and it’s important to spend time discussing this, helping students find new, less distracting, “high flow” environments in which to study.
We would love to hear your thoughts on this and if you found similar results in your own schools.
This brings us to a redesign of one of our current slide decks - “High Flow Spaces”, which is free in a beta-version below. Please let us know your feedback by emailing [email protected]. Remember - Mission Impossible style…this slide deck will self destruct on 1st January!
If you’d like to find out more about our student revision webinars, or have any questions about our slides and resources. Please contact me at [email protected]. or book in a quick zoom call using the link below:
Our latest offer...
This is a reminder of our VESPA-themed training session. On December 11th, we’re in central London, 10:00-3:00.
We want you to come along!
Stick a reminder to speak to your CPD lead and jump on the Eventbrite form below. We’re going to keep it relatively small, so we can all discuss and share. We’re having to cover event hire, travel and accommodation costs, so we can’t run it free, but it’ll be great value - there’ll be lots to learn.
And for newsletter subscribers only - we’re sticking around 3:00-4:00 to talk about anything you want. Questions, discussion, observations, rants, anything. You’re cordially invited.
We’d love to see you there, friends.
…and that’s it for this week, you wonderful people. Have a great weekend.
All the best to you and yours,
Tony, Martin and Steve