What does teacher leadership mean to you?
Prior to beginning this programme, I wrote down what Teacher Leadership meant to me. To me it meant challenging yourself, driving learning forward, passion, sharing, collaboration, developing a confidence in myself/ability, commitment, taking forward part of the School Improvement Plan and undergoing an enquiry project.
Now that I am reaching the end of the programme, I still agree with my initial thoughts. This programme as enabled me to recognise an interest in STEM and as a result I enrolled on a PG Cert in STEM in January. I have thoroughly enjoyed the enquiry approach and although it did not turn out as I had planned, and there were many twists and turns, it has created a starting point for the driving forward of STEM in my setting.
Where are you on your leadership journey and how has this been influenced by your enquiring approach?
In terms of where I am on my journey, I completed the GTCS Self-Evaluation Wheel to illustrate this.
GTCS Wheel (pdf available here)
I look forward to continuing with this enquiry once the new session starts again!
What are the implications of your learning for your practice, your school and more widely?
This enquiry has mapped out a starting point for myself and our setting in terms of the delivery of STEM.
There has been some shift in the gender bias present since our Digital Learning Week however we now need to keep this going in order to remove barriers and misconceptions (hopefully!)
As a practitioner, and having the opportunity to influence pupils in STEM by inviting outside agencies in more frequently throughout the year, being a positive role model and sharing successes in STEM from a local and national point of view.
Within lessons, it is vital that pupils have the opportunity to experience hands on learning with activities having a real-life link.
What happened for both pupils, staff and my learning community so far?
Through this enquiry and the natural progression of digital learning and STEM within the school due to current policies I have noticed the following:
- The conversations around STEM are becoming more often.
- The integration of STEM activities as ‘free-choice’ options within our infant classes and shared areas
- The suggestions and ideas for Digital Learning Week have taken on more of a STEM career focus than just ‘digital technology’.
- More children are sharing their interest in STEM, enjoying challenges set and sharing their evaluations and adaptations of designs within my classes.
- The school has designated a STEM leader (me) to help drive forward STEM in school through meeting with STEM leaders council wide.
- From feedback from Digital Learning Week, we are hopefully going to rename it as STEM Week and make it a focus week where the whole school is involved in projects.
- Our Digital Leaders will now be known as STEM leaders and will be encouraged to undertake the Young STEM Leader Award.
How do you know?
This is known through professional discussions with my colleagues, observations of pupils and discussions with them during lessons.
Which forms of evidence tell you this and in what way?
Due to circumstances, it has been difficult to gather data to compare to the surveys in January however, I put out a plea to my students online from P4-7 and managed to get 5 responses.
|Total number of children participating: 58 (29 Boys, 29 Girls)
||Total number of children participating: 5 (3 Boys, 2 Girls)
|Total number who like: Science 36, Technology 40, Engineering 26, Maths 26
||Total number who like: Science 3, Technology 4, Engineering 2, Maths 2
||Majority still like technology
|When asked which gender you see the following careers as:
|Engineer – Boy 47, Girl 9, Both 2
||Engineer – Boy 1, Girl 1, Both 3
||Majority now lies with both genders
|Computer Programmer – Boy 33, Girl 23, Both 2
||Computer Programmer – Boy 1, Girl 2, Both 2
||Majority now see as girl or both genders
|Builder – Boy 44, Girl 12, Both 2
||Builder – Boy 5, Girl 0, Both 0
||Still very male dominated view
|Scientist – Boy 32, Girl 22, Both 4
||Scientist – Boy 0, Girl 1, Both 4
||Majority now see as both genders
|Mathematician- Boy 28, Girl 27, Both 3
||Mathematician- Boy 1, Girl 2, Both 2
||Majority now see as girl or both genders
|Total numbers when asked if they would consider a STEM Career in the future – Yes 36, No 22
||Total numbers when asked if they would consider a STEM Career in the future – Yes 4, Maybe – 1
||Majority still considering a STEM Career