Move Me On

The problem page for history mentors

Move Me On is a regular feature in Teaching History (TH) designed to offer practical help to all those involved in training new history teachers. Each one presents a specific problem or challenging situation related to a history trainee’s development.

Two responses outlining possible ways forward are suggested for each problem – each written by different school-based history mentor or other experienced teacher educator. 

Move Me On – problem addressed:

TH issue  

Year

Is struggling to use questioning effectively

177

2019

Is worried about how to deal with his own dyslexia in the classroom

176

2019

Isn't paying enough attention to why particular topics and approaches have been included within the department's schemes of work

175

2019

Finds that the activities he devises tend to involve him, rather than his students, doing all the real thinking and processing of information 

174

2019

Finding it difficult to teach the GCSE thematic study

173

2018

Thinks he can simply rely on the textbook for his own subject knowledge development

172

2018

The extent to which history trainees should be encouraged – or even allowed – to make use of existing lesson plans

171

2018 

Is struggling to adapt to new ways of working in his second placement school

170

2018 

Is struggling with the planning of a local history enquiry

169

2017

Is worried that he is not gaining enough experience of planning and teaching exam classes

168

2017 

Doesn’t really understand her students’ frames of reference and the difficulties that many of them have in making sense of the particular historical phenomena she is teaching them about

167

2017 

Is struggling to get the pitch right in teaching topics at GCSE that the school previously taught to Year 7

166

2017 

Capturing student interest vs. sense of period: in her concern to capture students’ interest tends to present people in the past as weird and wonderful aliens 

165

2016

Is getting very confused about the concept of similarity and difference

164

2016

Concern to encourage students to think for themselves is leading to some very ahistorical thinking

163

2016 

Is finding it difficult to judge how much or what kind of reading he should expect of his students

162

2016 

Doesn't really notice and respond effectively to what the lesson she has just taught reveals about students' knowledge and understanding

161

2015 

Is so interested in the history that he’s teaching that he gets caught up in interesting digressions or overwhelms the students with complexity

160

2015

Would like to wean students off the use of writing frames

159

2015 

Is struggling to model tasks effectively for students

158

2015 

Feels she hasn’t got enough ways of getting knowledge across to the students before they can do something with it

157

2014 

Treats ‘Assessment for Learning’ as a though it is a bolt-on extra unconnected to his learning objectives

156

2014 

Tends to treat differences between historical interpretations simply as matters of opinion

155

2014 

Is having problems providing sufficient challenge for the higher attainers within his mixed ability groups

154

2014 

Is struggling to sustain an emphasis on developing historical knowledge and understanding in teaching about genocides

153

2013 

Is worried about how to teach meaningful overviews

152

2013 

Seems to have reached a plateau in her development as a history teacher

151

2013 

Is given very little freedom to learn how to plan

150

2013 

Is uncertain how to provide appropriate support for certain students without restricting what they can achieve

149

2012 

Is using Bloom’s taxonomy in very mechanistic ways to plan lesson objectives and think about progression in history

148

2012 

Finds the analogies that she’s using to make historical ideas meaningful end up distracting or confusing the students

147

2012 

Is constantly anxious about whether he knows enough to be able to start planning

146

2012 

Is very uncomfortable with any kind of sustained story-telling

145

2011 

Has come to define GCSE teaching in terms of a diet of practice exam questions

144

2011 

Tries to tackle everything at once

143

2011 

Keeps just making assumptions about his students' thinking

142

2011 

Wondering how to approach teaching the Holocaust, especially with her ‘difficult’ Year 9

141

2010 

Worried about getting students to generate their own enquiry questions

140

2010 

Difficult to teach about change and continuity in meaningful ways

139

2010 

Uncertain about his Year 7 teaching in a competency based curriculum

138

2010 

Regards her PGCE assignments as an unhelpful distraction from the real business of learning to teach

137

2009 

Struggling to teach elite politics/international relations (believing history should be about ordinary people)

136

2009 

Not sure where to draw boundaries when handling sensitive issues

135

2009 

Getting enough A-level experience

134

2009 

Alienating students by relying too much on teacher talk

133

2008

Already the best teacher in the department

132

2008 

Trainee’s mentor is struggling to know how to help him learn to plan independently

131

2008 

Would love to generate much more productive small group talk and worthwhile class discussion but can’t work out how to manage it

130

2008 

Feels out of his depth teaching controversial issues

129

2007 

Keen to find ways of recognising and recording students' progress and achievements without resorting to 'levels'

128

2007 

Using PowerPoint as anything more than glorified chalk and talk

127

2007 

Setting worthwhile homework

126

2007 

Lack of conceptual clarity – i.e. lacks subject knowledge (disciplinary understanding)

125

2006 

Teaching Local history

124

2006 

Teaching KS3 only once a week – how to build effective relationships and worthwhile enquiries

123

2006 

Catering for different learning styles (as answer to differentiation)

122

2006 

Teaching outside subject area

121

2005

Teaching Citizenship

120

2005 

Teaching EAL students

119

2005 

Can’t find connection between fun and serious learning

118

2005 

Putting her ideas into practice

117

2004 

Having problems with his mentor

116

2004 

Class already know all about World War 1

115

2004 

Teaching history of medicine at GCSE

114

2004 

Getting pupils to really care about what happened in the past

113

2003 

Has problems with his subject knowledge

112

2003 

Having problems with differentiation

111

2003

Confused by KS3 strategy

110

2003

Pressured into using styles she is uncomfortable with

109

2002

Reconciling sources and stories

108

2002 

Doesn’t see point of teaching to those who find history difficult

107

2002

Teaching AS level

106

2002 

Teaching historical interpretations

105

2001

Establishing lesson goals

104

2001

Department’s approach to sources is not improving pupils’ understanding of evidence

103

2001

Securing progression in historical understanding

102

2001

Finding Literacy a burden

101

2000 

Deciding on lesson objectives

100

2000

Struggling with just about everything

99

2000

Struggling with marking and assessment

98

2000

Having difficulty evaluating own lessons

97

1999

Struggling with language register - getting pitch right

96

1999

Becoming frustrated with A level

95

1999

Struggling to find questioning style to develop pupils’ thinking

94

1999

Not making progress in use of ICT

93

1998

Problems with teaching causation

92

1998



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