Sunday, March 23, 2008

Training Day

The end of term can only mean one thing- the celebration of madness that is Training Day. I have received the usual collection of emails describing the horrors that teachers can be subjected to in the name of 'Diversification', 'Cross Curricular Linkage' and the inevitable 'Gender Somethingorother' to name but three forms of torture that are still being used on teachers across the country.

These forms of madness are usually indicative of a weak SMT, who lack the courage to stand up and shout;

'Shut up Fool! This is crazy talk. Get out of my School!' when some well meaning, buckle shoed woman with dangly earrings from the Council proposes that the day be spent doing role play.

One of the best reports was from a school which decided to pay for a lady to come and talk about how different coloured cats could make you think in different ways. (I heard this on the telephone at 11.30 pm punctuated with bursts of hysterical laughter, so do forgive me if I've got any details wrong) Apparently if you have the red cat, then you have to shout out your feelings (I can imagine what mine would be), a green cat means that you use lateral thinking, a black cat means that you tend to be cynical and some other cat means God knows what. Anyway they spent the afternoon doing this whilst the naive and gullible lapped it up, making copious notes and vowing to use it in their lessons, the lady went away a bit wealthier, the Head pronounced it all a great success and the wise just sobbed gently into their hands.

As these events are such a rich vein of madness, I've set up a link to this post on the Sidebar so that your Training Day Tales will live forever.

13 comments:

oldandrew said...

Are you sure it wasn't "hats" rather than "cats"? I definitely remember a training session for NQTs I attended years ago about thinking hats.

I remember it mainly as the point where I realised that the training was a waste of time even for an NQT and I'd rather be teaching year 11.

Hill said...

It is Hats, Chalk you fool! It's from one of Edward de Bono's books and is a favourite amongst peddlers of twaddle.

oldandrew said...

Now I think about it, why is anything on a training day with the word "thinking" in it, particularly likely to be stupid?

Jimbo said...

I think the cats would still work better than hats.

What happens if it was a marmalade cat?

Anonymous said...

Is it not a cat hat thats used

catinhat said...

It sounds better than the usual happy/sad balloons.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a teacher but I used to always know when my son's teacher had been on some daft course- he used to make the students re-enact the excercises.I remember "Morality Squares"which involved the student jumping about on a chalked-out board:the square he landed on would have an ethical question on it and the other students would yell out suggestions which he could choose which might get him off the board.Also a team building day which literally involved building bridges and a "mind-map" consultant who charged a fortune to show them how to draw little bubbles.This is a private school by the way -showing that" twit-ness "is not class orrather income specific.

Anonymous said...

What are your thoughts on the military "Recruiting" in schools Frank?

Steve said...

What are your thoughts on the military "Recruiting" in schools Frank?

I don't think the military would have much use for teachers.

Anonymous said...

God, yes, I remember the ridiculous hat scheme. We put forward a projected budget that included money to pay for pegs for aforementioned hats - SLT very umimpressed.bkriznvg

ironlung said...

I've had training days that have included - learning to juggle with hankies; learning to count to ten in japanese (twice - fell flat the second time when the whole staff said 'we've done this before' and the twaddle peddlar had no other tricks up his sleeve); and most recently an endless stream of 'A Curriculum for Excellence' Awareness days (we're all aware of it in Scotland, and most of us are aware that its the same old stuff with 'I can' tagged on the front)

Who are these lucky sods who get useful, beneficial training? Does such training exist?

Robert said...

de Bono's book is actually quite useful. Unfortunately the courses based on it aren't. If you want to have fun next time you're subjected to one of them, read the book ahead of time and ask questions of the presenter — who almost certainly hasn't read the book, but has just been to a training course much like the course they are giving.

It's almost as much fun as quoting Adam Smith to a neocon who's just referred to the Invisible Hand of the Market in support of a 'loot the public' scheme.

Contact Law said...
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