Making your own resources

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The student teacher handbooks / forums and tutors repeatedly state in BOLD text that you should not be making your own resources during your first 2 placements. This is something that I just can’t agree with for several reasons but the main one being that I teach a minority subject with very few readily available resources in a curriculum that does not have set topics to be covered.

Obviously if you can adapt existing resources to suit your teaching and particular class that is great and I am not for one second suggesting that we all go about re-inventing the wheel and creating extra work in what is already a really busy year. However, at the same time you shouldn’t shy away from doing a topic or unit of work just because the materials don’t exist.

When creating your own resources or units of work – these are my top tips:

1. justify what you are doing and why and what evidence you will get out of the topic – connect it to the Es and Os before you start then you have a strong foundation

2. make it managable – you have more than this class to prepare for, don’t make your work load top heavy towards one class

3. ask someone else to looks over your plan and resources – experienced teachers get their materials checked all the time so don’t let pride, over confidence or any perseived weekness stop you 

4. check if someone somewhere else has done that topic or a similar one before – use the TESS website and GLOW, you may get some useful ideas to play with

5. play to your strengths – CPD is an important part of the teaching process but step by step is better than a giant leap of faith into the unknown

and finally… make sure you get credit for the resources you create and give credit for the resources you use and adapt – professional courtesy can go a long way!

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One thought on “Making your own resources

  1. I both agree and disagree. I make a lot of my own resources, and definitely prefer that I do so. It lets me shape what I want to do and where I want to go.
    However, I think schools need to be told not to expect us not to make resources, because we are still learning. We still need help. Therefore they should show us how they would have done it, or what they would have used.
    I suppose having a department’s resources is like having training wheels on a bike. When you’re properly going then they don’t even touch the ground, but they’re a wee safety net, just in case.

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