I went on a ‘walkabout’ today.
A lot of schools have them to promote positive behaviour management – It’s where (mostly) senior members of staff visit lessons to see how things are going.
I was particularly excited to be visiting Year 10 lessons because I can start to put names to faces of the 140 options forms that I processed. It’s nice to actually see the 10Q Geography group in action as I had to create it due to heavy demand for Geography (don’t ask me why!) and then had to negotiate staffing accordingly.
I think walkabouts help to raise your profile – I’ve been looking at the students’ planners and checking their books as I visit classrooms; a former mentor of mine called it ‘walking the job’ and it certainly helps me as a way of informal monitoring. If I spot anything I like or am worried about then I will pop back in a more formal setting.
I sometimes feel I don’t have time to do these things, they take me out of my office and away from the sickeningly huge pile of work but seeing the children enjoying their lessons and seeing the staff enjoying teaching (as it’s only the second week of term and they will have some energy) is rewarding and work-life affirming.