A Chemical Orthodoxy

Schools, Science and Education


Markageddon* Earlier this school year, my Headteacher (who is a legend) asked me to present to governors on the topic of marking. Internal school politics and policies aside, I have attached the document I wrote for them as well as... Continue Reading →


My Best Lesson: Quantitative Chemistry

This morning, I think I taught one of my best lessons. I've been trying to hold off the blogging recently for the AfL Symposium but I thought people might be interested. And besides, Mark Enser has been nagging people to write... Continue Reading →

AfL in Science: A Symposium

As part of a round of high stakes observations I had two separate members of SLT come to observe my lessons*. In feedback, the first called me out on something which I strongly disagreed with. Right then and there however,... Continue Reading →

My Most Influential Blogs

I have a blogging conundrum. Like many others, the edu-blogger-twitter-sphere has had a huge impact on my teaching philosophy and practice. In a bid to join the fun, I started this blog just over a year ago. Recently, I've been... Continue Reading →

But what if I’m just not that inspiring?

For some reason my Facebook feed has been dominated by little videos from the DfE advertising teaching as a career. They’re all quite similar, featuring some young, fresh and sparkly eyed 20-something talking about how wonderful teaching is as a... Continue Reading →

Great Explainers: Richard Feynman

Richard Feynman was one of the greatest and most influential physicists of all time. Awarded a Nobel Prize in physics for his work on quantum electrodynamics, his academic career included working on the Manhattan Project and with Nasa investigating the... Continue Reading →

Novice and Expert Teachers

I've been reading into the difference between novices and experts in different domains. Most of my reading has been about students but I found this fascinating paper via Harry Fletcher-Wood that I thought people might be interested in. Borko &... Continue Reading →

Cognitive Load in Chemistry Practicals

UPDATE 14/11/2017 I have written a new practical instruction sheet for the thermal decomposition of copper carbonate for my year 7s (hence imprecision in method). When I made it I was surprised at just how many steps it broke down... Continue Reading →

Rosenshine Observation Form

Rosenshine's Principles of Instruction have probably had a bigger effect on my teaching than any number of CPD sessions, lesson observations or blog posts. To me they represent masterful, systematic teaching geared and optimised to enable long-term learning. I wanted to share... Continue Reading →

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