Transcript - AI Generated
Welcome to the Effective Teaching Podcast!
[0:00] Hi, and welcome to the Effective Teaching Podcast.
I'm your host, Dan, and we are going to be talking about being an effective teacher.
Using Parent Volunteers for Teacher Tasks
[0:19] Hi, and welcome back. Today, I'm giving you seven ways to outsource your teacher tasks.
Now, I know this might sound like it's impossible, Right, we can't outsource things but there are actually a whole bunch of things that we can outsource as teachers and that we can ask Other people to do for us if you're doing any of these So some of you may already be outsourcing some of this stuff because there are systems set up within schools to outsource some things, So let's let's go through these now The first one is to use your parent volunteers and that kind of stuff who are at your school Often they are the people who might come in and do photocopying and laminating and stuff for you.
They might cut out worksheets or you know pictures and stuff for you that you need that kind of stuff so utilise your parent volunteers don't be... I have this.
[1:07] I used to do booklets all the time for my students, but I used to go down to the photocopier and sit there for half a day photocopying, you know, 120 books for a whole year group or whatever.
[1:19] And I'd be photocopying because someone has to be there in case it gets jammed, someone has to be there to add more paper when it runs out to make sure that I check the first ones correct, all that kind of stuff.
And it consumed a lot of my time being down there, but I didn't need to be.
I could have just sent that document to someone else and said, can you please print this as a booklet ready for my class. I need 120 copies and just check that it actually comes out and looks good when it comes out and lots of people could have done that for me.
If you want to use your parent volunteers you can also use them to help organise excursions so you can ask them to help you find places to help book things in maybe to organise the buses for you possibly all that kind of stuff you could you could ask parent volunteers to help organise that kind of stuff to help organise you know the lists of things and who's helping who do what you want to check over it but they can help in the organisation of that and they can help maintain the classroom right so you can go through and actually go well my class you know it needs to be looked after so I'm maybe I'm gonna use my kids to look after my classroom maybe when I go to decorate my classroom I'm gonna get the students to help I'm gonna have parents come in and help decorate the classroom for my students if you think that's something that's important for your lessons okay but you can use all these parent volunteers to actually help you as a teacher reduce your workload and offload some of it to them.
In-Class Marking and Feedback to Reduce Workload
[2:41] That's one.
So some of you may be using that kind of strategy already, if not please do.
Your school probably has a system where you can outsource all your photocopying and laminating and stuff at least.
Okay get that happening.
Number two is in class marking and feedback. So marking and giving feedback often takes a lot of our time.
Okay even I gave you a recent episode of three do's and don'ts for effective, efficient feedback.
[3:07] Even if you're doing that, you can further reduce that if you want to do some marking and feedback in your class.
Now this is obviously better for students because it's going to help them to develop their ability to understand the criteria and know what makes a good answer and a bad answer.
So in this kind of process you're going to make sure that what's being given feedback on or whatever doesn't have people's names on it for example.
You want to swap it around, make sure no one's marking or giving feedback to themselves.
Don't let them know who it's for, and then you want to guide them through the process.
Okay, guide them through the criteria, what we're looking for in the good answer, all that kind of stuff.
You might have a sample one that you're doing on the board and then go, okay, I want you to now look for that criteria throughout that answer, all right, and then the next thing, and the next thing, and then you go, okay, I want you to pick one thing that this student can improve on, you know, and tell them what maybe they might do to improve that, okay, and give them a deadline from what it needs to be done by.
And that is something that automatically you're training your students to be able to give feedback to each other.
So then when it comes to them doing their actual assignments and stuff, they can pair up and go, okay, I want you to bring your drafts in today.
We're gonna pair you up.
You're gonna give each other feedback, read through each other's stuff, write some things down, highlight things, whatever.
And we're actually developing this culture where the students support and help each other with their learning.
We're developing their ability to understand what's required in their tasks when they need to submit things.
and overall it should improve everyone.
[4:34] And it's gonna reduce your workload because you're now bringing that into the classroom.
You're bringing that in as a learning activity, not just as something that you have to do.
Now, obviously, if they're doing any kind of marking, you wanna make sure that you double check the marking and that kind of stuff.
And I would normally use it for feedback for students more than the marking.
But having said that, if you want to, you probably could use some kids to help you with the marking, as long as they are students who really understand what they're doing and you want to maybe sit in a smaller group with them or something and guide them through that process.
[5:07] But definitely the feedback element and giving each other feedback and improvements very much.
If you do that in class it's going to reduce your workload and help your students a lot.
Utilising AI to Generate Resources and Questions
[5:16] Number three, ways to outsource your teacher tasks is to use AI, right?
AI has been this fantastic thing that's come into education.
Like a lot of people were worried about it at first and there probably are still people who are stressed about it and don't let their kids use it at all in class, but you can use it.
As a teacher, if you need to create, you know, a bunch of questions about a particular topic, get AI to generate a whole bunch.
At least your drafts are done, right? You can then refine and fix it, but most of the work is gonna be done.
If you can't find resources, Go and use something like Perplexity and ask it to give you a bunch of resources for this particular topic where you could ask students to do particular things.
And they'll go, all right, here's a bunch of resources.
And then go, okay, give me five questions for each of those resources that the students would have to answer about this topic.
And they go, here you go, here's five questions for you.
And then you can go through and adjust those and make sure they're right for your class.
But it's going to really reduce the amount of time that you've got to spend in creating these kinds of resources for your students.
So they can design the questions, can provide base level answers as well.
If you want to say, well, here's a sample answer that's generated by, you know, chap GPT or something.
It's not going to be a great answer, but as an example, and we're going to analyse it, right? As an example for our students.
[6:26] It can actually even be used, like there's lots of AI stuff that does, you know, design elements that will create the slides for you.
It'll turn things into videos, where there's so much that AI now can do.
But what you don't, what you want to avoid with this is spending ages looking through all the different AIs, trying to find the best one, okay?
Just talk to people who are using AI, who have used it lots, and find out, you know, what would you recommend I needed to get this done? I want AI to help me.
And they go, oh, use this, that'll be amazing for that.
So you're like an image creator, creating lots of images for you, fairly easy to use if you want an image.
It might take you three or four times to get used to it, but it works, right?
Mid-journey you've got to pay for, but it's better than being an image creator, but at the same time.
Using Free AI vs. Spending Money on AI
[7:13] Do you want to spend money on AI or do you just want to use the free one?
Use the free one if you don't want to.
Tip number four for how you can outsource your tasks is to start using other tech.
Okay, I love a thing called Calendly.
Whenever I'm booking any appointments with anyone, I just send them a link.
Okay, here is a link to my Calendly.
Please click on it and you can book a time with me where we're gonna have a meeting.
Okay, and you book it and then we'll send out automatic reminder emails, all kinds of stuff for that Calendly appointment.
And I don't have to go through the process of are you available on Thursdays?
No, okay. How about Fridays?
Oh, no, I'm not available on Friday at that time.
Maybe we were but it takes ages.
Well, it's like 20 emails.
I Can save all that one email.
They can find the time when I'm free and they're free and book it in Saves me a lot of headaches and other cool tech.
Using Templates and Reminders to Streamline Email Communication
[8:00] You could use auto responders and templates as well for your emails So if there's a particular topic that you have to address over and over again You can either set up so there's an automatic response about it when people email you and go, I'm away or whatever or I'm working.
So if I'm working I'll get back to you sometime tomorrow and, That's when I'm that's when you can expect to reply if it's an emergency Here's my number call me type thing or you can set up templates for your emails and then you go Well, you know, I'm organising this excursion parents Keep asking for the same bit of information every time because their kids didn't take it home or whatever.
[8:35] Set up a template so that whenever a teacher sends that you just go up there's a template done there's a template done just paste it in there and send it paste it in there send it you don't have to go about the whole process of rewriting it again and again again it's there as a template, you can also set reminders up to free up your brain space right so you can go set an alarm on your phone to remind you to do whatever and then you can forget about it knowing that that alarm is going to go off to remind you oh it's time to do this great i'm going to sit down and get that done.
You can also use, if you're higher up in school, you can use timetabling software.
Saving Time with Timetabling Software
[9:06] So I used to use it, I can't remember what it's called anymore, it was Elevate, something like that.
[9:12] There's a software that you basically just enter in, the teachers you've got, the classrooms you've got, all that kind of stuff.
Setting it up might take a while but then you click a button and it spits out a timetable for everyone.
You're like, that works, that doesn't, or you can tweak things, set out, it might even give you three or four of them and you can pick the right one.
It saves you a lot of time as you go about trying to create these timetables.
The fifth tip is that you can share responsibility as well.
So for example I used to be in a faculty right and we're all in faculties generally but if there's lots of us who are in a faculty we can then divide up who's writing programs for which year groups for example and we can get stuff done and share out the load.
Sharing Responsibility and Collaborating with Colleagues
[9:52] So I might write the program for year 7, Sarah's going to write the program for year 8.
We'll work a bit together as well and check each other's work but we have this whole collaborative type process where we're separating things out but also working together at the same time by checking each other's work and suggesting improvements and that kind of stuff so at the end we end up with better programs, better resources and I only had to do one year groups worth not you know four, five, six year groups worth, and if you're working on a stage or primary school type year level instead yeah then you're going to break things up not by the year but you're going to break things up by the subject, or by the group of subjects, as maybe you're gonna teach a few things together and do like a project-based thing or something.
[10:33] That's how you divide things up.
You also can share responsibility and stuff in ways where you actually are working together to create, maybe you're gonna create the lesson design type stuff together, you're gonna program together, that's gonna also help you to improve as a teacher because you're working together and learning from someone.
I remember when I first started teaching, my second year I had a mentor and we had to reprogram everything for my subject area, PDHPE, and we, I paired up with my mentor because he was a PE teacher as well and we, went through, we broke up the syllabus into all of its various parts and selected what was going in what year group, we chatted about everything, we planned things, I created resources, he would give me feedback on them, we would improve them and it was fantastic.
I learned heaps and also it got done, right, it got done and it wasn't as big a burden as it would be if I was writing all my own lesson plans for every class that I was teaching.
So that becomes really cool because we're sharing, we're collaborating, we're learning from each other and we're saving each other time.
[11:34] All right number six, the sixth way to outsource teacher tasks and of course,
Letting Students Decorate the Classroom and Outsource Tasks
[11:38] you don't have to use all these right and they're not all going to work for you but pick the ones that are helpful for you.
The sixth one is to let students decorate their own classroom.
The number of times I see teachers as it comes up to the beginning of the year and they're decorating their class trying to make it amazing and wonderful before the students come in and that's lovely but generally it doesn't have the kind of impact on student learning that you might want it to.
Okay and I know that for some of us it's just kind of our personality we would like things to be colourful and vibrant or something or we want things to be really well organised but if you actually let the students be involved in that process you can plan all these great lessons instead of decorating your classroom and then in the first couple of days have the students go out guys look we have this brand new classroom, let's work, what do we want it to look like, what can we do?
And then the students can be involved in it and then they will value it way more and as they create the stuff that goes up there, they might actually even do some learning.
You might design some of that learning so that when they're creating and decorating your classroom for you, they're learning and ticking things off that they're meant to be learning as well.
I think that is a way better, more efficient use of your time to outsource stuff to your students.
And that can be outsourced, marking the role to your students too.
You shouldn't have to mark the role all the time. and get a student to do that.
[12:53] Particularly if you don't know the students very well, just go, who can mark the roll? You can mark the roll. Tell me who's here and who's not, okay?
90% of the time, well, probably 99.999% of the time, they're not lying on that, they're just gonna go tick, tick, tick, tick, tick.
And if you know the students, you know exactly who to give it to, because that kid's never gonna bother doing it wrong, right?
They're always gonna do it right for you.
And so there you go, you take that, and then you're taught the lesson, so you can always double check it, because you should be interacting and seeing your students anyway.
[13:18] But it's done, and it's not taking you away from what you actually want to do in your classroom which isn't marketing the world but so think about what there's lots of things that you can use your students, to do in your classroom, like I've been talking about doing feedback as well with your students right and decorating your classroom is another thing.
Think of lots of other things you could do with your students, cleaning up your classroom at the end of the day, you'd probably do that anyway but you know having your students actually sort stuff out, help you pack up, put things away, getting equipment that you need, you know, I'm a PE teacher and if you go and do PE you need to have someone who's actually getting all that equipment.
It's going to take ages to collect all that equipment, pack it up, set it up, all that kind of stuff.
If you utilise your students in that a lot better.
Outsourcing that task frees you up to be guiding the rest of the students and getting them ready.
All right tip number seven to outsource teacher tasks and this is not so much a specific task for teachers I guess this is kind of a task that everyone has and this is your lunch okay with all your food for the day you're spending time preparing that bringing it into school or something like that going getting it see if you can organise a done-for-you lunch system where someone else is going to go and get it for you and bring it to you.
Outsourcing Lunch Preparation and Delivery
[14:28] You can utilise a student maybe.
You can go, right, I want you every day or you can put them on a roster or something if you want.
But go to the, you know, my parents used to, we had a school canteen and it was run by, it was essentially an external business that was running inside the school.
[14:45] And the food that was there was actually really good and they would pre-make all your sandwiches and all that kind of stuff.
So you put in your, you know, your food orders and it would be made and brought to you.
And so my parents had their lunch delivered to them every day and they would sit down.
They would eat it Fantastic.
They didn't have to prepare it.
They didn't have to worry about it, it just arrived at the time when they needed it and they ate it and It saves you time if you can outsource something like that.
It's a very basic thing, right?
But it's there and you can use Uber Eats.
You can use your canteen.
You can use Hayview Like there's so many ways that you can get good quality food delivered to you that will save you time by having to go and get it.
And I would highly recommend you just have standard orders so you don't even have to think about it each day.
So it's gonna come and you know what it's gonna be.
Bonus: Teaching Kids to Outsource Household Tasks
[15:30] And I think that is fantastic. Okay, that is seven ways to outsource tissue tasks.
I do actually have a bonus one.
A bonus one is to outsource activities at home as well.
[15:41] So particularly if you're a parent and if your kids are getting a bit older, you wanna start to think.
As you train your kids, how can I help them to learn all these things that actually free you up, right?
So I'm going to train my kids to clean my kitchen, to put away the dishes, to be the ones who mow my lawn, who go and move the mulch, do the jobs around the house, who fold the laundry, who do the laundry.
And you can utilise that to save you time so that you can be a bit more relaxed or you can do it with them and see it as quality time together as you work on something.
Maybe you're going to cook dinner together with one of your kids.
I know my kids love cooking with my wife or cooking with me as they're preparing food.
And that is a fantastic way to bond, but also I'm outsourcing a task and training them up so that later they can cook for me.
And that's gonna be fantastic when I come home from work or when I have a really busy day and my daughter or my son has cooked dinner for you and I'm just like, awesome, this is fantastic.
So that's a bonus for you.
Not necessarily a teacher task, but it's just another way of thinking about outsourcing some tasks.
So I want you to think more broad about that to think further about how you might be able to take the tasks you're doing, the things that eating up your time, how you can actually find someone else who might be better at doing it and who by doing it can save you time and maybe even not cost you anything if you find people like students in class and all that kind of stuff.
I think none of these things should really cost you anything except if you choose to start you know hiring people to do the work around your house that's that's different.
[17:10] Alright well I hope you got stuff out of that.
I hope that you can go and outsource a few things this week and benefit.
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