About

I started this website and blog in April 2016. Partly, this was to allow me to play around and learn how to set up a website and partly to enable me to share resources for IB Biology that I had created, in the hope that I would find more interaction with other Biology teachers online.

The academic year 2016-2017 was probably been the hardest of my teaching career for a number of reasons. Having a young family with two daughters under the age of two has certainly been a factor but my guidance role very much absorbed my time throughout the year; certainly more than the official 20% time I was contractually obliged to spend on it.

I just haven’t had the time I would like to devote to many aspects, simply because I was still teaching a new subject – TOK – and because I was still setting up the guidance program – working with my first grade 12s in this regard and improving the process for the grade 11s and 10s (2nd year for those cohorts).

As such the inital website hasn’t developed in the direction I originally planned. I have been finding WordPress a little too clunky with which to build a website dedicated to IB biology. While it is obviously possible to do so I simply haven’t had the time to invest in this project this year between teaching, guidance and family life.

Time constraints considered, I now find that much of my thinking is lately taken up with my guidance program and naturally this means that most of what I want to write about is to do with the issues I face in this area. Writing my blog is primarily a way for me to get my thoughts straight with the added bonus of inviting comment and further discussion from colleagues.

So going forward I plan to:

1) Continue a blog on this website, writing about guidance and education issues as they crop up and time-dependent.

2) Stop adding biology teaching resources, plans and ideas to this website, but build a new platform that I can also use for teaching based on google sites.

3) In time, build another platform for MYP Biology and another for guidance resources.

first tried using the new Google sites platform as a wiki for a biology teachers workshop I led. It is super simple to use, although it does have a raft of limitations that I am hoping will gradually be removed over the next few years.

With inspiration from a colleague, I began creating workbooks tailored to the IB Biology course for my students in 2012/13. This year I massively overhauled them to bring them in line with the new IB syllabus but also Ron Ritchhardt’s thinking routines (still a work in progress).

The development of a website feels like a natural extension of this work – the exercises in the workbooks need to be transposed to website form and no doubt this will take time, but I feel that I am getting some clarity on the direction my digital presence needs to take.

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