Connected physics – LinkedIn recruitment

I joined the LinkedIn network to connect with colleagues, teachers I worked with from other schools and others I had worked with, including former pupils who now have careers of their own.  Since my early years of teaching, I have tried to show current pupils that there are often careers in physics/science generally, often linked to what they are studying in my classes.

Some of my most memorable experiences have been with Oracle, the Educational Development Trust and The Goldsmiths’ Company.

I can perfectly understand that LinkedIn is a very useful service to discover new job opportunities, but I am still astonished at the number of recruitment agents who have connected with me in the hope of getting me to move to a new job.

Should I need to look for another job, my first site will still probably be the TES.  I guess that relatively few teachers use LinkedIn so there are fewer of people like me who meet the agents’ criteria, so I get disproportionately more offers.  In other sectors, outside education, I guess there is a more competitive edge, where employers, recruiters and employees/candidates are all looking to seek/find each other.  I do not want to “humble brag” but as a physics teacher, I am aware that there seem to be many vacant positions, irrespective of the calibre of the candidates.

I would recommend that many more colleagues join the network, to increase the sharing of ideas, suitable job opportunities and connection requests!


Past papers, different specs– it’s all physics!

What do you do when you exhaust your supply of revision/practice materials for pupils who may now be revising for exams?

My Irish language teacher taught us the phrase “Cleachtadh a dheanann máistreacht” (Practice makes mastery, or the common alliterative English phrase “Practice makes perfect”).

I often use materials from other exam boards, such as past papers or specimen papers, to give pupils further practice, or to challenge them beyond their carefully ring-fenced specification content.

Today I am using British Physics Olympiad papers and trying to separate different questions and then aggregate them into different topic areas appropriate to our current specification.  I found this has this has already been done here; BPhO Question Bank


I’d be interested to hear what you have tried and feedback on how well it works!

My 1st TeachMeet

Following @TeacherToolkit, he posted a link to his publisher Bloomsbury.  They had some other interesting books for teachers and they (Laura Givans) were planning their first TeachMeet at their offices in London.

“I’ll go”, I thought, as others I’ve admired have raved about TeachMeets in the past.  Last Thursday I went to Bloomsbury’s offices in central London, a short walk from Tottenham Court Road Tube station.  It was my first time on Tube since some time early in 2015!

At the TeachMeet I spoke to several Bloomsbury staff and several of the presenters.

Between talks, there were silly games with prizes for the winners.  Thanks to the “sterling” efforts of those at my table, we won book prizes for “tin”-foil hats made of aluminium foil!

The evening was only slightly marred by missing the earlier bus home, causing me to experience the late-night delights of 20 minutes at Edgware Bus station.

Thanks to Bloomsbury education department for their careful organisation and generous hospitality.  Thanks to those at, presenting, or sharing their ideas and enthusiasm.  They included