Many schools globally are becoming attuned to the benefits of implementing metacognition into classrooms, supporting the teaching and learning process to achieve more manageable and positive outcomes.

In previous UKEdChat articles, I have explored some of the key reasons why educators should implement metacognitive strategies within the classroom, along with tips on planning for metacognition in the classroom, and supporting students to use metacognitive strategies during exams, but a recently published research article caught my eye that explored classroom circumstances that can interfere with metacognitive activity.

Published in the Journal of Educational Research and Practice, Rae-Kim & Moore ((Rae-Kim, Y…


How metacognitive skills can be used in business when completing tasks or projects

I’ve been working on a large project recently that has demanded quite a lot of research of metacognition, trying to understand what the concept means, and how to use it in an educational setting to help develop teaching and learning. The research task has been challenging, and a lot for me to get my head around, but a lot of the principles, ideas and questions involved in metacognition can, I have found, be translated into business management tasks, helping to inform how tasks, decisions and processes are undertaken, concluding in opportunities to help improve productivity. …


Understanding how our own minds work, how we respond to everyday challenges and recognising our self-generated biases are central components to metacognition. Often credited to John Flavell, the term ‘metacognition’ is deemed as — at a basic level — ‘thinking about thinking’ but, more fundamentally, metacognition challenges individuals to take mental steps to stop automatic thinking and responses. Developing metacognitive skills is not a quick fix, demanding time, patience and persistence to correct, tweak or improve automated responses when presented with a predicament.

Metacognitive strategies are not an educational fad, with John Hattie recognising that, when enough attention to the…


We watch is awe, often, at the amazing computer animations and graphics that make the impossible possible in modern day movies. The life-like motions in the Toy Story films, or the incredible textures added to the creatures in Monsters Inc demand a lot of computer processing and rendering.

The genius behind being able to render such incredible movie sequences is mainly down to the perseverance, imagination and tenacity of Loren Carpenter — one of the quiet heroes who worked with LucasFilms, and then Pixar Animations. Creating some of the most memorable sequences in the modern history of movies, Loren’s career…


Being trapped in the pressures of the senior leadership bubble, it is often easy to forget what it’s like to be a teacher. You have your own pressures and are keen to see results improve whilst ensuring standards will surpass the roving eye of the inspectors. These pressures can sometimes be inadvertently passed down to teaching staff as it can be a challenge to leave the bubble, demanding even more attention from colleagues, who are themselves trying to juggle different pressures in their life.

So, what strategies and plans can senior staff follow to ensure that they are truly making…


Fads within education come and go, and many settings are full of optimism, hope, and trying to instil a positive mindset among their pupils. Yet, all these positive, happy signals sometimes fall short of providing individuals the skills to think more critically within the world they engage in. Many people believe that thinking negatively is a bad thing, and do not consider it as a positive force for good.

Expecting things to go wrong can be a great force for good, and with grades and expectations in schools set very high, what happens when things don’t go to plan? People…


How research and collaboration can keep people within the box

I was fortunate enough to attend a seminar recently about creativity. The speaker was an ‘old-school’ designer, who does not really interact with technology, and enjoys the freedom of using pens, paper and space. Although interesting hearing about his creative story, there was one aspect of the talk that really got me thinking. The discussion turned momentarily to talk about ‘research’, and how academic research showed and highlighted different things in life, which was all very good. …


This week, in the UK, The Royal Society released a report emphasising the lack of teaching of computing in English schools, since the change of the curriculum in 2014. The 2014 change shifted the focus on ICT as something we use, to computing — something to work with. The priority shift was monumental, as the emphasis was now on coding and computational thinking, whereas the functionalities of using technology were pushed into the background. All very well and good, but the teaching profession wasn’t truly prepared for this shift as the complexity and detail required in the new computing curriculum…


When managers are tempted to overstate performance

Shouldering the responsibilities of middle management can be an overburdening task for individuals, who are suddenly faced with serious accountability pressures from many directions. This is true in the business world, but also recognisable in schools, as teachers become tempted by progression, pay and future plans, thrusting them into the world of middle leadership, accepting responsibility for a Key Stages, subject areas, or data analysis.

But, with pressures coming from high up in the command chain, and expectations from colleagues lower down, recent research has shown that some middle managers may turn to unethical behaviour to face unrealistic expectations. Although…


Understanding the complexities and multitude of nuances that fall under the umbrella term, known as ‘Autism’, is a challenge for teachers as individuals bring with them a range of unique issues that are difficult to categorise under one term.

Following an accompanying UKEdChat session, focused on understanding autism, we have created the following basic guide for teachers, school leaders, and those working with pupils who live with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder.

You can download a free PDF version of this basic guide by visiting the UKEdChat website here, making it sharable in staffroom’s and to hand to colleagues.

Col Hill

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