In 2010, Ross Morrison McGill founded @TeacherToolkit from a simple Twitter account through which he rapidly became the ‘most followed teacher on social media in the UK’. In 2015, he was nominated as one of the ‘500 Most Influential People in Britain’ by The Sunday…
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What are the most popular resource downloads on the website?

I’ve published hundreds of resources on this site and I’ve got another 1,000 or so on the hard drive that I’ve yet to work through and share.

1. Resource Membership

I had been planning a subscription service on my website before the pandemic. When we all faced lockdown, my focus changed to publishing something as soon as possible. In March and April 2020, this website had almost 1 million visitors – typically, it’s 200-300K a month.

I used this period of time to invest and plan in researching and developing a resource service for teachers. Launching in June 2020, The Toolkit has now been used by 2,500 teachers and 25 schools. I rarely promote it, constantly developing the site behind the scenes with resources for exclusive users.

The Toolkit Membership

The Toolkit is now in its 24th month, with various levels (starting at Bronze) for teachers to learn more.

At Silver level, members connect with me online in a private webinar to go deeper into resources, unpicking some of the strategies and sharing ideas with one another.

At Gold level, subscribers can access any resource on the website! When teachers choose to ‘Go Red‘, they get all the benefits, plus big discounts and a signed copy of my teaching books!

2. The 5-Minute Lesson Plan

Love it or hate it, teachers across the world will always need to plan lessons. First evolving during a period in England where teachers were required to submit detailed lesson plans, the 5-minute lesson plan offered teachers a thought process to reduce this burden, providing an alternative way to translate curriculum plans into one-off episodes.

Whilst some schools saw this as a perfect opportunity to change the way they lesson plan, its downfall was when schools forced the process on all their teaching staff. Despite this, the resource has been downloaded over 3 million times – the second most popular over the past 3 months – and reinvented by teachers all across the world!

NEW 5 Minute Lesson Plan 2021 by @TeacherToolkit

Fast forward 10 years and it still remains one of the most popular resource downloads on this website! Teachers all across the world will always need to plan lessons, especially new teachers who have to go through the process of laborious form filling whilst also trying to master a methodology for effective teaching.

Someone you know has used the 5-Minute Lesson Plan.

3. Question Pyramids

Questioning I believe, is the number one tool all teachers must master. When questioning is used in academic and pastoral settings, teachers can unlock a wide range of effective pedagogical strategies. For example, in corridor conversations, conflicts and in nurturing sessions.

Question Pyramid

This is a 12-page PDF that offers 3 simple core subject examples and a blank template.

The question pyramid supports knowledge-rich curriculum teaching, with each new question (ideally) drawing upon prior knowledge to support schema acquisition.

4. The Question Matrix

Shared on this site many years ago, The Question Matrix is a well-known resource to regular readers of this site. However, I am often surprised when I meet teachers who have not seen it before on my teacher training travels in schools. It is probably the most powerful resource I can offer across this site and reminds me that I must keep sharing classroom resources that I perceive to be ‘old school’.

The matrix provides teachers with an effective method for proposing a range of questions. If individuals can learn these question sets, they can develop many questioning types to use within their classroom repertoire; useful for all teachers to use on their feet.

The Question Matrix

I’ve seen many incarnations of this resource, first evolving from my own publication of Pose Pause Pounce Bounce (2011). Teachers can use this as a large wall display, as an acetate ‘periscope’ for a live display or performance, or as an assessment tool for teaching assistants to sit beside students in class.

5. Questioning Techniques

I spend much of my working week thinking of effective questions I can pose to colleagues in my work with teachers and schools. So much so, that my 11th book (you have read it first here) will be on questioning.

Teachers spend much of the day posing questions too, so why not help them to become much better?

In this resource, Questioning Techniques gathers all the effective question strategies I know, mixing up the approach is to hold engagement which is essential for learning, but also to elicit a response, retrieval and reflection.

10 Questioning Techniques by @TeacherToolkit

You can find over 200 resources to download, hundreds of training videos and exclusive membership ideas.

These are the most popular resources over the last three months.


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