Quick Navigation
Social media
Contact information

Crown Buildings, Bancyfelin, Carmarthen, SA33 5ND,
United Kingdom


.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)


+44 (0) 1267 211345


+44 (0) 1267 211882

Darren Mead

Darren Mead is an experienced science teacher who has been described as ‘the Jimi Hendrix of teaching’ and ‘perhaps the most intellectually engaged of all British teachers’. Based in the north-east of England, he shares his classroom-based interpretations of research through his highly respected blog, Sharing Pedagogical Purposes.

Connect with Darren


Publications by Darren Mead

The Expert Teacher

In The Expert Teacher: Using pedagogical content knowledge to plan…

Author Blog

How good am I at explaining?

July 17 2019

As teachers, our audience, our students can be a great source of feedback upon our craft. They see you teach more than you do. So one way to develop our ability to explain things well is not only in their understanding of the subject, but also in identifying what aspect(s) we need to improve upon. This may be a structural, signalling, clarity or supportive feature of your communication. Further details can be read here and here and here.

These features are broken down in the following student voice survey. As always I worry that a checklist in the wrong hands turns into a management tool, and that is not the intention here. So if anyone tries tell them to do one. This is a professional reflection tool, for teachers to check their own classroom practice on their own or with some feedback from their classes.
A downloadable version can be found here.

My teacher...
explanations are clear and understandable

goes at the right speed

teacher makes clear points

teacher loses track of what they are saying

teacher says urr, um, em during their explanations

teachers explanations emphasise important ideas

explanations contain extra, unhelpful, statements

Explanations review or summarise  key ideas

Makes mistakes when explaining

Finish the explanation

Build up/ breakdown complex ideas into chunks. 

Remind me of what we have already studied

link ideas together

Make clear what they are about to explain

Make useful notes on the board

Point/ highlight key parts of diagrams or idea on the whiteboard

Read Blog

John Loughran on Pedagogical Content Knowledge.

July 16 2019

Read Blog