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The Professional Development Portfolio (PDP)

 Your PDP serves several different roles. Firstly it is a tool by which you can reflect on your teaching practice. Secondly it is a means by which evidence can be collated and stored against the eight teaching standards.   Your PDP will need to be continually updated as it is the principle means by which the outcomes for your practice of teaching units are evidenced. 

The PDP comprises three distinct sections:

The Blog

The Audit

The Action Planner 

1.The Reflective Blog

The blog is the key component of your PDP.  You are expected to complete this everyday while you are in school.  Each day you are expected to spend about 15minutes (but strictly no more than 20minutes!) and record your reflections and thoughts on the day you have just had.  Here is an example from a current trainee.


10A Lesson 08/05/13

Taught 10A again today. I have been struggling recently to get this group of pupils motivated and actively engaged in the lessons. They are a quiet group and usually very content to just sit and write during lessons, however this isn't always appropriate- or very interesting, so I thought it important to try and devise a new way to get them more active and talkative during lessons. (S1) (S5)

We were finishing off our work on the Black Death and this was to be our last lesson on this topic before preparing for their mock exam. To start pupils were given a 16 mark essay back and told to read through my comments and ask any questions they had about the marks they received. It was useful to give them this time within lessons as some of them asked me to clarify exactly what it was they needed to do to improve. After this we moved on to discuss what Medieval people thought would cure the Black Death. We had a long list of different cures ranging from Flagellation to holding bread over buboes. During this I was a able to embellish some of the cures and explain how they would be used, this was very useful in gaining pupil interest and attention.

I then asked pupils to get themselves into pairs or threes and assign a cure to their group, so that each group was looking at a different cure. Their task was to design an advert for the believed cause of the Black Death assigned to their group. I gave some suggestions of what they could produce and encouraged them to be creative and not just make a poster! I had booked the ICT room so there were more options with what groups could produce. (S2)

The results were actually really good given the time available. Adverts produced ranged from a radio advert, to a billboard poster and even a filmed tv advert. I was really impressed with the creativity of the group and the enthusiasm they showed towards the task. It was also very beneficial from a learning perspective as the task was so different to what we normally do it will be more memorable for the group when they come to revision for this topic.


The blog is yours. It provides a tool through which you can reflect and review your teaching practice.  However, both your Mentor and University Tutor will be able to read and comment on this.  It is therefore essential that your blog is kept upto date and you show some sensitivity towards your school and colleagues. 

The blog is also the central means by which you collate evidence against the teaching standards.  As you can see in the example above the student has signposted their blog to particular standards by referencing them at the end of the relevent sentance.  Once you have evaluated any lesson plans or lesson observations it is important that you upload these to your blog and 'tag' them against the 8 teaching standards.  As you progress you can use the tags to show all the evidence you have for each standard.  The tags are displayed through a 'tag cloud' see below. The larger the digits the more evidence you have for that standard.  In the example below you can see the trainee has more evidence for S4 than the others.

What makes evidence?

Your evidence can be anything that shows you have achieved a standard or grade.  On the most part this will be lesson plans, resources, or lesson observation forms. But it could be anything that shows you have progressed against the standards for professional development.

Please note: do not duplicate evidence. If you have evaluated a lesson on the plan you have uploaded then simply signpost this do not evaluate the lesson again in your blog. Remember: 15minutes only a day.


2. The Weekly Audit

At the end of each week review your progress with your mentor. When you think you have enough evidence to meet a standard and your mentor agrees then highlight the relevent section on Mahara.  As you can see below the trainee has highlighted the Standard 1, Grade 4.

You must only highlight a standard once you a) have enough evidence from your blog  b) Have agreement from your mentor.

Underneath the standards is a box asking for evidence. Please ignore this as it is for other subject areas who use Mahara in a slightly different way.


Induction phase

Grade 5

Working towards

Grade 4

Achieving ‘Satisfactory trainee’

Grade 3

Achieving ‘Good trainee’

Grade 2

 Achieving ‘Outstanding trainee’


1.1 They have begun to develop a good rapport with pupils

They address the pupils appropriately

They dress appropriately

1.1 They are respected by some pupils and have a good rapport with them

1.1 Rapport and relationship

They are able to develop a rapport with a range of individuals and groups3.  As a consequence of this pupils are engaged in their learning for most lessons

1.1  They are well respected by learners and promote pupils’ resilience, confidence and independence when tackling challenging activities. As a result of this most learners are enthused and motivated to participate.


1.1 There are high levels of mutual respect between the trainee and pupils.

They are effective1 in promoting learners’ resilience, confidence and independence when tackling challenging activities. Pupils are well supported and encouraged and develop confidence in their abilities.



2. The Action Planner.

The action planner is a way of recording your progress in school.  The action planner forms the basis of your mentor meetings. It works on a two week cycle. Every two weeks in Block 1,2 & 3 you will set 3 or 4 targets explain how you will achieve them.  Then after two weeks with your mentors you will review your targets and then set some more.  This tool will enable you to adopt a reflective proactive approach to your practice.  All of these targets must relate to the teaching standards.  Here is an example from a trainee's action planner.






Block 1 - Fortnightly Action Planner

Identify and record targets: What targets should I set for the next two weeks (or beyond) to help me progress in relation to the standards?

Identify and record action to meet targets: What will I do in order to address the targets that I have identified? What evidence will I need to collect?

Review impact and summarise progress: What have I achieved during the last two weeks in relation to previous targets and more generally?

 1. To start to feel more confident standing up at the front of the classroom and start addressing each pupil by their name. Also, to make sure that I know where all the humanities classrooms are located. (S 1)
2. To meet more staff and become familiar with senior members of staff. I aim to introduce myself to TA's who are in the classroom. I did meet more staff during my 'pupil pursuit' in the first week and I aim to build on this. (S8)
3. To feel confident about finding resources including textbooks, schemes of work, lesson plans, resources, SEN information. Know how to use the photocopier, printers. (S8)

1. Speak to staff about taking on more responsibility in front of the classroom. I can start with teaching a few starters and plenaries and then gradually build this up towards taking the whole lesson before block 1 starts. I will collect all the class lists and seating plans of the lessons that I observe in so I can learn pupils names.
2. I will attend staff briefings on a Thursday morning so I will have the opportunity to meet more staff. I will also ask my Professional Tutor if I can be introduced to senior members of staff. I will take the initiative to introduce myself to the TA's.
3. I will explore the 'staff shared area' on the hard drive and make sure that I know where to locate electronic schemes of work, resources and lesson plans. I will look through the filing cabinets in the humanities resource room and locate hard copies of lesson plans and printed resources. I will ask my mentor where the history textbooks are stored and I will make sure that I become familiar with using the photocopiers and printers.

 1. I have planned and taught one plenary to a Year 7 geography class. I have also planned and taught a starter to a Year 10 history class. I discussed what I was going to do with the class teachers and I made sure that it fit in with the scheme of work. I have collected class lists and seating plans and I keep these in my teaching file so I can always refer back to them. (S1, S2)
2. I have met the Head teacher in a meeting with my Professional Tutor. I have also met one of the Deputy Head teachers. I attend staff briefings every Thursday morning and I am starting to be familiar with different members of staff. Next week, I will attend the Year 6 Open Evening which will allow me to meet more staff as well as prospective parents. (S8)
3. I have saved all necessary files from the staff shared area onto a USB stick so I can have access to the various resources at any point. I understand the schemes of work that pupils follow in Year 7 and I have made notes on these. I know where to locate textbooks and I have used the photocopier and printer. (S1,S8)



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