Parental engagement: linking the classroom to the home with GCSEPod

Here’s how GCSEPod can help to get parents and teachers on the same page without placing extra pressure on students.

GCSE revision materials

Teachers know that a student’s performance in GCSE exams relies on more than just the work done in the classroom. As examinations get harder, the importance of independent study and support for students outside of the traditional learning environment becomes ever greater. And this often means actively engaging parents to support their children through the curriculum.

This is not an easy feat, given that teachers can be juggling hundreds of children across the school at any given time. Yet it is something that can pay dividends at the end of the academic year, when a student has been supported to reach their true potential. Creating a strong and connected support network undoubtedly helps to ensure that a child does not become overwhelmed by their studies.

It is also important for the teacher–parent network to find a balance between being supportive and becoming overbearing. After all, no child likes to feel like they are being constantly observed or pressured.

The solution

At GCSEPod, we believe that our award-winning platform has a role to play in linking the classroom to the home.

Not only is our suite now widely used in more than a thousand schools around England, Wales and Northern Ireland as a GCSE revision guide; it has also become an essential tool for keeping teachers and parents in tune with a child’s independent learning time.

As a teaching resource, the platform enables homework to be set in an efficient and engaging fashion, whilst making it possible for parents to track assignments. Parents may simply log in to their child’s account to see what work is being set, how they are managing their workload and how frequently they are viewing Pods to help support their classroom learning.

This not only acts as a measure of how diligent a child is being in studying the pods but may also highlight areas where a student is struggling – particularly if they feel the need to watch the same Pod again and again.

Take a look at our parents’ guide on “How to use GCSEPod” below:


Through GCSEPod, parents are empowered to lend their assistance during independent study time. Monitoring their child’s account also helps them to attend parents’ evenings armed with the right questions and points for discussion, based on a realistic understanding of how their child is faring.

Often, the discussion can be as simple as agreeing between parent and teacher that a student should be encouraged to view their Pods at a certain time for greater impact – perhaps before an evening meal or before 9pm rather than at 10.30pm when they should be winding down to sleep.

More information on following Assignments can be found in the GCSEPod User Manual here.

As Ben Cheeseman, Assistant Head at Rednock School, explains:

“We can never underestimate the power of parents and we were keen to ensure that our parents understood how GCSEPod works and how it could benefit their children.”

Through a dedicated parent revision session, Rednock School, like many of the schools that subscribe to GCSEPod, took the time to explain to parents how the technology worked and how it would be rolled out in classroom, homework and exam revision environments. Rednock School has even included GCSEPod presentations at parents’ evenings.

At GCSEPod, we offer a raft of resources to guide parents on supporting students through their studies and, particularly, with ensuring that they are using their electronic devices for the right reasons.

Check out these usage statistics below:

Parents Guide - Revision

A parent’s guide to using GCSEPod at home

  1. Watch a few pods yourself

Take the time to discover how GCSEPod works so that you can better understand its potential for your child. Watch them on your own or, even better, with your child so that you can test each other afterwards.

  1. Use the My GCSE tool

Not only does the My GCSE feature provide the perfect playlist for your child’s upcoming exam, it can also help you devise a revision timetable with your child.

  1. Encourage regular use

Research has shown that the more Pods your child watches the better they are likely to do at exam time. For that reason you should make it easy for them to get a knowledge boost, wherever and whenever they need it. Play one on the school run or during a break time.

As teachers around the country are discovering, GCSEPod is about so much more than GCSE revision videos. If you would like to learn about how you can integrate our suite into your schemes of learning, why not get in touch today.

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“100% of our year 11 students achieved at least 5 GCSEs at grades A*-C.

82% achieved at least 5 GCSEs including Maths, English and/or Welsh at grades A*-C. An impressive 27% of grades were at A* or A compared to the national average of 19.4%.

We strongly believe that GCSEPod has played an important role in improving the outcomes for some of our pupils. Indeed, some of our top users exceeded their target grades in many areas and have now returned to the sixth form to continue their studies at A level.”

Diane Evans - Assistant Head Teacher,
Ysgol Uwchradd Aberteif

There is a very clear correlation between the subjects with the most pronounced raises in attainment (English Literature, Chemistry, Biology and Physics) and those that had the highest GCSEPod usage.

In addition, the student with the highest GCSEPod usage was also our highest achiever.

Because there has so clearly been an impact on the departments that utilised GCSEPod effectively, we will be looking to increase the use of GCSEPod across the school in coming years.”

Andrew Ost - Deputy Head,
Fort Pitt Grammar School

“We’ve used GCSEPod for a year and the results speak for themselves!

Not only did we see a rise in headline measures across the board with our highest user of GCSEPod gaining 7A* – but the students and their parents love it!

It’s fun, user friendly, and easy to use in a variety of ways – on a mobile device, in school, at the heart of our mentoring and intervention strategies, for flipping learning, and to deliver positive engagement that parents can see. Plus we’ve only just scratched the surface!”

Dominic Howkins - Vice Principal,
Ormiston Sudbury Academy

Awards

Don’t just take our word for it. GCSEPod has gained huge recognition since our initial launch in 2010 and we continue to pick up industry awards along the way. We’re constantly listening to the schools that use GCSEPod and learning how we can best support teachers and students in times of change. Contact us to tell us your goals for the next year and discuss how we can be a part of your school improvement strategy.

Click here to find out more about our awards