Brian Smith

13th January 2006 at 00:00
Brian Smith, 46, is a self-employed plumber from Sunderland. His son Jack is in Year 5 at Broadway juniors, a local primary school. His daughter Emma, 12, started secondary school this year "The best teachers are the ones who really prepare their lessons and try to make them as lively as possible so they can fire kids' imaginations, mystify them, make them want to go on and learn more.

"I think it does count if their style involves taking a personal interest in children. I think if a teacher had taken some sort of interest in what I was doing at school, then I might have gained much higher scores rather than being happy to coast along unnoticed at the top of set two.

"If children are doing good work and responding well, then teachers need to tell them why they are good, and explain why and how they need to tackle a particular subject.

"If a child has a positive relationship with a teacher, if he or she has taken time to know something of them and can share a joke, have a laugh with them, then they are much more likely to listen when the teacher needs to hammer home a point."

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