Pride of Britain Awards 2011: Llew Davies named Teacher Of The Year for F1 twist to science
Inspirational Llew Davies is a self-confessed 'big kid' who puts education in the fast lane, delivering outstanding teaching with a Formula 1 twist.
Llew led the nine and 10-year-olds to victory in the F1 In Schools contest. Their gas-powered mini racing car beat off competition from secondary school students, racing around a 20-metre track in just 0.7 seconds.
“It was a really cool project,” says Llew. “We broke the record for the high schools, and came first in Wales and second in the UK. We've entered for the past three years and came top three every time.”
The Year Five pupils are certainly used to taking part in unusual projects. Whether it's a volcano experiment erupting red paint all over the classroom, or office chair races across the gym to teach velocity, Mr Davies' lessons are always entertaining and informative.
“We obviously do sensible stuff too,” he says. “But I think it's more interesting to teach things hands-on.
“When I was at school there was a lot of sitting down listening to the teacher and it was boring. You always remember doing something different at school.”
And Llew's adoring pupils are unanimous in stating that he's the teacher they “will never forget”.
The rugby-mad Welshman says: “I love teaching and I love children, probably because I am a big kid myself.”
But it's not just the youngsters who love Llew. He has also helped boost standards across the whole school, resulting in its best ever ratings from inspectors Estyn (the Welsh equivalent of Ofsted) since he joined.
In 2009, the school was awarded seven 'outstanding' grade ones, the highest level obtainable and the first time Ysgol Cae Top had achieved such an accolade.
Head teacher Rhys Howard Hughes says: “More important than the inspection results though is the fact that the children want to go to Mr Davies' class.
“They have fun, feel safe and are happy in the learning environment created.”
Colleague Eirian Kelly also praised Llew's teaching. “He is like a magnet and draws out a longing to do well from all his pupils,” she explains.
And the school is at the forefront of Information and Communications Technology (ICT), thanks to Llew's commitment to running after-school computer clubs.
He says: “The kids grow up using computers and some of them are better than the teachers. I've even got them making the school website.”
Llew, from Anglesey, remains modest about his success, though. “I take it all with a pinch of salt,” he says. “No one gets these achievements on their own.”
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