English Teaching


Dec

01

2016
Year 11 mock exams: speedos, modelling writing and self assessment.

Year 11 mock exams: speedos, modelling writing and self assessment.

“Eagerly I reached for my delightful new purchase: a five pound pair of silver speedos.” The great debate this week: spend five hours marking thirty copies of my middle set Year 11 pieces of creative writing or spend an hour writing my own example and sharing with them? The ponder: which will have more impact in improving their understanding of what makes engaging writing?  Which will enthuse them more...

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Nov

25

2016
Like Lambs to the Slaughter: preparing Year 9 for GCSE English

Like Lambs to the Slaughter: preparing Year 9 for GCSE English

  “Mary Maloney was waiting for her husband to come home from work.” Poor old Mary, the jilted lover of Roald Dahl’s masterful ‘Lamb to the Slaughter’.   It all began so calmly. Her tumultuous marriage has been the focus for two Year 9 groups I am teaching this year: one a low band set and one a middle band. Both these groups present different learners...

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Nov

11

2016
UNSPECIFIED - DECEMBER 16: Henry VIII Tudor (Greenwich, 1491-London, 1547), 1539-1541, King of England and King of Ireland with his family portrait wearing the outfit worn for his marriage to Anne of Cleves. Painting by Hans Holbein the Younger (1497-1543), oil on panel, 88.5 x74.5 cm. Rome, Galleria Nazionale D'Arte Antica Di Palazzo Barberini ( National Art Gallery, Barberini Palace) (Photo by DeAgostini/Getty Images)

Shakespearean Trump card: teaching ‘Macbeth’.

Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no more. It is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing. If ever a week was required to emphasise the importance and relevance of teaching Shakespeare and ‘Macbeth’ to young people, this week was one. I set this Sizzling Shakespearean Starter...

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Aug

15

2016
The Joys of English Teaching

The Joys of English Teaching

  Teaching is not a lost art, but the regard for it is a lost tradition. —Jacques Barzun The space of a few weeks of sunshine does some wonderful things to your vision of what you do. In this frame of mind, wholeheartedly idealistic (and perhaps cleansed from some of the less perfect realities of the classroom!) this post will unashamedly celebrate the unique beauty and value of...

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