Poetry writing: A walk-through lesson

Reading Time: 7 minutes In the lesson before this, I’d read On the Sidewalk Bleeding with my Year 8 class, as part of a narrative/short-story unit (some EXCELLENT black lives matters and identity conversation came from it too). The standard has been a couple of analytical lessons followed by creative writing. It’s been an AGE since I taught poetry, and I’ve recently read @funkypedagogy‘s book which reminded me of how much I enjoy it – and I was heartened to see her methods basically mirrored my own. (Always lovely when someone you respect can reaffirm you’re doing the right thing!) Some of the below …

The messy middle of curriculum planning

Reading Time: < 1 minute The video below explains some of our currrent curriculum thining. This is very much a “work in progress” video exploring the English curriculum, responding to Freya O’Dell’s brilliant collection of videos – here. With this one, I’ve tried to look more at the “messy middle” of a curriculum when it’s at the point of needing a refresh, and what the considerations and thought processes are behind it. Hopefully some people will find it useful! I’m always happy to chat on socials about it as well @miss_tiggr on twitter. I’ll try to follow ups a bit later with some other thoughts …

Oracy is a feminist act – it’s the way we teach our girls to take their place in the world and speak up for themselves and others. How can we structure talk more effectively?

Reading Time: 5 minutes In any list of people’s fears and phobias, public speaking is usually in the top three – and often first. Even among teachers, who arguably spend most of their day presenting in one style or other, there’s a common, if rueful, admittance that teaching is one thing but delivering a CPD presentation to our peers is something else entirely. Speaking has been critically undervalued in the secondary curriculum, especially since the English GCSE presentation was reduced to an NEA. Even before then, it rarely held the prestige of writing and reading. It fares better at primary school, I think, although …

Creativity and recovery

Reading Time: 5 minutes Last night, I was cross-stitching. This year, I’ve read more than ever – fiction and non-fiction. And it’s a huge thing, because a few years ago I couldn’t see well enough to do either of those things. I used to love cross-stitch. I don’t remember exactly when I started but I remember going to lunchtime clubs with Mrs Wilding, so it must have been year 4 or 5 at Gorse Ride Infant school. I think I’d done bits before that; my mum and grandma are crafty, either sewing, embroidering, knitting or crocheting, so it was definitely around. As I got …

Oracy in home learning

Reading Time: 4 minutes I’ve been limiting my news consumption recently; after a first week of isolation checking what felt like almost constantly it seemed a good idea to slow it down. As much as possible in current situation, anyway! In and amongst, though, there’s been some stories about who’s likely to suffer long-term impacts of covid-19 the most in the Western world and, unsurprisingly, it’s predominantly women and the under-25s. The BBC reports that 17% of female employees work in what they call ‘shutdown sectors’ – retail, leisure, customer service industries – compared with 13% of men. Women are also more likely to …