Dressing for my own identity

Reading Time: 5 minutes Clothes are so important, aren’t they? With teachers returning to schools this week, my Twitter timeline has been full of teachers with their ‘back to school wardrobes’. There’s a lot of the Harkel rainbow pencil skirts, the Popsy maths dresses and the Popsy crayon dress, among others. Clothes make us feel comfortable, or safe, or more professional. Everyone has their own quirks and preferences. An outfit that makes us feel powerful. Most men also can’t fathom the glee that comes from discovering your dress actually has pockets!!

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 …

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 …

Ideas to celebrate International Women’s Day 2020

Reading Time: 3 minutes International Women’s Day this year falls on March 8th. If you’re interested in doing something at school, their site has loads of resources and suggestions for their theme #eachforequal https://www.inteArnationalwomensday.com/Resources IWD is about raising awareness about the inequalities that still exist for women around the world. Whether it’s in education, healthcare, work, finance, or any other aspect of life, women still experience inequality at virtually every level. The international statistics are horrifying – but the really, amazingly hopeful thing is that when men and women are equal, everything improves. UN research backs this up. When women enter education in a country, you …

“Be a lady” – the contradictory messages girls get every day

Reading Time: 2 minutes This video from Girls, Girls, Girls magazine is pretty powerful: There’s some discussion about the magazine promoting it and whether it’s genuinely a change of direction, but I think the message of conflicting messages is a powerful one – and the debate about whether the magazine itself is promoting or challenging only intensifies that conflict. I start my book, The Lost Girls, with this quotation from Caitlin Moran: “When a woman says, ‘I have nothing to wear!’, what she really means is, ‘There’s nothing here for who I’m supposed to be today” — Caitlin Moran, How To Be a Woman. …