What do we want from the KS3 Curriculum?

Around two and a half years ago, Head teacher Tom Sherrington posted this tweet. It left a lasting impression on me, and I suspect many others: If there was no OfSTED, no league tables, no SLT… just you and your class..what would you choose to do to make it GREAT? Do that anyway… At a time where…

How do you teach a novel you’ve never taught before?

When the new specifications changed, and texts like To Kill a Mockingbird and Of Mice and Men were removed from the GCSE syllabus, I was pretty upset. Not because I felt that these texts were somehow ‘better’ than the ones set to replace them, not because I have a particular love for American literature, not because I thought…

Beautiful language, beautiful analysis?

If students are given more beautiful language to explore, would their analysis itself be more beautiful? One of my biggest priorities this year is preparing my year 11 classes for their exams. Sure, this statement is unlikely to make it into any teacher recruitment literature, but it’s an unavoidable fact of teaching. And to this…

Speaking & Listening and the Subordination of Knowledge

I use to be jealous of Maths teachers. Not for the range of stationery they have at their disposable, nor their titanic powers of organisation. No – I was jealous of their curriculum. I was envious of how there seemed to be a discrete number of topics which could easily be organised and worked through logically, whereas…

Walking the Walk: Authentic Tests for GCSE classes

I’m writing this post in an attempt to contribute to this month’s blogsync: “What is the best place for testing in schools?” The other contributions can be found here. I write purely from personal experience. As ever, any feedback / criticisms are welcome. Authentic Tests This year our year elevens have been tested a lot. They’ve…