The Learning Renaissance

Critical Child Development Sequences and Milestones, via Charlotte Davies

I have long taken an interest in the posts of Charlotte Davies. Her specialism is in cognitive and development issues and the impact of underdevelopment on the potential of young … Continue reading

September 5, 2022 · Leave a comment

Why I’m glad that I’m an ‘overthinker’ | The Guardian

Examining every aspect of a question can be exhausting, but the most amazing insights can be gained that way, writes Annalisa Barbieri. If you are an overthinker, try not to … Continue reading

August 8, 2022 · Leave a comment

Shift Your Vibe! 60 Quick Ways to Make Yourself Slightly Happier | The Guardian

Things feeling a bit stale? These small tweaks to your routine will turn things around, boost your mood and could even make you a better person… Find them here: Shift … Continue reading

August 1, 2022 · Leave a comment

‘My spelling isn’t that great’: Michael Morpurgo on why teaching kids to love writing is more important than grammar | The Guardian

The author, poet and playwright on why we should move away from Michael Gove-mandated lessons on fronted adverbials and back to unleashing the creative potential of children. Read the article … Continue reading

July 11, 2022 · Leave a comment

100 ways to slightly improve your life without really trying | The Guardian

The world feels like a pretty bleak place right now. Whether it’s taking fruit to work (and to the bedroom!), being polite to rude strangers or taking up skinny-dipping, here’s a … Continue reading

March 14, 2022 · Leave a comment

Your attention didn’t collapse. It was stolen. | The Guardian

Social media and many other facets of modern life are destroying our ability to concentrate. We need to reclaim our minds while we still can. Prof Barbara Demeneix, a leading … Continue reading

February 9, 2022 · Leave a comment

Lost your get up and go? Here’s how to get it back | The Guardian

After a lifetime of loving exercise, Martin Love lost his motivation. But where had it gone? And could he get it back? Plus, five experts on how to maintain your … Continue reading

January 17, 2022 · Leave a comment

Be interested, be curious, hear what’s not said: how I learned to really listen to people | The Guardian

Being a good listener isn’t just about shutting up and not interrupting – it’s about really taking in what someone is telling you. I thought the correct response was to … Continue reading

November 8, 2021 · Leave a comment

Linguistic Bias and Slang – The Significance of Context is Speech

I had to smile when reading of one school’s efforts to standardise the language used by pupils by banning what they considered to be ‘slang’! The simplistic idea that the … Continue reading

October 25, 2021 · Leave a comment

Constant Craving – How Digital Media Turned Us All into Dopamine Addicts | The Guardian

According to addiction expert Dr Anna Lembke, our smartphones are making us dopamine junkies, with each swipe, like and tweet feeding our habit. Her new book, Dopamine Nation, emphasises that … Continue reading

August 30, 2021 · Leave a comment

Children read more challenging books in lockdowns | The Guardian

A new report on reading habits of more than one million children also finds they read longer books, particularly during school closures. The annual What Kids Are Reading report from … Continue reading

May 17, 2021 · Leave a comment

Dear Gavin Williamson, teenagers use mobile phones. Get with the times | The Guardian

Author and broadcaster Michael Rosen has a few things to say to the education secretary… Why not applaud the explosion of literacy in texts and posts? Better to welcome rather … Continue reading

April 26, 2021 · Leave a comment

Teachers vilified as UK government tries to force opening of schools without adequate protection for pupils and staff…

From heroes to villains in a few days… like other public sector and key workers, teachers have been lauded for keeping schools open to a limited extent to care for … Continue reading

May 18, 2020 · Leave a comment

The Covid 19 crisis has exposed some salutary lessons about what schools are, and could be about…

Michael Gove, as Education Secretary, having as much impact and engagement in a primary school as he did with any group of free-thinking individuals. This was the man who was … Continue reading

April 20, 2020 · Leave a comment

A Society That Gives Up on Reading Gives Up on Culture and Decent Values

This from The Guardian regarding the 800 libraries that have closed in the UK since 2010 when the Tory government came to power… An annual survey shows sharp cuts to … Continue reading

March 25, 2020 · Leave a comment

Questions, Questions, Questions… Why Schools Are Killing Creativity

This is a very reflective piece from Wendy Berliner, brought to my attention by Charlotte Davies, which recalls some research from 2007 about children asking questions. The intensity with which … Continue reading

March 9, 2020 · 2 Comments

One of the Problems with Multi-Academy Trusts: Accountability

One of the problems when you transfer state educational assets  to Multi-Academy Trusts operating in a commercial environment to generate shareholder value is accountability. I say one of the problems, … Continue reading

December 30, 2019 · Leave a comment

Wealth Inequality and Social Injustice: A Message for Christmas

Until such wealth inequalities are addressed this county will not make the progress it desires. We cannot use the blunt mechanism of wealth to determine opportunity. We cannot afford to waste … Continue reading

December 24, 2019 · Leave a comment

Militant tenderness: how teachers are rooting out sexism in school | The Guardian

Skinhead English teacher ‘Mr Pink’ is one of many finding ways to stop stereotypes sticking, even among the smallest children. Often it’s about as little as being relentlessly polite – … Continue reading

October 10, 2018 · Leave a comment

The marketisation of English schools: students paying the cost of the market

An article from the Guardian on the negative effects bringing schools into a market place for education implemented by the Tory Government. Students are jettisoned in the middle of their … Continue reading

July 15, 2018 · Leave a comment

Neo Liberalism: the idea that is blighting our futures

An interesting article from the Guardian which explores the impact of neoliberalism on our lives… The word has become a rhetorical weapon, but it properly names the reigning ideology of … Continue reading

March 7, 2018 · Leave a comment

Learning Strategies That Work

A great piece in the Guardian by Carl Hendrick that links principles to practise in the classroom. He also debunks some high workload / low impact elements present in many … Continue reading

December 13, 2017 · 2 Comments

Careers of Passion

An interesting article validating research that most teachers could confirm from their own experience… that passion is as important as subject knowledge in supporting young people in developing excellent careers. … Continue reading

December 6, 2017 · 1 Comment

The Madness of Standardisation in Learning

In contrast to a recent post regarding project based learning, here is an article from the Guardian exploring what teachers and students are enduring in the standardised testing regime currently in … Continue reading

August 9, 2017 · 1 Comment

Learning Styles Myth Debunked

Over a decade ago the idea that students exhibited learning styles was gaining ground. The underlying assumption was that students had a preferred learning style with might involve receiving written … Continue reading

July 24, 2017 · 2 Comments

Montessori Secondary School: Teachers as Guides

The Montessori educational philosophy is well established at primary level as a child development focussed philosophy of letting children discover their own interests  and develop at a pace appropriate to the … Continue reading

June 28, 2017 · 1 Comment

Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming | The Guardian

This article first appeared in The Guardian in 2013, but remains pertinent today. A lecture explaining why using our imaginations, and providing for others to use theirs, is an obligation … Continue reading

March 22, 2017 · Leave a comment

Cooperative Schools: A Way Ahead?

  In England, the Tory government has, for the last six years, been pursuing a policy of the privatisation of education through its Academies programme. This took a policy of … Continue reading

December 12, 2016 · 1 Comment

The Politicians Who Made Thinking Redundant: Evidence-Based Decision-Making for Students

As a teacher of History, I spent a considerable part of my time in the classroom helping students to develop critical thinking skills which explored evidence to come to reasoned … Continue reading

December 5, 2016 · Leave a comment

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