Realising the wider purpose of teaching Modern Languages through integrative approaches

Language learning is now compulsory in primary schools in England. Although the move may initially have appeared as a bold one in 2014, when compared to earlier practice, much work developing capacity in primary schools preceded the change in policy. And much work continues to ensure the delivery of languages is maximised for the benefit …

Mathematics Shanghai style

Three things I learnt from a mathematics lesson study during the Shanghai-England Primary Teacher Exchange   The Exchange During November, the latest leg of the Shanghai-England primary exchange took place.  This is the fourth year of an exchange of primary teachers organised by the Department for Education through local Maths Hubs.  In September, two primary …

How dogs could make children better readers

In this post, which has previously appeared on The Conversation’s site, Gill Johnson considers the use of dogs within education as a way of promoting reading.   (Bark and Read – H.Hudson / The Kennel Club) Issues around children learning to read are rarely out of the news. Which is hardly surprising – becoming a …

The power of picture books in the primary classroom

In a previous blog Gill Johnson considered what we mean by quality children’s literature and why it might be valuable in the classroom in promoting successful reading and writing. In this blog, she explores the importance of picture books and thinks it is time to rediscover their power with all children. If you have watched …

Using quality children’s literature in the classroom: it’s win win!

  When was the last time you immersed yourself in a good book? In the midst of a busy term, I suspect the answer is – not for a while!  When was the last occasion you read a children’s book? The answer to this may vary, but in this blog Gill Johnson considers what we …

Understanding comprehension

In the wake of the controversy surrounding this year’s KS2 reading test, reading has been very much in the spotlight once again, as seen in this recent TES story. In this post Jane Medwell explores comprehension as an important aspect of that reading process. What is comprehension? Comprehension is what turns “decoding” into “reading”. Understanding …