Quality Assured?

You may or may not agree that unqualified teachers should be allowed to teach in schools but I’m happy that that would not occur in Scotland. As far as I am aware, every teacher must have a Postgraduate Certificate in … Continue Reading →

The Tyranny of the Working Group

I’m not sure if you would ever call it pressure but, when you start a new school, or even when you begin a new term in August, there is an expectation that you join a Working Group. That group might … Continue Reading →

A Wee Post About Making Things Difficult

So, once again, exam season is upon us. The course has been covered, all texts studied and we’re ready to rock ‘n’ roll. Yes? Well, no, not exactly. In the Higher English exam, pupils will have to sit a Close … Continue Reading →

Looking Over the Shoulders of Giants

It may well be an urban myth but an old quotation from John Lennon has been floating about my head recently. “Do you think Ringo is the best drummer in the world?’ “Ringo? He’s not even the best drummer in … Continue Reading →

Finding the Book That Hooks You

I think we, as both adults and teachers, often mythologise our reading histories. Our formative years with books tend to become a short trip down amnesia lane: we’d like to think it was spent reading ‘The Wind in the Willows’ … Continue Reading →

My Ipad Year – Thanks for the Memories.

I wrote this post a couple of years back when I was a bit giggly over having an iPad. I tried to use lots of apps with classes – some seemed great, some less so – but found it frustrating … Continue Reading →

Marking – A Year On.

About a year ago, I wrote this post about marking which proved to be somewhat popular compared to my usual widely unread subject matter. Perhaps the topic hit home with teachers. In it, I described a change in my marking … Continue Reading →

There is No Beginning

There is no beginning. We saw Lewis laid down, when there was not much but thunder and volcanic fires; watched long seas plunder faults; laughed as Staffa cooled… (From ‘Slate’ by Edwin Morgan)  My National 5 class are working on … Continue Reading →

A Reading Period? Seriously?

I apologise if I’m going over old ground here but this does make me very cross indeed. The topic of personal reading in English class is one I’ve written about many times before and it always amazes me that some … Continue Reading →

We Are All Phonies

I reread ‘The Catcher in the Rye’ for the umpteenth time recently. I teach the novel to senior pupils -16/17 year-olds – but still read it for pleasure just the same.  And it never fails to hit the mark. Thirty-odd … Continue Reading →

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