A ‘British Value’ Worth Teaching

I have argued against the idea of teaching ‘British Values’ on a few occasions but the NUT might make me reevaluate my position. If, for example, we made one of the fundamental British Values ‘nurturing civilised disagreement and debate’ then I could argue that this (so-called) British Value should be at the centre of teaching and learning. That … More A ‘British Value’ Worth Teaching

Schools Should Not Teach the End of History

Schooling changes lives. That is the claim. Without having attended school our lives would be different, how different we do not know but, clearly education makes a difference. A liberal arts education is an education for freedom. This seems laudable but what does it mean? Freeing a person through knowledge, insight, and initiating them into … More Schools Should Not Teach the End of History

The Stalinist Libertarianism of Nick Gibb

On the Radio 4 Today Programme Nick Gibb announced that: “We can’t have two systems,” as a justification for the ‘Academicisation’ programme. He should try living in Greenwich. In this South London borough we have more than two systems adding to the mix of stress and anxiety for parents and children. The nearest school to us is … More The Stalinist Libertarianism of Nick Gibb

Building British Values, Character and Resilience in Every Child

The recent white paper Educational Excellence Everywhere states that the Government is set on: “Building character and resilience in every child” It continues by stating that: A 21st century education should prepare children for adult life by instilling the character traits and fundamental British values that will help them succeed: being resilient and knowing how to … More Building British Values, Character and Resilience in Every Child

Where Did Education, Education, Education, Go Wrong?

In a speech on 23rd May 2001 Tony Blair made the following pronouncement: Our top priority was, is and always will be education, education, education. To overcome decades of neglect and make Britain a learning society, developing the talents and raising the ambitions of all our young people… In the past four years our teachers have … More Where Did Education, Education, Education, Go Wrong?

Progress in Learning

Greg Ashman’s extremely helpful blog ‘A two-axis model of approaches to learning’ points out that there are different ways of teaching and that these methods can be relevant to different levels of expertise in the learner. Ashman posits that: “As a period of explicit instruction progresses, it will actually become less explicit as the instruction moves from … More Progress in Learning

Independent, Critical Thinkers and Schooling

‘We are only puppets, our strings are being pulled by unknown forces.’ Danton’s Death: Buchner The French playwright, Olympe de Gouges, the writer of the ‘Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen,’ criticised the French Revolutionary Regime, complaining ‘equality’ did not seem to include female suffrage. She wrote that: “My aim IS TO SPEAK TO YOU … More Independent, Critical Thinkers and Schooling