There has been a stormzy brewing for some time about curriculum content. The National curriculum says we ought to teach ‘the best’, I don’t agree, we each have our subjective tastes and sensibilities, I think it is better to teach children to enter into the conversation about what the best might be. That is not … More Stormzy or Mozart, Who Knows?
Here is a video of a talk I gave in the Netherlands, and the accompanying slides should you wish to follow the fun. You can download a pdf of the slides below… (might take a bit of time to download… Hopefully not too long)
Here is my post for the TES from earlier this week: https://www.tes.com/news/dont-simplify-complex-shakespeare-emojis
The Guardian gushes: At a time when arts are squeezed in some schools, teachers are embracing them as a tool to teach the environment without realising it is this insidious belief that the arts are merely a pedagogical tool that is leading to a paucity of engagement with great art. The tragic figure of the starving … More Dumbing Down the Arts
Apparently there are now 1,700 fewer drama teachers teaching in UK schools than there were in 2010. I don’t have any information as to how accurate this figure is and what the figures are in the constituent nations of the United Kingdom nor how it compares to other subjects, suffice to say it adds to … More Drama in Decline
“In the popular imagination,” writes Tim Blanning in his wonderful book ‘The Romantic Revolution’, “Beethoven was the romantic hero par excellence: the lonely, afflicted, uncompromising, utterly original genius, ‘a man who treated God as an equal’…” This vision of creative minds echoes down the centuries. The tortured artists in their garret, often poor, wearing black, … More Creativity and Collaboration
An innocent tweet? Apparently, for some, it was all too much. Comments about rows instead of groups, chairs facing one way and not the other followed… and ‘seating plans’ it became a proxy battleground for traditional and progressive minded teachers to make their points. Our tweeter even got called an abuser and a probable victim … More Views.
Trying to fit a personalised curriculum around the desires of a child is a dangerous idea. If we only ever follow the extreme individualisation where the child’s own innate tastes are paramount we might never move out of McDonalds. The argument for personalisation goes hand in hand with the idea that much that is studied … More The Dangers of a Personalised Curriculum
Despite the person, who came to my school talking about how they arrived at estimated grades, saying that they should never be used as ‘target grades’, the school informed us that the data generated was to be used as a target grade for every pupil. A grade set by English, maths results at key stage … More Shoot the Target Grade
Every subject is different, it has its own rhythms and constraints around which a positive classroom culture can be created. Getting changed for PE, putting on lab coats, getting out exercise books and pens, all these seemingly mundane rituals are an essential part of creating a positive working atmosphere. In the drama room I have … More Creating a Classroom Culture: The ‘Centre’