Joy of being subversive

6th December 2002 at 00:00
MARK Edwards (TES, November 22) has, on the face of it, good reason to fear the Department for Education and Skills' dead hand falling on thinking skills and putting them into neat boxes of lock-step bullet points to be "delivered".

After all, this is what the strategies (numeracy, literacy, and now key stage 3 foundation subjects) appear to do, in spite of all their glossy splendour. But in fact he should be less pessimistic and have more faith in the wonderful ability of teachers to subvert, very professionally, the convergent behaviourism of the mandarins.

I, too, was initially alarmed by the way that many ideas from our cognitive acceleration work were taken into the KS3 strategy teaching and learning in the foundation subjects, but now that I see how the consultants are using the glossy folders, taking them as useful resources and turning them to their own educational ends, I am delighted.

Any resource can be adapted, whether it's Mark Edwards' no doubt excellent mathematics materials being turned into a routine, or the routine strategies being turned into education.

Philip Adey

Centre for the Advancement of Thinking

King's College, London

Stamford Street

Southwark, London SE1

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now