In My Own Time

16th March 2012 at 00:00
Neil Winton, English teacher, blogger, speaker and writer


One band I listen to a lot is the magnificently underrated (and relatively unknown) The Appleseed Cast. Brooding, moody guitar and screamingly anguished vocals. Check out "Marigold and Patchwork" from their The End of the Ring Wars album - and make sure you play it loud. I have a passion for collecting live recordings of Midnight Oil: raw passion, raw politics and raw, raw guitar. Peter Garrett, who was their singer, is now the Australian education minister.


I've just finished Suzanne Collins' The Hunger Games trilogy. Apart from the all-too-neat ending, they were gripping. For something more thought- provoking, I'm reading Seth Godin's education manifesto, Stop Stealing Dreams. While a touch idealistic in places, he makes a convincing case for educational change to prepare for the future, rather than the past. I'm in the middle of further research on the Great War for a novel and that means I'm never far from Martin Middlebrook's seminal The First Day on the Somme. If you only read one book about the First World War, make it this one.


I love documentaries but, with a six-year-old son, the TV programme I see most is Phineas and Ferb. Fortunately, it's a funny and inventive kids' show. Similarly, most of the films I've seen at home of late have been from Studio Ghibli. I can't remember the last film I saw in the cinema - probably the final Harry Potter - but I try to keep myself informed by listening to the podcasts of Kermode and Mayo's Friday film reviews from BBC 5 Live. Thanks to them, I've seen films as diverse as Of Gods and Men and Benjamin Sniddlegrass and the Cauldron of Penguins. As a loyal listener of the show, I'm duty-bound to finish with a quick: "Hello to Jason Isaacs!"


Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today