26th August 2011 at 01:00


A cracking read

In Eggland, everyone and everything is egg-shaped, including Eggbert, the star of a new series of books for nursery-age children by Paul Gustafson. Lesson plans and activities are available at

New battle lines

Bosworth Battlefield has just opened its 1.25-mile trail, which includes an audio and visual interpretation of the battle and surrounding area. The battlefield heritage centre has information about the Wars of the Roses and the start of the Tudor dynasty. Other ideas for educational visits are also available at

Hearty singing

Heart Research UK is calling on teachers and pupils to sing their favourite songs this Christmas as part of its annual "Sing for your Heart" fundraiser, 8-15 December. Schools can sing in an X Factor-style competition or link it in with their annual concert. Information packs can be downloaded at


Explanation texts

Six of the best for budding writers

Explanation texts are similar to information texts but explain a sequential, step-by-step process.

There are six texts in this collection, including cross-curricular topics such as "the lifecycle of a butterfly", which can be used for science or English lessons. Each TESiboard interactive non-fiction book has two versions for differentiation: the "listen and read" books have simpler text and full sound support for emerging readers; the "read alone" books have more detailed text and are suitable for more confident pupils. Primary-level children can use the books as a model for non-fiction writing or as a source of information for a science, geography or history topic.

Accompanying the explanation books are lesson plans to use when teaching the topics and an editable Word document containing images from the books to support non-fiction writing, sequencing tasks and for displays.

There is also a "cyclical sequencer" activity which has similar images and information to that in the explanation books. Pupils read or listen to each stage in the cycle, then put them in order. They can play back their sequence and print off their page. The "simple" version of the sequencer has fewer stages and simpler text. The "complex" version has more stages to sequence and space for pupils to write their own text.


People who help us

Getting to know vital roles in the community

These resources focus on the people who help us, such as the police and nurses.

Topteach has shared a PowerPoint presentation on the police that is suitable for a reception class. It contains information and images on how to identify a police officer and gives examples of their role in society. For images to display in your classroom, bevevans22 has uploaded a series of photos with labels that can be printed out.

ZapRowsdower has uploaded a lesson suitable for early years, focusing on the fire service, while Banks193 has shared a week-by-week plan on this topic.

To incorporate role-play into the topic, cariad2 has shared a resource about opticians that includes posters and an appointment book for pupils to use in acting out the role. Fuzzie has shared a similar set, but for a hospital or doctor's role-play, while Browneyedgirl18 has created a worksheet to help children identify parts of a fireman's uniform.


Help with data handling

Collecting, recording and interpreting information

These resources cover collecting, recording and interpreting data and are suitable for key stages 1 and 2. They will help teach data handling in a meaningful way and offer activities that encourage pupils to use tables and charts to collect information, as well as compare methods of displaying survey results.

TESiboard has shared some great interactive pictogram activities that ask pupils to collect information, such as what their classmates' favourite toys are, and then present their findings in a pictogram.

For younger pupils, bevevans22 has shared a data-handling board game in which players have to collect different types of fruit. And for those teaching in KS2, TeachersTV has supplied a video resource to help generate ideas for data-handling activities. Meanwhile, Sphynx thinker has shared a data-collecting activity that is also a great exercise to help pupils get to know each other at the start of term.

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