Teaching at the scene of a crime
To get pupils writing, they need to be enthusiastic about what they are writing about. So, to begin a sequence on newspaper reports, I create a scene of intrigue.
Before your students arrive, mock-up a crime scene complete with police tape, knocked-over tables and chairs, a sea of papers on the floor and even footprints on the windowsill.
Divide the pupils into small groups. Task some of them with investigating the scene, searching for clues about who might have broken in. Another group will interview potential witnesses such as the caretaker and the deputy head. A third group can scrutinise mocked-up CCTV footage of suspicious characters who have been hanging around outside. Each group must take notes and devise quotes.
When the break-in has been investigated, bring learning back into the classroom. Organise the children’s ideas and use shared writing to embed high-quality vocabulary. Pupils then write a newspaper report using their quotes and different forms of evidence.
Rhodri Thomas is a teacher at Bournemouth Park Primary School in Southend, Essex
secondary first aid
Confidence saves lives
A great way to teach students about first aid is through inspirational videos, case studies and role plays that highlight the key action to take when someone needs help. This gives young people the confidence and skills to step in when someone requires first aid.
To immediately engage students, begin with a discussion that explores concepts and experiences of first aid and helping others. Next, choose from a selection of confidence-building activities that investigate why people might not stop to help. Then consider the positive qualities of a helper.
From here, move on to an engaging role play. Students act out emergency situations, learning practical skills and how to deal with a first-aid situation. Finish the lesson by evaluating knowledge using an interactive quiz dashboard.
British Red Cross First Aid Training
Turning the tables on Victorians
This introductory lesson on the Victorians gets children working together and provides opportunities for independent learning.
Begin by asking pupils to create a timeline of their own lives, without giving them any instruction on what to include. This is a great way for pupils to start thinking about history.
Next, place objects representing different Victorian inventions on each table: I use sanitation, Morse code, bicycles, photography and trains. Each table has “eyewitness accounts” of the inventions on paper that I’ve singed or torn for an authentic look.
The children spend five minutes on each table and I question them as they walk around. Once they have seen all the different inventions, we discuss which they think is the most important and why. There is no right or wrong answer.
Matt Griffiths is a primary teacher in London
To access resources for all three lessons, visit: bit.ly/LessonPlanner25September