My objection is purely academic

15th July 2016 at 00:00

Classroom practitioners should not have been surprised to read about the latest pedagogical quackery in TESS (“Why early years children are hitting the dough gym”, Professional, 8 July).

Indeed, the notion expressed in the article that most children need to build up their muscles in order to hold a pencil will have left many thinking that 1 April must have been moved to July.

Despite the widespread neuroscientific dismissal of programmes based on the old visual-auditory-kinaesthetic (VAK) model, too many iterations still seem to make it into our classrooms.

For the most part, doctors working for the NHS are not allowed to employ unproven medical practices, thanks to the work of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Sadly, there is no equivalent independent expert review mechanism in the UK that could protect our nation’s teachers from the snake oil that threatens to sap school budgets.

Teachers need an equivalent to NICE, providing both research and evidence-based guidance, if our understanding of learning is to be truly enhanced.

Neil Roskilly

Chief executive officer The Independent Schools Association

Short and tweet

Sitting in the sun in the park, learning Italian. I do like a holiday.


Old Scots word of the day: “Spinkie-den” – a woodland clearing full of flowers.


1+2 is giving our pupils increased confidence to speak, read and write in another language #falkirk1+2 #learnfrench


Tory MP: “A Remain woman and a Leave woman who both went to state school. That’s pretty quirky for the Tory party.”


Roald Dahl was buried with chocolate, red wine, HB pencils, a power saw, and his snooker cues.


“As a teacher I see the benefits the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award has on building confidence and life skills.” Michelle, DofE leader. #IAmDofE


Super active at @DalmarnockPS this morning! Steal the treasure, crocodile tig, starboard and ladders @cisweb #PEEKPlay


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