In the wake of the Trojan Horse inquiry into schools in Birmingham, many questions have arisen – questions that education secretary Michael Gove has added to with the announcement that schools will be required to teach “British values” to their students.
As is now almost mandatory when the government makes a statement about anything, anything at all, Twitter rallied to provide suggestions about what they felt British values truly are, proving that we may be a nation of hard workers, but we’re never too busy to take some time out and troll a prominent politician via social media.
So stop complaining about the weather, apologise for nothing and to nobody in particular, grab a cuppa and enjoy our tongue-in-cheek guide to the top 10 #BritishValues you can use in your school.
1. For those unsure where to start with teaching British values, worry not: @M0by_Duck has already put together a scheme of work for your class.
2. @ThePoke submitted the picture below – presumably to be used in an economics lesson about supply and demand, or a PSHE lesson on the importance of perseverance.
3. @RevRichardColes struck at the heart of teachers’ end-of-term plans everywhere by considering a fundamental British value was, “Thinking quizzes are fun” (which, of course, they absolutely are…).
4. @yokelbear, a lecturer at a college in Oxford, signed straight up to Gove’s new plan, outlining lessons that “will now include ‘passive aggressive tutting’ and ‘sighing wistfully at the Shipping forecast’”.
5. Combining the British love of grammar with the equal love this nation holds for a great pun, @HelenMilburn tweeted a picture of the “Pedants’ Revolt”.
6. A cross-curricular activity that requires good geography and PE skills, @woodo79 added the rather unique British value of “seeing a rogue traffic cone and immediately working out the nearest sculpture in need of a hat”. @clareasmud added to the imagery with this picture of the Duke of Wellington and his (non-Trojan) horse looking rather dapper indeed.
7. Languages teachers can join in with the fun, too; @SoVeryBritish provided some handy tips on how to translate British into recognisable English: "'No no, honestly, my fault' – Translation: It was exceedingly your fault and we both know it".
8. Nodding to the proud tradition of the Empire, a staple of history curriculums everywhere, @alexvtunzelmann tweeted: "You see all that stuff you thought was yours? It's not any more. Now make me a gin and tonic while I shoot all your wildlife".
9. Need to instil some British values into your staff room or desk? @Pietros1 provides this handy picture, captioned: "Taking your job seriously."
10. And if you want to live British values, not just teach them, you could do worse than follow this simple advice from @william_shutter : "Socks with sandals".
Have a look at the hashtag #BritishValues on Twitter to find more mirthmaking – not to mention ample evidence of one of the most British values around: roundly mocking those in authority positions. Though perhaps it wouldn't be in your best interests to pass that particular value on to your students.