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With all my resources I try to find a balance between clarity and creativity, aiming to stretch and challenge as well as train. Most of all, I want to 'knock on the doors of the mind', introducing students to a wider range of texts, ideas, activities and experiences. Although English is my speciality, I've also got a keen interest in Biology and Geography, which occasionally manifests in resources. Let me know if there is a text not catered for anywhere and I'll see what I can do.

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With all my resources I try to find a balance between clarity and creativity, aiming to stretch and challenge as well as train. Most of all, I want to 'knock on the doors of the mind', introducing students to a wider range of texts, ideas, activities and experiences. Although English is my speciality, I've also got a keen interest in Biology and Geography, which occasionally manifests in resources. Let me know if there is a text not catered for anywhere and I'll see what I can do.
Improving writing at KS4: Proof reading & SPaG exercises1
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Improving writing at KS4: Proof reading & SPaG exercises1

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Rather than a series of lessons, this is a 'drop-feed' of tasks to improve older students' writing. The first step is to make them aware of how important accurate expression is. Great ideas are corroded by error-filled writing. The proof reading Power Point looks at two samples of students' writing that need to be improved - on the Word document these are written out to facilitate this process. In each case the next slide presents the corrected sample,so that students can peer mark or check their own. Each sample could be done in a different lesson: I'd recommend that for classes that are easily board by focused work. Likewise the two starters can be spread out. They focus on spelling, particularly the difference between sound and spelling, helping students notice pitfalls like ite/ight/ee/ea as well as the 'c' that sounds like 's'. Awareness leads to focus and on to improvement. That's the aim!
Last lesson Ideas: Creative Revision
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Last lesson Ideas: Creative Revision

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This resource contains a series of ideas for last lessons, whether the end of a topic or term. These can be used to revise previous units of work. Has a slant towards English and could be used with writing, reading and speaking and listening assessment foci.
10 Unseen Poetry starters
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10 Unseen Poetry starters

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Whether revising unseen poetry or honing reading skills, focusing on a few lines of poetry as a starter enables students to practise picking out key words and commenting on them, as well as noting structural and literary devices. You could also use these as prompts for descriptive writing with a brigh KS3 group, or the new creative writing A-Level.
Descriptive writing: Colours; sustaining imagery, creating mood
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Descriptive writing: Colours; sustaining imagery, creating mood

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Help more able students develop their powers of description with this exercise; although it uses colour to create mood and atmosphere, the technique can be transferred to sustaining metaphors or similes, skills top marks are made of. The PP begins with a hyperlink[click on ‘colours’] to a song, Donovan’s ‘Colours’ [you may want to move to slide 2 on the musical interlude, as by then the link between colours and mood has been made] and takes students through the steps of choosing a colour while also making useful notes on the technique by looking at quotes and extracts. In the end, their task is to describe something, weaving colour imagery and mood words through the description. This could be set as a homework – or a next lesson. Linking this task to the opening lines descriptive writing task as a follow up lesson works well.
SPaG 'The Boy who swam with Piranhas'  Chap 1-4 vocab.
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SPaG 'The Boy who swam with Piranhas' Chap 1-4 vocab.

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This fun, illustrated novel by David Almond is ideal for KS2 & weaker KS3 readers, especially those who don't like reading much. This first task is a word recognition exercise that helps improve spelling by getting students to notice words within words. This also makes a good homework task. To facilitate peer or self-assessment, the answers on p2 can be projected. You can extend the task by setting a spelling test on the words. The PP takes the challenge further: students are shown how to memorise the spelling of words and then asked to find 3-5 of their own errors to learn to spell correctly using the technique. Tip: let them use colours to show the words within words.
Writing a Biography
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Writing a Biography

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PP with note to teacher and 'brain gym' slide; starter looks at how the word Biography is built up; main section is defining the word and writing a brief biography and plenary is reporting back - a very simple introduction to the topic
Revolver, by Marcus Sedgwick: chapter 22-26 with a mini assessment.
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Revolver, by Marcus Sedgwick: chapter 22-26 with a mini assessment.

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Assuming you are reading with this brilliant novel with your class in part of the lesson [the chapters are very short] there is something for five lessons, each focusing on both a chapter and a skill. Retrieval and synthesis are practised by writing a police report, while in other tasks sayings, titles, structure and implications are explored through starters, plenaries and PEAL paragraphs. Each task builds on skills visited in previous tasks so that they become familiar and increasingly independent strategies.
A Level unseen poetry : revision support booklet & list of questions- AQA Love through the Ages
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A Level unseen poetry : revision support booklet & list of questions- AQA Love through the Ages

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It might not seem like much if you don’t follow the links, but this is the portal to the world of unseen poetry! This booklet will save you and your students hours of trawling the Internet. My thanks to Caro Evans, my colleague and friend who asked me to compile this list and selected the poems- we decided that the most logical way to prepare for the unseen element of the exam was to look at other poems by the studied poets, to give students an idea of the context of the time and an ability to write about form and structure. Rather than re-inventing the wheel, I’ve searched for information online and given you the links - so this works best as an e-book, where links can be easily copied and pasted. So this is something you can use for your own preparation and planning of unseen poetry - along with the sheet of possible comparison questions- or can mail to your students so that they can do their own exploring. There’s such a lot of treasure here to discover - Enjoy!
AQA Love through the Ages unseen poetry trial/mock exam: Sidney & Rossetti sonnets
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AQA Love through the Ages unseen poetry trial/mock exam: Sidney & Rossetti sonnets

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The best way to revise unseen poetry is by doing trial exam papers, so here is one in which students compare a sonnet by Sir Philip Sidney with a sonnet by Christina Rossetti. A pp enables you to display instructions while handing out the papers and while doing the peer assessment. Indicative content is given to this end as is a student friendly summary of the bands. Two lessons worth of work here, or a homework and a lesson, plus lots of discussion and revision opportunities.
Improving writing: Learn a skill - self-check summary
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Improving writing: Learn a skill - self-check summary

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Being able to summarise is a vital skill. It is a particularly good way of checking understanding of what has been read and the ability to foreground the most important information when writing. It impacts other subject areas as summarising aids revision. The PP begins with a few guidelines and a starter exercise, models how to summarise and then gives an independent summary task using an extract from 'Out of Africa'. This task is also on the worksheet, which should be handed out at that point. There are two to a page to save printing costs. Students can check their own from the penultimate slide. The last slide plenary challenges students to think of other ways in which we summarise information, as in mind-maps & lists...
Measure for Measure: Problem play discussion stimulator with quotes
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Measure for Measure: Problem play discussion stimulator with quotes

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The PP looks at what is meant by 'problem play' and quotes various opinions - the class should apply the quotes in discussion and explore to what extent they agree and find them helpful. Students can use these quotes either to sharpen their own insights or as supporting evidence in essays. End the lesson with a discussion or debate, as a class or in groups, about how they think the actors should end the play - does she or doesn't she?! The 'so what' worksheet is versatile as a starter or homework - its aim is to develop a sense of Shakespeare's like experience as a context for the play.
Love through the ages : Unseen poetry 2 - 'Meeting at Night' by Robert Browning; AQA
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Love through the ages : Unseen poetry 2 - 'Meeting at Night' by Robert Browning; AQA

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This is a poem where structure undergirds the meaning of the poem more obviously than often, so it is a useful 'unseen' to explore. As well as the lesson on PP and the fill in worksheet, there is a detailed note on Metre, using examples from the poem. Avoid with a weak class, but worth doing with a mid- to able class, provided the focus is on how the rhyme and rhythm support/ enhance meaning. The teacher's notes has two links, one to a reading of the poem and another to a youtube clip that could be used as a 'flipped learning' style preparatory homework task [under 20mins]: particularly useful with weaker students - an easy differentiation.
Revising Coastlines: what do you notice?
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Revising Coastlines: what do you notice?

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This revision lesson is aimed at encouraging students to notice what they're looking at. As they come into the lesson, a PP with two word-clouds should alert them to their topic and they have 5 minutes to brush up on the information. Thereafter they look at slides of coastlines and jot down what they notice. Annotated slides follow, offering opportunity for discussion and then a question is set on each slide. Posters of the coastal features are included as separate poster, printed A4 and enlarged or A3 or used as A4 handouts. For differentiation of the lesson, weaker students can be given the A4 printouts to annotate.
Media: Montage Project- preparation for GCSE Media
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Media: Montage Project- preparation for GCSE Media

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Here is everything you need for a fun media project - get your students making a montage. This is aimed at yr9s who will be doing a Media GCSE, so gives them a flavour of projects to come and is ideal for the end of the year. Although most will want to film, it is possible to deliver a montage on Power Point, so all skill and interest levels are accommodated. There are 6 lessons with instruction slides, links to lots of clips showing montages as well as tutorials for use at home. The note to the teacher guides you through the scheme and the montage outline gives students their instructions and due dates [you fill those in]. As well as a project review sheet to flag up problems, there is a self- and peer- assessment sheet for when the montages are done.
SPaG 'The Boy who Swam with Piranhas' Chap 6 - tense
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SPaG 'The Boy who Swam with Piranhas' Chap 6 - tense

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In this lovely, easy to read novel by David Almond, the author uses both past and present tense. This starter brings this to their attention and begins a discussion about the merits of each. The task is really simple, just changing the verbs, but it can be developed into a discussion that moves analysis of reading to a higher level for some. Suitable for KS2 & weaker KS3/ reluctant readers. In addition, there is a starter on tense for those who feel imparting grammatical knowledge is important: students could take notes or just discuss tense, but this is a useful opportunity to give some clarity on a topic often left to 'what sounds right'.
Comparing unseen poems: 'Futility' by Wilfred Owen & 'Suicide in the Trenches'  by Siegfried Sassoon
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Comparing unseen poems: 'Futility' by Wilfred Owen & 'Suicide in the Trenches' by Siegfried Sassoon

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The questions on the worksheet are valid prompts for any comparison of poems, but are particularly for the new EDUQAS style of Section C unseen poetry comparison. The first worksheet contains the poems and the questions, which are based of the specimen papers provided by the exam board. This makes an easy to set homework of cover lesson. The second worksheet has key points as possible answers. So the task can be self or peer assessed easily. For other exam boards or general poetry preparation, the 'answers' could be the springboard for an essay comparing the two poems, to help less able students cluster their response.
Tricky terms: denotation/connotation; explicit/implicit, made easy for weaker students.
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Tricky terms: denotation/connotation; explicit/implicit, made easy for weaker students.

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As these 4 terms, denotation/connotation; explicit/implicit, come up throughout KS3 & 4, it is worth taking time to ensure that weaker students understand them. Included are the 'notes' students will be making from the power point, with key words written in a 'join the dots' font for the slow and those whose handwriting is illegible. This lesson can be used with any topic where the terms feature in lessons, or as a stand-alone literacy task.
SPaG starters: Proof-reading- correct errors & punctuation
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SPaG starters: Proof-reading- correct errors & punctuation

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Keep students mindful of the need to proof-read with regular starters and short SPaG exercises. These self-mark starters consist of an instructions slide and an answer slide PP and the text to be corrected on a handout, either for the whole class to aid speed or as differentiation to aid weaker/slower students.
'Love through the Ages':  Cavalier vrs Metaphysical poets; 'The Scrutiny' by Richard Lovelace
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'Love through the Ages': Cavalier vrs Metaphysical poets; 'The Scrutiny' by Richard Lovelace

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Using AQA's 'Love through the Ages' poetry anthology, these resources aim to distinguish as far as one can, between Metaphysical poetry and Cavalier poetry, but also to show how blurred the line between them sometimes is: this is the focus of the first Power Point . The quiz quotes lines of poetry and asks students to decide whether the extract represents Cavalier or Metaphysical poetry to enable them to discuss how to recognise each school. Focus turns to 'The Scrutiny' in the work sheet and then there's a revision sheet that focuses on the AOs to ensure that they are met.