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I have been teaching for twenty eight years. Having been a Head of English and Head of Literacy, I now work with most able students in an inner city comprehensive school. This has led me to focus on notions of growth mind set, Socratic thinking and independent learning, which I incorporate into my resources. I am also a fiction writer, who has had some success. As a practitioner of my subject, I believe in the importance of keeping English teaching creative.

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I have been teaching for twenty eight years. Having been a Head of English and Head of Literacy, I now work with most able students in an inner city comprehensive school. This has led me to focus on notions of growth mind set, Socratic thinking and independent learning, which I incorporate into my resources. I am also a fiction writer, who has had some success. As a practitioner of my subject, I believe in the importance of keeping English teaching creative.
An Introduction to Shakespeare's Plays - Comedies, Tragedies and Histories
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An Introduction to Shakespeare's Plays - Comedies, Tragedies and Histories

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This Shakespeare resource is suitable for HOME LEARNING and to use in the classroom. It is designed to introduce Key Stage Three students to Shakespeare’s plays. It explores how Shakespeare wrote comedies, tragedies and histories. As well as video links, research links, Socratic thinking tasks and information on genre and historical context, it includes a variety of tasks: costume design, focussed questions and exploring how Macbeth can be performed in different ways. It is sufficient work for about five one hour lessons.
Women and Society - Wuthering Heights (inc. comparison with A Thousand Splendid Suns)
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Women and Society - Wuthering Heights (inc. comparison with A Thousand Splendid Suns)

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This 43 slide presentation provides everything you need to teach Wuthering Heights for the EDEXCEL A level Component 2: Women and Society. It focusses on the social and historical context of the book, then moves onto exploring the female characters and finally draws comparisons with Khalid Hosseini’s A Thousand Splendid Suns, as per the specification. It includes relevant quotations and invites students to consider how Bronte uses language, structure and form. The presentation would also be useful for A level with other examination boards and study more able GCSE students who are looking at this book for their 19th century novel study.
AQA A Level English Literature (Spec B) Elements of Crime Writing - Course Book
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AQA A Level English Literature (Spec B) Elements of Crime Writing - Course Book

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This forty page booklet acts as a companion to the AQA A level English Literature, Spec. B, Elements of Crime Writing course. It allows students to explore and question ideas about crime, justice and punishment. It includes a number literary extracts with questions; these could be used either as an introduction to the course or as practice for the first section of the examination. The booklet also encourages independence with a comprehensive reading list and essay questions. It could be used as a homework booklet or for work in class.
Steampunk Writing
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Steampunk Writing

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This differentiated resource looks at the science fiction sub-genre, steampunk. It can be used as a stand alone, as part of a science fiction scheme of work or as a fun diversion from work on Victorian literature. The presentation would be suitable for one or two lessons, with the outcome of a steampunk short story. Key words: self-assessment, Socratic thinking, growth mindset and independent learning.
The Adventure of the Speckled Band by Arthur Conan Doyle
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The Adventure of the Speckled Band by Arthur Conan Doyle

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This is a detailed, differentiated, five week scheme of work on Conan Doyles' The Adventure of the Speckled Band. It focusses on reading skills. It also includes an assessment question. It does not come complete with all the resources, like Powerpoints, hence it is a free resource. It is very adaptable, though. It would be useful for year 9 students who may go on to study Conan Doyles' The Sign of Four in Year 10.
An Introduction to Science Fiction
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An Introduction to Science Fiction

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Key ideas: Growth Mindset, Socratic thinking and independent learning. This presentation would be suitable for one or two lessons at the beginning of a science fiction module. It focusses on students understanding the ideas and themes used in the science fiction genre. The presentation includes a starter, plenary, a number of main tasks and self assessment. The language of the presentation reflects Carol Dweck's research on Growth Mindset, while the supplementary tasks encourage Socratic thinking and independent learning.
Peter Grimes by George Crabbe: Context
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Peter Grimes by George Crabbe: Context

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This Powerpoint explores the social, historical and generic context of Crabbe's poem, Peter Grimes. It is suitable to be used as part of the study of AQA's English Literature A level, Specification B: Elements of Crime. There are discussion questions and a written task included, as well as self assessment opportunities.
First Lesson Back After a School Holiday
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First Lesson Back After a School Holiday

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Key ideas: Growth Mindset, Socratic thinking, independent learning. This presentation asks students to write about their school holiday experience (perhaps summer, Easter or Christmas). It incorporates some of the principles of Carol Dweck's Growth Mindset, using language which suggests that success comes from hard work. Students are also asked to audit their own effort, as well as self-assess. After the main task, there is the opportunity to take part in 'Socratic' discussion, encouraging risk taking, then the 'Take It Further' slide encourages students move forward independently.
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie Context
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The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie Context

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This resource focusses on the context of Christie's The Murder of Roger Ackroyd. It would be most useful to use as part of the AQA A level English Literature, Elements of Crime unit. It would be suitable to use for two or three complete lessons and there are questions and tasks included.
Gothic Writing Scheme of Work
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Gothic Writing Scheme of Work

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This differentiated six week scheme of work focusses on the gothic tradition, exploring how writers use the conventions and motifs of the genre. It pays particular attention to tension and atmosphere. Although this is a writing scheme it also aims to develop students' speaking and listening skills. Each week there is a writing task, culminating in a writing assessment in week six.
Editing and Proof Reading
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Editing and Proof Reading

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This presentation focusses on how to edit and proof read, emphasizing the importance of both. It includes tasks and advice. It would be useful as part of a writing scheme or as a one off lesson.
Viewpoints and Perspectives: Down and Out in Paris and London
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Viewpoints and Perspectives: Down and Out in Paris and London

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This resource looks at Orwell's non-fiction text, Down and Out in Paris and London. It looks at questions 1, 2 and 3 of the AQA English Language, Paper2, Viewpoints and Perspectives. Key ideas: independent learning, speaking and listening, growth mindset, Socratic thinking, self -assessment.
Science Fiction Reading and Writing Twelve Week Scheme of Work
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Science Fiction Reading and Writing Twelve Week Scheme of Work

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This is a TWELVE week differentiated reading AND writing scheme of work on all aspects of science fiction. It includes all links for extracts and texts to be studied. In week six and week twelve there are assessments: the first for reading, and the second for writing. Weekly headings are: space, aliens, superhumans, dystopia, post apocalypse, dangerous science, robots, androids and time travel. The extracts studied include pre 1900 texts, young adult fiction and sci fi classics. Homework and discussion activities are also included.
War of the Worlds: Science Fiction Reading and Writing
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War of the Worlds: Science Fiction Reading and Writing

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This presentation comes in two parts: reading and writing. While the focus on the opening of Wells' novel The War of the Worlds presents aliens as aggressive, the following writing task (play script) offers some light relief. It would be useful for a Key Stage 3 class studying Science Fiction or a LOWER ABILITY Key Stage 4 class studying the Creative Reading and Writing Paper 1, GCSE (for example, AQA). Key ideas: growth mind-set, Socratic thinking, self-assessment and independent learning. This Powerpoint would cover at least two lessons and could be used as part of a Science Fiction SOW or as a one-off.
Theatre in Shakespeare's Time
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Theatre in Shakespeare's Time

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Looking at a contemporary account of going to the theatre at the time of Shakespeare, this presentation asks students to complete independent research and create a resource. This presentation forms a full lesson and includes detailed information about Elizabethan/Jacobean theatre. Key ideas: growth mindset, Socratic thinking, independent learning, self assessment. It would make a perfect introduction to the study of a Shakespeare play or extracts.
The Ballad of Reading Gaol by Oscar Wilde: Context
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The Ballad of Reading Gaol by Oscar Wilde: Context

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This resource is ideal to use as part of the AQA English Literature A level (spec. B), Elements of Crime course. It explores the social and historical context of the poem, specifically prison life and Victorian punishment. It also explores the cultural and generic context of the poems as 'crime fiction'. There are discussion questions and a written task to help students develop a personal response.
Five Creative Writing Exercises
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Five Creative Writing Exercises

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These writing exercises are to get the creative juices flowing. They could be used as lesson starters or for a workshop. They remind students that creative writing, should be actually creative and helps them see examination tasks, (like the Question 5 for the AQA English Language GCSE, Paper 1), in a new way.
Year 7 School Poetry Scheme of Work
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Year 7 School Poetry Scheme of Work

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This is a six week scheme of work on the poetry about school, culminating in a reading assessment. It is designed for Year 7, but would be equally suitable for Year 8. It comes with a booklet of five poems.
Dangerous Science: The Mad Scientist in Science Fiction
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Dangerous Science: The Mad Scientist in Science Fiction

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This presentation on Dangerous Science is about the archetype of the mad scientist in classic science fiction. It would be useful for a Key Stage 3 class studying Science Fiction or a LOWER ABILITY Key Stage 4 class studying the Creative Reading and Writing Paper 1, GCSE (for example, AQA). Although it would need adapting for this - perhaps the main task could focus on language for example, rather than genre. The main extract explored is from Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. Key ideas: growth mind-set, Socratic thinking, self-assessment and independent learning. This Powerpoint would cover at least two lessons and could be used as part of a Science Fiction SOW or as a one-off.
An Inspector Calls by JB Priestley
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An Inspector Calls by JB Priestley

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These materials focus on theme, context and character. There is a context PPT, a learning ‘mat’ for each of the characters and a chart asking students to consider theme. Alongside a reading of the play, these resources would last about three weeks. As they are ‘self-contained’ they would make excellent cover work, or form a useful revision pack.