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for Christians working in education

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Items relating to the work of schools and colleges, including resources and training opportunities.

Online learning prepares students for the future.

Take a moment to think back to the first classroom you ever entered, whether it was at school, or nursery, chances are there was a blackboard, with coloured chalk where you focused most of your attention. You were probably working from a booklet or on paper using pencil and crayons and drawing pictures by hand.

Now fast forward to the classroom of 2017 and everything has changed. Gone are the chalks and the crayons – which have been replaced by screens, social networks, cloud computing and augmented reality.

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Guided reading on the way out - guided maths must stay.

This assistant headteacher says that targeted guided maths sessions can boost attainment and engagement with maths

The school day begins: laughing children, clattering dice, counters and playing cards abound. There’s chatter about numbers, problem-induced struggles and adults modelling and giving feedback.

Guided maths is underway.

What do I mean by guided maths? Put simply, it is an additional 20 minutes of maths learning every day. Pupils, grouped by attainment, enjoy numbers: playing with them, talking about them, representing them, wrestling with them, and asking questions about them.

It may have started as a way to squeeze more maths into the timetable to meet the expectations of an increasingly challenging curriculum, but it has now developed into a rich programme that neither teacher nor pupil would be without.

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Is phonics the right way?

Learning to read requires more than merely sounding out words, according to leading academic

The Department for Education’s promotion of synthetic phonics can be damaging to early readers and is seriously flawed, according to a leading education academic.

The way reading is being taught has “disturbing and potentially destructive consequences” for teachers and pupils, warns Dr Andrew Davis, honorary research fellow at the University of Durham’s school of education.

Synthetic phonics teaches children to sound out letters and blend those sounds into actual words and is the government's favoured reading method for primary school pupils.

In a new book, Dr Davis says: “It really does look as though they are trying to make all teachers teach all pupils in a particular way, regardless of what those teachers know of individual differences and needs”.

He adds that giving children who are already reading “a rigid diet of intensive phonics could make a destructive impact on their emerging identities as persons”.

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Students teaching maths at Scottish crisis school.

University students are being drafted in to help teach maths at an Edinburgh secondary school after a job advertisement to fill two vacancies failed to find anyone suitable for interview.

A Freedom of Information request by The Scotsman reveals Trinity Academy, whose maths teaching crisis led to angry exchanges between First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Tory leader Ruth Davidson at First Ministers Questions in the Scottish Parliament, received fewer than five applications.

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Lesson plans for pupils to survive a terror attack.

Counter-terror experts say pupils should respond to terror attacks 'like a fire drill' 


Advice for pupils on how to survive terrorist gun and knife attacks is to be made available to schools across the country for the first time.

The lesson plans for key stage 3 and 4 pupils have been produced by the National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) and the PSHE Association, and are backed by the Department for Education.

The materials are an extension of the government’s Run, Hide, Tell campaign and address the threat of terrorist attacks in crowded places.

They are based around a six-minute film called Run, Hide, Tell - The Story Of Nur, Edih and Llet. The film follows the story of three young people reflecting on how they managed to survive an attack on a shopping centre. 

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Financial education resource sent to schools.

He’s the money guru who has helped millions of people save cash and improve their spending habits, but Martin Lewis has a new mission – to provide a quality financial education for the next generation of school kids.

For the founder has teamed up with leading financial education charity Young Money to send over half a million textbooks to UK schools. It is understood that Lewis is personally funding the initiative to the tune of £200,000.

As part of the initiative, Young Money will be producing a dynamic new curriculum mapped textbook providing free financial education resources to all state English secondary schools in 2018 - 2019.

The textbook will include guidance on issues such as saving and spending, borrowing, good and bad debt, risks and rewards, insurance, investments and future planning around student loans, tax and National Insurance.

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Head Teachers demand more money.

Head teachers representing more than 5,000 schools across England are supporting a protest letter to the chancellor over "inadequate" funding.

The letter, being delivered to Downing Street, warns of schools increasingly having to make "desperate requests to parents for 'voluntary' donations".

Heads are calling for an extra £1.7bn per year for schools.

The government has already moved £1.3bn of education funding directly into school budgets.

The protest, ahead of next week's Budget, has been organised by regional groups of head teachers representing schools with 3.5 million pupils in 25 local authorities from Cornwall to Cumbria.


It follows a letter warning about funding cuts, sent to the parents of more than 2.5 million pupils in September.

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Investment needed in staff for maths mastery to be achieved.

The best way to make maths mastery effective is not to waste money on pre-packaged schemes, but to focus on improving access to quality professional development for those who have to teach it, says one primary maths lead

At its best, maths mastery teaching can be transformative. The children we teach in this way develop a deep, meaningful understanding of maths, a sense of wonder about numbers, and a secure confidence in their own abilities – why wouldn’t we want that for our classes? Headteachers certainly want it – not least because, when done well, mastery teaching leads to accelerated progress.


There’s a problem, though: mastery teaching is hard. To completely transform your maths teaching from the traditional three-part lesson to an enquiry based, child-led journey to understanding is a massive pedagogical shift that involves change at every stage of the teaching and learning process.

Primary teachers around the country can see the benefits of mastery teaching, but they’re desperate for support with delivering it in their own classrooms. And so educational publishers, responding to the needs of teachers, have developed schemes that promise a mastery approach – including planning, textbooks and assessments – all in one handy package. These schemes offer teachers a "pick up and teach" solution to mastery. Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, it might be.

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Is Paddington a migrant or refugee?

Is Paddington a migrant? A refugee? What is the difference between the two? Does it matter?

These questions are being debated in the classroom, with Paddington acting as a cute, furry Trojan bear in order to introduce children to issues surrounding refugees and immigration.

Kiri Tunks is vice president of the National Union of Teachers and teaches a Global Perspectives class at her school in Tower Hamlets. She has enlisted Paddington for the subject.

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Businesses in London to tackle literacy crisis.

Businesses come together in London to tackle the UK's literacy crisis

Last night, business leaders gathered in London to show commitment to tackling the UK’s growing literacy and social mobility crisis by signing the Vision for Literacy Business Pledge 2018.

UK companies, like Costa and Penguin Random House, attended the annual Pledge seminar - supported by education secretary, Justine Greening.

In the following year, the Pledge is to focus on closing the early years attainment gap to give all children the best possible start. So far, 54 businesses have pledged support.

Greening said: “I want to make sure that everyone has the same opportunity to reach their potential, regardless of where they are growing up or their background

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