Teaching and Learning

Learning environments: Finding the Catch Zone...

How effective is your school’s learning environment? How do you organise your classroom and school displays for maximum impact on learning? Fiona Aubrey-Smith discusses the secrets to success and introduces the Catch Zone...


The vocabulary gap: A cross-phase challenge

Differences in vocabulary acquisition might be particularly noticeable at age 5, but it doesn’t stop there. Teachers report that the word gap is increasing across primary education and into secondary. Suzanne O’Connell reports


Maths mastery uncovered

Maths mastery is the latest policy being supported by the government. Tony Staneff explores the truth behind some common maths mastery myths and outlines four ways to kick-start your school’s journey to mastery


Oracy: Speaking up for speaking

Plans are afoot to create an All-Party Parliamentary Group on oracy. Primary school leader Anthony David considers the importance of speaking skills for children of all ages




Literacy: What can we learn from PIRLS?

Fifty countries took part in the most recent Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS), the world-wide study of reading at ages 9 and 10. Rachel Classick looks at some key findings from England and Northern Ireland and what lessons we can learn


Improving pupils' working memory

Achieving effective differentiation in the classroom and improving your pupils’ working memories are key priorities for teachers. Margaret Reeve offers some quick CPD ideas


Maths Mastery and the National Maths Hubs

The national network of Maths Hubs are recruiting schools for the 2018/19 Teacher Research Groups. We hear from the London North East Maths Hub about this year’s work on Maths Mastery


Give them a challenge outside!

With the summer here, it’s a good time to take the children outdoors. Suzanne O’Connell summarises what the Education Endowment Foundation has to say about the benefits of outdoor adventure learning


The battle to take back control of the curriculum

With the momentum growing behind evidence and research-based teaching practice, arguments to give back control of the curriculum to the profession are becoming louder – led, perhaps surprisingly, by Ofsted’s chief inspector...


Case study: Making PE and sports a priority

With today’s educational climate focusing on literacy and numeracy, PE can sometimes be left behind. Not so at Birchwood Primary. Suzanne O’Connell finds out how deputy headteacher Melanie Alexander and her team have made PE and sports a priority




Successful approaches to the computing curriculum

When the new computing curriculum was introduced there was concern about the capacity of primary schools to deliver it. Suzanne O’Connell speaks to two schools, both possessing Naace’s ICT Mark, about how they prepare their pupils to be IT literate in the 21st century


What is your approach to promoting learning skills?

As a headteacher, what are your priorities when beginning at a new school? For Frances Robertson, the focus must always begin on children’s learning skills and the school’s teaching and learning ethos...








A curriculum to stimulate a sense of engagement

A curriculum focusing on independence, collaboration, creativity and expression has been the key to turning around a primary school in an area known as ‘little Beirut’. Headteacher Steve Kernan explains


Simple science ideas

The Wellcome Trust’s free Explorify programme is helping to boost primary school science lessons. Louise Stubberfield discusses how headteachers can support excellent primary science provision


Developing a reasoning-rich maths curriculum

In 2015, Kirsty Munns spent 10 days in China observing maths lessons. The experience inspired her to develop a whole-school ‘reasoning-rich’ maths curriculum. She reflects on the outcomes and the lessons learned so far

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Headteacher Update is the only magazine delivered directly to every primary school headteacher in the UK. It is published six times a year, at the beginning of each term and half-term, to keep headteachers up-to-date with everything going on in primary education.

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