Literacy and numeracy


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


Literacy: A moral right

In a challenging article, literacy expert Debbie Hepplewhite bemoans the conflicting and often strongly held views on how we should teach children to read – and calls for the moral rights of the child to be placed above the professional rights of the teacher



Case study: A library in every classroom

With a small school library that was not fit-for-purpose, Tom Donohoe set about a new approach – creating a well-equipped mini-library in every single classroom...


Literacy: Who is the Secret Storyteller?

Milton Primary School’s Secret Storyteller project, which brings parents into school to read to children, has been an enormous success. Christine Dean explains how it works



Year 6 attainment: Filling in the gaps

In a bid to raise year 6 attainment, Lesley Keast led a project to identify and focus on the ‘key marginal’ students and close the gaps in their learning



Literacy, oracy and language with Shakespeare

Robinsfield Primary School has been delivering Shakespeare to its five and six-year-old pupils with a specific focus on literacy, oracy and language. Headteacher Naomi Leaver explains how they approach this work


Ideas and strategies to engage reluctant readers

Reluctant readers in their final years of primary education are in danger of entering adult life functionally illiterate – with all the risks that this brings. Georgina Jones looks at what parents can do and offers teachers some ideas for use in class


Getting to grips with teaching Shakespeare

Engaging young pupils with the work of Shakespeare is not as hard as you might think. Emma Lee-Potter speaks to two schools who have been working with the Royal Shakespeare Company to great effect


A whole-school guided reading programme

Deputy headteacher Auveen Twomey describes her work to introduce a whole-school guided reading programme to raise standards of literacy, boost reading for pleasure and raise pupil outcomes


Diary of a Parent: Sexism? At age 6?!

In a new regular feature for Headteacher Update, we get the view from the other side of the school gate. What do parents think about the many issues affecting education – from policy and leadership to the curriculum, testing and pastoral issues?


Case study: The Phonics Champion

The appointment of a ‘Phonics Champion’ and a focus on the most vulnerable pupils were among the strategies introduced by David Harrison to improve early reading outcomes at his school


Literacy – the 6UP project

The 6UP literacy project is using ‘dialogic’ teaching to boost reading outcomes for children across a group of schools in London. Helen Frostick reports


The links between language ability and behaviour

Are we focusing too much on the behaviour of children when we should be looking at interventions aimed at supporting language and communication ability? Dr Zoe Owen discusses the links between language ability and unwanted behaviour – and some possible interventions


Literacy difficulties and the Pupil Premium

Whole-school approaches to supporting students with persistent literacy difficulties and spending the Pupil Premium are essential. Sarah Driver explains more and offers practical advice and ideas


Cicadas and prime numbers

Mathematics expert Marcus du Sautoy explains why art is an ideal vehicle for teaching mathematics and introduces a simple lesson idea involving the cicada and its predators...



Ideas and thoughts about the new maths curriculum

The new primary curriculum offers an opportunity to clarify for children what maths is and how it fits together, says former headteacher Pete Sumner. He offers some advice on delivering the new-look mathematics curriculum


Introducing peer-to-peer reading

A peer-to-peer reading programme at Barry Island Primary School has proved a great success. Headteacher Ty Golding explains how they went about implementing the scheme and offers his advice to others wanting to do the same.


Preparing for English and mathematics

We’ve left the basics until last. In the final article in our series on preparing for the new curriculum, Suzanne O’Connell focuses on the national curriculum for English and maths and the advice available for those gearing up for September 2014


Blogs in the classroom to boost literacy

Using blogs in the classroom can have a positive impact on pupils’ engagement and success in writing and literacy. Sarah Horrocks and Myra Barrs offer some tips to get you started.


Case study: Mathematics Mastery

How do you demonstrate pupil progress when the best moments of learning often aren’t on paper? Alexandra Mintz speaks to Caroline Farrant, a teacher at Sir Thomas Abney, which is involved in the Mathematics Mastery project..

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