Education

Questioning Rosenshine’s Principles

In search of the real Rosenshine In the 4th September 2020 issue of the TES, Jessica Powell argues that Rosenshine’s principles are “poorly understood”. In the article, Powell describes her initial sense that the principles are “straightforward, uncontroversial” and a framework of approaches that most teachers are already doing. The…

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Rosenshine’s (and Stevens’!) SIX fundamental instructional “functions”

Rosenshine’s principles of instruction aren’t anything new. Their origin is the 1960s in the direct instruction work initiated by Siegfried Englemann and Carl Bereiter in their work with children from disadvantaged backgrounds. Rosenshine and Stevens themselves readily point out the influences of their instructional model: Gagne’s “components of instruction” (1970), Good…

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Macbeth: Prose Retelling

To a certain extent it’s difficult to read a Shakespeare text with a class in the same way that you’d read anything else. The archaic and rich language can confound children even if they watch a live performance or film version. I’ve found that students approach the text if time…

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Knowledge Agenda for Macbeth

In my preparations for teaching Macbeth again I’ve collected a number of knowledge organisers created by teachers working in different school contexts in the UK. There are commonalities: they name characters, identify similar themes, list a handful of quotes to learn and offer some vocabulary to learn. All provide a…

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Introduction to English and Its Teachers

Notes from English and Its Teachers by Simon Gibbons (2017) Chapter 1 – Introduction Simon Gibbons presents the purposes, rationale and scope for this study of the development of secondary school English teaching from the mid-1960s to the present. He defines three periods during this time but agrees that the…

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Introducing Macbeth

The first few lessons on a text – particularly Shakespeare – are crucial. Nowadays the standard modus operandi at GCSE is to start with assessment objectives, pages of (often irrelevant and subsequently forgotten) contextual information and lists of vocabulary or technical terms. Often knowledge organisers are given out before anything…

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A Long, Long Time Ago…

Sorting through old school resources, I found this project from 1997. I was in my second year of teaching and still have memories of making this booklet as a media mini-project for Year Seven. The scan of the booklet shows the way in which it was constructed back in the…

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