My Top 5 Blogs of 2017

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And so 2018 approaches… It is that time when you get inundated with top 10s, most reads and internet awards from 2017.

As I approach my fifth year of blogging, I thought a top 5 most read blogposts from 2017 would be apt, so here they are. Thank you for reading in 2017.


‘Why Whole School Literacy Fails!’ 

My most popular blog of 2017 was a rather dour-titled look at the Sisyphean challenge faced by Literacy Coordinators and the broader issue of dealing with literacy standards across a whole school. My solutions include addressing literacy with a subject-specific emphasis and making the boulder rather more manageable by focusing developing our students’ vocabulary knowledge.

’10 Tricky Questions for Teachers’

‘What if we are testing spelling, but not teaching spelling?’ This blog is my attempt to spark some thinking about many of the prevailing flavours-of-the-month in education. It prompted many more questions from readers of the blog. I suspect I could generate a 10 more questions based on the popular edu-fashions of 2018.

‘The Problems with Past Exam Papers’

This blog was spawned by an angry bout of marking sub-standard essays, but it crystallised years worth of frustrations with assessment and the annual rigmarole of mocks and past papers. My hope is that 2018 sees a continued challenge to the orthodoxy that undertaking lots of past papers will prove a solution for our students.

‘The Problem with Judging Teacher Performance’

This post raises a few important questions about how we go about judging teacher performance in schools. As teachers are assigned groups that bias how they are judged, alongside research showing exams may not be a valid tool to judge teacher performance, we are left with pressing questions for a profession already haemorrhaging teachers.

‘GCSE English Language and Literature: Planning for Success’

This post, for English teachers and subject leaders, gives my overview for curriculum design and English teaching. I was prompted to write the blog after a year teaching new and significantly changed GCSEs with very little national insights regarding curriculum design and related tools.

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