Closing The Vocabulary Gap

7 Strategies to Explore Unfamiliar Vocabulary

A 10-year-old child who is a good reader will encounter something like 1 million words a year (around 12 novels), but crucially, approximately 20,000 of those words will prove unfamiliar (Oakhill et al. 2015). It is important then to support our pupils to develop an array of independent word learning strategies to explore and to …

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The ‘Reading Gap’ between Primary and Secondary School

A lot of attention is rightly devoted by schools to address primary to secondary ‘transition’. We know that as children move schools it can prove a difficult move emotionally. Therefore, our focus, quite rightly, attends pastoral matters to offer vital support to our pupils. And yet, what if we a missing a vital aspect of …

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Cracking the Academic Code

(This article was first published in Teach Secondary Magazine. You can subscribe HERE) How could a group of crossword puzzle champions save the world? Such a startling question has a very British answer, and it should inspire teachers everywhere. During WWII, at Bletchley Park, a collection of academics and other intelligent folk became ordinary heroes, …

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The Early Vocabulary Advantage

“Dad, what is a whisk’s favourite drink?” “I don’t know. What is a whisk’s favourite drink?” “Whisky!” And so starts my young boy’s burgeoning entertainment career. So far, it is full of bad puns and energetic attempts at word play. Most jokes narrowly miss the mark, but they are no less fun. What proves more …

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