Blog

Education Scotland and the Mystery of the Shifty Document Swap

KIA Briefing 2: Early Reading Back in February, Education Scotland published this: A Knowledge Into Action resource for practitioners and education staff Briefing 2: Early Reading. I blogged about the document and how it was a small step in the right direction. And although the document was flawed in places, the importance of phonics in […]

Read More

My Verdict: Education Scotland’s ‘Early Reading Briefing’

Well, it has been just over a year since I started writing angry letters to the Scottish Government and campaigning about the need for proper phonics teaching in the classroom and in teacher training in Scotland. So today gave me cause for a little, tiny celebration, when Education Scotland published some new guidance on the […]

Read More

Scotland’s Standardised Testing: How did we get here?

A simplified timeline of events: 2010: Curriculum for Excellence (forward-thinking, aspirational and inspirational) begins full implementation. 2010: Standardised testing is abolished. BUT: HMI start asking to see our standardised testing. (But, erm, we just got rid of it… ) THEN: Schools and local authorities spend ££££s on standardised testing. 2012: SSLN (Scottish Survey of Literacy and […]

Read More

*NEW* Mog’s Christmas Calamity Task Map

Well, the Christmas spirit is strong today – because here is another super festive-themed Task Map for you to download! Today we have Barry Donaldson from Aberdeen City to thank for creating this cute and Christmassy activity-fest! The text is another advert – Mog's Christmas Calamity – inspired by Judith Kerr's book of the same name. […]

Read More

*NEW* Man on the Moon Task Maps

With the holidays fast approaching, we can now finally mention the 'C' word… Christmas! And to help you out at this frantic time of year, here are not one – but two – count 'em – two! – Task Maps for the new John Lewis advert – Man in the Moon. We have to thank […]

Read More

*NEW* St. Andrew’s Day Task Map and Text

What are you doing in class to celebrate St. Andrew's Day? Well, here is another *new* Task Map along with a text to help you help your class to find out more about the patron saint of Scotland! Today's Task Map lesson and text were added to The Teaching Trunk by Mr Grant from Aberdeenshire […]

Read More

*FREE* Guy Fawkes Task Map!

Remember, remember the 5th November! Well instead – forget planning – because here is a Guy Fawkes Short Read Text and a Task Map for you to use in class tomorrow! Best suited for P3, P4 and P5 – but could be a nice quick warm-up for something else further up the school. Click below to download: […]

Read More

Planning and Assessing Listening and Talking

Would you like some *new* and *free* documents to help with planning and the assessment of Listening and Talking? Of course you would! Well, I have created the following that might be useful in your school to provide consistency in teaching, learning and record-keeping. If you are already a Reflective Reading school they will dovetail […]

Read More

I’m not angry, I’m livid (TESS article)

According to a recent Guardian article, a group of children’s authors is writing to the UK government, to complain that primary teachers are "damaging children's creative writing" by encouraging them to use language that is "too elaborate, flowery and over-complex". Cecilia Busby, who writes fantasy fiction for children, would much rather that we teach writing in […]

Read More