Making use of cognitive apprenticeship in English teaching

This is an academic concept I came across recently in an article related to training medical students. It means making the process of thinking more visible, so students do not just get an understanding of what to do, but also how to do it. However, it is also an excellent model for teaching English andContinue reading “Making use of cognitive apprenticeship in English teaching”

GCSE English Language and Literature 2022

*Edited with more up to date information from AQA What will English exams look like this year?  Today is the day that the examination boards have released further information and guidance about what the examinations are going to involve this year. The advance information for English is fairly limited, but there are some important changesContinue reading “GCSE English Language and Literature 2022”

Is university right for me?

This is obviously an incredibly personal decision, which for some students will be fairly straightforward to make and for others will involve a lot more thought and reflection. What is true is that this pathway is not for everyone, and there are several myths surrounding university that can sometimes lead students to make the wrongContinue reading “Is university right for me?”

How to Build Your Teen’s Confidence

As a tutor, a lot of my work is not just about developing a student’s academic knowledge, but also ensuring that they have the confidence to apply it independently. A lack of confidence is a major issue for many students and can seriously affect their academic and personal development. Some of these issues may stemContinue reading “How to Build Your Teen’s Confidence”

Your Christmas Shopping List

Whilst academic gifts may not come top of your child’s Christmas list this year, it is a good time to double check that they are ready for the year ahead, especially if they have public examinations this year. Here are a few suggestions of English related presents you can sneak under the tree this Christmas! Continue reading “Your Christmas Shopping List”

Busting the English Revision Myth

One of the biggest misconceptions about English is that you cannot revise it. I understand how this has come about, since English is predominantly a skills-based subject rather than knowledge-based. However, this does not mean that students cannot prepare effectively for their English examinations. With many students currently in the middle of mocks and endContinue reading “Busting the English Revision Myth”

Five Ways to Deal with English Block

English is one of those subjects where students do sometimes feel as though they have reached a plateau. When they seem to be getting the same marks on every piece of work, it can feel very frustrating. This perceived lack of progress can even make students start to disengage from the subject, deciding that thereContinue reading “Five Ways to Deal with English Block”

An Inspector Calls – The Blame Game

An Inspector Calls is a play deliberately designed to elicit a strong response from the audience. As a deeply political writer, Priestley wants his audience to eschew the callous, selfish principles of the Birling family and embrace social responsibility. Writing in 1945, at the end of the Second World War, Priestley saw the potential forContinue reading “An Inspector Calls – The Blame Game”

Five Reasons to Write Spooky Stories

One of the questions I am often asked by students is which genre to pick when writing a story. I have always leaned strongly towards horror and Gothic as one of the most successful genres students can choose. It allows them to showcase many of the skills that GCSE examiners are looking for, as wellContinue reading “Five Reasons to Write Spooky Stories”

Writing a Personal Statement

It is that time of year again when the UCAS deadlines begin to loom, and students turn their attention towards that all important five hundred words. Universities place a great deal of importance on their personal statement, and that is why it is vital that students get it right. As a former sixth form tutor,Continue reading “Writing a Personal Statement”