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Celebrating Primary Writing: Take One Book…and run with it.

Martin Galway shares some of the wonderful work carried out by the pupils and staff at Hare Street Primary School, Harlow, inspired by the Take One Book training and approaches offered by the HfL English team.

Continue reading “Celebrating Primary Writing: Take One Book…and run with it.”

Come aboard the Hogwarts Express!

Monday 26th June 2017 marks twenty years since the first publication of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.  In this blog, Michelle Nicholson celebrates the twentieth anniversary of the release of JK Rowling’s fabulous book, with some ideas for bringing the story to life in the classroom.

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On bunnies, magic and the genius of Mini Grey…The Bad Bunnies’ Magic Show

Martin Galway suggests that some especially badly behaved rabbits might just deserve a second chance, and a place in your library, in this review of Mini Grey’s latest picturebook.

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The power of a good book – leading the way to successful grammar teaching.

In this blog, Kathy Roe looks at the invaluable role that high quality texts can play in supporting children’s knowledge and understanding of grammar. 

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Reading on the Rise -Raising Standards conference 27th March

We are extremely pleased to be able to provide schools with an opportunity to hear from Sarah Hubbard  – Ofsted’s National Lead for English – who will be leading a session on ‘Reading, assessment and curriculum development’. Places are limited so early booking is advised.

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HfL Primary English newsletter Spring 2017

Here we are again.   A new term.  A new year.  We hope that you have had a lovely Christmas break and that the new term has begun as smoothly as possible for you all.   With this in mind, we thought we’d share our latest-hfl-primary-english-newsletter-spring-2017as swiftly as possible, especially as it is such a short half term.

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A book (is) for life (not just for Christmas): Back to Marianne Dreams

Following on from our recent blog on books that trigger emotional responses, Alison Dawkins offers some reflections on one such book that has left a lingering trace.

A few weeks ago, my chum Martin  wrote about the importance of reading scary and sad books , as adults and as children, and as usual, got me thinking. Specifically, thinking again about Marianne Dreams by Catherine Storr .

He’s quite right, when he mentioned the book back in the summer, I visibly shuddered with a ‘oh, that book’s so scary’, (although I have to say there was already a set of six copies in the guided reading choices for Y6 in my old school, ready and waiting to scare them each year) and agreed to re-read. Oddly, I found that I’d misremembered the ending, and then in fact, realised I’d misremembered it before. A deliberate trick of my subconscious because I still find it quite unsettling for all its apparently happy tying up of ends? I wonder.

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Do judge a book by its cover!

Ruth Goodman is an English Teaching and Learning Adviser for Herts for Learning and is  also a contemporary artist.

Some of my earliest memories are of sharing a picture book and poring over the illustrations. I found these books were a feast for my eyes, with exquisite illustrations that were just as important as the text. These two elements in picture books work wonderfully together to tell a story that is a blend of text and art. This means that there is always great excitement within the HfL English team when a new picture book arrives to share with schools.

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Do the Voices – Reading Aloud in the Primary Classroom Pt. 2

Martin Galway is an English Teaching and Learning Adviser at Herts for Learning


Right then, where were we? In the last blog I hopefully established that reading aloud to children is a very good thing.  But what if you still haven’t managed to persuade the right people that it deserves its place in the primary classroom?  Read on to further reinforce your case…

The Primary Curriculum (2014) not only gives you licence to provide great reading aloud opportunities, it makes them a statutory requirement.

Continue reading “Do the Voices – Reading Aloud in the Primary Classroom Pt. 2”

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