I sit near the window with the rising sun pouring in the room, I close my eyes and I am transported, mind and body back to Greece, as if again it were only two weeks prior. The illusion of the magnified heat, doubled by the glass, licks my body and bronzes my skin. The relentless roar of traffic now replaced by the soft roar of crashing waves. The book lying open on my lap, begging to be read with hours of content, is weighing on my leg, I open my eyes, and I’m back in classroom at 8am, just an hour before the room is filled with children, looking to me to restart their routine and be the familiar face they’ve known to associate with Media Studies.
Talk about shock to the system...
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Earlier this week, I decided I should put my 25-minute drive to work to more productive use. Instead of listening to Radio 3, Radio 4, 5 Live, or Capital, I downloaded the AQA’s podcast ‘De-icing with Death and Jane Eyre’s flamingos’ as it promised to explain ‘how effective back planning can help students untangle a text from its context’ and the ‘importance of cultural capital’ in this process. It proved a thought-provoking 15 minutes.
Of all the challenges in the English Language exam, question one fades into the background when compared to the complexities of question four, or the mental gymnastics for the analysis in questions two and three. Question one sits there. Unobtrusive. Inoffensive. Nonchalant. A little dream of a question, really. “Find four things…”. Can’t go wrong, right?
The language analysis in question two is a tricky little gem of a question. Most students feel pretty confident attacking this one, and usually even weaker students can pick up one or two marks. I’m going to split this into advice for those who are aiming for each separate ‘level’, because the advice I would give is quite different.
And now question three. You little tricky brute. It should be so simple! Teach structural devices, and how to analyse them, chuck in a couple of nice sounding technical terms to boost their confidence, and voila! Eight out of eight? NO.
What is the problem with question four? It should be as simple as teaching the difference between analysis and evaluation, point them in the right direction, and watch them go. But it isn’t.
How to Use Unseen Texts and Poetry Effectively in the Classroom the assessment of reading skills in this paper is based entirely on unseen texts. Consequently whenever possible students should practice analysing texts as ‘unseens’ as the norm in their study of both English Language and English Literature try to harness good reading skills from Key Stage 3 onwards by introducing students to a range of non- fiction texts from the 19th to 21st centuries across a range of genres and increasing the challenge of these texts up into Key Stage 4
Presented at both The Team English Conference and the ResearchEd National conference this series of resources combine the latest research to improve creative writing. Directed towards improvements for the GCSE English Language Paper this resource can be used in conjunction with any qualification which includes a Creative Writing element.
Edusites English Macbeth Allusions booklet is not only useful for the teaching of Macbeth, but also in other texts where these biblical and classical allusions are made. We’re preparing our students for the language exam, where the text could be taken from anywhere. We are preparing our students for A Level, where good Bible knowledge is necessary for every text on the syllabus.