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Tes 17 September 2021

Tes is dedicated to supporting the world’s teachers. Our mission is to enable great teaching by helping educators find the tools and technology they need to excel, supporting them throughout their career and professional development.

United Kingdom
Tes Global Ltd
51 Issues

in this issue

3 min

My first thought on reading Molly Bolding’s piece on the benefits of playing with dolls in this week’s magazine was that I did not have a doll as a child. But then I remembered the 12-inch figures – Batman, Ghostbusters characters, a WWF wrestler – with which my brother and I would battle each other, pushing the button on each figure’s back to make their arms flail wildly. I hadn’t really thought about those interactions since. I had dismissed them as not important beyond some sibling bonding. But after reading Bolding’s article (pages 28-31), I can now see that we were playing out different scenarios and testing out different emotional reactions, and that this experience was crucial to our development. “When children are playing alone with dolls,” explains Sarah Gerson of Cardiff…

3 min
school budgets creak under strain of covid

This September was supposed to be when the shackles of Covid were thrown off and schools got back to normal. In some respects, that has happened: in-person whole-school assemblies are back, as are after-school clubs. Staggered starts in most schools are now a distant memory. And yet, as we have learned the hard way, the impact of this virus is not so easy to shake off. The effects of the past 18 months remain stubbornly hard to shift for several aspects of school life – the windows are still open, mask wearing is still present in some areas, isolation is still a factor for those who test positive and long Covid is a growing issue. And then there are the financial impacts. During Covid, school budgets that were already struggling to cover the…

2 min
a bloomin’ marvellous way to teach wellbeing and metacognition

In the Education Endowment Foundation’s dedicated guidance report on metacognition, released in 2018, there are seven key recommendations for teachers – but not one of them mentions plants. And while this magazine has featured countless approaches to teaching metacognitive skills over the past five years, we haven’t mentioned plants, either. Why would vegetation come up in discussions about metacognition – the process of learning how to learn – you might ask? Callum Bates, a music teacher in the East of England, has the answer. “Metacognition is the processes involved when learners plan, monitor, evaluate and make changes to their own learning behaviours,” he explains. “Applying this notion to include wellbeing principles allows students to map out, assess, critique and adapt their own wellbeing behaviours.” And how does Bates bring the principles of wellbeing…

7 min
10 questions with… sathnam sanghera

Sathnam Sanghera is a prizewinning journalist and author, whose book The Boy with the Topknot was named 2009 Mind Book of the Year and adapted into a drama on BBC Two. His latest book, Empireland, was released earlier this year to widespread critical acclaim. He is also one of the authors supporting the Penguin Lit in Colour campaign that aims to highlight the importance of a diverse English literature curriculum. He chatted to Tes about his time in school, the pranks he played on his classmates, some wonderful teachers who shaped the course of his life – and the time he took a clothes peg on a school trip. 1. Where did you go to primary school? I went to Woden Primary School in Wolverhampton. It was an amazing school because it was in…

6 min
souped-up toolkit puts ‘best bets’ for outcomes at teachers’ fingertips

“This is the EEF toolkit 3.0.” The words of Steve Higgins, lead author of the Sutton Trust/EEF Teaching and Learning Toolkit, underline just how different your next visit to the Education Endowment Fund’s (EEF) pages will be. “They definitely won’t miss the changes,” adds EEF head of policy John Kay. And this is not just because the toolkit has a new colour scheme. As of today, the entire scope of the toolkit has been expanded to offer a far wider array of insights into the different approaches schools can use to boost outcomes – from assessment and homework to the use of technology, peer feedback, small study groups, behaviour and much more. “We’ve basically taken every single underlying study in the toolkit and reviewed whether it is of high quality and whether it…

2 min
next year’s exam results should be based on 2019, say heads

A headteachers’ union has called for a return to the 2019 distribution of grades for next summer’s GCSE and A-level results if exams go ahead in 2022. Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, has said that the higher grades seen in the past two years, after exams were cancelled, were the result of “extreme circumstances” and cannot be compared with previous years. He said it would be “difficult to justify” maintaining this spread of grades if exams do return next summer and warned against higher grades becoming “baked in”. Mr Barton said: “We have decided to recommend a return to the grading distribution of 2019 in the exams due to be held next summer. We thought long and hard about this issue because there is no…