Morning Settlers with Thunks!

I absolutely love Ian Gilbert's Thunks. This book "The Compleat Thunks Book" is described as 'A collection of classic Thunks from a number of his books, as well as hundreds of new ones, all designed to make your brain hurt as you think, question, debate and argue your way to a better understanding of how to survive in a world gone dangerously bonkers.'

To give you an idea of what a thunk looks like, here is a screenshot from the book:

Thunks can be used as a great discussion tool in class. Sharing one on the board at the start of the day and encouraging children to talk and listen to each other's ideas can be a great way to settle children into a lesson. JUST BE AWARE, not all the Thunks would be appropriate for the classroom.
You can also use apps like Seesaw to record and evidence children's thoughts and ideas about a Thunk. If I create a question like this:

Within the explain and reflect option of Seesaw, pupils can add labels. These can be initial tho…

Another song for Comprehension with links to Growth Mindset

I love using music in class for a number of reasons: remembering facts, teaching narrative structure and improving comprehension.

 Another song that I came across recently is Grace by Rag'n'Bone Man. The message of the song is powerful and lends itself well to PSHCE and growth mindset discussions.

Here is a description of the song I read recently:

You know that feeling when you've just made a wretched mistake and you want the whole world to swallow you up? When you don't want to talk to anyone, you feel like you've let yourself and the people you value down?

It hurts right? But with enough strength, humility and willingness to stand again, you realise that mistake isn't the end of you. More so, that 'mistake' could be the very thing you needed in your life to become a better person. To change or let go of parts of you that aren't empowering or positive. Some people call it grace, when you experience something in your life exactly the way it was meant to…

Seesaw Activities - Another brilliant addition!

Ok, so I am a little late to the party! Seesaw introduced activities a good few months ago, but I've only just got around to really investigating this fantastic addition to what is my favourite app to use in the classroom.

I recently blogged my top 5 apps of 2017. Seesaw was at the top of my list. For me, this app is a no-brainer for the primary classroom. The endless benefits for how it can enhance teaching and learning, save teachers time and money and embed key digital literacy skills for your pupils has meant it has become the app I use most and one I regularly share on my training sessions.

I have recently been contacted by a number of teachers who have been told by their local authority that they can no longer use Seesaw as it will not comply with the new GDPR guidelines that will take effect in May 2018. I contacted Seesaw about this and this was their response:

GDPR goes into effect in the EU in May 2018 and Seesaw is preparing to be compliant with it.
If you are concerned …

Mr P's Top Ten Videos of 2017

Earlier this week, I did a Facebook live video sharing my top 5 apps of the year. You can watch it here.

It made me reflect on 2017 and what an amazing year it has been. Especially when it comes to my social media channels. It has been a year where the videos I make about life as a teacher have had such an amazing response from you guys. I thought I would compile a top ten list of videos from my page based on views from Facebook, I hope you enjoy:

10 - What would Love Island look like in a Primary School Staffroom? 383k Views

9 - Teacher One-Liners 384k views

Check out more teacher one-liners here.
8 - Teachers in Summer 523k views

7 - Different Teachers in a Singing Assembly 623k views

5 - Things Teachers Never Say When Writing Reports - 634k Views

There are a number of other - Things Teachers Never Say Videos, including: Things Teachers Never Say When SATs are overThings Teachers Never Say in the last weeks before SummerThings Teachers Never Say When Going Back To School
4 - Why Teachers Ca…

Mr P's Top 5 Apps of 2017

So as 2017 comes to an end, it is time to reflect on the past year. For me, it has been another incredible year. The support and feedback I have received from teachers all over the world has been amazing. There are still huge issues in education and 2017 hasn't been the best year for schools, especially in the UK. However, it is my mission to change that, take teaching back and get schools working smarter, not harder.

I decided to do a LIVE Vlog on my facebook page tonight to share my top 5 apps in 2017. These aren't necessarily the best apps, I have picked them based on which apps I have used the most in the classroom this year. Here is the whole video which also talks about John Murray's new book - Reading Rocketeers. 

So here are links to the apps mentioned:

5 - iVisualiser - Along with, this tool can transform your teaching by turning your iPad into a mobile Visualiser. To find out more, check out this blog post I put together - click here.

4 - Adobe Spar…

Mr P's Talent Show Entry 2017

One of my favourite days of the school year has to be our Christmas dinner day. Not only is the food always immense, we spend the afternoon doing an annual talent show. I've had the pleasure of hosting the talent show for the past few years and have always treated the pupils to a little surprise at the end. I say 'surprise' but as this is the 8th year or so that we have done it, I think the children expect it now. Anyway, this year we decided to make a teacher's version of one of the biggest songs of the year - Mans Not Hot. As much as the students love it, I wanted to share a message that hopefully will resonate with a lot of teachers too.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy it. Please feel free to share. I will take this opportunity to say a massive thank you for continuing to support the blog, my social media pages and my CPD and conferences. 2017 has been an incredible year, and 2018 is shaping up to be just as good if not better. I hope everyone has a wonderful and restful C…

Reporting from the scene of the Great Fire of London

We recently discovered the Read Write Perform has now been used in over 2000 schools around the world. This is incredible! For a fairly new approach, to see it grow so quickly has been amazing. The best part is the positive feedback we receive from teachers, who say it has revolutionised the way in which they teach English. At present, there are 10 packs, we have mapped out around 30+ to hopefully get to a point where schools could do a pack a half term from year 1-6. Unfortunately, due to the amount of detail and quality that goes into the packs, they take a while to write.

However, we love how teachers are now innovating on the approach. After trying one of the teaching packs, teachers and schools understand the pedagogy behind the approach and now use the overview to plan their English. This includes some of the teachers in my school. So Year 2 have been writing newspaper articles about the Great Fire of London. Using the ReadWritePerform approach, the children then performed their…