Thursday 8 October 2009

Harvest time in school brings on melody and rhyme and an educational revolution. This must make me Citizen Smith.

The educational revolution is taking me back to the future.

Sir says I have permission to plan anything, in any format I want, to take my learners in any direction I think would engage and motivate.

That space represents the distance my jaw dropped.

It is a fraction of the sickly feelings of disorientation that went with his announcement.

Of course, there was also the spinning vortex playing havoc with my inner ear as I saw a link form to bridge a gap between the years when it was me that sat at the little desk doing topics, and projects, and writing stories in note books (well, I never said that much changed in my life) and the present that has been straight jacketed by the National Curriculum mark I, II, III and however many more incarnations there have been of it.

I was the voice of reason suggesting that we really out to build up and out of the key targets. Planning two weeks of Maths and Literacy took two hours not an hour a lesson.

I'll teach Maths and PE on a timetable. Then I'll do conferencing in blocks while the children keep time logs and work toward the expected outcomes for each week. We have additional adults to make practical elements possible. The children will get to plan, do, review, improve and present - wow. I'm fighting the need to "Steiner" because the SATs will still be looming large in May. I'll be looking at the principals though and adapting them, where possible, into the educational revolution.

Science - Microbes - not due until after half term - steps up and has real-life context as we will make a traditional bread wheatsheaf for the Harvest. I told the class if they wanted to do their non-fiction Recount on the History of Tractors they were to go for it. Of course, there may still be Florence and Fred hoping to achieve as little as possible under a desk but, I predict, few will be hoping to join them.

This weekend, marking notwithstanding, I'm going to have time to write. This will be the first block of free time long enough to work on more than editing.


Near Edgware' s Beta Readers suggested a minor modification in Ch 8 that I love - it really works well. They made a good scene even better. The alterations that I've already made to the ending pre-empting the other main discussion.

The only highlight of my week, last week, was that after their positive comments I did the first submission with the re-worked letter (that has been re-worked again already).

It felt good to be doing something for Jess and Caleb... as good as taking part in the revolution!

I'm looking forward to creating JJ's world and a section for FOUND'ER.

Do many author's deliberately write two books at the same time?


  1. Wow! In this day and age of accountability and teach-by-the-expectations, I'm very excited for you! It'll be fun - and exhausting I'm sure :)

    I don't write 2 stories at once. I tend to have one I'm writing, and one I'm editing. That way I can flip between them depending on the time available and my desires.

  2. Hi Jemi
    Sir says it will minimise work load :S
    He has had my jotters for 10 days after one two hour session sub-ing for me. I don't think he's found time to mar... get them back to me yet.
    It will still be the same old accountability. Like the "creative" International Curriculum but without the expense and with 'Mand and I writing it.