News and updates from Education Works - providing innovative, effective
support programmes in reading, speaking, listening and maths.


Monthly Musings

We thought we would like to share things that are currently interesting us and informing our thinking. Each month we will give you a link to an interesting article, news item or DVD clip.

November Musing...

In the attached article, Kate Townshend, writing for the TES, interviews Dr Jessie Ricketts, director of the Language and Reading Aquisition (LARA) research lab at Royal Holloway, University of London.

Dr Richetts says, 'I cannot underline the importance of oral language for reading enough... We know that children with better language abilities go on to have better educational and socio-emotional outcomes.'

She is currently researching the relationship between vocabulary knowledge and reading. 'Whilst vocabulary might play an important part in children learning to read in the first place, once they actually are reading, this debt to spoken language is likely to be repaid. Once Children learn to read, reading abilities impact on vocabulary and the relationship becomes reciprocal.'

We think you'll find this a fascinating read. Click here to read the article in full.

September Musing...

‍This month we are attaching a link to the TES article interviewing Kate Nation, Professor of Psychology at St John's Oxford. She states...

'Two sets of things are critical for early readers. You have to understand how the writing system works- the idea that letters represent sounds... and then the other side of the coin is that we need to comprehend, too. We need that alphabetic principle but we also need a broader understanding of language.'

The article, her views and findings, emphasise the importance of of language development and comprehension alongside good quality phonics teaching. This serves to underline the importance of programmes such as TP@P/S and BR@P/S which directly support those children who are in danger of missing out on essential life skills.

Click here to read the article in full

July Musing...

This month, we have news of an interesting project carried out by ten Camden primary schools that formed a Teacher Research Group.They looked at the learning  of times tables to automatic recall level.  They wanted to help the children to learn, remember and understand their times table/division facts.

This group of primary schools formed in September 2016 and the results of their ongoing research can now be read in a short article from the June 2017 ncetm, primary magazine, issue 96, and seen in a video sequence hyperlinked in  issue 97 of the magazine from July 2017.  

Please click the above links to read the results of their findings and to view their inter-school 'Spring Slam' competition.

April Musings...

This months we have two interesting reports that you may be interested in reading:

'Talking About a Generation' is a paper from the Communication Trust which discusses current policy, evidence and practice for speech, language and communication click here to find a copy of the report

'Young people: Changing Times' is a joint publication by the BBC and the Open University. It discusses life and on-going challenges for young people in today's society. The booklet was produced to accompany the BBC One series 'Child of our time'. Click here to read it

March Musings...

This month we want to share the continuing success of Talkingpartners@primary. The results, as in previous years, are outstanding. As always the Renfrew Language Scales: Action Picture Test was used as the standardised measure. This assessment measures two areas of productive oral language: Information given  and grammar used. Pupils made average gains of 1 year 9 months (21.3m) in Information and 1 year 2 months (14.4m) in Grammar. Many thanks to everybody who shared data and made this report possible. If you would like to download a copy of the report please click here.

February Musings...

What are the causes for the next generation of people to feel dissatisfied in the workplace? Simon Sinek discusses 4 main factors: parenting, technology, impatience and environment. Some very interesting messages that many of us could consider!

Click here to find out what he has to say.

January musings...Ensuring children and young people reach their full potential by becoming confident communicators is at the heart of our work at EW.

Here are a couple of articles that may be of interest:

Read this cutting edge article from Voice 21 and the English Speaking Union 

Voice 21 have also published this report The State of Speaking in Our Schools by Will Millard and Loic Menzies.

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