Gendered Reading Still Persists

Does this image shock you? Why do we still have this distinction between “books for boys” and “books for girls” on recommended reading lists in 2021?  Surely, the only questions that matter when choosing a book for a child are: is it well written, is the story engaging, will my child be interested?  This lastContinue reading “Gendered Reading Still Persists”

Using Practice Papers for 7+ Preparation

Don’t try to run before you can walk.  I am sure we have all heard this expression but have you ever thought about it in relation to 7+ entrance exams?  So often, I hear of both parents and tutors who use exam practice papers as their primary tool for preparing for exams.  Perhaps this makes sense to you.  SurelyContinue reading “Using Practice Papers for 7+ Preparation”

How Do We Encourage Risk Taking as Part of Learning?

Over my long career, I have often come across students who are described as perfectionists.  These students have ranged in age from five to fifteen but all share the same characteristic: they will only present work when it is perfect.  Is “perfectionist” an accurate description of these students, or is there something else at the root ofContinue reading “How Do We Encourage Risk Taking as Part of Learning?”

How is Learning 11+ Comprehension Like Learning to Cook?

In guiding parents through the 11+ entrance exam process, I am often asked what is the right time to begin purchasing and using practise papers.   To help parents understand why I ask them to delay doing this, I use the analogy of learning to cook.   Look at this simple recipe for stir-fry: Step 1: Finely chop orContinue reading “How is Learning 11+ Comprehension Like Learning to Cook?”

Celebrating the Return to Home Educating

Today is the day that school children and parents are rejoicing.  It marks the end of home schooling.  Today is also the day that another group of children and parents are celebrating as it marks the return of home educating.  The terms “home schooling” and “home educating” are often used interchangeably, a fact that has long irked theContinue reading “Celebrating the Return to Home Educating”

Imagination is a Muscle

What exactly is imagination?  Imagination is defined as the faculty or action of forming new ideas, or images or concepts of external objects not present to the senses.  Is it possible to have no imagination?  There is indeed a very rare condition in which sufferers have no ability to visualise mental images – known as Aphantasia.  It is believed that onlyContinue reading “Imagination is a Muscle”