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National Share-A-Story Month

“Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May” said Shakespeare in Sonnet 18, and don’t we know it! Following our gorgeously sunshine-filled April, this bad weather is an unwelcome turn of events to say the least. Having encouraged you all to get outside and enjoy the delights that Spring nature has to offer us, […]

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Spring has sprung!

Spring is finally in the air, and with the sun scheduled to get his hat on this week, it’s the perfect time to get outdoors and encourage children to explore the natural world around us. Daffodils and lambs are popping up everywhere, the woods are carpeted in bluebells and magnolia trees are in glorious full […]

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Shakespeare Week

Monday 12th March marks the official start of Shakespeare Week – Hooray! A whole week dedicated to celebrating this wonderful and much-loved playwright. But with language deemed too flowery and complex for children, how are we to teach the youth of today about what this talented Englishman of old has written? Yes, your average 7-year-old […]

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World Book Day

Next month will see the annual appearance of one of my favourite days of the year. A special day when in playgrounds across the country you can see Gangsta Granny playing football with Harry Potter, Willy Wonka laughing with Angelina Ballerina and The Hungry Caterpillar chasing the Gruffalo. Yes, 1st March is World Book Day, […]

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The Corporate Callosum

TIME for a quick trip down memory lane. Today I have an article published in The Sunday Times, my journalistic alma mater, and it’s been at least 10 years since I have written a piece for them. The occasion is to mark 50 years of the launch of the Sunday Times Business News section. I was asked, as former Technology Correspondent, to write a piece of the top ten technologies that have most changed the world in the last 50 years.

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A Hunch Over Lunch

I HAVE BECOME almost obsessively fascinated by the process of learning. I guess it stems from giving lectures, visiting schools, writing books that try to explain big subjects… – speaking with teachers – having my own kids – living with my own thoughts! It means, of course, that whenever I have time to read I almost always immerse myself in books about the human brain…

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The Omnivore’s Dilemma

MICHAEL POLLANS brilliant book of the same title does a noble job of fusing evolutionary biology with everyday life, but actually the issue goes a great deal deeper than a history of the world in four square meals. One of the most profound questions you can pose to a class of curious kids is to ask them to list the biggest differences they can think of between humans and other mammals.

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Connecting the dots of the past

CURIOSITY is our most precious natural instinct. It is how we learn all the most important life skills from talking to tickling from cradle to grave. But today knowledge is usually chopped up into separate subjects – into a timetable, a syllabus or curriculum – usually by adults who are addicted to measuring and recording a student’s progress through constant tests and examinations.

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All The World’s A Stage!

THEY ARE WITH us from the moment we are born (perhaps before?) and stay with us until the day we die. They define us. Most people would agree that without them we are not human. I am referring to feelings. Nothing is more fundamental to our being.

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Sunny Bonnington

IT IS ONE of the greatest privileges to spend all day with a range of children aged six to 11 and then the evening with their parents and the next day with their teachers in an teacher training workshop. If ever there is an opportunity to have an impact then surely this is it. The child, their parents and their teachers – all three points in the triangle of stakeholders surrounding any curious young mind.

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The Power of Non-Fiction

ENGLAND, WE HAVE A PROBLEM. According to the latest Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) education report our young adults have amongst the lowest literacy rates of any country in the modern industrialised world. England came 22nd out the 24 countries surveyed.

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It’s a small small world…

I AM BACK in Japan. This time just for a week, but it’s action packed. Six lectures in all, but the final one on Tuesday is the one that matters most. It’s at the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo, in front of an audience of about 600, where I get to give my take on the future of planet, life and people over the next 1,000 years in the light of a warming climate and the relentless rise in human populations.