Reflections of 2020

So today we finally say goodbye and good riddance to 2020. We marked it with a lovely walk up on Devil’s Dyke (see photo above). My natural tendency is to look for the positives, but that can feel a bit forced, and a bit ‘everything is marvellous’. For me, the secret is probably the way […]

Depth, Dormancy and Permanence.

I had an interesting experience recently, which made me reflect on what I now think is an overly simplistic model of memory – namely the very common binary way to thinking about working memory and long-term memory. Here’s what transpired: My son recently asked for help with A-level maths homework. It was a bearings question, […]

Writing this is a RISK. But I believe in taking risks.

Deep breath… Ten years ago I left the security of a great job, a secure pension and a good salary to follow a dream. That dream was to become a support to teachers who didn’t yet feel the same love for mathematics that I did. I was fortunate. Part of that, I believe, is down to […]

What Price Mastery? The Place of Culture in Education

Much has been written recently, both about mastery and the way in which it is interpreted in different cultures. I have been fortunate enough to be able to travel widely both in the UK and abroad, and rarely miss an opportunity to learn about education wherever I go. While usually my trips are predominantly to […]

School. Or Education?

Education. Everyone in the world gets one. To doubt this is to confuse the concept of education with the idea of schooling. My view of education is perhaps a little different from many: I define it as the sum total of your experiences, how you choose to interpret them, and how you choose to respond […]

The Textbook Dichotomy

There has been lots of talk in recent months about the merits or otherwise of using textbooks in primary mathematics. Inevitably whenever such a contentious issue arises in education, differing points of view all attract their share of passionate advocates, and this particular issue has proved to be no exception. In my experience, however, things […]

Left, Right, Read, Write…

“Plus ça change”, say the French, “plus c’est la même chose”. It’s all go on the front benches, isn’t it? I have been engaging with politics more in middle age then when I was a young student (though admittedly we were all lefties in those days because protesting and perceived social injustice was the fashion). […]

Flipping Father’s Day: Maybe it’s a day to BE a father.

    Confession time. I have been looking forward to Father’s day as I do every year, and today was certainly a good day. But I read a disturbing piece on the internet this morning about a father who came to his senses and realised that he had become obsessed with his various headships.   […]

This Happened.

Yesterday something brilliant happened, which I think deserves a wider audience. Some of you will know that my brain does not work in the same way as many others, and one symptom is an extreme inability to retain visual memory. This means that if I put a cup of tea down somewhere I will instantly […]