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John Connor
South Devon
Former teacher, adviser and inspector, now a freelance consultant, author and trainer
Interests: music, film, wildlife, good food and wine, hill walking, Everton FC (all-consuming), all things hispanic and latin american.
Recent Activity
The possibility of having to teach film in the new languages A Levels puts yet another strain on language teachers. Yet another discipline in which many will have no expertise, it joins the ranks of politics, economics, sociology, environmental studies and historywhich we are all required to teach without necessarily... Continue reading
Posted Jun 20, 2016 at Meanings that matter
I stumbled across this by accident, looking for the text to the poem. There is no dialogue. no voice-over, so it occurred to me that it would be a useful exercise to give students the lines of poem on cards, jumbled up, for them to reassemble in the correct order... Continue reading
Posted May 26, 2016 at Meanings that matter
We have anew White Paper. It's called "Excellence "Everywhere". I would add a third E - for "Except". There is so much to unpick that it's difficult to know where to start. A quick run down a few policy ideas, then: Strengthen ITT content - presumably away from those unfortunate... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2016 at Meanings that matter
Ever since James Nottingham introduced the idea in 1999, the concept of "The Learning Pit" has gained significant traction in schools. When coupled with other ideas such as John Hattie's "Visible Learning", Carol Dweck's "Mindset" theory, Vygotsky's "Zone of Proximal Development" and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's (I wish I knew how to... Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2016 at Meanings that matter
Explanation Writing - The Learning Pit from Pembroke Dock Year 5 on Vimeo. Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2016 at Meanings that matter
Dear Ms Morgan I write to express my grave concern over the perfect storm that is set to engulf the assessment and qualifications sector of the English education system. Let me preface my remarks by saying that I am not defending the status quo, nor am I opposed to change... Continue reading
Posted Jan 2, 2016 at Meanings that matter
Well it's over now. The General Election has been done and dusted for over a month. I don't know which of us was more shocked and disappointed at the result, me or David Cameron. Leaving aside some of the more sinister features of this Tory majority (is 36% of the... Continue reading
Posted Jun 16, 2015 at Meanings that matter
This presentation came about as a result of pondering on the age-old cry of many pupils: "I'm no good at (insert language of choice)." It's difficult to persuade pupils otherwise, when they perceive that being "good at" languages is the result of innate talent or ability. If I haven't got... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2015 at Meanings that matter
Thanks to Dominic McGladdery for the heads-up! Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2015 at Meanings that matter
Below is the presentation I gave to a webinar organised by the inimitable Helen Myers for ALL London branch on Friday 9 May 2014. Michael Gove take note - 25 language teachers, including colleagues from Uzbekistan and Brazil, coming together for an hour and a half on a Friday night... Continue reading
Posted May 10, 2014 at Meanings that matter
Languages – it’s a guy thing from Bootleian Continue reading
Posted May 10, 2014 at Meanings that matter
The Voki below was made for a GCSE revision session on listening with about 40 Y11 pupils in Trafford LA. Asmaller group of students taking Spanish were introduced to María from May 2010! Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2014 at Meanings that matter
To shanghai - to force someone to do something or go somewhere (Cambridge English Dictionary). After yet another less than subtle critique of teachers in England, Liz Truss and several academy cronies whisked off to Shanghai to see how maths should be taught "properly". The driving force behind this fact-finding... Continue reading
Posted Mar 13, 2014 at Meanings that matter
Mant thanks to Twitter friend @SylvieBRawlings for drawing my attention to this hilarious clip. The power of non-verbal communication, or to coin a phrase (with apologies to Alison Krauss) "You say it best when you say nothing at all." Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2014 at Meanings that matter