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Follow Teachit on Twitter  Like Teachit on Facebook - the original English teaching site created for teachers by teachers. 11,000 pages of downloadable worksheets, lesson plans, audio materials, ICT tools, and much more.English Teaching News | February 11th 2011




We've given our newsletters a bit of a makeover this month ... picking the best bits and putting them all into one handy email. Let us know what you think!


Name the newsletter competition!

We hope you like our new-look newsletter ... the only thing missing is a nifty name. If you have a good idea for one, email it to us at The best suggestion will win a pack of ten lovely ponder prompting posters.

(PS We've already thought of Teachit News, English Teaching News and Teaching Cloud ...)


Ravishing resource of the week

Get romantic with this resource from our Poetry basics section: Fine amour - creating a love poem. Learn about the literary conventions of love poetry and write your own!


For even more ravishing resources, visit our Latest additions page.

What's hot in the staffroom?

Jemima wants to know how you're doing it ... share your controlled assessment experiences here.

Jess wants some help with a wider reading project for KS4 - what would you suggest they put on their reading list?


Whizzy and wonderful

Whiz up some Shakespearean compliments this Valentine's day with Teachit's Lovewhiz phrase generator.


Hitting the headlines: education news

Baccing students

Andrew Chubb, head of Archbishop Sentamu Academy in Hull is leading a rebellion against the English Baccalaureate. With just 15.6 per cent of all students last year achieving the required grades for an EBac, Chubb claims that we risk 'dividing our students into those who are seen as "academic" and those who are not.' He is supported by at least 30 other schools in his move to develop an alternative award.

'Resist, ignore, reject': rebel heads in call to arms on EBac (TES)

Library users are more literate

A study from the National Literacy Trust has shown that children who use the library are twice as likely to be above average readers. This finding adds strength to the Save Our Libraries campaign and, as Jonathan Douglas, director of the NLT says 'shows just how important a role libraries play in supporting literacy.'

Library use boosts literacy, shows study (TES)
Save our libraries campaign gathers pace (SecEd)
NLT Research


Brilliant books and riveting writers

Novel winner

First-time novelist Siti Brahmachari has picked up the Waterstone's Children's Book Prize 2011 for her novel Artichoke Hearts. The book, inspired by the author's mother-in-law, is about a teenager 'coming to terms with life, death and first love'. The Waterstone's prize is open to authors writing for seven to 13-year-olds and last year's winner was The Great Hamster Massacre by Katie Davies.

First-time author wins Waterstone's Children's Book Prize (The Telegraph)
Tribute to 'totally funky grandma' wins Waterstone's children's book prize (The Guardian)

Book tokens

Why not adopt a book at the British Library this Valentine's day? Show the bibliophile in your life you care! The adoption programme supports the conservation team at the library and will help 'preserve the world's knowledge for future generations.'

Best of Beryl

Beryl Bainbridge was shortlisted for the Booker prize five times and even nicknamed the 'Booker Bridesmaid' by the press, but now, the much-loved author will be celebrated with a special prize. The Man Booker Best of Beryl will invite the public to vote for one of her five shortlisted novels.

The Man Booker 'Best of Beryl'
Vote for the Man Booker Best of Beryl


Competitions and other lovely things

Entries for the Young Film Critic 2011 are now open. Run by Film Education, the competition is open to UK students aged 4-19 and is supported by some useful classroom resources.

14th Feb is the deadline for the Young Human Rights Reporter 2011 competition. Encourage your roving reporters to write a compelling human rights article. Top entries will be published and showcased at the Amnesty International UK Media Awards.

25th-27th Feb: Take a trip to London over half term for the NATE conference. The line-up of workshops, seminars, walks, talks and exhibitors looks great. You can book your place on the NATE website.

3rd March is the closing date for entries to the Chris Evans Breakfast Show's short story competition - '500 Words'. It's open to children aged 13 or under and they also need teachers to volunteer as judges!

30th April marks the deadline for entries to The Book Drum Tournament. This rather splendid competition has £2250 of prizes on offer for teachers (and students) who build the most impressive illustrated profile for a book of their choice.

Want to find out more about your membership? Check that you're making the most of Teachit with our Big Fat Ticklist!


What’s on!


The Review Show
Martha Keaney and guests discuss environmentally themed plays Greenland and The Heretics and review David Vann's novel, Caribou Island.
Friday 11th February

Faulks on Fiction
In the second episode of the series, Sebastian Faulks explores the role of the lover in British fiction discussing novels such as Tess of D'Urbervilles, Pride and Prejudice and Wuthering Heights. Read a sample chapter from the accompanying book Faulks on Fiction here
Saturday 12th February

Girl with a Pearl Earring
Scarlett Johanssen and Colin Firth star in the critically acclaimed film adaptation of Tracey Chevalier's bestselling novel.
Sunday 13th February


Poetry Please
In the fourth episode of the series, Roger McGough presents a selection of poetry written to stir the senses. Featuring works by Coleridge, Cavafy, Larkin and Plath.
Sunday 13th February
BBC Radio 4

Words and Music
The Opium of the People

Literature and music exploring faith and atheism. John Sessions and Claire Harry read works by Nietzsche, Larkin, Marx and Darwin to a soundtrack of Beethoven, Strauss and Janacek.
Sunday 13th February
BBC Radio 3

Mrs Dalloway's Party
Mrs Dalloway in Bond Street

The first in a three part adaptation of Virginia Woolf's short story sequence. Sylvestra Le Touzel reads the first story which follows Mrs Dalloway as she prepares for a party later that evening.
Tuesday 15th February
BBC Radio 4

In the first episode of a seven part dramatisation of Bram Stoker's novel, Jonathan Harker and Mina begin their ordeal in Transylvania. Starring Bernard Holley and Frederick Jaeger.
Thursday 17th February
BBC Radio 7


A new film adaptation of Graham Greene's Brighton Rock is in the cinemas now.

Never Let Me Go, a film based on Kazuo Ishiguro's bestselling novel, opens in cinemas today. The Guardian is running a 2 for 1 tickets offer until Monday 14th Feb.




A Doll's House
24th February - 12th March 2011
The Lowry Theatre, Salford

A Flea in Her Ear
4th December 2010 - 5th March 2011
Old Vic Theatre, London

The Complete Works of Shakespeare (abridged)
9th - 19th March 2011
Questors, Ealing's Theatre

19th - 26th March 2011
Garrick Theatre, Stockport

Dancing at Lughnasa
22nd - 26th February 2011
Coliseum Theatre, Oldham

Doctor Faustus
4th February to 26th March 2011
Creation Theatre, Oxford

Twelfth Night
11th January - 2nd March 2011
National Theatre, London

Doctor Faustus
12th - 19th February 2011
Questors, Ealing's Theatre

The Importance of Being Earnest
9th September - 22th October 2011
Birmingham Repertory Threatre

Lord of the Flies
19th May 2011 - Sat 18th June 2011
Open Air Theatre, London

The Rivals
29th November 2010 - 26th November 2011
Theatre Royal Haymarket, London

To Kill a Mockingbird
28th February - 5th March 2011
Mayflower Theatre, Southampton

The Woman In Black
7th June - 17th December 2011
Fortune Theatre, London

Recently published

Half Brother by Kenneth Oppel

Matched by Ally Condie

A Web of Air by Philip Reeve

You Against Me by Jenny Downham

Tall Story by Candy Gourlay

The Enemy by Charlie Higson

Halo by Zizou Corder