My summer holiday: writing a book!

So, what have we been up to over the summer? Well, the answer is: quite a lot. You may have noticed the more streamlined website. Well that was thing number one. Do let us know what you think. The new website was designed in part to help promote a new project: Gather Round. Gather Round offers workshops and training to schools, with storytelling at its heart. Tuition has continued and Ruth and Paul have worked with West of England Homestays, tutoring French students in English for the 3rd year running. We have also done a bit of relaxing fun with … Continue reading

6 tips for writing an essay introduction

“How do I write a good essay introduction for my exam?” I have been working on essay writing with many students in the run up to the exam season and if there is one piece of information that I could give students writing essays for exams, be they GCSE, A level or even degree it is that the introduction is key. A good introduction is perhaps the most important element for an exam essay. It does not need to be long. It does not need to be complex. It does not need to be ‘clever’, but there are a few key things … Continue reading

Online English sessions

Today we are launching the first of our small group online tuition sessions. Aimed primarily, but not exclusively at home educated children, the sessions will run via Skype and Google docs and cover a variety of English skills. The first set of sessions will look at analysis; how to analyse a variety of texts; the point of analysis, both for examination and in real life; and how to write analytic texts. These sessions will not be aimed at any particular exam board or specification, but will give children an overview of the skills, theory, practice and purpose of analysis. The … Continue reading

What makes a good tutor?

If you want to invest time and money into tuition, you want to be sure that it is good tuition.  You want to make sure that the tutor is good. The big question is, however, what are you looking for and how do you tell?  Here are ten tips to help you choose a tutor. Relationship You need to have a good working relationship with a tutor.  Perhaps the most important things for the success of a learning relationship is that the tutor and tutee can work together. Having a good working relationship can mean different things to different people, … Continue reading

The importance of play

I was reading a paper today, published back in 2012, by Dr David Whitebread from the University of Cambridge. The paper is entitled “The Importance of Play” and it is a review of evidence surrounding children’s need for play. It is interesting to read this report at a time when headlines over the first part of this year have been suggesting that we seem to be heading for earlier and earlier formalised learning and less space for play, as children are not ready when they start primary school. Dr Whitebread’s report opens “‘Play’ is sometimes contrasted with ‘work’ and characterised as a … Continue reading