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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney.

On this week's Inside Education I bring you another chance to meet with Jane Shimizu where she tells us about her participation in Science on Stage over the midterm break. We also discuss the participation of her class in the Scoil Féile Drámaíochta. From research I bring some insights around education and sleep following my reading of Matthew Walker's book, Why We Sleep.

Among the topics I discuss with Jane Shimizu are the following:

  • Her participation in the Science on Stage Festival this week in Portugal, representing Irish teachers.
  • Getting children interested in science through space using projectiles and rockets
  • How she makes mouse, toilet roll, air, straw and foam projectiles with her class
  • The science and maths that can be based around foam projectiles
  • Making predictions and recording answers to questions
  • Using controls and the importance of fair tests
  • How she times activities to coincide with Space Week.
  • Sharing work with other classes and hosting a space display day for parents.
  • Structuring lessons around projectiles and rockets and how they provide integration opportunities with several other curriculum subjects.
  • What happens when questions arise to which she does not know the answer.
  • Online resources: https://www.dltk-teach.com/, https://www.safesearchkids.com/.
  • Her school’s website. Here are some of the links Jane recommended.
  • Recommended sources for ideas and materials for teaching about space and science from ESERO and Science Foundation Ireland.
  • Her class, which is in a school serving an area traditionally associated with disadvantage, participates in An Féile Scoildrámaíochta by entering a musical each year. Because many of the available scripts are intended for students in Gaelscoileanna and Gaeltacht schools, Jane writes her own scripts for her class.
  • How she prepares the class during the school year for staging the musical

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune: David Vesey

My guest on the programme this week is my colleague in Marino Institute of Education and the person behind the social media identity, Little Miss Teacher. She is Clara Fiorentini and we talk about play, literacy, phonics, early years education and much more. Here are the topics we discuss and the times at which they appear.  

  • Why she started posting on social media (1’33”)
  • Her thoughts on the new language curriculum and her interest in literacy, especially early literacy (7’00” and 24’11”))
  • A typical day in her classroom (with a focus on literacy activities)
  • Different kinds of play 12’03”
  • The kind of stories she used in her teaching (14’35”)
  • Phonics and literacy instruction (16’22”)
  • Literacy in more senior classes (21’42”)
  • The phonics programme she participated in developing, Sounds Like Phonics (23’46”)
  • Her approach to teaching (26’48”)
  • Returning to study for a master’s degree in children’s literature (29’50”)
  • What schools are for 33’41”
  • A teacher who had a significant impact on her (34’48”)
  • Who inspires her (39’13”)

Among the resources and materials mentioned by Clara were the following:

Farmer Duck by Martin Waddell

Goodnight Mr Tom by Michell Magorian

David Walliams

The book with no pictures by BJ Novak

Rita Pierson – Ted Talk – Every child deserves a champion

Jen Jones on picture books

 

My recommendation:

Podcast: Speak-Up Storytelling with Matthew and Elysha Dicks

Book: Storyworthy: Engage, teach, persuade and change your life through the power of storytelling by Matthew Dicks

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune by David Vesey

On this week's programme I continue my conversation on teaching literacy in the early years with Dr. Tara Concannon-Gibney from Dublin City University. The occasion was to mark the publication by Routledge of Tara's book Teaching Essential Literacy Skills in the Early Years Classroom: A Guide for Students and Teachers. Among the topics we discuss on this week's programme are:

  • Her definition of literacy
  • Digital texts and literacy
  • Why some children struggle with reading
  • How parents can help their child to read
  • How a parent should react to a child reading when the child comes to a word that is not known
  • Advice for choosing a book for a child
  • The benefits of repetitive reading of texts
  • Poetry and literacy skills
  • How she became interested in the area of literacy
  • How she went about writing the book

In the course of our interview Tara mentioned texts by the following writers: Mem Fox, Georgia Heard, Lucy Calkins, Oliver Jeffers, Hervé Tullet, and Julia Donaldson.

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune by David Vesey

The guest on this week's programme is Dr. Tara Concannon Gibney who is an assistant professor in Dublin City University. The interview is to mark the launch of Tara's new book Teaching Essential Literacy Skills in the Early Years Classroom: A Guide for Students and Teachers, which is published by Routledge. Among the topics we discuss this week are the following:

  • Why she wrote the book
  • Phonological awareness and how to develop it using games
  • Using big books to teach literacy (e.g. Owl Babies)
  • How to teach phonics
  • Sequence for teaching phonics
  • Developing fluency
  • Teaching concepts of print
  • Tier 2 vocabulary
  • Comprehension strategies – Gradual release of responsibility model
  • High frequency – Dolch - words
  • Guided reading literacy centres
  • Role of play in developing language and literacy

 

 

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme music composed and arranged by David Vesey

This week I bring you the second part of my interview with Katie Ashford Deputy Head of Michaela Community School in Wembley Park in London. The wide range of topics we discuss include the following:

  • Michaela Community School Building
  • The Teach First Programme
  • Starting a blog, which led to a job offer
  • Personalised Instruction and whole class instruction
  • Her blog posts
  • A typical day
  • Family Lunch (at school)
  • What she likes most/least about teaching
  • Her ideal English lesson
  • What schools are for
  • Teachers who had a significant impact on her
  • Who inspires her

Katie also referred to Tom Bennett's blog and to books by Daisy Christodoulou and Daniel Willingham.

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney.

On this week's programme I speak to the main author of An Irishman's Diary in The Irish Times, Frank McNally. Frank was a keynote speaker at the 42nd annual conference of the Literacy Association of Ireland. Among the topics covered in the interview are the following:

  • Why Frank's family members were known by the nickname the “College” McNallys.
  • Among native English speakers, why only the Irish and the Scots use the expression “Amn’t I?”
  • Doing two Leaving Certificates and no Inter Cert
  • Doing a masters degree without doing a bachelors degree
  • How he goes about writing An Irishman’s Diary in The Irish Times
  • The books he read while attending the “University of Life”
  • Two English teachers who had a significant impact on him

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney.

On this week's programme I welcome back a guest who was on the programme before, Brendan Culligan. Brendan was a keynote speaker at the 2017 annual conference of the Literacy Association of Ireland. His presentation was titled “More than one hundred and twenty five years of Crushing ‘Garlic’!" - in which he honours the memory of an educator who had insightful ideas about teaching spelling.

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney.

On this week's programme I spoke to three people who presented workshops at the 2017 Annual Conference of the Literacy Association of Ireland. They were Claire Dunne from the Marino Institute of Education, Damien Quinn from seomraranga.com and Anne Burke from Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada. Among the websites mentioned on the programme were:

Children's Literature Association of Ireland

http://bookcentre.ca/

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13586750-bully

Kidblog software

Animoto

 

 

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney.

My guest on this week's programme is Laureate na nÓg, PJ Lynch, who is also an award-winning illustrator and author. I spoke to him on the occasion of his giving the keynote address at the 41st Annual Conference of the Literacy Association of Ireland, which held its conference in Marino Institute of Education on October 5 and 6 this year.

During the interview Pj Lynch referred to many children's illustrators and authors, including:Louise O'Neill, Derek Landy, Eoin Colfer, E.R. Murray, Matt Griffin, Nicola Pierce, Mo Willems, Lisbeth Zwerger, Sandy Turner, Oliver Jeffers, Chris Haughton, Niamh Sharkey and Marie Louise Fitzpatrick. He also mentioned the book, Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn.

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney.

On this week's programme philosopher and retired primary school teacher, John Doyle, explores his relationship to the Irish language. It's a complicated picture but one that he attempts to portray because it informs his teaching of the language. He considers such excavation for teaching as being like the preparation a boxer does in the gym before stepping into a boxing ring for a fight. The essay is abridged in order to fit in the 30-minute duration of the radio programme.

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