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We get excited about what we do - talking to teachers, and authors, chatting with pupils and turning conversations and ideas into practical educational series. Find out more about our guest bloggers.

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10 texts to spark a lifelong love of reading

Author of our English for the More Able series, Vicky Burrill, picks out 10 books to engage and inspire your students.

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Rising Stars are thrilled to be sponsoring NACE’s English for the more able conference

Our partners NACE are hosting an entire day of talks and workshops designed to help you challenge your more able learners through the primary English curriculum. Find out more about the conference and receive a special discount if you book before the 9th of February.

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15th December - Big Cats

For 12 days in December, Rising Stars is giving you a fantastic free English lesson plan to use with your pupils! Today's free lesson plan uses Annabelle Lynch's Big Cats.

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14th December - Room for a Little One

Martin Waddell's Room for a Little One is the basis of today's free English lesson plan!

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Deepening children’s understanding of maths

It is important to say from the outset that depth of understanding of maths should be a goal for all and not just the most able children.  Differentiating for the most able should not necessarily be fundamentally different tasks.  Certainly, those children should have opportunities to deepen their conceptual understanding of an area of maths but why not have that expectation of all children?

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2nd December - Mapping Europe

For the 12 days of advent, Rising Stars are bringing you a fantastic English lesson plan idea to use with your pupils. Today's is based on Paul Rockett's Close-up Continents: Mapping Europe. Our thanks to Maddy Barnes, Assistant Head Teacher at Sacred Heart Catholic School and English Consultant, for her superb lesson plan!

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Working Memory Training

This is the final article in our working memory series. Our thanks to Dr Richard Skelton for this fantastic article on working memory training.

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Choosing texts for more able children

Teacher and author Vicky Burrill looks at the challenges of choosing texts for more able children.

She writes: It can be a minefield.  Balancing trickier and more complex language with a suitable subject matter can be very hard. Jumping a year or two ahead in vocabulary often means that the topic of the book is too advanced. In this instance, classics are a great option as they offer solid stories, detailed settings and characters but lack the shocking issues or grown up topics of many modern books for older children. 

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Working Memory and Attention

Difficulties with concentrating means that children aren’t able to use their Working Memory to process and make sense of information in class, which can lead to underachievement across the curriculum, including literacy and numeracy.

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E-safety competition - we visit the winning school!

Back in the summer term, the Switched on Computing team ran an e-safety competition to promote the safe, responsible and positive use of digital technology. We sent out a free e-safety poster to all schools, challenging children to design their own e-safety poster! The brief was clear – it needed to be colourful and eye-catching with a strong e-safety message.

After much consideration, the judging panel (including HES and Switched on Computing author Miles Berry), announced Alex from Smawthorne Henry Moore Primary School in Castleford as the winner! They were really impressed with the creative design, attention to detail and the positive e-safety message. As a prize, the poster was recreated by one of our top designers and professionally printed.

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