How do children learn to speak? | David Didau

In chapter 2 of my book, Making Kids Cleverer, I discuss, David Geary’s theory of biologically primary and secondary knowledge. Human beings seem to possess various universal behaviours and characteristics common regardless of the specific culture into which they’re born. Geary’s theory suggests that such species-wide traits must have some root in evolution and he […]

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The Epistemology of English | David Didau

For some time now I’ve been thinking about how epistemology* – how knowledge is accumulated and divvied up – in English as an academic discipline. While I’m not at all sure that I’ve accomplished anything particularly profound or useful, I’ve identified four distinct areas which I’m calling metaphor, story, argument and pattern. These concepts underlie […]

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What’s wrong with Ofsted’s definition of learning? | David Didau

As everyone already knows, Ofsted have published a draft of the new Inspection Framework which is currently undergoing a process of consultation. Amazingly, one of the most contentious aspects of the document is definition given to learning: Learning can be defined as an alteration in long-term memory. If nothing has altered in long-term memory, nothing […]

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Does creativity have a dark side? | David Didau

Of course it’s desirable that students are able to identify problems, generate potential solutions, evaluate the effectiveness of those strategies, and then communicate with others about the value of the solutions. If you want to call this ‘creativity,’ so be it. But it may be that creativity isn’t always desirable. Kaufman and Beghetto argue in their […]

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Why smart people say stupid things: a response to Jack Ma | David Didau

Just in case you’re unaware, I’ve just published a book that explains the role of knowledge in thought. Rather than rehash the arguments in depth (there are a series of chapter summaries here) suffice it to say that no one, no matter how intelligent they believe themselves to be, can think about something of which […]

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Leading literacy masterclass: 1st March 2019 | David Didau

Since the publication of The Secret of Literacy back in 2014 I’ve been asked to visit a lot of schools to talk about how teachers can make sure they’re focussing on reading, writing and speaking as well as teaching academic content. In that time I’ve learned an enormous amount about how schools can successful implement […]

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