Month: March 2019

A Christmas Carol – Key Quotes – GCSE English Literature

This is an important quote if you’re talking about Ebeneezer Scrooge. We get the idea that he’s not used to talking to people in this positive way. Although Scrooge is talking to another character, this quote illustrates the theme of isolation, as it reminds us that he used to be solitary and is only now trying to be sociable and positive.

“Spirit!” he cried, tight clutching at its robe, “hear me! I am not the man I was. I will not be the man I must have been but for this intercourse. Why show me this, if I am past all hope!”

This is the moment where Scrooge finally changes. It takes place in stave 4.

This is another good quote if you’re talking about Scrooge. He has woken from his experience and, although no traces of the ghosts remain, Scrooge remembers everything and that is enough for him to believe. This quote is from stave 5.

This quote is from stave 2. It relates to the theme of choice.

“I don’t know what day of the month it is!” said Scrooge. “I don’t know how long I’ve been among the Spirits. I don’t know anything. I’m quite a baby. Never mind. I don’t care. I’d rather be a baby. Hallo! Whoop! Hallo here!”

He was checked in his transports by the churches ringing out the lustiest peals he had ever heard. Clash, clang, hammer; ding, dong, bell. Bell, dong, ding; hammer, clang, clash! Oh, glorious, glorious!

This is an important quote, as the image of a bell appears frequently throughout the story.

Here’s another good quote for Scrooge. He’s talking to Fred and being as stubborn as ever. Fred just sees Scrooge as a member of his family, and he wants to have some form of relationship with him, even if he’s not a pleasant man to spend time with. This quote is from stave 1 and it’s great if you’re discussing the theme of family.

What are your favourite quotes from A Christmas Carol?

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The Winslow Boy – Character Quotes – Catherine – iGCSE English Literature

Here are some useful quotes from Terence Rattigan’s The Winslow Boy. This post focuses on Catherine Winslow.

This quote is from Act 1. Catherine says this in response to Grace, who asks: “You’re such a funny girl. You never show your feelings much, do you? You don’t behave as if you were in love.

It’s a useful quote to learn, as it tells us a lot about Catherine and Grace. It also relates to the themes of family and the media.

CATHERINE: Not a verbal protest. Something far more spectacular and dramatic. He’d had his feet on the Treasury table and his hat over his eyes during most of the First Lord’s speech – and he suddenly got up very deliberately, glared at the First Lord, threw a whole bundle of notes on the floor, and stalked out of the House. It made a magnificent effect. If I hadn’t known I could have sworn he was genuinely indignant –

ARTHUR: Of course he was genuinely indignant. So would any man of feeling be –

CATHERINE: Sir Robert, Father dear, is not a man of feeling. I don’t think any emotion at all can stir that fishy heart –

This quote is also helpful if you’re discussing Arthur Winslow or Sir Robert Morton. Plus, it relates to the themes of principles, women and the media.

This quote obviously relates to Dickie as well. It’s also a good one for the theme of family.

DICKIE: Suppress your opinions. Men don’t like ‘em in their lady friends, even if they agree with ‘em. And if they don’t – it’s fatal. Pretend to be half-witted, then he’ll adore you.

CATHERINE: I know. I do, sometimes, and then I forget. Still, you needn’t worry. If there’s ever a clash between what I believe and what I feel, there’s not much doubt about which will win.

Again, this quote is also useful if you’re talking about Dickie.

This quote is also useful if you’re discussing John Watherstone. Plus, it relates to the themes of family and women.

CATHERINE: You don’t think the work I’m doing at the W.S.A. is useful?

ARTHUR is silent.

CATHERINE: You may be right. But it’s the only work I’m fitted for, all the same. (Pause.) No, Father. The choice is quite simple. Either I marry Desmond and settle down into quite a comfortable and not really useless existence – or I go on for the rest of my life earning two pounds a week in the service of a hopeless cause.

This quote also applies to the themes of principles and women.

Here, Catherine is talking to Sir Robert Morton about the possibility of her working in the courts one day.

What are your thoughts on the character of Catherine?

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SATs Spelling List

attempts – carriages – engines – foundations – hedges – materials – pieces – stripes – visitors

Plurals – change the y to an i, add es

tries – cries – stories – babies – activities – carries – cherries

hunting – buzzing – jumping – dressing – emailing – eating – teaching – doing – learning – cooking

ly words

actually – carefully – extremely – frequently – generally – highly – importantly – particularly – smoothly – thoroughly

challenging – escaping – including – moving – raising – wrestling – amazing – preparing – phoning

When c sounds like s

audience – centre – excellent – medicine – necessary – silence

beginning – planning – stopping – shopping – fitting – running

biggest – largest – nastiest – tallest – widest – warmest

helped – asked – enjoyed – pulled – looked – jumped – floated – groaned – spilled – kicked – parked – mended – barked – stamped – picked

Verb Endings: double the last letter, add ed

grabbed – occurred – planned – slipped – trapped – stopped

tried – cried – worried – carried – qualified – satisfied

Verb Endings: Just add d

arrived – disguised – excited – illuminated – judged – released

Which words have you recently mastered?

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Romeo & Juliet – Characters: Romeo. iGCSE English Literature

Here is a handy info-graphic containing some key information about the character of Romeo in Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet.

What do you think of when you imagine the character or Romeo?

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Handy (free!) Apps and Websites to Help Make Maths a Habit

Most of us have habits. Some are good, some are bad! Maybe you bite your nails? Do you instinctively have a cup of tea in the morning, or a glass of water in the evening?

You can do the same with maths! Now that we have an app for anything and millions of websites, it’s never been easier. We can even allow the apps to send notifications to encourage us!

I have put together my own list of personal favourite apps and sites for you to try. I have tested them all, and I don’t pay for any of them. This is a completely honest list; I have not been asked to endorse any site or app.

I have been using Khan Academy for years and I always recommend it to my students. You can use it through the website, but there is also an app. I think the website is a lot better at this stage.

The great thing about Khan Academy is that it spans so many levels. It starts at “kindergarten” and goes up to university level. For each topic, you can work through unlimited practice questions, read through lessons, watch informative videos and read tips. You can do all or some of these, so it suits all learning styles.

I have used Khan Academy with students as young as six and they love it. Older students also find it very helpful. It’s easy to spend a few minutes or a few hours on the site and it’s all completely free.

Transum Mathematics is a big website designed for maths teachers, but the Starter of The Day page is great for students. They have a different maths puzzle for every day of the year. Many are what I would consider to be brain-teasers, which can be really fun to get stuck into as a family.

The difficulty varies from day to day, but I think most of the activities suit anyone from Key Stage 2 to adult learners. Of course, the fact that it’s a daily puzzle is something that can help you to build your maths habit! Every day might be a bit much, but perhaps you could try every other day, or every weekend.


There are many websites and apps to help you improve the speed and accuracy of your times tables, but I particularly like this site. It’s very simple and allows you to choose which tables are included, how many questions are asked, and whether you have multiplication questions, division questions or a combination of the two.

It also records your speed and accuracy, so it’s really good for building that habit! Why not try ten questions a day? That’s probably only a minute or two. Record your score on a note on the fridge and get other family members involved. We learn our times tables at primary school, but I find that many older students need to brush up on these skills too.

Most people think of Memrise as a tool for learning languages, but it has loads of maths courses too! You can use Memrise through the website or by downloading the excellent app.

The content is made by other users and there is a premium (paid) option, but I’ve always found the free account to be more than helpful. You can allow the app to send you notifications, so it’s great for building our maths habit!

Courses range from multiplication to GCSE and each can take anywhere from 35 minutes to 81 hours to complete! I think the style of Memrise is very enjoyable and makes learning any subject into a game.

It’s great for other subjects too, so have a little explore and add the courses you want to try.

I’ve been using Elevate a lot recently and I love it. It’s described as a brain-training app for adults, but I think it’s great for KS2 & 3 students and adults. You can practise your maths and English skills through very quick and fun games.

It tracks your high scores and you can unlock new games by doing well in each subject. Again, you can allow the app to send you notifications to help build your maths habit!

The app does have a premium option, but the free version is great if you just want to do a little each each day. I did sign up for the free trial when I first started using the app, and this allows you to play all of the games as much as you want. I would recommend saving the free trial for a school holiday or just before an exam so that you can get the most out of it.


Tinycards is similar to Memrise, in that you can learn all sorts of things through this app and website. I prefer to use the app and it’s great if you only have a few minutes to spare.

Courses vary from multiplications and fractions to equations and trigonometry.

Have you tried any of these apps or websites? What did you think? Can you recommend any others?

Let us know in the comments below!

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Guided Reading Questions – KS2 and KS3

Think about the last book or story that you read. Can you answer some of these questions?

Tell us in the comments below!

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English Language – Parts of Speech

Grab the nearest book and pick a sentence at random. Can you figure out what type of speech each word is?

Let us know your sentence in the comments below!

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