Raising attainment through entertainment

Punctuation and Grammar News

Quite simply, this page is to keep you updated with any developments with our products, news about literacy, or maybe just a few things that we hope you find amusing.

Eight and a Half Tips for NQTs

If you’re not happy about something, do something about it.

This is probably one of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever been given.  It applies to anything in life and is equally appropriate in the classroom.  The thing you’re not happy about could be a child’s behaviour, your workload or an abrupt member of staff, but no matter what it is, it won’t improve itself.

Get to know the people you work with.

And by this I mean the kids.  People might not like this, but adults and children really aren’t all that different: we all want to be liked and we all want people to be interested in us.  Invest some time getting to know a little bit about each child in your care.

Own your space.

Look at the room you’re working in.  Does it inspire you?  If not, it certainly won’t inspire anyone else.  Populating the area with learning prompts is great, but don’t forget to have areas set to display pupils’ work as this will inspire them.  Inject a little bit of yourself in there too.  

Use a seating plan.

There are many reasons for this.  The reason you give to the pupils is that it helps you remember names and get to know them.  The real reason is that it doesn’t matter how good your lessons are, they’re more interested in their best friend than they are in you.

Focus on the long game.

You will have pupils misbehaving; you may be sworn at; you might even be punched or kicked.  You will not get revenge, so don’t expect it.  You cannot control the behaviour of others; you can only manage it.  Put on a smile and diffuse any situations and then look for ways of making sure the same thing doesn’t happen again.

Do things your way.

You may have a colleague whom you admire.  Perhaps they make planning look effortless, or maybe they simply walk into a room and silence falls.  It’s likely that these super powers have been developed over years of struggle and hard work.  Concentrate on finding what works for you.  If you’re reading this, you’ve probably passed your degree, QTS and possibly found a teaching position - you have lots going for you

Make time for yourself.

I remember people telling me “You won’t have ANY free time.”  What nonsense.  Teaching is a busy job.  It’s busier than most, particularly at peak times of the year, but in the midst of all of that planning, you need to plan some time for yourself.  As with any profession, some people will take advantage if you let them. Don’t.

Enjoy yourself.

Know that you make your living making people’s lives better and smile.

A lovely visit to Christ Church CE Primary School.  Staff and pupils were lovely and very welcoming.

An article from October 2012 that appeared in the TES about The Punctuation Show.

The Sunderland Echo article from 2011 when The Punctuation Show visited Seaham School.  A great time was had by all.

A newspaper article from the Evening Chronicle written in October 2011.  You can see how much fun the pupils have from the pictures!

An article about The Punctuation Show by the Northern Echo from September 2011. The show took place at Risdedale College in Catterick and was a roaring success.  The pupils were fantastic.

A small article on the Mac based studio I use to create all of the resources and write all of the songs used in The Punctuation Show.

Don’t forget to read Michael Rosen’s view of Mr Gove’s performance here:


Check out our Flickr Feed at www.flickr.com/podcastrevision

All the posters are available on the website.

Oh dear.  Just to clarify, I haven’t gone into the ice-cream business.

Should have gone to the Punctuation Show.

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Our mission is to raise attainment through entertainment. We aim to please in everything we do and will go out of our way to provide outstanding customer service.

Contact us to see how we can help you improve your pupils' literacy skills.

Mission Statement:

Raising attainment through entertainment.
Learning through laughter.


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Barrie McDermid
Barrie is an English teacher, musician, exam marker, husband and father.

He believes that learning is better when it's fun.
This page was last updated on: 20/05/2018