Plan ahead for playtimes by checking the weather forecast (Met Office)

According to the weather forecast (Met Office) it appears that pupils across the UK will be spending some of their playtimes indoors for the next few weeks as cold, windy, snowy and rainy weather is predicted.

To see if your pupils’ playtimes could be affected by the weather, you can find a summary of the weather forecast in your region at the links below.

Central, Tayside & Fife Northern Ireland
East England Orkney & Shetland Islands
East Midlands South West England
Grampian Dumfries, Galloway, Lothian & Borders
Highlands & Eilean Siar Strathclyde
London & South East England Wales
North East England West Midlands
North West England Yorkshire & Humber

If in fact it does look likely that your pupils will be spending some of their playtimes indoors over the next few weeks, it might also be worth checking your school’s stock of wet play games, activities and equipment.

As wet play resources may only be used a handful of times each year, we have produced a number of wet playtime packs which carry significant savings compared to when the play resources are bought separately.

You can choose from our extensive range of wet playtime packs, which include:

Primary Wet Playtime Pack – saving of £14.95 (18%)
Junior Wet Playtime Pack – saving of £14.50 (17%)
Infant Wet Playtime Pack – saving of £14.35 (17%)
Classroom Favourite Pack – saving of £7.00 (20%)
Popular Games Pack – saving of £4.00 (17%)

What’s more, if you’re reviewing your current wet playtime policy, Edventure has written a policy document to support schools with this process. For a copy of the document, please click here.

As always, you can place an order with Edventure in a variety of ways, including:

  • on the website
  • by faxing us to 01323 50 10 41
  • by calling us on 01323 50 10 40
  • by emailing us at    
  • by post to Edventure Ltd, Hargreaves Business Park, Hargreaves Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN23 6QW.

If you quote HH0515 on your order delivery will be free. Without quoting the code the charge is £3.95.

Viking assembly and writing workshops

Bring the Vikings to your hall with an interactive assembly followed by writing workshops. Pupils will go on a Viking raid, meet the skald (storyteller) – and hear tales of heroes, myths and monsters. Finally two bands of Vikings do battle with a fun quiz.  I’m a children’s author who teaches creative writing in schools, so I can also answer their questions on writing and perform short extracts from my books Beowuff and the Dragon Raiders.

The assembly is a perfect primer for story writing workshops where pupils will write their own stories. We’ll use the innovative Accelerated writing method (as used by Creative Writing Club).

As well as the Vikings, other topics include: the Stone Age, the Bronze Age, the Iron Age Celts, the Greeksthe Egyptiansthe Romansthe Celtsthe Anglo Saxons, the Aztecs, Mayans, the Great Fire of London, Flooded world (natural disasters), the Normans, the Tudors, the Victorians, Shakespeare, Traditional tales, the Rainforest and many more.  I’m an ex-BBC editor and I can also offer workshops on factual writing (using a historical frame).

About me
I’ve written 14 books for children, over a wide age range (Y1-Y9) including: Spartapuss (Romans), Beowuff (Anglo Saxons vs Vikings) Olympuss Games (Greeks), Boudicat (Celts), Cleocatra’s Kushion (Egyptians).  My graphic novel ‘London Deep’ was chosen as a Recommended Read for World Book Day. I co-wrote the musical version of Julia Donaldson’s books The Gruffalo and Room on the Broom. I’ve led writing workshops for Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust and The Young Archaeologists Club. Check out my profile on Love Reading For Kids:

  • No school is too large or too small
  • I am DBS checked and I have insurance cover.

For dates and prices please call 0845 838 5526 or email

Please reply to this email with ‘Vikings’ in the subject line and I will send you my free PDF
‘7 Tips for story writing
and a Viking writing frame.


Every week we answer the key questions that music teachers are asking. And we do it all without charge.

Each week we look at a key issue in the work of music teachers in primary and secondary schools across the UK, dealing with questions such as how to help a non-musical parent encourage a child to practise an instrument at home.

Or how exactly to measure whether KS3 students are improvising and composing at a suitable level to satisfy an Ofsted inspector.

Or returning to the sort of questions parents can ask, how to answer the question, “How do I know if my child is really talented?” Or indeed, “what can I do for a student who is very talented musically but simply can’t sight read?”

All these questions and many more will be tackled each week in the free Music Education Newsletter which is published with the kind support of Caswell’s Strings.

To read the letter all you have to do is click here – there’s no form to fill in, although if you find anything that we are doing helpful, it would be great if you could log in and tick the “like” button.

What we really want to do is discover topics of concern and answer any questions you may have by simply putting your question on the newsletter (we won’t publish your name or email address – just your question) and then publishing the replies from fellow music teachers.

So if you want thoughts on tackling a particular set work, the best value to be found in primary school percussion instruments, suitable insurance policies for instruments that are carried to and from school by pupils and students, or anything else to do with music education, we’re hoping we will be able to help you find the answer.

And again, let me assure you that the newsletter is free and will remain free. There’s no sign up, and no catch about a “one month free trial…” – this is a free service.

To read the letter all you have to do is click here

If you would like to talk to us about the newsletter please email and if you would like to know more about our sponsor (without whom we couldn’t be running this service) you can read about them here.

Jenny Burrows

Understanding what dyscalculia is can allow schools to help sufferers improve their maths and obtain reasonable results in their examinations

It is a strange but true fact that while most of us working in schools have come across dyslexic children and adults, many teachers have not had direct contact with anyone who is dyscalculic.

And yet dyscalculia is not only a genetic issue, as is dyslexia, it is also as common within society at large as dyslexia.

So why is it that we don’t come across dyscalculic children as often as dyslexic children?

The reason is probably that many schools recognise that they have a small number of children who are poor at maths because they have missed some schooling or failed to grasp specific lessons.

The nature of the subject, which is of course utterly cumulative, means that some children fail to grasp certain concepts simply because they failed to grasp what went before.

This is, of course, utterly different from English, where the fact that I might not be able to spell “was” does not mean I won’t be able to learn “because”.  In maths, however, if I can’t do division I will struggle to understand fractions.

Furthermore there can be social reasons why children do poorly at maths.  Missed time at school can be more detrimental in maths than in most subjects, and there seems to be a greater tendency for parents to suggest to their children that they never understood maths at school, so it just “runs in the family”.

In short there are many reasons why dyscalculia might not be seen as a special need but rather as a consequence of parenting, poor attendance, etc.  As a result specialist tuition and support may not be given as early as it might be with dyslexia.

Understanding Dyscalculia: An Introduction for Schools examines the five main causes of dyscalculia and sets out the methods of working available which can help pupils overcome their dyscalculic problems. The book contains short sections which can be photocopied to give out to other members of staff in school, to worried parents, and to governors, so that everyone can share in the awareness of what dyscalculia is, and how it can be tackled.

Above all the book shows that once we understand and accept the causes of dyscalculia we can adopt appropriate methods of teaching to overcome the problem. Research suggests that most children who gain appropriate help in school can overcome their dyscalculic difficulties and achieve an acceptable grade in secondary school examinations, thus allowing entry into further and higher education.

The book, which is available in copiable form so that it can be shared with colleagues throughout the school, is published by the Dyscalculia Centre, a leading provider of teaching materials for dyscalculic individuals. The Centre also publishes a range of books for special needs teachers working with dyscalculics, and provides on-line testing facilities for pupils and students who are thought to be dyscalculic.

There is a sample chapter available on-line at

Cat No: 978 1 86083 614 5;  Publisher reference no: T1628emn


  • Photocopiable report in a ring binder, £24.95. plus £3.95 delivery
  • CD with school-wide rights: £24.95 plus £3.95 delivery
  • Both the Ring Binder and the CD £31.94 plus £3.95 delivery
  • Prices include VAT.

You can purchase the book…