English Literature Summer School 2019 Booking Now Open

A wonderful opportunity for students aged 15-18 with a passion for literature to discover a range of new authors and texts, explore fresh approaches to familiar works and to prepare for undergraduate study of English Literature.

“I absolutely adored the summer school – it was completely inspiring and I enjoyed every second of it! I would have done the week over and over! I would recommend to anyone interested in literature, no matter whether experienced or not because you will, without a doubt, come away from the course with a passion for literature that will never leave you!”

The English Literature Summer School – Part 1 will cover literature dating from 650AD to 1790AD, including Middle English, Medieval Literature, Chaucer, The Renaissance, Shakespeare, Restoration Literature and the Rise of the Novel. In addition we will also be covering Historicist and Feminist critical approaches as part of this Summer School.

The English Summer School – Part 1 will be held on the 29th July – 2nd August – you can see a schedule for the course here.

The English Literature Summer School – Part 2 will cover literature dating from 1790AD to the present day, including Romanticism and the Gothic Movement, Victorian Sensation Novels, Literature and the British Empire, Modernism, Postmoderism and Contemporary Literature. We will be covering the ‘Death of the Author’ and Postcolonial criticism as part of this Summer School.

The English Summer School – Part 2 will be held on the 5th – 9th August – you can see a schedule for the course here.

Please note that students can attend both Parts of the Summer School, or either one, depending on their literary interests. Although the courses complement one another, they can also be treated as stand alone events and there is no requirement to have attended Part 1 in order to register for Part 2.

The material will be challenging, about the level of difficulty one might expect in the first year at university, but a relaxed atmosphere, with plenty of discussion, debate, and opportunities for students to shape the direction of classes creates the perfect environment for getting to grips with new ideas. Working in small groups (usually around 12 students per class) over five days means a real chance to get to know tutors and fellow students and to explore the topics or questions that particularly interest each individual.

This Summer School is suitable for all students aged 15-18 with a love for literature!

“The Summer School was really fantastic. I had the chance to explore Old English which I was interested in, but had not fully explored. I now have so many ideas and further reading lists to look at especially for my personal statement which is very helpful indeed. The tutors are all experts in their fields and create an engaging, challenging environment. Highly recommend.”

“This was the second time I had done a Debate Chamber course, and it was just as good as the first. I really love the sequential nature of the English course, especially as it helps so much in placing texts in their historical and inter textual contexts. I particularly enjoyed the Measure for Measure session because we were able to all explore many of the problems and themes in the play in a very liberating and intense way. I loved the debates that were generated. I also really enjoyed the Anglo-Saxon session because it was an introduction to something I had never covered before, and which also introduced me to some excellent early feminist writers (Margery Kempe!). Every day I came home absolutely buzzing and it really helped cement my desire to take English Literature at university. Thank you so much to all the tutors and the rest of my group for making this week a brilliant and memorable experience.”

Read more reviews from previous English Literature Summer School students here.

Practical Details:

All the Summer School events will be held at University of London venues in Bloomsbury, Central London, and will take place in July and August 2019. Please note that these courses are not residential, and accommodation must be arranged independently if required.

You can find full details of schedules, dates, costs, student reviews and tutors at https://debatechamber.com/project/english-literature-summer-school/Please note that there is a limited amount of bursary funding available for students who would otherwise have financial difficulty in attending.

To book a place please visit http://www.debatechamber.com/, call us on 0800 810 1058, or email info@debatechamber.com. Places will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

Is it really possible to portray the entire PSHE syllabus in one hour… on stage?

Apparently yes, it is possible, because so far over 100,000 secondary school students have watched the theatrical presentation “Alphabet of a Teenager” in their own school.  Feedback from teachers has been universally positive.

What these students have seen is a production that covers 36 PSHE issues in one 60 minute performance.

The play follows a teenager as he reflects on how his life has changed over his time at school, the friends he’s made along the way, and the trials and tribulations of teenage life.

The performance encompasses drug and alcohol education, emotional health and wellbeing, work-related learning, racism and cyber safety.

Alphabet of a Teenager was put together with a consortium of educators, writers and performers, ensuring that it works for pupils and students every time – and with productions having taken place in over 800 schools, we can certainly verify that this is the case.

There are also optional follow up workshops which delve deeper into the issues raised.

To find out more about this performance please visit https://qsworkshops.com/workshops/alphabet-of-a-teenager/ or you can call me at anytime on 020 8088 0717.

What is the one factor that all parents are concerned about when it comes to schoolwear?

When it comes down to it there are two factors that parents can be concerned about, although sadly one of those factors is something that we can do nothing about.

The issue beyond our control is, of course, the unavoidable reality that all children grow, which means schoolwear has to be replaced year by year.

That obviously can’t be avoided, but the other issue – that is the quality of labels, embroidery, and print that is added to school clothing – is very much under your control.

Which is a rather important factor, for there is no doubt that the one thing that annoys parents almost more than any other is the quality of anything that is added to their school uniform purchases.

And the simple fact is that the quality of labels, embroidery, and print on school garments can vary from one supplier to another.  Indeed, as you may well have found, embroidery and print are services that many firms claim to offer, but not everyone gets it right.

The simple fact is that we are the specialists in this area of work including embroidery without minimum quantities, heat transfer printing, direct to garment digital printing, bespoke garment labels, and of course nametapes.

If it is labels and tags that you are interested in you will be able to find out more on our specialist web page

You can also find out more about each of these areas on our website – from this page you will find at the top links to the rest of our work.

Alternatively you can call us on 01208 833 070, fax 01208 781 158 or email wovina@aol.com and we’ll be pleased to quote you.


For the past twenty years or so, trim trail play equipment has been incredibly popular within school playgrounds and for good reasons – it caters for a wide range of children aged 4-11; it can easily be added to as funds allow; it is easy to install; some items do not require safety surfacing which can be quite expensive and it promotes physical and mental awareness.

Up until now, the standard material used for this type of play equipment has been timber and usually rounded log as this avoids any sharp edges for children. Whilst this is a pleasant material to work with, it also has its disadvantages too in that rounded posts suffer quite badly from radial cracking where the wood dries out from the pith (centre), causing shakes and splits which can open up quite considerably in the summer months. And more importantly, posts which are dug into the ground without the proper protection will eventually rot over a period of time and render the playground unsafe to use…or even condemned in worst case scenarios.

But there is now a new alternative and that is adventure trim trails made out of recycled plastic instead of timber. Recycled plastic has quite a lot of advantages for a school to consider when considering value for money – firstly, it is incredibly eco-friendly as it is manufactured out of recycled plastic milk cartons which very much complements the whole eco schools programme and teaches children about sustainability. It does not rot even when dug into the ground whatever the conditions; it is hard to vandalise; it lasts about five times longer than other materials; it is UV resistant and does not suffer from the afore-mentioned shakes & splits; it is splinter free and it is virtually maintenance free (so some big savings to be made for a school’s annual maintenance budget).

The trim trail range includes products such as stepping stones; traverse crossings; balance beams; play towers; multi-faceted activity cubes; spring boards; net climbers; log weavers; clatter/net bridges and fitness trails.

We have therefore put together some recommended trim trail packages but a school is also able to have their own “pick n mix” trail comprised of a selection of our individual products within the range.

And we can also provide for any attendant safety surfacing if so required.

The Hideout House Company  also offer other products in the recycled plastic range including planters, mud kitchens and tables, sandboxes, dipping pond platforms and tables.

If you would like to know how we can help your school develop its playground, then please contact the Hideout House Company on 01832 275902 or email: info@hideouthouse.com.

Young Fashion Designer Making Waves For A Big British Brand

Have you ever wondered what its like to be a fashion designer of an international brand? Well now, you don’t have to. With a phenomenal presence as an online retailer for both menswear and womenswear, several stores across the UK and entities in Spain and America, we were welcomed into the office of Emma Kenyon — a leading fashion designer at QUIZ.

Her life at work is everything you would expect it to be and more — she’s like the real-life Miranda Priestly. But nicer of course. So, if you’re studying fashion or want to make waves in the industry, this is the girl boss that you should be looking up to and we have all the deetz you’re dying to know.

How long have you worked at QUIZ?

Wow, you’re testing my memory now! I’ve been at QUIZ for around five years now — I guess time flies when you’re having fun. It’s interesting how I got to work here actually, I’ve always respected QUIZ as a brand and how it influenced my fashion choices when I was younger, so I rang up the HQ and told them that I thought I would make a great addition to their team even though there were no positions available, I secured two interviews and done a huge presentation in front of the decision makers!

What is the first thing you do when you arrive at the office?

Equipped with my coffee, I check out what has been selling that week and which styles have really taken off with our customers. This is really important from a design perspective, because once we know the type of items of customers want, we can tailor future products to those specifications!

What do you spend most of your time doing?

My aim is to create something that people feel proud wearing, so I spend a lot of time researching new shapes and taking inspiration from luxury brands. It’s important to strike a balance between affordability and the latest trends so that our customers can always have an up-to-date wardrobe at a low cost while not compromising on the quality of our garments.

What is the best part of your job?

Every designer will say this, but the best part of the job is seeing something that you’ve worked on go from development to fruition in stores. I love scrolling on Instagram and seeing lots of people wearing the dresses I have designed on their nights out!

Where do you get your design inspiration from?

There’s so much inspiration out there, but I mainly look towards trend forecasting agencies, international brands, catwalks and of course — Instagram!

What makes a great fashion designer?

If you want to be a fashion designer, a key interest in the industry is essential. You’ll need a lot of motivation, the ability to pick commercial trends and be able to know your customers like the back of your hand!

Did you study fashion related courses?

You should always work hard in all of your subjects as this can really open up more opportunities for your future. I did GCSEs and A-Levels in Textiles, then moved on to an Art and Design course at college where I specialised in fashion. Then, I went to university for four years and got my fashion design degree!

What advice would you give to someone who wants to work in fashion design?

Getting experience is essential, reach out to companies and ask if they offer internships! Before QUIZ, I completed an internship at House of Holland in the lead up to London Fashion Week where I learnt pattern cutting. As well as this, I also worked in John Lewis’ head office as an intern where I learnt CAD design skills. Take as many opportunities as you can — it will look great on your CV!

Volcanoes, dunes and cities

Of all the subjects on the curriculum, Geography must be the one that most demands its students to get out of the classroom and into the field.

As well as the ever popular Iceland, we offer tours to Germany to study urban planning and coastal geography.

Take a look at Geography study tours to whet your appetite, then give us a call to talk through your needs.

Culture Trails

Travel House, Llwynmawr, Llangollen LL20 7BB

Tel: 01691 886161 e: geography@culturetrails.co.uk


Accredited online keyboard skills training for pupils with an optional funded qualification.

Learning to type with speed and accuracy is one of the most useful skills a young person can learn.  It increases their confidence in using a computer, whilst enabling them to concentrate on learning content rather than typing mechanics.

For sixth-formers looking forward to entering further or higher education or employment, it is a skill that will prove to be invaluable.  A skill that will give them an advantage in the short term and then last a lifetime.

At Type&Test, we’re the UK’s foremost provider of online typing training and assessment tools for learners of all ages and abilities.   We offer engaging online learning, delivered through a dedicated secure portal, with up to 60 hours of varied content, pre and post assessments, tracked and measurable results, and an optional accredited qualification that is eligible for funding.

To find out more, with no obligation, please complete and submit our schools enquiry form.  Or just browse our website at www.typeandtest.com


Andy Stevenson, Director.
Type&Test Ltd

017683 42821



History Summer Schools 2019

The Debate Chamber Summer Schools offer students age 11-18 the opportunity to find out more about some fascinating subjects, prepare for university applications, meet like-minded peers and get to grips with some tough intellectual challenges.

The material will be challenging (about the level of difficulty one might expect in the first year at university), but the atmosphere will be relaxed, with plenty of discussion, debate, and opportunities for students to shape the direction of classes. It is an environment conducive to getting to grips with new ideas.

Working in small groups (usually around 14 students per group) over several days offers participants a real chance to get to know tutors and fellow students and to explore the topics or questions that particularly interest them.

Highlights of Summer 2019 for students (aged 15-18) interested in History:

The History Summer School is an intensive five-day course which looks at historiographical questions and historical methods, using seminars, lectures, activities and informal discussions. Topics are selected to challenge and broaden the historical outlook of participants, and give a taste of what the subject is like at undergraduate level.

See more details of the History Summer School here.

The Classical Civilisations Summer School looks at the ancient worlds of Greek and Rome from a range of perspectives, including politics, international relations, literature and philosophy. On this course we try to convey both the radical strangeness of the classical world, and to look at the legacy in modern times of ancient thinkers, ideas and institutions.

See more information about the Classical Civilisations Summer School here.

In addition to the those highlighted above, we also have Summer Schools in International Relations, Politics, Economics, Philosophy, English Literature, Law, Medicine, Dentistry, Maths and Physics.

Practical Details:

All the Summer School events will be held at University of London venues in Bloomsbury, Central London, and will take place in July and August 2019. Please note that these courses are not residential, and accommodation must be arranged independently if required.

You can find full details of schedules, dates, costs, student reviews and tutors at www.debatechamber.com/summerschools/.

There is a limited amount of bursary funding available for students who would otherwise have financial difficulty in attending – please see our website for details.

To book a place please visit www.debatechamber.com/summerschools/, call us on 0800 810 1058, or email info@debatechamber.com. Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis.


What is the single biggest problem that comes from the need to deliver a new assembly every day? 

During the course of their primary school lives most children will take part in over 1000 assemblies.

Which provides a significant challenge.  How can one ensure that each day’s assembly has an immediate impact on each child, and then additionally ensure that some of these assemblies have such an impact that they will be remembered for months (and sometimes even years) to come?

This is the issue that schools face every day through the school year, and it is the issue we looked to solve when we created Assembly Box.

The aim has been to create a series of 350 outstanding assemblies that really engage the pupils and which they will remember over time.

Each assembly is fully scripted and the collection comes with a complete index so that you can choose your assembly by topics as diverse as community and citizenship, saints’ days, black history, social and emotional stories and so on.

What’s more each assembly comes with its own supporting presentation material, and a set of ready-to-use key word cards.   The assemblies can be downloaded and printed out, thus making them immediately usable without further preparation.

You can see a complete list of the 12 main categories our assemblies are divided into here on our website, and from there you can go into each categories and see  the details of all the assemblies on offer.  Just visit http://www.assemblybox.co.uk/

You can also read a full example of one of our assemblies by following this link

The complete set of all of our assemblies costs £149 (+ VAT).  Order on line at www.assemblybox.co.uk

If you have any questions please email enquiries@assemblybox.co.uk

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Let’s make Shakespeare come alive for the next generation

Responding to a number of enquiries, I’ve been busy working on a new interactive production for younger students who are about to embark on their Shakespeare studies. Working title: Introducing… Mr William Shakespeare

The concept is straightforward – make Shakespeare come alive through an exciting, fun session that imparts knowledge and encourages creativity. I’m planning a production that fills up a half day, has actors playing out short scenes, is full of fun facts and has students thinking and working creatively with each other. In other words, a session that leaves students enthused about the bard and prepared to study his works.

I’d love to talk to you about this, and how bringing the production to your school might help your students get ahead of the game when it comes to working on their Shakespeare texts.

The fist draft of the content is currently with colleagues at a couple of local schools for their feedback. We will be finalising this soon and then touring the production during the summer term.

In the meantime, there’s still time to book our touring productions designed with the needs of GCSE students in mind. These are…



Feel free to call me on 01789 777612 or email: ad@fred-theatre.co.uk to discuss any aspect of Fred Theatre playing at your school.

Robert Ball
Artistic Director
Fred Theatre

PS: For more information, please visit our web site: www.fred-theatre.co.uk/schools

Major anniversaries in 2019

Hard to believe that it’s 2019 and there isn’t a child in the world who was alive in the twentieth century!

So many anniversaries this year, all of which give even more reason, if you need more reason, to take your students on a study tour.

Amsterdam will be celebrating Rembrandt, and Paris (Louvre) – Leonardo.

The centenary of the founding of the Bauhaus suggest that this is the year to visit Berlin, Weimar and Dessau.

Take a look at Art study tours to whet your appetite, then give us a call to talk through your needs.


Culture Trails

Travel House, Llwynmawr, Llangollen LL20 7BB

Tel: 01691 886161 e: art@culturetrails.co.uk

Why reading poetry on-line is not reading poetry

If we consider the works of the great poets of the language – Blake, Burns, Byron, Chaucer, Keats, Shelly, Tennyson, Wordsworth, Shakespeare etc etc – all of it is available to read on-line.

But in a sense it is also not available on-line.   By which I mean it is there, but not in a way that the student can use.

Of course, one can find a particular poem and read it on the screen.  One can also print the poem out – but interestingly very few students do this.  What they do is read on-line, and then, if asked to write a commentary or critique, they cut and paste.

None of this activity takes them anywhere near the words as the poet intended. The overall impact of the poem as a unified whole is lost, and the value of the work in our culture is reduced to the same level as the distracting Facebook message that pops up in the corner of the screen while the student is reading on-line.

There is in fact every reason to encourage students to read poetry in book form.  And of course, not just the poetry that is part of the syllabus but other poems written by those whose work is being studied.

Which is why printed editions of the works of poets are still very much required if the student is to get a serious understanding of what the poet was saying.

And thankfully the printed editions are not only still available, they are available at very modest prices, so every school can have new editions of the collected works of the greatest poets throughout the history of English literature.

Not just those poets listed above, but also Kipling, Owen, Wilde, Whitman, Yeats and many more.

Our works include reprints of the classics from as little as £2.99 each, after deduction of our 25% school discount, with no delivery charge and no minimum order.

If you would like to see our full list of poetry collections please take a look at this page from our website.

Ordering our books couldn’t be easier, as they are supplied for us by Bookpoint Ltd, where nearly all schools will have existing accounts. You can find full details on our website.

And we also have our offer of a free book just in case you have not come across Wordsworth Editions before.  To receive a free sample of one of our classics without any obligation please do email education@wordsworth-editions.com with your name and the school address, and we’ll put it in the post to you with our compliments.

What is the simplest way of ensuring that parents fully appreciate the excellence of your students’ work on stage?


While most of the energy in drama productions is taken up with rehearsals there is one factor that can hugely affect how the final work is appreciated by the audience.

And it is, unfortunately, a factor that can on occasion is overlooked because of the sheer volume of work involved in putting on a production.

This factor, quite simply, is the lighting; a factor which can totally transform any stage event from something that is rather good, into something that is extraordinarily brilliant.

However, lighting can be forgotten, it is not necessarily seen as being instrumental in enhancing the quality of the event and the enjoyment of the audience. There are, after all, enough other issues to worry about.

This is the key subject we specialise in: the installation of lighting systems into schools that will transform any production from the smallest school nativity play to the largest all-school end of year show.

But there is more for we also understand how value for money is essential. We don’t over engineer a project but we will leave room for expansion. And we’ll ensure that the end user is able to operate the system with confidence and always offer backup and support.

We stay in touch with the latest technology and we’ll do the research so you don’t have to. Plus we have our own team of installation and service technicians with a proven track record and reputation.

However perhaps the best bit is that you can also have a free no obligation site visit for schools within 60miles of our Birmingham base. And we are happy to quote for venues further afield.

You can take a look at some of our recent work here

or to start the exploration of what possibilities there are simply drop us an email with details of what you have in mind.

dgh@centraltheatresupplies.co.uk   Or you can call us on 0121 778 6400

Are you looking to pursue a career in the jewellery industry?

From goldsmiths to CAD designers, read on as we look at the various career paths you could follow to be involved with creating stunning pieces like wedding rings and necklaces.

The UK jewellery industry could be one that you find yourself working in if this is a passion of yours. In fact, over 55,000 people are employed within this industry and make up over 16,000 businesses. Have you considered the different roles in the sector?


To be a goldsmith, you need to enjoy being practical by working with your hands, as you’ll be forming metal into different shapes. Patience is also required, as you’ll need to be concentrating for long periods of time on one object. You may also be asked to make changes to jewellery to meet a client brief, so persistence is also key. Being able to create technical drawings is an advantage too and something that is sought after by some employees, depending on the company.

It’s important that you’re a team player too, but happy to work independently as well. It’s likely that you’ll be working with other craftspeople on different projects but will also spend time perfecting pieces on your own.

This is a highly skilled job, so training is necessary. On the job experience is key here and although gaining qualifications will help develop your industry knowledge, it may not help develop your skills in the way that you need them. The best way is to learn from other professionals, either through an apprenticeship or by spending time in industry.

As their names suggest, goldsmiths and silversmiths are skilled in making jewellery out of gold and silver respectively. A Master goldsmith is highly skilled in working with precious metals using a variety of techniques.

Independent jewellers

Some people decide to go solo when it comes to making jewellery and set up their own business. This is usually done as an additional job or a hobby, but some people are successful in making a career out of it.

There are many sites out there that focus on arts and crafts and appeal to a market that wants something truly unique. You can teach yourself how to make jewellery pieces, and experiment with different materials to find your niche.

If it’s something that you’re passionate about, you can start your own website and possibly supply your goods to others in the future! If you want to be your own boss, this could be for you.

CAD designer

Developments in 3D printing and Computer Aided Design (CAD) means that there are more technical roles becoming available in the jewellery industry. There is now a requirement for people who can use these digital tools with precision in the design and manufacturing process.

These types of software are able to create prototypes of models, which go on to be made into 3D designs and castings. Jewellery that is designed with this sort of technology uses state-of-the art equipment and is drawn with precision like no other. The designs are then sent to mills, printers and growing machines, where they come to life with the help of 3D wax or resin.

How can you get CAD training? There are courses online and ways that you can gain a CAD qualification from home. Alternatively, get in touch with your local vocational college and see what related courses they have to offer.

Jewellery designer

Jewellery designers are usually involved right at the start of jewellery creation. Depending on the size of the business, designers may have to discuss a brief with the client and liaise with them through to completion. Individuals in this profession use their artistic abilities to bring an idea to life, either by hand or using Computer Aided Design, also known as CAD (see below).

Many designers create models out of the jewellery, which will go on to be mass produced in a business-to-business trade or given to the customer for a bespoke design. It could also be part of the designer’s job to source gemstones, metals and other jewellery parts to create their proposed piece.

This is a role that’s very competitive and not often advertised, so networking and building contacts in the field is a good idea to get started. You’ll find that many jewellery designers have foundation degrees, or bachelor’s degrees in related subjects which looks at modules such as metalwork, design and metal design.

For students who learn best on the job, apprenticeships are also available. Again though, these are increasingly competitive. And, for those who are looking to learn jewellery design alongside other commitments, there are short courses available at colleges and private providers, but these aren’t usually as in-depth or may take longer to get to the level that an apprenticeship or degree qualification would provide.

More specific roles

In larger jewellers that deal with making a lot of new products or making repairs and alterations, there are a lot of specific roles. You might find your niche in jewellery making and find that you want a more specialised job. These roles again require patience and working with your hands.

  • Engravers — skilled in the art of engraving, they can engrave lines words and other markings onto jewellery pieces
  • Enamellers — apply powdered glass and heat to the metal to create decorative finishes
  • Bench jewellers — make, repair and alter items
  • Model makers — design and create models which are used to make numerous copies or an item through the casting process
  • Casters — generate multiple casts for the production process

Do any of the roles discussed in this article take your fancy? Start networking and build your portfolio to better your chances of breaking into the industry.




Mathematics Summer School 2019

Our Maths Summer School offers bright and aspirational students the opportunity to study a variety of advanced topics in pure and applied mathematics that are not typically covered by the school syllabus. The course is particularly appropriate for students who may be considering further study of mathematics, but is also a great addition for those interested in related disciplines, such as physics, computing or engineering.

This Summer School offers the chance to explore some of the most exciting ideas in contemporary mathematics. As a general structure, students will develop a theoretical understanding of a particular branch of mathematics in the morning session, before exploring the practical applications of these ideas in the afternoon. 

Mathematics – Part 1 focuses on Number Theory, Algebra and Geometry and is open to all students aged 15-18. Topics will include prime numbers, Riemann-zeta functions, polynomial equations, non-Euclidean geometry, group theory, statistical methods, probability theory, algorithms, Turing machines and code-breaking. As part of this programme, students will explore some of the most fascinating and famous unsolved problems in mathematics, including the Riemann Hypothesis, Goldbach Conjecture and Twin Prime Conjecture.

Mathematics – Part 2 focuses on Calculus, Proofs and Infinities and requires that students have completed a minimum of one year of A-level study in Mathematics (or equivalent) at the time of the course. This programme offers a university-style approach to the topics of linear algebra, modular arithmetic, limits, multi-variable calculus, mathematical induction, set theory and cryptography. During the course, students will explore some of the most exciting modern-day applications of these ideas, including quantum encryption, RSA algorithms, Google PageRank, the Black-Scholes equation and Gödel’s incompleteness theorem.

Classes are small, typically containing twelve to fourteen students, all of whom should have a passion for mathematics, a curiosity to build on their existing knowledge and be keen to embrace and exchange new ideas. Classes will focus on problem questions and exercises, creating a comfortable environment for students to share ideas amongst their peers and to progress from their existing knowledge toward more challenging material.

The Mathematics Summer School will be held in late July 2019. You can find detailed schedules, available dates, costs, student reviews and tutors on the course webpage – here.

Feedback from previous students:

If you love Mathematics and are thinking of taking the subject at A-level and beyond then do not hesitate to attend this course. I came away from this week with crazy enthusiasm for maths as well helpful guidelines and knowledge to support my career in the subject. I made some great new friends and met inspirational maths-minded people who I will never forget!’ 

‘Even though we only spent one day on each topic, they were taught at a surprising level of depth. I felt that in in my time at Debate Chamber, the main focus of the tutors was for you to learn about new topics you wouldn’t usually study at school. In school, the main focus of the lesson is to learn a topic to a level that is sufficient for you to be able to solve problems in a test. Instead, in the summer school I felt encouraged to ask questions, to understand the logic behind the mathematics, why it works, and the underlying importance of the concepts learned in the real world.’ 

‘You won’t regret it! If you love the subject, you’ll love the entire week. It gives an unparalleled taster into university mathematics and allows you to explore some absolutely fascinating concepts – some of which will be almost entirely alien to you! The teachers were excellent, and the friendly atmosphere ensures that everyone has a great time. I wish I could go again’ 

‘The Mathematics Summer School is a great introduction to maths at university. During the five days, I was presented with a variety of new topics in mathematics which had not been covered in the A level course. I would highly recommend attending the Debate Chamber Summer School, as it gives you a great opportunity to look at other areas of maths.’ 

‘This is a great event as it gives you lots of exposure to university style teaching and ideas, really testing your knowledge and dedication to your subject. The tutors guide you through it, pushing you to your full potential but in a fun and engaging manner. This course is definitely worth taking part in.’


Debate Chamber is committed to ensuring that financial circumstances do not prevent any student from attending our events. For details of how to apply for bursary funding, please see here. 

Practical Details

All of our courses will be held at University of London venues in Bloomsbury, Central London. Please note that these courses are not residential, and accommodation must be arranged independently if required.

The Mathematics Summer School will be held in late July 2019. You can find detailed schedules, dates, costs, student reviews and tutors on the course webpage – here.

To book a place students can complete the online booking form, call us on 0845 519 4827, or email us at info@debatechamber.com. Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

A guide to offering extra support to pupils with musculoskeletal disorders

Musculoskeletal disorders compromise of sore joints to aching bones and inevitably, this can have a significant bearing on a person’s quality of life. It’s important for schools to look at how many of their own students are affected by these sorts of conditions and consider carefully what they can do to help.

Do you have procedures in place to cater to students with such problems? If not, then it’s something you should consider developing and implementing for 2019. In addition to that, you must also ensure that such conditions aren’t caused by the environment of your school premises.

Read on to find out more about ways that schools can help those who suffer from such pain, as well as preventative action they can take to stop these types of disorders developing.

Musculoskeletal disorders can cause attendance issues

Research shows that 45% of musculoskeletal disorders are to do with the upper limbs or neck, 38% to do with the back, and 17% involve the lower limbs. There is a downward trend of musculoskeletal disorders per 100,000 from 2001 to 2017, but it’s still an issue that must be considered. If one of your students suffers from a musculoskeletal disorder, they might have issues with their attendance.

How can schools take action?

What can schools do to make learning and achieving goals more possible for these students? And potentially reduce the number of days missed from attending school?

Can your pupils complete some of their work at home?

Completing class work exercise at home is one area that you could look into if your students with musculoskeletal disorders have issues with attendance. Provide them with learning materials in a digital format and a face-to-face chat via Skype, to ensure they don’t fall behind which could lead to further pressures and strains.

If the students are not based close by the school, alleviating them from a commute to school every day could be beneficial. Instead, students can stay at home where they may feel more comfortable and get on with their studies — reducing stress and promoting wellbeing.

If you create a system, allowing your students with musculoskeletal disorders to complete their work at home when necessary, they’re likely be more flexible and attend any doctors and physio appointments in their own time. Perhaps their rehabilitation centre is closer to home than it is from school, and less time may be spent getting to and from their sessions than if they were travelling from school lessons.

Can you buy specialist equipment for your students?

To help make your students more comfortable in the classroom, why not buy specialist equipment to help them out? Examples of these include:

  • Sitting or standing desks — Giving students the option of a sitting or standing desk is one way to help. For some, standing upright may be more comfortable than sitting in the same position for a prolonged period.
  • Ergonomic keyboard — These are designed to reduce muscle strain and should be offered to employees. For sufferers of musculoskeletal disorders, tasks that may be easy for some such as using a keyboard, mouse or pen can be difficult for someone who suffers with repetitive strain injury for example. Those with arthritis and carpal tunnel syndrome may also struggle with these types of tasks.
  • Lifting assistance — Where lifting and carrying books or art materials is concerned, to and from class or the library for example, offering assistance with heavy lifting can be helpful. A trolley for example can help students transport objects that they might be struggling with. This may relieve shoulder pain for example and can help prevent further injury and strain.
  • Other equipment — By talking to students, teachers can find out about other types of specialist equipment that could be helpful — tailored to each person and their needs.

Could your school offer free therapy?

For back pain relief and mental wellbeing, could you potentially offer your students complementary therapy? Your school may already offer different types of therapy but is it specific to sufferers of musculoskeletal disorders?

This could also help reduce stress levels for individual students and increase the number of days spent in school. There is a clear link between musculoskeletal disorders, mental health and lifestyle productivity. In fact, depression is four times more common amongst people in persistent pain compared to those without pain. Ensuring that all students have someone to talk to if they are feeling under pressure is important and encouraging positive energy throughout your group of students with social events can also help. If students are feeling extra stress, it could be worth looking into hiring extra teaching assistants or referring the students for therapy for example.

Why not encourage yoga lessons too? There are many ways that schools could encourage their students to participate in this exercise — through organised classes at lunchtimes or after work, or through funding the classes. Although expensive, it’s possible that this extra exercise will help manage pain levels and offer relief, boost wellbeing and reduce the number of days missed from school.

Other ways that you can support your students

Making sure that your students feel valued is essential. What else can schools do to support their students with musculoskeletal disorders?

  • Promote good communication inside and outside of school — teachers should take time to learn about each of their students and their individual issues and requirements. This way, appropriate changes can be made within the school environment, which can encourage students to come to their teachers with problems and suggestions.
  • Recognising and being aware of the conditions early on — If a student has recently been diagnosed with a musculoskeletal issue, they should be encouraged to tell their school as soon as possible. This allows for the school to intervene early and get the measures in place that will encourage the student to return to school and learning as soon as they can.
  • Creating a ‘return-to-school’ programme — For those who have sustained an injury, creating a phased return could be beneficial for them. This reduces the risk of them taking a long period of leave from school through appropriate adjustments in their learning environment.
  • If you have someone with such conditions, you must be aware of the triggering factors. Teaching staff should encourage their students to take breaks or move away from their desks/chairs frequently (at least once every hour).

Author bio

Lee Dover is a senior copywriter at Mediaworks with an interest in healthcare as well as researching into healthier ways of living. He has a BA (Hons) in Magazine Journalism.




State of Musculoskeletal Health 2017 report — Arthritis Research UK


What’s the simple and cost effective way to help maths lessons be more productive,  both for teachers and students…….? 

Every now and again I get to chat with  teachers and one of the topics that often crops up is why some students don’t  bring a pen, pencil, ruler etc to their lessons.  They tell me that this leads to wasted time and a measure of disruption,  even before teaching has begun.

In an attempt to solve this problem there’s  now a  product called the “Value Maths set ” which, as the name suggests, contains all the basics that students need for their  maths lessons.

Consisting of  two quality black ink ballpens, a full length HB pencil, eraser, 15 cm ruler, 180 degree protractor, metal compass and half pencil,  and a sharpener, all packed in an  A5 size, clear PVC “exam friendly” wallet with a zip slider.

From just £ 1.25 each (ex vat) the “Value Maths set”  is a convenient and cost effective solution to the problem of students who haven’t brought the correct kit to their maths lessons.  Ideal to give or sell  to students at the start of lessons or at the start of a school day………  also very useful for exams.

Full details of the “Value Maths set”   can be found on the website:       www.signposteducational.co.uk 

You can order by email:  signpost@talk21.com  or by phone on tel: 020 7515 1797

Signpost Educational Ltd.,   PO Box 999   London   E14 6SH

What is it that the very best assemblies do at the very start?

Of course there are many answers to that question, but there are two answers that always seem to stand out.

Two issues which, if met, really enhance the chances of the children understanding and remembering the core message within the Assembly.

First there is the issue of how the assembly starts, which determines how much focus the child gives to the proceedings that follow.  And second there is the way the child’s attention is kept, which of course determines if the child follows the proceedings all the way through.

Obviously you don’t need me to tell you this, but the problem is that with the pressure to think up a new assembly every day it is occasionally possible to focus primarily on what the assembly is about, rather than how one is gaining and holding attention.

It was in thinking about this issue of not only providing assemblies that deliver an important and interesting message to the children about their lives, but also of producing assemblies that grabbed and held attention, that my colleagues and I began to work on the Assembly Box.

We wanted to create assemblies that were original, which met the social and emotional needs of the children who attend them, and which grabbed and held the children’s focus from the start to the finish.

In working through this idea we have produced a set of over 350 assemblies with each one categorised and indexed, each of which is instantly available and fully scripted.

You can read a full example of one of our assemblies by following this link.  Additionally you can see the complete list of the categories and from there you can go into each category and see the details of all the assemblies on offer.

All the details are available at http://www.assemblybox.co.uk where you can also order online. The complete set of all of our assemblies costs £149 (+ VAT). If you have any questions please email enquiries@assemblybox.co.uk

Debate Chamber Summer Schools 2019 – Booking Now Open

Debate Chamber Summer Schools offer students 11-18 the opportunity to find out more about some fascinating subjects, prepare for university applications, meet like-minded peers and get to grips with some tough intellectual challenges.

The material will be challenging (for our older age-group, about the level of difficulty one might expect in the first year at university), but a relaxed atmosphere, with plenty of discussion, debate, and opportunities for students to shape the direction of classes creates the perfect environment for getting to grips with new ideas. Working in small groups (usually around 14 students per group) over several days means a real chance to get to know tutors and fellow students and to explore the topics or questions that particularly interest each individual.

Highlights of Summer 2019 for students interested in current affairs:

The International Relations Summer School for students aged 15-18. This course will introduce the central theories involved in the academic study of IR – realism, liberalism, constructivism and Marxism – and will then look at a range of detailed case studies in order to apply, test and explore these theories. Topics covered will include military intervention, international law, development aid, feminism and IR, regional sessions looking at China and the Middle East, and the European response to the migration crisis.

See more details about the International Relations Summer School here.

The Economics Summer School for students aged 15-18. Focusing on political economy and macro-economics, the five-day Economics Summer School will include seminars on a diverse range of topics, from financial and currency markets to an analysis of economic inequality and its potential remedies. We will also be looking at development strategies in emerging economies, and the emerging impact of Brexit on the UK and other economies. The focus throughout will be on debate and discussion, and on encouraging and supporting students to engage critically and actively with the material.

See more details about the Economics Summer School here.

The Politics Summer School for students aged 15-18. This five-day course will include seminars on key questions within political theory and philosophy, workshops on important policy areas, and analysis of changing voter behavior in both the UK and US. The Summer School will conclude with a full day Mock Parliament, with participants taking the role of MPs, forming parties, making policy and debating legislation.

See more details about the Politics Summer School here.

Practical Details:

All the Summer School events will be held at University of London venues in Bloomsbury, Central London, and will take place in July and August 2019. Please note that these courses are not residential, and accommodation must be arranged independently if required.

You can find full details of schedules, dates, costs, student reviews and tutors at http://www.debatechamber.com/summerschools/. Please note that there is a limited amount of bursary funding available for students who would otherwise have financial difficulty in attending.

To book a place please visit http://www.debatechamber.com/, call us on 0800 810 1058, or email info@debatechamber.com. Places will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

Jigsaw PSHE: The only PSHE Scheme you will ever have to buy

Jigsaw PSHE is now being used in over 2600 schools in the UK and overseas to deliver a comprehensive Personal, Social, Health Education  programme with creative lesson plans and all the teaching resources needed.

This innovative, stand alone, evidence based whole-school programme covers all the required content for Relationships and Sex and Health Education.

Jigsaw the mindful approach to PSHE 3-11, guarantees your school will be fully compliant, takes away any concerns about forthcoming statutory status, and has a proven significant impact.

Click here to download the Meeting Expectations report – How Jigsaw the mindful approach to PSHE, delivers the draft RSE and Health Education Guidance.


To claim your FREE USB stick or learn more about how you can get started with Jigsaw click here:


Or email:


Major anniversaries in 2019

Hard to believe that it’s 2019 and there isn’t a child in the world who was alive in the twentieth century!

The centenary of the Armistice is barely behind us and already we are into the eightieth anniversary year of the outbreak of World War 2 and the seventy-fifth of D-Day.

To mark this, and in addition to our regular programme of tours focusing on various aspects of the Third Reich, from the founding of the NSDAP through to the fall of Berlin, Culture Trails is introducing two brand new study tour itineraries tracing the conduct of the war in Poland.

If you are teaching any aspect of German history from Weimar to Cold War, at GCSE or A level, then we have tours to help explain it to your students.

Take a look at Germany and Poland tours to whet your appetite, then give us a call to talk through your needs.

Culture Trails

Travel House, Llwynmawr, Llangollen  LL20 7BB

Tel: 01691 886161       e: history@culturetrails.co.uk

“Can this calculator take over  from the  Casio FX 83GT Plus …..?  


The Casio FX 83GT+ has been the UK’s best selling scientific calc…and deservedly so.  It’s been setting the pace in many UK schools and is  the first choice for GCSE exams for many students. 

But  now there is an alternative…… It’s the Logik LK 83XP which has almost all the features of the FX 83GT Plus  (no verify or recurring decimal)  and with one big advantage…… it’s dual power.  This combination of battery and solar power  prolongs battery life and gives  extra reassurance for your students when used in exams. 

The LK 83XP has a THREE year guarantee* and is suitable for all exams where a calculator is allowed.  Features include:  252 functions,   “natural (true) display,”  check, correct and replay,  stats. calculations, prime factorisation, hard plastic keys, slide on case etc. 

It’s a calc which can see your students all the way from year 7 to GCSE and at a surprisingly modest price, from just £ 5.25 ex vat.         

Further details on:   www.signposteducational.co.uk 

or phone 020 7515 1797  or email: signpost@talk21.com 

Signpost Educational Ltd., PO Box 999   London  E14 6SH

What is the most effective way of teaching the new PSHE curriculum?

One of the most common talking points by educators is how PSHE is integrated differently into everyday school life. Some schools opt to have collapsed timetable days and others weave it through form periods and one-off sessions.

I’m sure you join us in applauding the government in the changes to the statutory safeguarding guidance for schools and colleges.

PSHE Association Chief Executive Joe Hayman said: “The world our children are growing up in offers huge possibilities but significant risks too and the school curriculum should prepare them for that world. This aim is exactly what PSHE education is designed to achieve, emphasising the key skills and characteristics – such as resilience, critical thinking and the ability to manage risk – which pupils need if they are to thrive in a changing world.”

Unfortunately, many schools are concerned about their overpopulated timetables and the pressures of the curriculum for academic subjects.

Thus the question arises: how can we maintain our busy school term and meet the new statutory obligations?

This is something we have invested a lot of time in supporting. As a result, we have 21 workshops available within the PSHE sector, catering for every subject area within the personal, social and health education framework.

Using various mediums of high-octane and energised delivery, our workshops support and enhance your own current PSHE programme.

If you would like to browse the workshops available, please visit the website – www.qsworkshops.com/workshops

And if you have any questions or queries about our workshops, please do call 020 8088 0717 or email me personally rosie@qsworkshops.com

Can you help Fred Theatre make Shakespeare live in 2019?

Everyone at Fred Theatre hopes you had a great break over the festive period and that 2019 will be a successful new year for you and your students.

We want to reach as many students as possible this year with our great in-school performances of:


Both of our 90-minute Shakespeare adaptations are available for in-school performances through till mid-April, as are our productions of:


 The diary has been filling up, but there is still space for your booking. To discuss your requirements, and how we can help your students through one or more of our performances, either:

e-mail Helen in our office: helen@fred-theatre.co.uk

or visit our web site for more information: www.fred-theatre.co.uk/schools

Alternatively, you can call me for a chat about any aspect of Fred Theatre playing at your school on 01789 777612.

Robert Ball
Artistic Director

Fred Theatre

PS: We’re starting to think about 2019-20 and we’d love to hear your ideas for additional productions we can add to our repertoire. Email your ideas to Helen today.