“My books draw on 30 years of teaching and life experience. It took me at least 15 years to understand how children work and think and then another 15 years to work out what they need at core to help them excel. Parents do not have this time advantage. As soon as a child is born, they have to ‘hit the ground running’ and many have told me they are dogged by doubt and worry about the way they are raising their children. My books hold the lessons, tips, reasons and activities that I have found helpful in encouraging children’s development and causing them to excel.
“I started teaching in 1974. It was pre-National Curriculum. Teachers were very much left to their own initiative and devices in social priority area school where my teaching began in Haringey. My first classroom had 200 bibles, a stock cupboard which was so full of scrap you could barely move and little else apart from 38 mixed ability year 6 children. This was where I felt my teacher training really began. Now forty years later, the whole world of education – and society – has changed beyond recognition. The National Curriculum has set down expectations; the world wide web is an intricate part of every classroom and teaching methods; children have access to a much greater range of activities and resources than ever before and teachers look to parents for motivating and reinforcing behaviour in their children.
“In the first 30 years, my experience included class teaching, covering the full primary range; I ran a unit for disruptive pupils for 3 years; worked with children with special needs and held various senior management roles working primarily in inner city schools. I taught one year in the USA and have had the privilege of being a guest observer in schools in Israel, South Africa and Mauritius.
“I set up Lessons Alive 12 years ago with the aim of helping interested parents and teachers to motivate and inspire children. I offer a bespoke teaching service for children and run talks and workshops for parents. My experience in schools and more recently my work with children in their homes has given me a unique perspective on the real issues faced by young learners.”