Inspiring Creative Teaching – Cumbria, Day 2: Fairfield Junior School

| March 22, 2011 | 8 Comments 

A fun drive through the stunning landscape of Cumbria brings us, today, to Fairfield Junior School in Cockermouth, Cumbria for our second day of the Inspiring Creative Teaching Project coordinated by John Nixon.

Our day started with a jam session with headteacher, Alex Wilkinson, on guitar and the bald bloke on piano. Fun!

Then we had a superb creative session with 50+ Year 6 pupils in the hall with their teachers and visiting colleagues.

As Fletcher Christian, the notorious sailor hailed from these parts, we took the children to the wreck of an ancient ship.

The Second Day of the Inspiring Creative Teaching (ICT) event in Cumbria takes place in Fairfield Junior School Cockermouth.

Fairfield is a town school nestling in the arms of the town of Cockermouth. Cockermouth has many literary links with the poet Wordsworth and more recent infamous historical fame as a town that was devastated by severe flooding in November 2009.

The school children take part in many local activities and won acclaim in a Local Authority Radio broadcasting competition. The school producing a hight emotive and personalised progamme on the plight of the community following the floods and resulting in the children hosting a visit from the Director General of the BBC who’s BBC Radio Cumbria had sponsored the competition.

Thanks to John Nixon, for recording his thoughts on today:

Having now seen Tim and Sarah twice on consecutive days their methods of inspiring learners have not ceased to amaze me. Holding 50+ children in a writing lesson for over two hours and the children not wanting it to finish is a sight to see.

One of the advantages of having Tim and Sarah working in schools is of course the ability to see a presenter actually doing “what it says on the tin”. Putting theory into practice with real children in a real school.

I would commend both Tim and Sarah to any school or practitioner as a must if they want to move their teaching to the next level and beyond.

The shards of frost cleared from my vision as the sun’s warm strokes brushed away the lace net resting across the herd of golden daffodils.

The building standing before me nestled in its blanket of green by the busy road beyond. Anticipation was visible in the air as the staff beavered like ants in preparation within their kingdom of learning. Today was the day that the mysterious magic weaver of dreams, the word smith was due to visit.  Fairfield Junior was alive with the thirst for learning and knowledge. The children keen to impress and anxious to enjoy. The staff tremble at thought of such a large group, over 50, in one lesson and writing at that.

If past recent history was to be continued there was no reasons to worry, excitement and enjoyment will be realised into  graphite pictures of dreams.

Poetic words, John. How appropriate, as close to the school, is  Wordsworth House. The Poetry of William Wordsworth has brought the Lake District into the lives and minds of people everywhere. He was born in 1770 in the fine Georgian House on Cockermouth Main Street, now owned by the National Trust and open to the Public during the summer.

He was educated at Cockermouth and Hawkshead Grammar Schools, and ultimately at Cambridge where he read Greek, Latin and Italian.

After touring Europe, he and his sister Dorothy settled at Dove Cottage, Grasmere, where a legacy from a friend, given to help cultivate his poetical talents, enabled him to continue to write works including the “Lyric Ballads” and the long autobiographical work “The Prelude”.

During his time at Grasmere, he married and had three children, later moving to Rydal Mount where he died on 23rd April 1850, eight years after becoming Poet Laureate.

He is buried in Grasmere Churchyard as are other members of his family.

Category: 1) Events and Training days

Comments (8)

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  1. Rachel says:

    An inspirational day. Thank you for the fabulous ideas for exciting resources to use in the classroom. I cannot wait to show the children in my class what I’ve discovered.

  2. Helen Richardson says:

    I can’t wait to try some of the software demonstrated today. It has been so inspiring but quite a pace! Thanks for the helpsheets!!!

  3. Amarjit Mann says:

    I’m walking away with an amazing bank of resources after today- can’t wait to get started!

  4. Today was super! Tim not only held the attention of 55 children for two hours, but challenged them (in a friendly, fun and supportive way) to move to a higher level of thinking and articulating their thoughts and ideas.
    I was delighted by the enthusiasm and confidence that Tim generated in every child to share thoughts and ideas.
    Inspirational!
    This afternoon was a fantastic tutorial in ICT – I’m really looking forward to trying out some of the huge number of ideas and techniques that we’ve been taught.

  5. Rachel says:

    An inspirational day. Lots of amazing ideas about how to engage children and encourage creativity. Children and adults were enthralled by the virtual world used to stimulate creative writing.
    The session about how to liven up interactive teaching resources using web-based technologies was superb – I can’t wait to get started.
    Thank you – it was one of those days that made me proud to be a teacher!

  6. Claire says:

    A day packed full of delightful, creative treats for pupils and teachers alike.
    For the children: a morning of laughter, learning and enjoyment. A morning in which they are challenged and inspired.
    For the teachers: a day which we did not just see our reluctant writers… writing; we also saw our more able pupils challenged and motivated. A day in which ALL pupils are excited about writing.
    The free software resources should bring a new dimension to the classroom and Tim gave us a great reminder of what is just excellent practice. No hands up in the future, just read out your responses….
    Thanks for a great day, Claire.

  7. Chris Wilkins says:

    Hi Tim,

    Looking forward to your visit to St Margaret Mary Catholic Primary School tomorrow. I get the impression it is going to be a fantastic experience for the children. (No pressure!)

  8. tom stephenson says:

    Tim and Mr Walker :)
    yesterday was great the funniest bit was when you said to liam “what do you think liam” when you looked at his book for his name and he didnt know how you knew his name.. you have really inspired me to write more

    thanks hope i can see you again, tom x

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