Opening Doors to a Richer English Curriculum for Ages 6 to 9

By: Bob Cox , Verity Jones , Leah Crawford


£12.99

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Ebook


Size: 180 x 148mm

Pages : 272

ISBN : 9781785833984

Format: Paperback

Published: October 2019


Opening Doors to a Richer English Curriculum for Ages 6 to 9 takes Bob Cox's award-winning Opening Doors' series into bold new territories, providing a treasury of techniques and strategies all carefully selected to support the design of a deeper, more creative and more expansive curriculum.

Together with Leah Crawford and Verity Jones, Bob has compiled this rich resource to help teachers enhance their learners' engagement with challenging texts and develop their writing skills as budding wordsmiths. It includes 15 ready-to-use units of work covering a range of inspiring poetry and prose from across the literary tradition, complete with vivid illustrations by Victoria Cox.

Bob, Leah and Verity's innovative ideas on theory, best practice and how to cultivate a pioneering classroom spirit are all integrated into the lesson suggestions, which have been designed for both the teacher's and the learners' immediate benefit.

Together they empower teachers to explore with their learners the scope and depth of literature capable of inspiring high standards and instilling a love of language in its many forms. Furthermore, they help teachers to lay down intricate curricular pathways that will prompt their pupils to better enjoy literature, read and analyse texts with a greater sense of curiosity, and write with more originality.

The book includes a great range of texts both as the core of each unit and as link reading, incorporating some contemporary texts to show how past and present co-exist ' and how various literary styles can be taught using similar principles, all of which are open to further adaptation. The authors have also suggested key concepts around which the curriculum can be built, with the units providing examples with which you can work.

All of the extracts and illustrations you will need in order to begin opening doors in your classroom are downloadable, and the book also includes a helpful glossary of key terms.

Suitable for teachers of pupils aged 6 to 9.

Units include:

Part 1: Opening Doors to Poetry

1. I Pulled a Hummingbird Out of the Sky ' Wind' by Dionne Brand

2. Do You Have Time to Stand and Stare? ' Leisure' by W. H. Davies

3. Mini-Beast Magic ' Hurt No Living Thing' by Christina Rossetti

4. How Out of Breath You Are ' Dear March ' Come In '' by Emily Dickinson

5. Voices in an Empty Room ' Green Candles' by Humbert Wolfe

6. Faceless ' Prince Kano' by Edward Lowbury

7. Green-Eyed Scratcher ' Cat!' by Eleanor Farjeon

Part 2: Opening Doors to Prose

8. Foundling ' Over the Hills and Far Away' by Hilary McKay and Blackberry Blue' by Jamila Gavin

9. A Power Struggle ' The Frost, the Sun, and the Wind' (Russian folk tale translated by Charles Downing)

10. Stories and More Stories ' Granny's Wonderful Chair by Frances Browne

11. That Is Disgusting! ' The American Woman's Home by Catherine E. Beecher and Harriet Beecher Stowe

12. Shadow in a Drawer ' Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie

13. Once Upon a Time There Was a Piece of Wood ' Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi

14. Whirlpools! ' The Island of the Nine Whirlpools' by Edith Nesbit

15. The Butterfly Dance ' The Story of the Blue Planet by Andri Snær Magnason


Picture for author Bob Cox

Bob Cox

Having taught English for 23 years, Bob Cox is now an independent education consultant, writer and teacher coach who works nationally and internationally to support outstanding learning. Bob also delivers keynotes for national associations, multi-academy trusts and local authorities, as more schools integrate Opening Doors' strategies into their curriculum design.

Get Examples from Opening Doors: Home Learning and support for distance leaning here

Listen to Bob Cox talk about his Opening Doors series of books with Karl McCarthy from More Teacher Talk here.


Picture for author Verity Jones

Verity Jones

Having spent over a decade working in education ' as a teacher, a deputy head and an adviser ' Verity Jones is now a senior lecturer at the University of the West of England, Bristol. She continues to provide training for both new and experienced teachers on how to ensure every child reaches their potential.


Picture for author Leah Crawford

Leah Crawford

Leah Crawford has 15 years' experience as a local authority English inspector and adviser, working across both the primary and secondary phases, and now leads the Thinktalk education consultancy. She is an associate tutor on King's College London's Let's Think in English cognitive acceleration programme and also works in support of a European Erasmus project on the assessment of thinking skills.


Reviews

  1. -‹For teachers looking to delve deeper into the teaching of English, exploring rich texts, this book is essential, with 15 units, seven on poetry and the rest on prose. Clear links are made to a range of texts that can be used to help pupils to develop their understanding and their writing.

    The examples of writing produced by children using the techniques in the book are inspirational and show the impact of using poems and prose that teachers may think too challenging. The link reading is a really useful list to ensure that pupils are gaining a wider range of reading. This book will really help to develop the teaching of English through quality reading. Through the use of these ideas pupils' vocabulary will develop along with their comprehension skills.

    Each unit in the book takes the teacher through the key reading strategies and how to engage the children. Pupils are encouraged to debate, put things in a continuum, and teachers are encouraged to use props, model the reading and start with quick writing tasks. There is also plenty of scope to differentiate to support those who find it challenging while stretching those pupils who are ready for further challenge.

    Opening Doors is an inspiring yet accessible book for teachers that will encourage wider reading in both teachers and pupils.
  2. -‹These books will enable teachers to open doors to pupils to broaden their skills of interpretation, discussion and writing by developing an understanding of great literature in its various forms.

    -‹The excellent foreword by Pie Corbett - which features within both books - sets the scene for the reader to gain access to a wealth of ideas, techniques, approaches and texts which have been road-tested to develop children as both readers and writers. As Corbett so aptly comments: -˜Children will never really become great readers until they begin to tackle great texts and learn that sustaining their reading with a classic bears fruit.'

    -‹The inspirational excellence of both books must not be underestimated. The authors enable the reader, by compiling a challenging and accessible framework, to discover how fascinating and full of wonder great writing and literature can be.

    -‹Bob, Leah and Verity have produced an outstanding teaching resource which will not only improve learners' literacy skills but also positively impact upon the development of reading for pleasure and the overall quality of education they receive.
  3. -˜Opening Doors to a Richer English Curriculum' takes Bob Cox's award-winning -˜Opening Doors' series into bold new territories, providing a treasury of techniques and strategies all carefully selected to support the design of a deeper, more creative and more expansive curriculum.

    There are two books in this series: the first aimed for teaching pupils aged 6 to 9, and an additional one for pupils aged 10 to 13.

    Together with Leah Crawford and Verity Jones, Bob has compiled this rich resource to help teachers enhance their learners' engagement with challenging texts and develop their writing skills as budding wordsmiths. It includes 15 ready-to-use units of work covering a range of inspiring poetry and prose from across the literary tradition, complete with vivid illustrations by Victoria Cox.

    Bob, Leah and Verity's innovative ideas on theory, best practice and how to cultivate a pioneering classroom spirit are all integrated into the lesson suggestions, which have been designed for both the teacher's and the learners' immediate benefit.

    Together they empower teachers to explore with their learners the scope and depth of literature capable of inspiring high standards and instilling a love of language in its many forms. Furthermore, they help teachers to lay down intricate curricular pathways that will prompt their pupils to better enjoy literature, read and analyse texts with a greater sense of curiosity, and write with more originality.

    The book includes a great range of texts both as the core of each unit and as link reading, incorporating some contemporary texts to show how past and present co-exist - and how various literary styles can be taught using similar principles, all of which are open to further adaptation. The authors have also suggested key concepts around which the curriculum can be built, with the units providing examples with which you can work.

    All of the extracts and illustrations you will need in order to begin opening doors in your classroom are downloadable, and the book also includes a helpful glossary of key terms.



    Click here to read the review on UKEdChat-˜s website.
  4. Since you sent me the manuscripts, I have not stopped reading, despite it being the first week of the holidays! The books are so engaging for several reasons: the sheer love of literature seems through the pages and cannot fail to inspire anyone looking to develop their children's love of reading. It made me want to fast-forward to September to try some of the extracts and ideas!

    The pitch is high, and unashamedly so. I wholeheartedly agree with the ethos that we should be pitching high, then enabling all pupils to get there with the appropriate level of scaffolding and support. This is laid out very clearly, with accessible suggestions of stretch and support. The texts themselves are complex and challenging, at both 6-9 and 10-13. This will certainly help to drive the mastery curriculum in English, as well as developing other subjects through a thematic approach. So many additional subjects are explored, making explicit the links between learning in literature, and the rest of the curriculum. This will lead to rich and meaningful learning.

    These books are far more than a schematic approach to meeting KS KPIs. They build upon a rich cultural capital and literature cannon, with key skills being taught and rehearsed explicitly. However, the writers have skilfully woven in grammar, spelling and writing concepts which will enable pupils to reach skill KPIs as a bi-product rather than a limited outcome. This for me is is the right way around curriculum design. Other outcomes will include growing vocabulary, widening cultural horizons and understanding a wider range of literary and poetic devices.

    Finally, the focus on developing learning habits and using cognitive research to embed learning chimes with my ethos and that of my school. We have worked closely with Graham Powell, embedding his work with Claxton on Learning Habits and the approaches tie in perfectly with Opening Doors. The focus on questioning, making links, metacognition and imagination sits very comfortably alongside the approaches in this book and would enhance rather than detract from our whole school approach to learning.

    The glossary is a lovely final touch and enhances the CPD of all staff!
  5. This is a thoroughly researched and exciting resource to open up the imaginations of teachers and students alike to the wonders of challenging Literature. The carefully thought through lesson structure with access strategies, deep objectives and knowledge-rich guidance makes you feel as if you are in the capable hands of someone who has climbed the mountain before you and knows the routes for every ability level but also that the views are spectacular.

    As a seasoned teacher of English key stages 3 to 5 I found myself getting excited by the suggested activities such as -˜imagining yourself to be the wind' and wanting to try them myself! Through using these books, students(and teachers)will regain their sense of passion for the world of imagination, so often ground out of them by exhausting assessment requirements.

    Also the use of students' own writing is very inspiring and shows you exactly what this age group are capable of given the right stimulus, support and licence to experiment. I loved the feeling that students just like mine had written beautiful, profound poems- so why shouldn't mine be able to? It is called -˜Opening Doors' rightly- the most important doors they are opening are the doors of perception in the minds of teachers, making all teachers feel able to introduce enriching literary content into their classrooms.

    Seeing the names of -˜John Clare' and -˜Emily Bronte' on a teaching plan for this age group is enough to get my heart rate going with excitement and the activities are all so clearly and cleverly staged to make these literary gems completely accessible to all students. As a GCSE and A-level teacher I cannot thank the Opening Doors series enough for reminding us that the student who enjoys creative reading and writing early on will thrive at assessments, but better than that they will be enriched beyond their wildest dreams as lifelong adventurous readers of fiction.
  6. I love so much about the Opening Doors approach to learning. What I really like is that it provides the detail for deep learning yet it is very accessible. The consistent approach, e.g. , -˜access strategies', -˜taster drafts', -˜reading journeys' not only help provide the reader with clarity around the process, but also help them to be able to apply these concepts to their own texts.
  7. Get ready for two more amazingly good books from the -˜Opening Doors' series penned by Bob Cox, this time in collaboration with Leah Crawford and Verity Jones. Drawing on solid evidence and their own experiences, this formidable alliance of authors offer books which have everything a primary teacher needs to inspire and captivate young minds. English lessons which are a far cry from dreary comprehension activities await as these books, one for 6-9 year olds and one for 10-13 year olds, ignite the spark to lead to a rich and deep learning experience.

    -˜Teach to the highest level you dare' is advice I frequently offer to primary teachers, and these gems do just that. Children (and their teachers) will be exposed and enthralled by the suggested outstanding texts which range from English and worldwide heritage to contemporary fiction - and also includes pupils' work which has been inspired by these approaches.

    Helpfully separated into poetry and prose, which also includes non fiction, the easily-navigated units of work are packed with ideas and suggestions to access what might initially be considered too challenging for young readers. They are not. The authors' experiences show that children delight in discovering famous writers and savouring a wide variety of literary styles.

    The chosen texts increase access to literature and cultural capital for both the teacher and pupils and they have the authors' helpful comments and hints throughout the books to guide them. The potential for children to acquire a deeper and wider vocabulary, more knowledge and a wide range of styles is vast. Suggested links to the wider curriculum and suggestions for extensive linked reading to take the learning further are abundant.

    Anyone familiar with the approaches in Bob's previous books will immediately feel at home as they are re-presented here. Grammar and punctuation are included, not as uninspiring, isolated -˜spot that adverbial' type of exercises but as meaningful elements of teaching the craft of writing. Children are given choices to extend their own ideas and writing, always inspired by a text or image. Film clips, too, are an integral component, but only where appropriate and connected, not as a hastily churned out diary entry after watching a random animation.

    A helpful glossary explaining the terms used, a wide range of core and linked texts, and tried and tested methods to increase the skills of the children and their teachers are all included in these excellent books. If you are a teacher keen to enhance your teaching of English, these new publications from Crown House, available just in time for the autumn term, are an essential addition to your classroom. Not only will your pupils benefit, but you will become a more knowledgeable, wider-read and better English teacher as a result.
  8. Any book by Bob Cox is always very well received! A compelling collaboration with Leah Crawford and Verity Jones, this compendium, will, undoubtedly, advance the English pedagogical practices in primary classrooms. It delves deep into the understanding of a text and supports teachers in challenging all learners confidently. Excellent exemplifications ensure that all pupils can aspire to the highest of standards. The -˜expert says' box hones teacher thinking when planning to bring a richness and depth to the whole curriculum. Full of practical support and very well structured, I can see this text quickly becoming a -˜go to' guide in our teacher library!
  9. Travelling with learners on their Reading Journey is both a responsibility and a privilege. To be able to read, for pleasure and for purpose, is not simply a gift but a right that we are entitled to.

    Using high quality texts and strategies for learning rooted in Dialogic Reading and Thinking, Opening Doors will help you to support your learners to unlock the unfamiliar and reveal the unknown.



    A reading rich resource that encourages readers and future writers to engage with the written word and explore themselves as authors, this book is one that should adorn the bookshelf of every staffroom.
  10. In his new series, Bob Cox provides a practical framework for -˜opening doors' to pupils' knowledge of how texts work, whilst also giving teachers the confidence to effectively cultivate this knowledge. The use of high-quality texts should take center stage within the curriculum, affording pupils the opportunity to appreciate our rich literary heritage. Bob provides a clear route to learning, demystifying the perceived perplexity of using challenging texts in the primary setting and beyond. The -˜Bob says' feature helps busy teachers to think in more depth about suggested approaches, strengthening teacher agency and building capacity to adapt learning to suit pupils' needs. -˜Support questions' are also a stand-out feature, outlining in-depth questions for stimulating learning dialogues, fostering a mastery approach to learning. -˜Link reading' provides suggestions of linked texts for pupils to extend and refine new learning in a range of contexts, perfect for strengthening connections. -˜Opening doors' helps teachers and pupils to re-discover the wonderment of reading, providing a true purpose for writing.
  11. These innovative se books provides a refreshing approach to the teaching of texts to primary plus aged children in the 6-9 and 10-13 age groups. Opening Doors makes literature accessible and engaging while scaffolding learners not only to -˜learn' but to absorb, engage with and enjoy an exciting range of literature. Opening Doors is nothing if not aspirational, encouraging young readers to immerse themselves in challenging, absorbing texts and their teachers to learn alongside them in terms of developing their own subject knowledge and pedagogy as they discover challenging new ways to engage with and teach the texts on offer. It provides pupils with -˜wings to fly, not drills to kill' - I love this - in its scaffold to approach the teaching and learning of quality texts. However, the authors very skilfully provide options for teachers rather than didactic instructions which have become prevalent in teachers' resources in recent decades. The explorations of each text follow a similar guiding structure which encourages teachers to think deeply about how they can effectively develop children's understanding of the text and how this understanding can provide a purposeful springboard into writing. This is particularly apparent in the poetry sections of both books, which, using well-chosen poems, encourage rich and nuanced classroom discussions that aim to challenge children's thinking and to provoke creative responses. These books would be excellent additions to support teachers to develop their understanding of how to use challenging texts in their classrooms, as they provide examples of how high-quality texts can be effectively explored through the use of a variety of suggested strategies and thoughtful pedagogical guidance.
  12. The -˜Opening Doors' series does exactly that. They remind teachers and children of the emancipatory, fulfilling role books have to play in igniting our thinking and our lives. These books enable teachers to use books in exactly this way in their classrooms. Any English curriculum in any classroom in any school committed to a depth of understanding, dialogic teaching and use of quality drama must have these books in their repertoire. In an age where schools are talking about cultural capital and challenge, the -˜Opening Doors' series is a must. Film, poetry, and prose learning opportunities cleverly framed in an accessible, high-quality teaching paradigm, enable new teachers to explore text deeply with their classes within a safe structure and experienced teachers, worth their weight in gold, to have a rubric for what they know is right. This book is not about mechanics and a formulaic approach to reading, writing and talk about books. It is about launching children into a world of possibilities which have been created for them. Challenge is always the focus and Bob and the team provide practical ways for teachers to focus on the challenge the text provides whilst enabling every child in a class to tackle it. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
  13. Bob Cox continues to extend the breadth and depth of approaches that he, now joined by colleagues Leah Crawford and Verity Jones, brings to bear on a generous array of expertly chosen and linked texts designed to foster -˜continual curiosity'. As with earlier editions in the Opening Doors series, one of the real joys of the books' core structure is in the expert way in which the reader is guided to see connections within and across texts. Most excitingly, the books carefully support teachers in bringing these connections to life in class, through access strategies, prompt questions and challenges, as well as enriching - sometimes provocative - talk opportunities. The sort of talk opportunities that will generate a real buzz for the spoken, as well as written word. Opening Doors makes no bones about celebrating literature, and keeps -˜beautiful writing at the heart' of each unit. Students are supported to engage with the whole of the chosen texts, not atomised, isolated chunks that might develop technical skills but little else. This is a holistic vision for English learning.

    Better still, there is plenty of choice in terms of suggested written outcomes to mark the series out as quite distinct from the more boxed-in, narrowed visions of writing that tend to predominate. Repeatedly this has struck me as the real hallmark of the Opening Doors books. They are helpful guides that supply an abundance of material to support time-pressed teachers keen to expand the literary horizons of their class, but that take great care to circumnavigate the growing tendency for prescription. It is like being in the hands of the best kind of tour guide. Enough information to keep you orientated and sure-footed. Enough fresh insight to open up new perspectives. A rich seam of knowledge to stimulate growth and further learning, and develop expertise in the field. And then, critically, enough space and gentle encouragement for teachers to adapt the approaches and range of texts used to suit their own, and their children's needs.



    Each book offers a series of 15 units, 7 for poetry and 8 for prose. Classic texts by the likes of Emily Dickinson and E Nesbit sit alongside more recent works, such as Jamila Gavin's wonderful Blackberry Blue. Each section is blessed with extremely helpful lists of suggested further reading, carefully themed to include a vibrant mix of literary heritage, contemporary fiction and poetry, and high quality picturebooks. The chosen works are all geared to challenge in some way, whether it be through complexity, theme, or even through taking a challenging stance. This is challenge in a wider sense than is often intended. Challenge with heart, soul, inclusiveness, and integrity and - once more with feeling - beautiful writing at its heart.
  14. From Han-Shan to Hardy, from Gaiman to Gray, this resource provides a cornucopia of poems and prose as the starting point for truly opening pupils' minds, deepening their knowledge of sophisticated writing and creating the conditions for them to produce substantive, authentic writing of their own.

    Beautifully crafted and sequenced, with fantastic examples of pupils' work this book will save teachers' hours of time. A resource full of joy and truly -˜Opening Doors' for teachers and pupils alike.
  15. These exciting publications offer engaging approaches to framing and developing the reading curriculum. Quality texts are combined with structured strategies to support comprehension and significantly, linked reading which stretches well beyond the focus text, is also offered. The books represent a rich resource for current and future teachers who want to develop a text-based approach to teaching reading, one already enthusiastically used by schools across the country. Accessible, practical and inspiring these books will open new doors for all learners.
  16. Having read Bob Cox's new additions to the Opening Doors series, I was struck by how, yet again, the focus is so clearly on us, the readers, to explore the beauty and depth of literature in a way that takes us beyond. Through such skillful selection of texts and sharing of accessible strategies I, as teacher, and they as students can explore, synthesise and make words and ideas our own - we are forever changed. Surely the highest of endeavours, to which we should all strive, to encourage all learners to fly.

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