Arctic Live – May 4th – May 10th

Currently in it’s fifth year, XL Catlin Arctic Live is the northernmost live education stream that connects classrooms globally to members of the UK science expedition team based at the UK Arctic Research Station in Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard.

This live education event is designed to ignite students’ curiosity for extreme environments; develop their scientific literacy and skills; point them toward STEM careers and inspire their environmental stewardship.

Between 1 and 10 May 2018, the expedition team will be in the frozen north studying ocean acidification and microplastics. Arctic Live will have sessions appropriate for students from age 5-18. You can take part with your class, as an assembly, or as a STEM club activity.

Through a series of YouTube Live broadcasts, there are a range of activities that you will be able to take part in:

Live investigations direct from the Arctic –  these are practical activities guided by the expedition team. They can be replicated in the classroom simultaneously. Topics include: Arctic food webs, insulation materials, ocean acidification, microplastics ice core sampling and sea level rise. You can view the lesson materials here.

Interviews with the polar science team – students can ask researchers and explorers about their work and lives. To increase a chance to get questions answered it is recommended that these are submitted  by the end of April. You can find out more about the speakers here.

Open Q&A sessions – classes can speak to polar educationalist, Jamie Buchanan-Dunlop, about life and science in the Arctic.

More Teacher guidance and advice on signing up to sessions can be found here. They have also produced a pack for teachers working with KS1 children which can be found here.

You can also follow the event on Twitter by following Digital Explorers  and you can use  the #ArcticLive to see updates.

Polar Exploration from LGfL would be a fantastic resource to use alongside this event. LGfL worked with the Scott Polar Research Institute at Cambridge University in creating this comprehensive resource, which provides a unique insight into the ‘Heroic Age of Scientific Discovery’.

Featuring exclusive access to the historic archive of the most famous polar expeditions of the 20th Century, the resource includes:

        • Video footage of equipment and artefacts from the most famous expeditions, complete with text transcripts of the expert explanations
        • High-resolution photographs of objects featured in the video footage
        • Journal extracts read by a descendant of a member of Captain Scott’s Discovery expedition
        • Interactive map of the Polar Regions with plotted locations of the multimedia assets
        • The opportunity to meet a modern-day polar explorer and hear of his experiences living for extended periods of time in some of the world’s most extreme environments.
        • A wide range of learning materials to support KS2, KS3 and KS4

If you do use any LGfL content in your school to inspire your students do let us know by posting them on LGfL’s twitter or Facebook pages.


10 Steps to a successful summer term

The Easter holidays are over and it’s time to take off the bunny ears, put down the Easter Eggs and get thinking about the summer term.

As teachers we know with Phonic test’s, SATs, GCSE’s, A Levels or just making it though the term with tired and hot students, just how hard the summer term can be.

Here are ten steps to a successful summer term to help get summer started in a positive way and helping you get the most out of the amazing content and support that LGfL can give you and your students.

Get booking: Our annual Conference is this month 30th April 2018 – We have some amazing keynote speakers and a terrific range of seminars to book, we have a few tickets left so be quick and grab the final tickets on Eventbrite.

Put this date in your diary: 25th April 2018 We will be at the Academies show at the ExCel London, The Academies Show brings together over 3,000 senior school leaders and 200 leading education suppliers for a day designed to support school business management, teaching quality and pupil outcomes.

Sign up to our newsletters: Every month we send out an email update to everyone who has signed up: to hear about new events and online learning resources, updates to education legislation, or news on how we can help keep your students safe and learn more with LGfL. We have 3 different newsletters LGfLDSLs and online safety leads and SEND.

Get you students SATS ready Using SATs Blast: SATS Blast is part of the BETT award-winning j2e Tool Suite. SATs Blast provides:

  • SATS maths games for Key Stage 1 and 2
  • Practice or test mode
  • Teacher feedback on areas of success or to highlight problem areas
  • Automatic test certificates for pupils who complete a SATs maths test
  • Gamification – Earn points to release avatars, encouraging pupil engagement

Read and subscribe to our Curriculum blog: Our blog is updated weekly and offers a mix of topical pieces relating to how best to use LGfL content within your school setting, subscribe to make sure you get the latest update straight to your inbox.

Get r-ea-d-y for the Phonics test: LGfL have a range of resources to support the Phonics test:

  • Busy Things has fun and engaging activities to help students at any phonics level. You can choose exactly which phonemes and graphemes are being used and so allow children to work at their own pace/level.  Don’t forget the super useful Phonics resource maker which enables you to create your own paper-based resources to support a systematic phonics programme and is great for group work.
  • We also have the highly used i-board phonics suite, the suite consists of 12 activity types which can be use with any combination of words from the suggested word list in each phase of letters and sounds, great for shared class work or smaller phonic interventions.

Check out our training hub: We have added a huge range of training to our  Training Hub offering a unique range of courses, browse and book or share a link with colleagues. Training is FREE for all LGfL teachers and is held on a Tuesday at Camden CLC, you can find out more about the courses on offer and how to sign up here. Examples of future courses include: Creative computing, supporting Teaching Assistants, Google and Microsoft training, including looking at Minecraft, using Microsoft tools to support pupils with additional and special needs and the Microsoft Certified Educator Programme.

Like and follow us on Social Media: Follow us on our social media channels Twitter and Facebook to keep up-to-date with the latest news, research highlights and benefit from a range of useful resources.

Read and subscribe to our new inclusion blog: Our Inclusion Blog is updated weekly and offers regular information, commentary and updates relevant to SEND.

Book an inset Day: it’s not too late to book a Free school session with one of our Learning resource consultants, the summer is a great time to start thinking about the new academic year and modifying your curriculum map, just email to book an inset

If you like our top summer tips or have your own top tips for starting the summer term why not share them on our Twitter or Facebook accounts.

Shakespeare’s Birthday – 23rd April 1564

The exact birthday of William Shakespeare is unknown, however church records show that he was baptised on 26th April 1564 so it is believed that his date of birth is the 23rd April, the same date on which he died in 1616.

Shakespeare is studied heavily throughout both Primary and Secondary schools and this date is a good time to explore his life and find out more about the man behind the plays.

LGfL have a range of resources for you to access Shakespeare within the classroom.

Early Shakespeare

Early Shakespeare is an innovative new introduction to the Bard for learners with SEND and EAL, and is likely to prove popular with all pupils. SEND specialists at SEN Assist have taken two favourite Shakespeare plays (Romeo & Juliet and Midsummer Night’s Dream) and transformed them into literacy exercises that are likely to prove popular with pupils across the ability spectrum.

In the same format as SEN Assist’s Fairytales, the two plays are broken down into one bite-sized sentence per scene, using the first 100 high-frequency words. This allows learners to easily follow, understand and remember the stories, and helps ensure access to the curriculum for all. Pupils can watch at their own pace, and opt to turn on or off the accompanying text and symbols. Animated characters bring each scene to life, with differentiated activities to help include all learners as well as being able to listen to the text from the plays.

The site contains hundreds of TV and radio programmes from the BBC’s Shakespeare collection,as well as more than a thousand photos from classic Shakespeare productions and can only be accessed within school, however it is possible to search the database at home just not view the resources.

Summary of the archive content

  • Online access to the BBC’s Shakespeare collection of hundreds of TV and radio programmes from the 1950s to 1989
  • Includes performances, sonnets, documentaries, interviews and more, dating from the 1950s.
  • Over 1000 photographs of classic Shakespeare productions and performers.
  • All cleared for use in the classroom.
  • Suitable for teaching of English and Drama.
  • Includes all major texts across the English Literature curricula.

Cambridge School Shakespeare

The LGfL online Shakespeare Picture Collection features production photographs from a wide range of stage and film versions, designed to support students’ exploration of interpretation,staging and performance.

Fully differentiated for use with students aged from 11 to 19, each play includes over 100 pages of editable, printable support material including lesson ideas, worksheets and production reviews. These include teacher notes (above) so that teachers can structure the use of the resource within the classroom.

BusyThings also have a range of resources linked to Shakespeare for you to use in the classroom these include labelling the Globe and completing a timeline alongside fact files and exercises based on Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet.  You can find all the resources linked to Shakespeare by using the search tool within BusyThings.

Or why not use one of the many tools within j2eTool Suite, children could use spotlight to create their own short animation of a William Shakespeare, they could use j2e5 or j2office to create their own Shakespeare insults or to create a presentation on the life of William Shakespeare.

The Tudors in London resource can also be used where you can find out more about the Globe Theatre.

There are also a range of resources online that teachers can use within the classroom.

Shakespeare’s Globe

The Globe theatre is running a range of events to celebrate Shakespeare’s birthday these include: a unique performance of Shakespeare’s poetry in Westminster Abbey. Families can enjoy a wonderful storytelling session in the Playhouse and discover more about Shakespeare in our Exhibition & Tour.Teachers can also use brilliant Teach Shakespeare website which has hundreds of free learning resources including audio files, video, lesson plans and exam revision lesson plans.

 Royal Shakespeare Company

The Royal Shakespeare Company has a huge range of resources for schools, including this year a free broadcast of Macbeth. The play will be broadcast to schools around the country on 26 April, along with student activities and a live Q&A with the actors. Schools can find out more and register here. There are also a range of teacher resources that will help bring Shakespeare to life in the classroom.


The BBC site has a huge range of resources for pupils, for primary pupils there are a range of radio plays available on school radio, you can watch Shakespeare shorts, or find out more via quizzes on the Cbeebies site – you can see the primary Shakespeare resources here. There are also a range of resources for Secondary school pupils including those from BBC Bitesize and a Secondary Shakespeare playlist you can see a collection of resources for Secondary schools here.

If you do use any LGfL content in your school to inspire your students do let us know by posting them on LGfL’s twitter or Facebook pages.