Some ramblings and a challenge!

So it seems that Hywel Roberts thinks I’m worth listening to (man has taken leave of his senses) and has offered some very lovely words in the form of his nomination for the twitteratn challenge. I’ve copied the rules here as required and made my nominations below. Have also added a video to Youtube where I fulfil the requirements and added that here …

Hopefully something of interest here for people!

In the spirit of social-media-educator friendships, this summer it is time to recognise your most supportive colleagues in a simple blogpost shout-out. Whatever your reason, these 5 educators should be your 5 go-to people in times of challenge and critique, or for verification and support.



There are only 3 rules.


1 You cannot knowingly include someone you work with in real life.

2 You cannot list somebody that has already been named if you are already made aware of them being listed on #TwitteratiChallenge

3 You will need to copy and paste the title of this blogpost and (the Rules and What To Do) information into your own blog post.



What To Do?

There are 5 to-dos you must use if you would like to nominate your own list of colleagues.


1 Within 7 days of being nominated by somebody else, you need to identify colleagues that you rely regulalry go-to for support and challnege. They have now been challenged and must act as participants of the #TwitteratiChallenge.

2 If you’ve been nominated, you must write your own #TwitteratiChallenge blogpost within 7 days. If you do not have your own blog, try @StaffRm.

3 The educator nominated, that means you reading this must either: a) record a video of themselves (using Periscope?) in continuous footage and announce their acceptance of the challenge, followed by a pouring of your (chosen) drink over a glass of ice.

4 Then, the drink is to be lifted with a ‘cheers’ before the participant nominates their five other educators to participate in the challenge.

5 The educator that is now (newly) nominated, has 7 days to compose their own #TwitteratiChallenge blogpost and identify who their top-5 go-to educators are.

Ok, So it’s my turn…

As I’m sure everyone that has to do this will think and comment getting just five from the momentous gang of fantastic people that we share, debate and laugh with on Twitter is massively difficult and if you’re not in the five I’m still sending lots of love and warm thoughts in your direction. Some have been included already by others or break the rules of the challenge and I’ve put my final list together with people I’ve had longest relationships or most exchanges with. A longer list would include @imagineinquiry, @McShaneChris, @developingtandl, @DKMead, @kbrechin, @gradgrind999, @ChrisMoyse, @davidfawcett, @mlovatt1, @Pekabelo, @dockershoops, @SeahamRE, @beetlebug1, @BridgetBurke2, @headguruteacher, @johntomsett, @vicgoddard, @learningspy, @Edutronic, @deadshelley, @hallrhall, @MichaelT1979, @kbrechin, @lisajaneashes, @MrsPrentice, @MissJKud and loads more


First up and one that will be no surprise to anyone that knows me is the magnificent Tait Coles (@Totallywired77). We met on Twitter a few years back and in person from time to time. He never stops giving and challenging and is a massively principled guy and a true revolutionary.  And he’s written a brilliant book cutting through lots of the safe and formulaic approaches to teaching that seem to dominate educational literature nowadays. I’m waiting for him to move from pedagogy to philosophy and politics in his next one. Have just seen that he’s already been nominated so the rules say he can’t be in my five. As a PuNk I’m going to stick two fingers up and leave him in my write up and add another one as well!


I first met Martin Said (@saidthemac) at Cramlington where I saw him deliver a workshop around an integrated creative arts curriculum. It was something I was looking into so was timely but his approach was also genius. As well as being a fantastic educator Martin is a genuinely warm guy and I still remember him saying how he knew he was lucky to work at a school like Cramlington and that he thought we should be more confident and comfortable to say how much we love young people and love working with them. And the XP school he’s been part of creating is an actual example of that over used and rarely real concept of innovation in education.


As a public (sorry Nick independent!) schoolboy working in state education I’ve always enjoyed conversations with Nick Dennis (@nickdennis) He’s a deep thinker and genuinely wise man who writes a stimulating blog and is also responsible for the annual TLAB event. Nick works in an independent school and this has been something that has been part of our discussions around the notion of one sector helping the other and how actually this suggestion of superiority or inferiority is unhelpful and we could do better to look at best practice regardless of where the funding comes from if we hope to move forward. We also share a love of old school hip hop which is always good to cement a relationship.


Sweary old Jamie Portman (@jamieportman) is someone I met through the Cramlington connection and is a #soldier that I’m glad to serve alongside in the education battlefield. He’s a straight talker and sophisticated thinker and also a great guy to have a beer with which I wish we could do more often but like so many of my favourite twitter guys he’s bloody miles away.


I’m not doing as much TEEP training as I used to but worked with some great people when I did and right up there with the best of them was Sandra Towers (@SandraTowers) who is a TEEP Ninja and a wealth of ideas about teaching generally and more specifically English teaching as well as being a driving force in getting more people to get involved in Twitter as a forum for discussion and encouraging us all to bring a friend to a teachmeet. We’ve also stayed at some terrifying places!


Last in my list but never last in my thinking is Kenny Pieper (@kennypieper) who I met at last year’s TLT and was a superstar when things were tough for me over the last year. Kenny sits quietly but is the architect of a hell of a lot of how teachers use Twitter and the associated grass roots movement of collaboration so next time you’re at a teatime or are tweeting a #pedagoo friday don’t forget to give a nod to the godfather. He’s also a fantastic moral compass and I don’t think I would have started blogging without his encouragement!

So that’s me. Let’s see where these guys take it next!

Lots of Love


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