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Transform Teaching and Learning through Talk
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Table of Contents

Foreword Beccy Earnshaw, Director, Voice 21 Introduction 1. It's Time to Take Speaking Seriously 2. Know What Makes Good Talk 3. Deconstruct and Teach Discussion 4. Remember You Can't Talk about Nothing 5. Structure Oracy 6. Elevate the Quality of Talk 7. Cultivate Vocabulary 8. Teach Listening, Too 9. Embrace Oracy for your Quiet Students 10. Talk about Talk 11. Create Authentic Contexts 12. Develop Oracy through Debate 13. Make Meaningful use of Assessment About the Authors Index

About the Author

Amy Gaunt and Alice Stott lead teaching and learning at Voice 21, a charity dedicated to raising the status of oracy in schools across the UK and worldwide. Over the last two years they have supported thousands of teachers and hundreds of schools across the UK to embrace oracy in their pedagogy and curriculum. Their practice has been shaped by the innovative approaches to oracy developed at School 21, a pioneering 4-18 state school in Stratford, East London.

Reviews

Essential reading for classroom practitioners, school leaders and, I'd argue, for policy makers who might be persuaded of the core value of oracy - not a distraction, but instead the engine house of academic achievement and for developing rounded, confident individuals. Those early pioneers in the 1970s and 1980s cleared a lot of the scrubland surrounding attitudes to talk in education. They planted the seeds that, now, possibly, are beginning to burst into flower again. This book doesn't just revisit what was made visible in those times, but stimulates and reveals new growth as well, fresh approaches that might just survive for longer this time around. * Oracy Cambridge *
This is a wonderful book that provides that rare thing - absolute clarity of vision and purpose alongside practical down-to-earth examples for the classroom. Dip into this this today and by tomorrow have a range of tried and tested activities that will inspire your class to engage meaningfully in discussion, build listening skills and engage in debate. The authors are experienced highly successful teachers who generously share their strategies, resources and insights. I recommend this to you wholeheartedly. -- Professor Dame Alison Peacock, Chief Executive of the Chartered College of Teaching
In their book on oracy, Gaunt and Stott have drawn upon their experiences at School 21 to produce a timely book for teachers who want to improve the quality of talk in their classrooms. The book is bursting with ideas and practical strategies for teachers, alongside a detailed exploration of the nuances of successful talk, listening, debate, and much more. -- Alex Quigley, Senior Associate at the Education Endowment Foundation, former English teacher, author of `Closing the Vocabulary Gap'
More than speaking, more even than a way to teach critical thinking, oracy offers hope for a generation of citizens who can understand each other and make decisions in common. Educators, parents-and anyone interested in saving the world, for that matter-should consider this book an indispensable guide. -- Jay Heinrichs, author of the New York Times bestseller, `Thank You for Arguing: What Aristotle, Lincoln, and Homer Simpson Can Teach Us About the Art of Persuasion'
Here's a book overflowing with ideas of how to make oracy come alive in the classroom. It will be welcomed by all heads of department who want to enable their children to lead fulfilled and successful lives - and do well in their exams! Although it doesn't set out explicitly to do so, it is also a 'vade mecum' for teachers wishing to make tutor periods fun and valuable. The many cogent examples of 'how-to-do-it' are drawn from classroom practice and will be gobbled up by teachers looking for practical ideas. The two authors who hail from the pioneering 'School 21' also justify the importance of oracy which strangely (given their reliance on oracy) appeals only fitfully to politicians making national policy. Yet listening and speaking are a precondition of a free and democratic society and a vital part of everybody's claim to be educated. After all until a person with a case which is just can argue it in a way which might enable it to prevail, there will continue to exist a mental form of slavery which is as real as any economic form. Teachers are pledged to destroy such slavery. This book will help them immeasurably in their vital task and should be on the shelf of every school's staff library. -- Professor Tim Brighouse, former Chief Commissioner for Schools
High quality talk in classrooms is easier to describe than to put into action. This book sets out in meticulous detail the what, the why and the how of securing great quality talk in classrooms. It leaves no stone unturned, draws extensively on the research and offers examples of how high quality oracy and its cousin, listening, work in classrooms. This is a rich, carefully structured resource, and will be a boon to individual teachers and whole school communities who know the importance of strengthening this aspect of their practice. -- Mary Myatt, education advisor
This clearly written and highly informative book is just what is needed to help teachers put the teaching of spoken language skills into the curriculum - and to convince them why they should do so. It makes the evidence-based case for oracy education very well, and is full of practical, tried-and-tested classroom activities. -- Professor Neil Mercer, Director of Oracy Cambridge, University of Cambridge
`Oracy' might be an ugly word, but this book beautifully makes the case for why it matters so much. We know from personal experience and academic research that high quality, well-taught speaking and listening approaches can form the foundation of children's wider achievement. Here is a compellingly comprehensive range of approaches and activities to give oracy the profile it needs to make a deep whole-school impact. For anyone interested in empowering children's learning, this book is indispensable. -- Geoff Barton, General Secretary, the Association of School & College Leaders
Transforming Teaching and Learning Through Talk: the Oracy Imperative is essential reading for classroom practitioners, school leaders and, I'd argue, for policy makers who might be persuaded of the core value of oracy - not a distraction, but instead the engine house of academic achievement and for developing rounded, confident individuals. Those early pioneers in the 1970s and 1980s cleared a lot of the scrubland surrounding attitudes to talk in education. They planted the seeds that, now, possibly, are beginning to burst into flower again. This book doesn't just revisit what was made visible in those times, but stimulates and reveals new growth as well, fresh approaches that might just survive for longer this time around. * Orana *

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