2nd March 2018 - Adverse Weather Protocol Learning Curve

Unsurprisingly, the focus for my letter this week is the weather. The week has been characterised by an obsession with the Met Office, Red and Amber Weather Warnings, driving conditions, fears over safety and the hugely difficult decision taken to close the school. As you are aware, the school’s…

read more...

16th February 2018 Rituals & Milestones

School life is based upon a series of rituals and reoccurring milestones. Ill-fitting uniform on the first day of school. A new school bag. Replacing lost PE kit. The Christmas service at Durham Cathedral. First lessons in options subjects at GCSE and A Level. Last days of term. Results days.…

read more...

9th February 2018 Some Battles Are Never Completely Won

“Sir, I was completing my homework on Anti-Semitism in 1930s Germany and I found a website which said that the Holocaust didn’t happened. Is that a common view?”

 

A year 9 student asked me the above question at the end of a lesson. He waited until other students had left and was clearly a…

read more...

2nd February 2018 Votes For Women

A boy and his father are involved in a car crash. The father dies and the boy needs urgent surgery in order to survive; he will die unless operated upon quickly. He is rushed into the operating theatre. The surgeon enters at speed, ready to operate, but stops, stating ‘I can’t operate on him. He’s…

read more...

Tags: Suffragettes, Lydia Pearson

26th January 2018 Lydia Pearson, Libraries & About The Young Idea

We have a number of invigilators in school this week as year 11 students are completing mock exams. On Wednesday an invigilator asked for directions and I explained that ‘You need to go straight past Lydia and turn right.’ They nodded, but rightly, looked a little perplexed.

Lydia is the name…

read more...

19th January 2018 Old Photographs

 

If you look very closely at the above photograph (left) you will see two small human figures; one man having his shoes cleaned by another. It is titled ‘Boulevard du Temple’ and was taken in 1838 by Louis Daguerre. It is the first known photograph to feature a person. A year later, in…

read more...

12th January 2018 Vive La France & An Introduction

As a history teacher at Durham Johnston it is always obvious that you have returned to school in January when, walking along the corridors, vigilant but thinking of tea, you are accosted by inquisitive 6th form students.

“Excuse me sir, how many economics ministers did Louis XVI have between…

read more...