Literature and Killing time combined

Waiting at public places is one thing that we, humans, do not find as an exciting task to do. (

exam stressTravelling and waiting around is part of the everyday hum of society – especially in schools! We ask students to wait outside the classroom while we get ready for the next class or while talking to another students or teacher. Even when we are commuting home from school and work – There is always time to kill. 

While we always have our screens (be it phones, cameras, ipads, tablets, computers) to keep us entertained going back to basics reading a small piece of literature is an excellent idea! This project of using a free short story dispenser as a way to combat killing time in public spaces is one that can be transmitted into the classroom. 

This has inspired a little project which hopefully I can have in place in the classroom soon – print off small historical stories that students can take with them to read while killing time. It’s a simple project which will take some time to get up and running. However, hopefully it will inspire students to take a moment away from their phones and learn something new!

Open to any good history stories which could prove a nail biting short read!

#Grenoble #reading #history #short stories #short story dispensers


piano keys

Music, similar to twitter is another overlooked resource that could be used more frequently in classes. Earlier I blogged about maybe using five minutes at the end of class to listen to allow class to rest. Why not use music?

At the end of a long class – both teacher and student will be frazzled. Though this may sound disheartening frazzled is a good word to use as it generally means there has been great amount achieved. However, it can leave teachers and students alike feeling drained.

Music is excellent at allowing people to relax or energise.

Additionally it should not be overlooked the importance of study music for students that find it difficult to concentrate or even are subjected to a noisy study environment.

I have a long list of songs I think can help to relax and motivate a class or individual students – but each class is different thus I’ve found this helpful ten tips to help you pick which you think can help your class or you study.

If at this stage you’re still sceptical read through the results found by these researchers. It may make you want to give it a try.

A research team reports that early music training dramatically enhancing children’s abstract reasoning skills. These findings indicate that music uniquely enhances higher brain functions required for mathematics, chess, science and engineering.
(From Neurological Research, Feb 28, 1997; Frances Rauscher, Ph.D., Gordon Shaw, Ph.D, University of California, Irvine)

A two-year Swiss study involving 1,200 children in 50 schools showed that students involved in the music program were better at languages, learned to read more easily, showed an improved social climate, showed more enjoyment in school, and had a lower level of stress than non-music students.
(Weber, E.W., Spychiger, M. & Patry, J.L. (1993))

Academic Articles

  1. Neurological Research, Feb 28, 1997; Frances Rauscher, Ph.D., Gordon Shaw, Ph.D, University of California, Irvine
  2. Weber, E.W., Spychiger, M. & Patry, J.L. (1993)

On this Day

History Resources are abundant online. But how can you make students use history outside of the classroom?

One resource I’ve found that students seem to use even after leaving the history classroom is On this Day in History.

It’s a great little resource which can be looked up online and now is available in app form. Encourage students to download the app and use it. Even incorporate it into lessons to show how history is relevant.