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Books that I’m looking forward to using!

I’m always looking for texts to use with lower KS2 and have enjoyed reading Andy Shepherd‘s series of chapter books about what happens when Tomas discovers a strange tree at the bottom of his grandad’s garden that seems to have odd fruit growing on it.
I love the idea of a dragon fruit that actually hatches a real dragon – Flicker. Children love dragons and I’ve collected lots of texts to use with the book, but just need the opportunity to use them now.
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Meet Dawn Robertson

Welcome to my newly revamped web site.

I created this website a few years ago, when I became a freelance English consultant, but then life side-swiped me and it felt easier to give little sound bites on Twitter (@justdawned). Now, things have changed again and we are all in the middle of very unsettling times. It felt right to try to rebuild my website as sometimes you just want, and need, to say more!

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A wish

This is my friend’s little boy writing from his heart. I hope that his wish comes true!

Daily dose of poetry for June

My love affair with poetry has been an extremely long one! Throughout June I am going to start by sharing this wonderful free resource from Books from Scotland specially commissioned for children during lock down. Then I’m going to tweet four poems every day that could be used to help teachers explore themes such as happiness, loss, old age, love, and resilience (these daily anthologies will be shared in the poetry section). Children love poetry and if I can help teachers find some interesting ones that will make June, and this madness we are all going through, just a little more bearable.

I’ve just seen this on Twitter and wanted to share Jackie Kay’s wonderful poem.
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Latest news!

This free performance by The Little A Theatre of ‘We found a hat’ is delightful and your pupils will love it.
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Books for whole school teaching

I am currently looking for high-quality texts to use for whole school projects in the autumn. This is one such book. It will lead to lots of work on well-being and growth and I’ll be able to use it with all year groups on different levels.
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Picture books that I love!

This is such a thoughtfully written book that carries such a powerful message about being true to yourself. It tells the story of Faizah first day and her pride that it’s her older sister Asiya’s first day of hijab–a hijab of beautiful blue fabric, like the ocean waving to the sky. Ibtihaj Muhammad and S.K.Ali explore the prejudices that she might face and show how the beauty in her strength and the power in celebrating who you really are. Hatem Aly’s art work is bold and powerful too.
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Garden Glory

A friend sent me a great video of the most amazing gardens with their own art! Here are a few of the images:
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Lizzie and the birds

Here is my picture book, Lizzie and the Birds, that I wrote with my husband Mick. We are so proud of it. It is a rip-roaring adventure about what happens when Lizzie, yearning for friendship after moving house, encounters a terrifying tornado (mu ha ha ha!) and has her world turned upside down by a rag-taggle bunch of feathery fellows!

I had always wanted to write a children’s book and having an artist as a husband meant we could illustrate it ourselves! I also wanted to be able to use it in schools to encourage reading and speaking and listening and to generate all different forms of writing, so I created a teacher’s handbook to accompany it!
It is full of detailed lesson plans, ideas and resources to help the book be used in any classroom. There is also a comprehension ‘test’ and GPS ‘test’ created to be used with the book. A bank of power-points and writing sheets were produced to give teachers everything they need! We really wanted everything at your finger-tips to bring Lizzie and the Birds to life!

You can purchase both of these directly from, on Amazon or through Madeleine Lindley Book Sellers in Manchester.
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Poetry book of the month June

Book Reviews for A Kid in My Class: Poems by By Rachel Rooney and ...

I have so many poetry books, that I use, that it’s always difficult to pick one out and say that it’s my book of the month, but I’m trying to be more disciplined and share my love of this art form so I’m going to try to pick anthologies that we can use right now, whether it’s directly with our classes or on-line with our pupils in the ‘ether’! The poems in A kid in my class, written by Rachel Rooney (winner of the CLiPPA Award) and illustrated by Chris Riddell (former UK Children’s Laureate) offer a wonderful range of different forms and characters that will be loved by your pupils.

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Chapter book of the month June

This wonderfully gripping, really well-crafted, text has been one of my favourite ‘lock-down’ books and helped me escape from the madness we’re all going through. Emily Featherhaugh is our eleven year old ‘hero’ who has inherited the ‘family gob’ and has to step-up to the plate when her mother, then her father both go missing.

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The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn the more places you will go.

Dr Seuss

Boy attacked by wasps picture by Mick Robertson