Pearson English Conference 2019

Pearson English Conference 2019

This year our English Conference will delve into the importance of creativity in the classroom, and look at ways in which you can incorporate it into your everyday teaching of English Language and Literature.

Our full-day conference will include workshops and expert speaker sessions.

Read more

Join us for the Friday night (25 January) for our formal dinner, drop-in session with the Pearson Edexcel English Qualifications Team and to hear poetry readings and discussion from Julia Copus and Daljit Nagra.

Keynote speaker: Dr Sue Dymoke, School of Education, University of Leicester.

Thinking and writing: students, creativity and poetry 

This keynote focuses on recent research exploring young people’s development as creative and critical writers of/about poetry. It draws on adolescent writers’ poetry workshop experiences to consider their responses to creative opportunities. Additionally, it addresses some of the creative challenges faced by those who are working with GCSE and A level students and offers some research-informed practical suggestions for teachers to adapt for use in their own English classrooms.

Sue Dymoke is a Reader in Education at the University of Leicester where she researches and teaches aspects of poetry pedagogy. She also leads writing workshops with writers of all ages and her work on poetry education has been internationally recognised through invitations to lecture in Japan and New Zealand. In 2017, she was awarded the Terry Furlong Research Award from the National Association for the Teaching of English and, in 2011, she received a National Teaching Fellowship. Sue has published three full collections of poetry. Her new collection, What They Left Behind, was published by Shoestring Press in 2018. She is the author of Drafting and Assessing Poetry (Paul Chapman); two highly acclaimed co-edited volumes from Bloomsbury - Making Poetry Matter: international research on poetry pedagogy and Making Poetry Happentransforming the poetry classroom - and, with Andy Croft, edited the anthology Not Just a Game: Sporting Poetry (Five Leaves).


Julia has recently worked with us on our new Poet to Poet podcast series and accompanying student resources where she is in discussion with Daljit Nagra and Ros Barber about their poems in the Poems of the Decade Anthology. Julia Copus's most recent poetry collection, The World's Two Smallest Humans, was shortlisted for both the T S Eliot Prize and the Costa Poetry Award. She has won First Prize in the National Poetry Competition and the Forward Prize for Best Individual Poem. She also works as a freelance podcast producer and is currently writing a biography of turn-of-the-century Bloomsbury poet Charlotte Mew about whom she will present a radio feature for the BBC later this year. Julia is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and her fourth collection, Girlhood, is due out from Faber in February 2019.

Daljit Nagra has published four collections with Faber & Faber. He has won the Forward Prize for Best Individual Poem and Best First Book, the South Bank Show Decibel Award and the Cholmondeley Award. His books have been twice nominated for the TS Eliot Prize, and he has been selected as a New Generation Poet by the PBS. He is the inaugural Poet-in-Residence for Radio 4 & 4 Extra, and presents a weekly programme, Poetry Extra, on Radio 4 Extra. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and is on the Council of the Board, and he is a trustee of the Arvon Foundation. He teaches at Brunel University.

{{ gatDoctitle }}


This workshop in creative writing will explore the ways in which we can use our own individuality and imagination to shape and explore the written and spoken word. Students will be encouraged to unlock their creativity through specific writing exercises, and by exploring stories related to their own backgrounds and experiences. The goal will be to understand how writing well corresponds to reading widely on the one hand, as well as understanding one's own unique voice and interests.

Siddhartha Bose's books include two poetry collections from Penned in the Margins, Kalagora (2010) and Digital Monsoon (2013), a monograph on the grotesque, Back and Forth (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015), and a play, No Dogs, No Indians (Penned in the Margins, 2017), which recently had sell-out runs at the Brighton Festival, Southbank Centre, and the Edinburgh Book Festival among others. Sid’s poetry has been anthologised in Voice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st Century (Bloodaxe, 2009) and he has been featured widely on BBC radio/ TV, The Guardian and The Times among othersHis theatre work includes a play, also called Kalagora (2010-12), which had an acclaimed run at Edinburgh Fringe '11, London’s Perverted Children (2012-13)long-listed for an Oxford Samuel Beckett Theatre Trust award, and The Shroud (2014). He has made a poetry film, Animal City (2014), and co-edited a special issue of the literary journal, Wasafiri (Routledge) on international urban writing. Siddhartha was a Leverhulme Fellow in English & Drama at Queen Mary, University of London (2011-13).  

Practical strategies for the English classroom to inspire Post-16 learners. A variety of tried and tested lesson starters and activities designed to give teachers a bank of resources aimed at motivating reluctant, nervous or disaffected students. All the activities help to embed the key reading and writing skills needed for the current GCSE specifications.

We will be looking at how to approach a text through active, get-up-and-do drama techniques. The focus will be on character. Specifically the workshop will be geared towards the practicalities of an English classroom. Participants will be invited to have a go at all the exercises we look at, however there will be plenty of understanding that we don’t have to be performers to enjoy the experience of exploring a character through drama.

For the purpose of the workshop we will use Macbeth, however the activities and techniques can be applied to any text

Jon Seal has taught English, drama and media studies for 30 years. He has published seven books focusing on GCSE texts from Shakespeare to Priestley. Jon has produced a large number of English training videos and is an experienced filmmaker and theatre director.

This workshop will consider the benefits of studying media texts in English. It will show how the use of contemporary media forms - especially those involving the moving image - can increase student engagement while at the same time improve the skills they need to improve attainment in their GCSE exams.

Teachers everywhere are painfully aware of the problems raised by the re-emphasis of 19th century prose fiction in the new GCSE English specifications.

Students with literacy difficulties or who are accustomed primarily to the pared down three-sentence-per-paragraph structure of web articles are confounded when suddenly beset with the rich descriptive vocabulary and archaic phraseology of Gothic literature.

Four of Swords has an extensive education programme and has established a reputation for bringing inaccessible texts to life. It has worked especially with a number of Gothic texts, especially Frankenstein and Jekyll & Hyde.

In this hands-on, practical session, we will explore a number of different tactics and activities for helping students to access 19th century texts. These activities are primarily – but not exclusively – drama-based. They will focus on Jekyll & Hyde and A Christmas Carol, although they should be adaptable to suit any text and, as such, is suitable for GCSE English Language teachers too.

  • Unlock some tricky Gothic language!
  • Explore characters and motivations!
  • Dive into some juicy 19th century context!

Nazmia Jamal, who has recently returned to the world of teaching, presents ways to find, select and approach the work of new poets. Suitable for all A level English syllabuses that allow free choice of poetry texts in the NEA (English Literature and Language & Literature).


  • £250 for an overnight stay on Friday 25 January with formal dinner and full Saturday conference.

  • £200 for Saturday 26 January conference only.

Receive a 10% discount when booking before 31 December 2018.

Book now