Why are we heading to Haiku?

Written by Steve Richards on 02/02/2013.

NorthstarWorldwide announced last Monday that after eight years of using Moodle as our online learning environment (OLE) we are switching off our Moodle server and heading to a hosted service provided by Haiku Learning. A number of people have asked why we are taking what is a pretty momentous decision for a small organisation like […]

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Loadsamoney and the purpose of education

Written by Steve Richards on 21/01/2013.

Whilst watching a quiz on TV this week one of the younger contestants was asked what he wished to do after graduating from university. His reply was simple – “to find a very well-paid job which would let me retire as early as possible.” Now this is not the first time that I have heard […]

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2013 – the best is yet to come!

Written by Steve Richards on 14/01/2013.

‘The best is yet to come’ is the title of a 1959 song originally made popular by Frank Sinatra and more recently by Michael Buble. It is also the promise made by Barrack Obama to the American people after defeating Mitt Romney in the American Presidential campaign last year. D:Ream, the 1990s dance band, expressed […]

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GCSEs and the blame game

Written by Steve Richards on 11/11/2012.

GCSE Fiasco: Report Blames Teachers’ Marking, – Sky News headlines 2/11/12 So now we know! After all the hours of media coverage, huffing and puffing, threats of legal action, the Welsh exam board regrading students work – it was our fault – Teachers in some of England’s secondary schools were guilty of “significantly” over-marking pupils’ […]

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Discrimination disguised as concern

Written by Steve Richards on 05/11/2012.

Leighton Andrews, Minister for Education and Skills in the Welsh government, is proposing to radically reshape the legal landscape within which home-based education in Wales takes place. In my opinion these proposals are ill-thought out, fail to take account of global research and discriminatory in essence. I don’t intend to spend time exploring the proposals […]

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Get lost – its not so bad!

Written by Steve Richards on 16/09/2012.

I came across the following quote in a local village hall a little while ago – “The man who never was lost, never went very far.” It was originally written by George Herbert Bridges Ward, the founder of the Sheffield Clarion Ramblers and a leading activist in the movement in the early 20th century for […]

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Charlotte Mason and habits

Written by Steve Richards on 28/06/2012.

With only two weeks left to the end of term, I thought I would hold back on covering the three pillars upon which Charlotte Mason built her approach to education. Instead, I want to mention something else that she attached enormous significance to – namely, ‘habit’; indeed, Mason’s enthusiasm for the cultivation of habits in […]

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Freedom in education

Written by Steve Richards on 14/06/2012.

On Saturday I spoke at a Home education conference in Coventry. Around 100-120 adults attended along with a host of children, most of whom looked to be under 9 or 10 years of age. It was a super day and one that was a real blessing to Lyn and me; the thrill was actually seeing […]

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Charlotte Mason – a few introductory comments

Written by Steve Richards on 13/06/2012.

Those of you who have studied with NorthStarWorldwide for a number of years will be aware that Charlotte Mason, a British educator from the turn of the 19th century, is one of my all-time heros! Though largely forgotton for much of the 20th century, she brought a vitality and a vibrancy to education which was […]

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