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Secondary Lesson Starters

From maths at the seaside to functional skills for engineering and hair and beauty diplomas, these short video lesson starters for secondary students present learning in a fun and relevant way.

There are 118 videos in this series, of which the following 116 are currently available to view online.

3 mins Hidden Patterns in Durham Cathedral
Hidden patterns in Durham Cathedral's architecture are revealed by mathematican, Steve Humble, in this Key Stage 3 maths video.
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3 mins Finding the Golden Ratio in Durham Cathedral
Maths teacher, Steve Humble, uncovers the golden ratio in the architecture at Durham Cathedral. Ideal for Key Stage 3 maths students.
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3 mins Symmetry and Circumference in Durham Cathedral
Mathematician, Steve Humble, looks at symmetry and circumference for Key Stage 3 maths students, drawing on the architecture at Durham Cathedral for inspiration.
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3 mins Measuring Height in Durham Cathedral
Dr Maths, Steve Humble, looks at hidden maths in Durham Cathedral, in this Key Stage 3 maths and architecture video.
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3 mins The Floor Plan of Durham Cathedral
Mathematician, Steve Humble, discovers hidden maths in relation to the architecture of Durham Cathedral. Suitable for Key Stage 3 maths students.
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2 mins Bullying Girls: Reenactment
Two peer mentors attempt to prevent bullying in this short video devised by students in this lesson starter for KS3 and KS4 PSHE lessons.
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3 mins Bullying Girls: The Issues
A short video looking at the issue of girls bullying other girls in this lesson starter for KS3 and KS4 PSHE lessons.
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4 mins Secondary PSHE - Violence and Abuse - Gangs
This secondary PSHE lesson starter looks at why some young people join gangs and gang culture, with opinions from students, teachers and police officers.
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4 mins Secondary PSHE - Violence and Abuse - Knives
A teenager from south London talks from personal experience about the problems of knife crime, in this secondary PSHE lesson starter.
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4 mins Secondary PSHE - Violence and Abuse - Anger
A teenage boy talks about how he is dealing with his anger issues in a lesson starter designed to start discussions in secondary PSHE lessons.
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4 mins Secondary PSHE - Violence and Abuse - Booze Bus
Following the work of an ambulance crew who help young people who have drunk too much, this classroom resource for secondary PSHE lessons is designed to start discussions on alcohol abuse.
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3 mins Britain's Black History - Coffee Houses and the Slave Trade
Learn about the growth in popularity of coffee and its connections with black history in Britain, in this lesson starter for use with KS3 pupils.
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3 mins Britain's Black History - Black Britons
This KS3 black history lesson starter video looks at some of the black people who came to Britain centuries ago and the role they played in British society.
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3 mins Britain's Black History - The Obelisk
This KS3 lesson starter on black history highlights the contributions of people of African and Caribbean descent to British landmarks.
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3 mins Britain's Black History - Gold
Historian Tony Warner brings to light African and Caribbean influences on Britain, in this KS3 black history lesson starter on gold and Britain's financial history.
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3 mins Holocaust - In the House of a Survivor
Help Key Stage 3/4 history students discover the life of one of the few British Jews who were deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp during World War II.
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3 mins Holocaust - In Hiding, A Journey through Berlin
Watch a personal account of being a young Jew growing up in Nazi Germany, in this classroom resource for Key Stage 3 history.
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3 mins Holocaust - My Brother, In the Resistance
See a German lady read a letter written by her brother, a member of the German resistance, just before his execution at the hands of the Gestapo, in this classroom resource for use in Key Stage 3 history.
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3 mins Holocaust - Wannsee, Implementing the Final Solution
The Wannsee conference, which debated the Nazi's 'Final Solution of the Jewish Question', is the focus of this Key Stage 3 history classroom resource.
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3 mins Holocaust - The Auschwitz Orchestra
In this Key Stage 3 history classroom resource, Esther Bejarano, a survivor of the Holocaust, tells how she was sent to Auschwitz-Birkenau and survived by joining the camp's orchestra.
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3 mins Holocaust - A Pre-war German Jewish Family
Show a Key Stage 3 history class rare footage of the life of a Jewish family in Germany between 1937 and 1939. This lesson-starting resource can be used to stimulate classroom discussion.
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4 mins Combating Cyberbullying: Posting Pictures without Consent
Teach primary and secondary PSHE pupils the risks and impacts of cyberbullying. This classroom resource can open discussion around Every Child Matters issues including e-safety, anti-bullying and personal and social skills.
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4 mins Combating Cyberbullying: Inadvertent Bullying
This primary and secondary lesson starter resource demonstrates to Key Stage 2-4 pupils how people's intentions can be misunderstood in emails and texts.
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4 mins Combating Cyberbullying: Suffering in Silence
This classroom resource helps primary and secondary PSHE pupils learn effective ways of dealing with cyberbullying. This lesson starter addresses human health and safety and supports Every Child Matters.
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4 mins Iraqi Refugees: Teenagers Talk
This Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship classroom resource looks at how war can disrupt the domestic lives of teenagers.
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2 mins Iraqi Refugees: Teenager at Work
A teenage Iraqi refugee talks about his working life in Syria, in this lesson starter for use in Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship lessons.
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5 mins Iraqi Refugee Children: Dounia's Story
AnIraqi child discuss her new life as a refugee, now living in Syria, in this classroom resource for use in Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship lessons.
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3 mins Iraqi Refugee Children: Ahmed's School
School life is the topic of conversation for Ahmed, a 10-year-old Iraqi refugee now living in Syria, in this classroom resource designed for use in Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship lessons.
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3 mins Iraqi Refugee Children: Ahmed's Home
Ahmed, a 10-year-old refugee from Iraq, talks about his new life in Syria, in this classroom resource designed for use in Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship lessons.
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4 mins Performing a Monologue: Voice
Renowned English actors Prunella Scales and Timothy West give advice about the power of voice to a student delivering a monologue, in a classroom resource designed for use in Key Stage 3/4 drama lessons.
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3 mins Performing a Monologue: Gestures
Actors Prunella Scales and Timothy West advise a student on her monologue, in this classroom resource for Key Stage 3/4 English and drama students.
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2 mins Refugees in the UK: Coming to Britain
Young refugees recount their first experiences of living in the UK, in this classroom resource designed for use in Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship lessons.
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2 mins Refugees in the UK: First Day at School
Show Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship students the experiences of young refugees on their first day at a UK school, with this classroom resource.
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2 mins Refugees in the UK: Fitting In
The difficulties young refugees face as they try to find a place in British society are explored in this lesson starter for Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship lessons.
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3 mins Refugees in the UK: Learning English
Young refugees who have recently arrived in the UK discuss some of the barriers to communication they experience, in this classroom resource for Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship lessons.
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2 mins Refugees in the UK: Leaving Home
As a lesson idea for Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship, show students these young refugees' experiences of leaving their home countries.
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2 mins Refugees in the UK: Finding a School
Refugees sometimes face a struggle attaining a place in a UK school. Explore their story with Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship students, using this classroom resource.
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3 mins Refugees in the UK: School and Beyond
Help Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship students learn about young refugees' aspirations for the future, with this lesson-starting video.
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3 mins Computer Skills: Keyboard Shortcuts
How to use keyboard shortcuts is the subject of this informative lesson starter designed for Key Stage 3/4 ICT students.
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3 mins Computer Skills: Internet Search
Show Key Stage 3/4 ICT students these practical tips on how to search the internet efficiently using sites like Google.
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3 mins Cyberbullying and Teenagers
Interviews and case studies are used to examine cyberbullying, in this lesson starter for use in Key Stage 3/4 PSHE classes.
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3 mins Astronomy: Inside a Telescope
A rocket scientist tours a huge telescope in South Africa, in this lesson starter on astronomy for Key Stage 3/4 science pupils.
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3 mins Stem Cells: Wheelchair User
A young paraplegic sportsman explains some of the issues surrounding the use of stem cells, in this science lesson starter designed for Key Stage 3/4.
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3 mins Stem Cells: Religious Angle
A pastor discusses the religious debate around stem cell research and some of the ethical issues of using stem cells, in this science lesson starter for Key Stage 3/4.
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2 mins Child Abuse: A Girl Speaks Out
Watch a dramatised true story of a young girl's abuse at the hands of her mother. The girl is played by an actor in this short video suitable for Key Stage 3/4 PSHE.
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3 mins Managing Water in Kenya
In this short video for Key Stage 3 global citizenship, a family in Kenya shows how the need for water dominates their daily lives.
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5 mins Child Labour in India: Anil's Story
A young boy talks about his working life in India, in this short video aimed at Key Stage 3 global citizenship students.
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4 mins Peace Process: Belfast Schools
Staff from two schools in Belfast, Northern Ireland - one Protestant, one Catholic - explain how they encourage pupils to integrate, in this short video designed for Key Stage 3/4 global citizenship lessons.
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3 mins Fair Trade: Football Enterprise
A Key Stage 3 global citizenship lesson could show students how fair trade can support young entrepreneurs.
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3 mins Fair Trade: Football Manufacture
This short case study for Key Stage 3 citizenship shows how fair trade practices are improving the lives of Pakistani villagers who make footballs.
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4 mins World War I: Christmas Truce Re-enactment
Show Key Stage 3/4 history pupils this re-enactment of the Christmas truce during the first world war, in this secondary lesson-starting idea.
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20 mins The Holocaust
This classroom resource contains six Key Stage 3 history lesson starters on the Holocaust, featuring archive footage, personal testimonies from survivors and other material.
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1 min Holocaust and the Kindertransport: Vera's Story
Watch Vera Gissing tell her story of leaving her home in Czechoslovakia to avoid the Holocaust, in this short video for Key Stage 3 and KS4 history students.
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4 mins Holocaust and the Kindertransport: Otto's Story
In this lesson idea for Key Stage 3 and KS4 history pupils, Otto Deutsch speaks about his experiences of the Holocaust, and how he was forced to leave Austria and move to the UK as a child.
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15 mins Maths Starters - Seaside
The properties of triangles are explored as maths expert Isaac Anoom visits the seaside to pose and answer questions, in this Key Stage 3 geometry and measures classroom resource.
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15 mins Maths Starters - Travel
Speed, time, petrol use and traffic flow are the focus as maths expert Isaac Anoom assesses using different modes of transport to travel from London to Plymouth, in this Key stage 3 calculations and graphs classroom resource.
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15 mins Maths Starters - Shopping Mall
Filmed in a modern shopping mall, these quick-fire lesson starter questions for Key Stage 3 maths are presented by maths adviser and performer Isaac Anoom.
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15 mins Maths Starters - Building Yard
Filmed in a building yard, these quick-fire starter questions for Key Stage 3 maths are presented by maths adviser and performer Isaac Anoom.
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15 mins Scrapyard
Filmed in a scrapyard, this Key Stage 3 maths lesson idea raises quick-fire starter questions on: probability, ratio and proportion, rotational symmetry, square numbers and circles.
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7 mins Engineering Diploma Functional Skills
Demonstrating functional skills in English, ICT and maths in an engineering context, this classroom resource is designed for use with Key Stage 4 and further education students.
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7 mins Hair and Beauty Diploma Functional Skills
Demonstrating functional skills in English, ICT and maths in a hair and beauty context, this classroom resource is designed for use with Key Stage 4 and vocational 14-19 learners.
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15 mins KS3 Physics - Sound
Show Key Stage 3/4 physics students the different effects of sound, as demonstrated in this classroom resource for secondary science, designed to be used on an interactive whiteboard.
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15 mins Antarctica
Show Key Stage 3/4 geography pupils what the future holds for Antarctica, addressing climate change, tourism, sustainable development and international treaties, with five lessons-starting videos in this classroom resource.
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15 mins Global Citizenship - Six Film Clips
Take Key Stage 3 global citizenship students around the world with six short videos designed to be used as secondary lesson starters.
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1 min Sound Through a Medium: Wobbling Bubbles
This quick practical experiment showing how a bubble is affected by different sounds is designed for use as a Year 7 to 11 physics classroom resource.
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1 min Sound Through a Medium: Flickering Candles
Demonstrate how a flickering candle responds when exposed to a variety of sound frequencies, this quick practical experiment designed as a lesson starter for Year 7 to 11 physics.
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2 mins Sound Through a Medium: Shattering a Glass
A wine glass is smashed by the power of sound when the right frequency is reached, in this quick experiment aimed at Year 7 to 11 physics students.
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2 mins Sound : Waveforms - Four Octaves
Examine waveform patterns with this lesson starter designed for Year 7 to 11 physics students.
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1 min Sound: Hearing and the Ear - The Confusaphone
Show how sound reaches the human ear in stereo, with this brief practical experiment designed for Year 7 to 11 physics students.
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1 min Sound: Sonic Boom - Cracking the Whip
Demonstrate the speed of sound, using the crack of a whip, with this practical lesson starter for Year 7 to 11 physics.
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1 min Sound: Materials - Brick and Foam
Highlight the effect of different materials on sound, with this practical lesson starter designed for Year 7 to 11 physics students.
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1 min Sound: Using Body Parts
Illustrate how different parts of the body can create different sounds, with this practical experiment targeted at Year 7 to 11 physics students.
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3 mins Delivering Aid in Afghanistan
The problems of delivering aid to people needing help in Afghanistan is the focus of this secondary classroom resource for use as a Key Stage 3 global citizenship lesson starter.
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2 mins Cyclone Warnings in Bangladesh
See how Bangladeshi people deal with the problem of cyclones and natural disasters, with this short classroom resource designed as a Key Stage 3 global citizenship lesson starter.
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2 mins Landmines in Bosnia
The problem of landmines in Bosnia and the impact they have on people's lives is examined in this short video designed as a lesson-starting classroom resource for Key Stage 3 global citizenship.
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4 mins Rehabilitation of Child Soldiers in Sierra Leone
Reveal the problems faced by former child soldiers in Sierra Leone as they're reintegrated into society, in this documentary classroom resource for use as a Key Stage 3 global citizenship lesson starter.
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2 mins Reuniting Families in Sierra Leone
As a lesson idea for Key Stage 3 global citizenship, show Year 7 to Year 9 pupils this short documentary classroom resource revealing how families in Sierra Leone are being reunited after being torn apart by war.
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2 mins Women Affected by War: Sudan
The problems facing women living in the Darfur region of Sudan are highlighted in this brief documentary classroom resource designed as a Key Stage 3 global citizenship lesson starter.
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3 mins Surface Area: Octagon
Show the process of calculating the area of an octagon with a real-life example to start a lesson on geometry and measures, with this classroom resource for Key Stage 3 maths.
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2 mins Percentages: Price Discount on Suitcase
Quickly show the practical application of percentages, as this Key Stage 3 numbers and algebra classroom resource reveals how to calculate percentages, using a real-life situation of sale discounts in a shop.
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2 mins Percentages: VAT on Suitcase
Start a Key Stage 3 lesson on decimals, percentages and fractions with a real-world example showing the step-by-step process of calculating VAT, in this classroom resource for secondary maths, numbers and algebra.
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1 min Value for Money: Boxes of Teabags
Challenge Key Stage 3 maths pupils to calculate which item is the best value for money, starting a numbers and algebra lesson with this practical classroom resource for secondary students.
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2 mins Value for Money: Mobile Phone Tariffs
This quick-to-use maths starter for a Key Stage 3 lesson on numbers and algebra challenges students to calculate whether a pay-as-you-go or contract mobile phone is better value for money.
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1 min Probability: Assorted Chocolates
Using the example of chocolates in a bag, Key Stage 3 maths students can calculate probability with this short lesson-starting classroom resource for secondary statistics.
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3 mins Fractions: Using Reciprocals
Teach Key Stage 3 maths pupils how to order fractions by size, using reciprocals in this quick lesson-starting classroom resource for numbers and algebra.
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1 min Fractions: Cutting a Cake
A numbers and algebra class can learn how to divide a cake into 12 equal pieces using only four cuts, with this short lesson-starting classroom resource for Key Stage 3 maths.
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2 mins Engineering Diploma - Inspiration
A female trainee car mechanic talks about what inspires her, in this observational lesson-starting classroom resource on functional skills, designed for Key Stage 4 engineering diploma students.
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2 mins Engineering Diploma - Communication Skills
Show engineering diploma students a female trainee mechanic talking about her job's need for good communication skills, in this short observational lesson-starting classroom resource on functional skills, for Key Stage 4.
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2 mins Engineering Diploma - Numeracy Skills
The numeracy skills a mechanic needs to do their job is the focus of this quick lesson-starting classroom resource on functional skills, for Key Stage 4 engineering diploma students.
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2 mins Engineering Diploma - ICT Skills
This short lesson starter examines the functional ICT skills a mechanic requires, in this classroom resource on functional skills, designed for Key Stage 4 engineering diploma students.
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2 mins Hair and Beauty Diploma - Inspiration
A trainee hair stylist discusses her job motivations, in this lesson-starting classroom resource on functional skills, for Key Stage 4 students taking a foundation or higher-level vocational 14-19 diploma in hair and beauty.
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2 mins Hair and Beauty Diploma - Communication Skills
The need for good communication skills in health and beauty jobs is shown in this short lesson-starting classroom resource on functional skills, for use with Key Stage 4 vocational 14-19 diploma students.
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2 mins Hair and Beauty Diploma - Numeracy Skills
A trainee hair stylist discusses the numeracy skills she needs, in this lesson-starting classroom resource designed for Key Stage 4 pupils taking a foundation or higher-level vocational 14-19 diploma in health and beauty.
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2 mins Hair and Beauty Diploma - ICT Skills
The ICT skills needed in hair and beauty jobs are the subject of this short lesson-starting classroom resource on functional skills, for use in a Key Stage 4 foundation or higher-level vocational 14-19 diploma class.
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3 mins Ecosystems - Antarctica
Provide a visual overview of the Antarctic, with this short lesson-starting classroom resource designed to give an introduction to environmental change and sustainable development, for Key Stage 3/4 geography students.
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3 mins Ecosystems - Pros and Cons of Research
Introduce the main arguments for and against carrying out research in Antarctica, with this lesson-starting classroom resource on environmental change and sustainable development, aimed at Key Stage 3/4 geography students.
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3 mins Ecosystems - Holes in Glaciers
Quickly introduce the scientific research being conducted on how holes are formed in glaciers, with this short classroom resource on environmental change and sustainable development for secondary geography students .
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3 mins Ecosystems - Tourism
Show the impact of tourism on Antarctica with this short classroom resource video on environmental change and sustainable development, for geography students from Year 7 to Year 11 .
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4 mins Ecosystems - Exploitation
Quickly introduce the controversy around industrial exploitation in Antarctica, with this lesson-starting classroom resource on environmental change and sustainable development, designed for Key Stage 3/4 geography students.
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3 mins Writing a Monologue: Bride
This short monologue about a bride-to-be can be used as an example of how to write a comedy script, as a classroom resource for Key Stage 3/4 English students.
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4 mins Writing a Monologue: Crush
This monologue about a pupil's crush on a teacher can be a classroom resource to be shown to Key Stage 3/4 English students as an example of comedy script writing.
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2 mins Male Students Dance
A group of male trainee physical education (PE) teachers learn to dance for the first time, in this short classroom resource for Key Stage 3/4 PE or dance and gymnastics students.
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1 min Choreograph a Solo: Tsunami
With a GCSE dance piece about a tsunami, this short video is designed for use as a classroom resource in Key Stage 3/4 physical education (PE) or dance and gymnastics lessons.
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1 min Choreograph a Duet: Red Light
With a GCSE dance piece by a boy and a girl, this short video is designed for use as a classroom resource with Key Stage 3/4 physical education (PE) or dance and gymnastics students.
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15 mins Secondary PSHE - Life
Show teenagers talking about sex, relationships, drugs and depression, with these short human health and safety videos designed as a classroom resource to provoke classroom debate among Key Stage 3/4 PSHE students.
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15 mins Secondary PSHE - Work
See teenagers discuss money, work, self employment, redundancy, debt and discrimination, in these short videos designed as a classroom resource for provoking debate among Key Stage 3/4 PSHE students.
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3 mins Careers: Rocket Scientist
A rocket scientist talks about why she finds her career so exciting, in this classroom resource designed for use in a Key Stage 3/4 PSHE or science class.
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4 mins Elementary School in Ghana
One of the founders of an elementary school in Ghana offers a tour of the premises in this KS3 and KS4 global citizenship lesson starter.
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4 mins Sustainability in a Tanzanian School
A profile of a school in Tanzania that makes extensive use of sustainable resources in this KS3 and KS4 global citizenship lesson starter.
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3 mins Himalayas: New School in Ladakh
A new school is opened in a Himalayan village in this KS3 and KS4 global citizenship lesson starter, desinged to stimulate classroom discussion.
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2 mins Himalayas: Learning Hubs in Ladakh
This lesson starter for KS3 and KS4 global citizenship topics demonstrates how people living in a Himalayan town can get access to a basic education.
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2 mins Himalayas: Mobile Learning
A nomadic tribe in the Indian Himalayas provide an example of educational outreach, in this KS3 and KS4 global citizenship lesson starter.
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4 mins KS3 English Speaking and Listening - Mum's Birthday
This classroom resource is designed for developing English speaking and listening skills at Key Stage 3, showing a dramatic scene with an open ending, which allows secondary pupils to decide what happens next.
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3 mins KS3 English Speaking and Listening - The Noise
This short speaking-and-listening classroom resource gives Key Stage 3 English students a scenario for which they can devise creative solutions addressing what happens next...
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4 mins KS3 English Speaking and Listening - The Letter
This speaking-and-listening classroom resource for a Key Stage 3 English class is designed to stimulate creative ideas for an ending to this open-ended dramatic situation.
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4 mins KS3 English Speaking and Listening - Grandma's Junk
This short classroom resource is designed as a lesson starter to inspire a Key Stage 3 English class to discuss how a play might develop, improvising alternative endings while developing speaking-and-listening skills.
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