Geoff Barton

Welcome to the Barton website, designed by one of my former students, Tom Cahalan. This is a sign of either (a) his high esteem for me as a teacher or (b) the fact that I originally promised him 50 if he did a good job. You be the judge.

With around 10,000 hits a month, the site contains a mixture of free English resources for students and teachers, based on materials I've developed in my own teaching, or for conferences and presentations, or through my publishing work and freelance writing.

The website contains no advertising or endorsements, which is a sign of my long-standing control-freakery: I don't want ads for books or writing schools or off-the-shelf essays popping up everywhere. Instead this is just an old-fangled, text-heavy collection of links and resources intended to amuse, inform and occasionally provoke.

My separate "Pick 'n' Mix" site contains links to articles and audio that strike me as interesting. You can also follow me on Twitter (@RealGeoffBarton), though this may well be a sign that you really do have too much time on your hands.

This site was developed as a straightforward resource for teachers, students and even the occasional bewildered collector of those 6-second songs called radio jingles. Welcome to you all.

Here's what you'll find:

Teacher resources:

Free resources for teachers - especially English teachers and Literacy Coordinators. These are materials I've developed for courses and conferences over the years. They are the most popular pages and include PowerPoint presentations, Word documents, and useful links. Some of these things may not make sense if you weren't at the original course. They are generally about literacy, school leadership, evaluation, school improvement and behaviour management.

Student resources:

These are the handouts I've been using in my own English teaching at GCSE, in A-level English Language and Communication Studies. The aim here is to give you copies of notes and handouts, and further guidance on how to complete assignments successfully. I've also recently added resources to help students to gain grade C or higher at GCSE. Good luck!


These are collected articles from various sources, including The TES, Independent and Guardian. The pages have recently been updated to include archive pieces on such diverse subjects as whole-school literacy; becoming a headteacher; Delia Smith; The career I never had (radio DJ); 'Grammar Without Shame'; and 'The 12 Things that Great English Teachers Do'. There's also a "Writing Samples" page to highlight the range of topics I have written about.


I love radio. It was the career I once thought I might have, and I've been fortunate in being able to dabble in it as a teacher. For example, here are the reports, based on live interviews, that I recorded in Kurdistan in November 2011 for BBC Radio Suffolk. Here I'm on Radio 4's Home Truths about my interest in radio jingles. And here's the audio report for BBC Radio Suffolk when I tried to trace the roots of my mysterious predecessor, Edmund Coote - a headmaster sacked by Governors in 1597. Oh, and my long-standing (some would say bewildering) fascination with American radio jingles is exemplified here.


This section highlights current projects and interests, including my most recent publications.


My real hope, in putting together this website (or, rather, getting Tom to put it together), is that I might come into contact with students I taught in Leicester, Leeds, York or Suffolk since I started in 1985. Many of you have already made contact. If I did teach you, forgive me for any moments of sarcasm, irrelevance, self-indulgence or arrogance. I've changed since then, as my current students will testify: I'm less sarcastic.

Thanks for visiting.

Geoff Barton