Librarians Recommend

Librarians Recommend – The Return (2018)

This World Book Day we bring you an exclusive look at recommendations from the Education Library Team


If you’ve visited the Education Library recently you may have seen our recommendation display boxes, if not, now is your chance to catch up with our latest reads.

First up, we have a creative jem from our collection of educational resources.

The doodle book 2 – : draw! colour! create! by Taro Gomi
“The Doodle Book 2 is so much fun and has some great ideas to inspire your own creations.”

This title can be found in the Design & Technology Education section shelved at: 607/2 GOM (Yellow label)
Although we ask that you do not draw, doodle or colour in this book, did you know that the Education Library has a colouring corner of calm with colouring books to be used in our #LibraryLivingRoom?

Next we go around the world with our fiction collection.

Earth magic, sky magic: North American Indian tales by Rosalind Kerven

“Wherever in the world you fancy going there is a book for you @edfaclib. Just one of the magical offerings in the fairy tales section of the Library.”

earth magic

This title can be found shelved in the Fairy Tales section of our Children’s Fiction collection at: KERVEN (Silver label)

The Children’s Fiction collection ranges from picture books to young adult fiction and includes short stories, poetry, fairy tales and mythology from all around the world.

Diverser fiction display
Come and explore the wonders of our collection via the guide to Children’s Literature Collections at Cambridge.

Finally another educational resource which can be borrowed to support teaching in the classroom.

It can’t be true! : incredible tactile comparisons edited by Fleur Star

“Did you know that the biggest stone from the Great Pyramid weighs as much as 20 elephants?! Find out a plethora of fun facts in this wonderful book from our Science educational resources.”

EDITED hot air ballon double page

This title can be found in the Science Education section shelved at: 507/2 STA (Yellow label)

We have a wide array of resources available that cover a range of subjects including other books written in braille and these Mathematic wooden and foam shapes.



Here at The Education Library we don’t just read stories, sometimes we write them! Why not follow us on our Social Media to keep up to date with what is happening at the Education Library!

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Presenting our Faculty Publications – New Year reads 2018


To help get 2018 off to a great start why not treat yourself and have a look at the recent publications written by members of the Education Faculty.  Don’t worry if you are away from the Faculty, the following publications are available as ebooks and can be accessed from anywhere at anytime with your RAVEN Password.

Missed our previous post? Catch up here: Presenting our Faculty Publications – Autumn 2017.


For those interested in STEM education, Keith Taber has two recent publications which are now available as ebooks.

Chemical education

 “One of the key ideas about the challenge of teaching and learning chemistry – that has been widely accepted for some decades – is that many learners struggle when asked to simultaneously consider and coordinate ideas said to be at ‘three levels’: the molar or macroscopic level (what can be directly seen and handled); the submicroscopic level (the theoretical models of the structure of matters in term of molecules, ions, electrons, etc); and the symbolic level where chemistry is described in terms of specific representations such as chemical formulae and equations. This chapter explored the symbolic ‘level’ to demonstrate that chemistry teaching uses a wide range of symbolic representations that are largely specific to the subject, and which are important features of communicating the subject that students need to master to make good sense of teaching. The chapter also questions the appropriateness of seeing the triplet as a set of distinct levels of representations, given that key symbolic representations offer ambiguity that bridges between the macroscopic and sub-microscopic descriptions. This useful ambiguity offers valuable affordances for the expert, but the chapter warns how the same feature can impede learning unless the shifts made by teachers are clearly explicit to learners.”


Teaching gifted learners

Our next publication has contributions from not one, not two, but seven Faculty members.

Professor Maurice Galton speaks about the book as a whole:
“The book, with 40 contributors, reflects on four decades of Professor Maurice Galton’s research observing teachers and pupils in the UK and elsewhere. In the concluding chapter he summarises the results of this research and considers some of the issues that face the next generation of classroom researchers.”

Life in schools and classrooms

See below for details of the chapters written by Faculty members along with  introductions to some of the contributions kindly provided by the authors:

Pam Burnard

Chapter 13:  Classroom creativities, pedagogic partnership and the improvisatory space of creative learning teaching and learning
“There is a long history of collaborations between teachers and professional artists in participatory arts activities in schools and communities. Models of pedagogic partnerships between artists and teachers vary considerably.

However, effective partnerships between artists and teachers in schools suggest that it is in classroom creativities that innovative professional practices emerge. This chapter draws significantly on Professor Maurice Galton’s study of the pedagogy of resident artists in schools for Creative Partnerships and the Arts Council of Great Britain. Extending Professor Galton’s ideas, I argue that creative learning and teaching is more likely to occur when the rigid division between teacher and student is relaxed, creating an improvisatory space where teacher, artist and students jointly construct the improvisational flow of the classroom.”


Linda Hargreaves

Chapter 14: Primary education in small rural schools: past, present and future


Sue Swaffield
Chapter 17: Supporting teachers in a developing country
 “Supporting headteachers in a developing country’ gives an overview of the Leadership for Learning Ghana programme that is focused on professional development for school leaders. The chapter summarises the programme’s theoretical basis, partnerships, activities and impact over several years, and considers possible future developments. It would be useful to anyone interested in large scale collaborative professional learning programmes especially in developing countries, and in issues concerning the introduction of a framework (such as Leadership for Learning) to different contexts.” (Sue Swaffield)

Colleen McLaughlin
Chapter 18: From exclusion to connection
“My chapter focused upon the widening gap in terms of wealth and its relationship to educational outcomes for children, especially the vulnerable. The chapter examines who the vulnerable children are in our societies and schools; how their position has changed; the role of education and its contribution to the development and thriving of vulnerable young people; and the implications for classrooms. The general points are illustrated with two case studies of particular groups in two different settings in the final part of the chapter i.e. the excluded in the UK and children living in poverty in Sub Saharan Africa. I argue for a new way of thinking and a new focus of schooling based on relationships and connectedness. This chapter will interest those who focus on vulnerable children, exclusion and inclusion and wellbeing.” (Colleen McLaughlin)

Ros McLellan
Chapter 25: Children and young people’s wellbeing in the school context
“This chapter problematizes what is known about children and young people’s wellbeing in the school context. It argues that different disciplinary lenses generate unique insights that must be considered collectively for a cohesive picture of wellbeing to be developed and that more research is needed to explore children and young people’s wellbeing in the school context specifically. Findings from research conducted by Ros and Maurice examining the impact of creative practitioners working with young people in the classroom on wellbeing are outlined and questions these raise about how best to conceptualise and capture wellbeing are posed. This chapter will provide food for thought for practitioners concerned about young people’s wellbeing but will also be of interest to anyone concerned about the performativity culture in education.” (Ros McLellan)

Sara Hennessy 
Chapter 38: International experiences with intergrating interactive whiteboards: policy, practice, pedagogy and professional development
“This chapter describes teacher strategies and experiences with interactive whiteboards (IWBs) and draws on the published research in this area to understand how a systemic approach to technology-based innovations in schools can contribute to quality education for all. It explores ways to support the cultural shift in teacher and learner roles that helps to integrate the technology effectively into classroom teaching. It begins by considering how the features of IWB technology might potentially be exploited in the primary or secondary school classroom to support subject teaching and learning. International experiences of implementing IWB programs are then described, mostly from the United Kingdom where integration efforts are by far the most prominent to date, and implications for future intervention efforts are examined. The chapter concludes by outlining the organisational conditions likely to enhance teacher commitment and thus to lead to successful change. In particular, the role of teacher professional development is foregrounded and characteristics of effective programmes are outlined. The chapter aims to offer messages to researchers, policy makers, practitioners and postgraduate students who are interested in digital technology in schools.
The audience for my chapter would be trainees and PGCE lecturers; and in both cases also researchers or graduate students who are interested in digital technology in schools” (Sara Hennessy)

Maurice Galton

Chapter 40: Life in schools and classrooms: A personal journey and reflection
Explore and discover more Faculty publications by following #EdFacPublications and keep up to date with all new additions to the Education Library collection by following our Pinterest boards.
ebooks, New books, Uncategorized

Presenting our Faculty Publications – Autumn 2017

After the long summer, now is the perfect time to catch up with some of the new publications written by Faculty of Education Academic Staff.  This is the first in a series of blog posts which will include overviews from the authors themselves.

We start off with science education and the following edited work includes chapters written by three Education Faculty members:

Abrahams, I., & Reiss, M. J. (Eds.). (2017). Enhancing learning with effective practical science 11-16. London: Bloomsbury.

Elaine Wilson – Chemistry: Session guides 11-14
Mark Winterbottom – Biology: Session guides 11-14
James de Winter – Introduction & Physics: Session guides 11-14

Enhancing learning with effective practical science 11-16

“In recent years there have been many questions asked about the value of practical work in science and whether or not it really supports learning. This led to some large scale national and international research projects to explore how to make practical work more effective to support students understanding of ideas in science. This book draws together a summary of this research as well as providing clear, direct and specific advice for how teachers can apply these idea in their classrooms. Elaine Wilson, Mark Winterbottom and James de Winter have co-authored subject specific chapters for Biology, Chemistry and Physics that provide this research informed advice for teachers.” (James de Winter)


Next we move onto higher education with the following publication, co-written by one of our Professors, Anna Vignoles:


Family background & university success

“Our latest book provides a recent empirical overview of what is really happening in terms of access to higher education and graduate outcomes. The book seeks to provide insight into how it is that we have such a big gap between rich and poor students in the likelihood of going to university. We show that if a student achieves well in school, the likelihood of going to university is similar for both rich and poor students – even after the introduction of tuition fees. The problem is that poor students are less likely to achieve well in school and addressing this is crucial if we are to widen participation in higher education to a broader set of students.” (Anna Vignoles)

Anna has also co-written an article in the Oxford Review of Economic Policy:


Our next publication includes two chapters by four Education Faculty members – Louis Major, Bjoern Haßler, Sara Hennessy & Keith Taber:

Handbook on digital learning k 12

Major, L., Haßler, B., & Hennessy, S.
Tablet use in schools: impact, affordances and considerations

“The increased popularity of tablet computers (e.g. iPads) has led to uptake in education. This chapter builds upon the authors’ past research and experience, in particular the findings of a critical systematic literature review that reports on the use of tablets in schools [see Haßler, B., Major, L., & Hennessy, S. (2016). Tablet use in schools: a critical review of the evidence for learning outcomes. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 32(2), 139-156.]. The aim of that review was to determine if, when and how using tablets impacts on learning outcomes. Outcomes of this review enable the authors to reflect on the impact and affordances of using tablets educationally, and allows them to consider factors related to the successful integration of tablets in schools. This chapter provides information and advice for educators (including initial teacher educators) and school policy makers interested in the educational use of tablets. Overall, the chapter reports how tablets have significant potential for enhancing learning—but, as with all technology—the most important element remains the teacher, and their classroom practice.” (Louis Major)

Taber, K.
The role of new educational technology in teaching and learning: a constructivist perspective on digital learning

“This chapter explores the role of digital tools in teaching and learning from the context of a constructivist perspective on learning. I would like to think the chapter might be useful both for anyone undertaking research into digital tools in learning, and for teachers (and future teachers) in thinking about how they should incorporate such tools into their work with students.” (Keith Taber)


If you are not able to come into the Library, the following ebook by David Bridges can be accessed with your RAVEN Password:


Philosophy in educational research“Philosophy in Educational Research is written as much for the wider educational research community as for philosophers by an author who has played a prominent role in both academic communities and is in a style that should make it readily accessible as well as highly relevant to research students and courses on research methods. Its 26 chapters are in four sections addressing issues of epistemology, ethics, politics and quality in educational research. There is wide ranging reference to contemporary international literature as well as historical sources and this as well as its discussion of issues encountered in research across different societies and cultures should make it especially useful to international research students.” (David Bridges)


Remember to look out for our next post, but in the meantime, you can keep up-to-date with all new additions to the Education Library collection, both print and electronic, by following #EdFacPublications on Twitter or our Pinterest board.

New BooksSee all the new titles on our Pinterest Board
Children's Literature, New books, Uncategorized

Student Showcase – Sharing Success Stories

Many of our Education Alumni have moved on to exciting new ventures and we always love to hear about their success stories and showcase the many achievements in their life after Cambridge.

Just as the Library Team have fond memories of supporting our past students throughout their time in Cambridge it is great to hear that they also have happy memories of their experience at the Education Faculty. It was through one such experience that ‘Cilla Lee-Jenkins’ was born.

S Tan book

“I wrote my debut novel, Cilla Lee-Jenkins: Future Author Extraordinaire during my time at Cambridge.  Every night, I’d put away dissertation work, close my laptop, and get into bed with my iPad to write more of Cilla’s adventures. The Cilla manuscript was finished and revised there, and on my phone during Uni 4 bus rides on rainy days! That’s not all that shaped Cilla- the manuscript was also informed by the lectures I heard, academic debates I had, and many conversations in the Faculty of Education Phd lounge. It was a pleasure to write it among such a vibrant, thoughtful community!”

Susan Tan (PhD)

Our students’ successes have made their way onto the Education Library #BookFaceFriday archive on Instagram, where we highlight creations from gems in our collection such as Kiran Millwood Hargrave’s debut novel, The Girl of Ink and Stars.

Girl of Ink & stars

They say the day the Governor arrived, the ravens did too. All the smaller birds flew backwards into the sea, and that is why there are no songbirds on Joya. Only huge, ragged ravens…

Forbidden to leave her island, Isabella Riosse dreams of the faraway lands her father once mapped. When her closest friend disappears into the island’s Forgotten Territories, she volunteers to guide the search. As a cartographer’s daughter, she’s equipped with elaborate ink maps and knowledge of the stars, and is eager to navigate the island’s forgotten heart. But the world beyond the walls is a monster-filled wasteland – and beneath the dry rivers and smoking mountains, a legendary fire demon is stirring from its sleep. Soon, following her map, her heart and an ancient myth, Isabella discovers the true end of her journey: to save the island itself. –

Winner of the Waterstones Children’s Prize 2017 and the British Book Awards Children’s Book of the Year, a Financial Times Book of the Year, twice-Waterstones Children’s Book of the Month, nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Award, shortlisted for the Jhalak Prize and the Branford Boase Award.

Both this award winning debut and Kiran’s latest novel, The Island at the End of Everything,  can be found in our Children’s Fiction collection.

The Island at the End of Everything

Kiran Millwood Hargrave (BA Education with English & Drama)


Another Alumni publication which has been nominated for a literary award and proudly presented in our Children’s Fiction collection is The Living Memory by Emma Dyer and Tim Byrne 

“The Living Memory is a timeslip/historical fantasy novel set in Victorian London and was longlisted for the Times/Chickenhouse Children’s fiction competition in 2017”

Emma Dyer (PhD)

The Living Memory Emma Dyer

This online interview with both Emma and Tim discusses writing the book and their ideas and inspiration: The Magic of Literature, Ancestry and Co-authoring: An Interview with Tim Byrne and Emma Dyer, Creators of The Living Memory.


The talents of our Education Alumni cover more than children’s fiction, as shown in this stunning book of poetry by Sarah Caulfield, available in our Poetry studies section here


Sarah Caulfield (BA Education with English & Drama)


With the long lazy summer evenings upon us it is hard to know what to choose to read first. If you don’t fancy fiction or poetry why not read Richard Brock’s book on Targeted Teaching.

Targeted Teaching

“The idea for Targeted Teaching arose because my colleagues and I observed that, whilst the authors of  teacher training books often advocated their interpretation of ‘best practice’ in a given context, our experience of teaching was that different strategies worked at different times and with different classes. Therefore, rather than offering a single approach to, for example, differentiation, behaviour management or questioning, the book provides a collection of different strategies that a teacher might experiment with and adapt to suit their own classrooms. We hope that trainee teachers and more experienced practitioners seeking to develop their practice will use the book as an easily accessible catalogue of teaching strategies.”

Richard Brock (PhD)

Don’t forget that you can keep up to date with all new publications in the Education Library via our Pinterest board.


Eloise’s Work Experience

eloise shelving

The Education Faculty Library Team have been delighted to host Eloise, a Year 12 student at Sharnbrook Upper School.  Eloise already volunteers at her local public library but she wanted to gain further experience by spending a week in an academic library, with a view to pursuing librarianship as a future career.

Here’s Eloise blog post about her time with us.

Over the past week, I have had a fabulous time doing my work experience with the wonderful team in the Faculty of Education Library. It has been fascinating to discover the vast variety of different tasks the staff perform and to give it a go myself! Throughout the week, I have had the opportunity to experience the whole lifecycle of a library book – from acquisition to processing, from shelving to charging, and from discharging to withdrawal. It has been so interesting to take part in all of the library’s different processes and I have learned a lot about what it is to be an academic librarian.

As part of my work experience I have been able to interact with staff and students, learn how to use databases to help people find the information they need, and discover the library’s use of social media to inform and engage with their users. I have gained a huge variety of new skills, from covering books to cataloguing new material, and am now confident in my understanding of the library system and all of the amazing services the library can offer.

eloise and the label machine

I also had the opportunity to visit the wonderful Homerton College Library and University Library, which was a fantastic opportunity to experience two other types of libraries available to Cambridge University students. This helped me to understand the different roles these types of libraries play in supporting students and how they work together to ensure students have the best chance of finding the information they need.

I also got to go ‘behind the scenes’ at both of these libraries.  I particularly enjoyed seeing the processing and cataloguing rooms at the University Library. I liked the fact that despite the differences between the libraries, many of the fundamental processes were the same. I also found Homerton College Library’s collection of rare books fascinating and was impressed by their selection of children’s literature.

Overall, my work experience has been a wonderful opportunity to engage with the workings of an academic library and it has undoubtedly furthered my passion for library work. I hope to use all of my new skills and knowledge in my volunteering at my local public library and will hopefully be able to follow up this experience with a career in library services. I thoroughly recommend this as an opportunity to anyone who is looking to go into librarianship, and I am truly grateful to the team at the Faculty of Education Library for accommodating me!

It has been a pleasure to show Eloise all the different services we provide for Education students and staff, and we wish her all the best in her A levels and for the future!

Guest blog posts

Harriet’s Work Experience


The Education Faculty Library Team have had the pleasure of hosting Harriet for her Year 10 work experience placement during the last two weeks. We have very much enjoyed showing Harriet the different ways that we support our varied student community and we are thrilled with the window display she has created to reflect and promote our library services.

Harriet has written the following guest post about her time with us.

My work experience in the Education Faculty Library at Cambridge University has been a very enjoyable one. I have not had a day go by where I haven’t had something to do. I have been on visits to other University College and Faculty libraries (Homerton College, Medical Library, Betty & Gordon Moore, English Faculty Library) and by doing this I was able to compare how different libraries are run.


Also, during my time here, I created a number of things including a summer reading list display, advertising for new books and a window display promoting digital resources via the Library’s Moodle site (which included a giant sandcastle) to support students over the summer holidays. On one of the days I was joined by a work experience student from the Betty Gordon Moore Library and she helped me in creating my summer reads list and then arrange it on display.


I was also given the chance to give this student a tour of the Education Library which helped me to improve my knowledge of the collection and also get more used to where everything was. I have learnt many things here as I have gone along, mostly by watching and shadowing the team, but I have thoroughly enjoyed it all. I have always felt like a part of the team and have grown in confidence the whole time I’ve been here. I feel that I will take the skills I have learnt with me and use throughout the rest of my time in school and then continue to use once I have left school. Librarianship is a career that I would consider doing but there are so many different roles around that I am also intrigued to look into how they differ from one another, such as librarians in schools, public libraries as well as academic and medical libraries.

Overall, my Work Experience has been a great opportunity and I am glad that I was able to spend it here at the Education Faculty Library.


As well as a guest blogger, we invited Harriet to showcase her time at the Library with an Instagram takeover to report on her varied experiences. Please do read Harriet’s Instagram diary  #HarrietsWex

We would like to thank Harriet very much for all her hard work and wish her all the best for the future.



A window on working together: librarians, academic staff and displays

Over the last few years the Education Library Team have used the beautiful Library windows for different kinds of displays from #BeMyBorrower to the #FestiveFeedbackTree.  This academic year we had the exciting opportunity to work collaboratively with academic staff in devising window and Library displays of material linked to conferences and Faculty research themes.

Peter Cunningham, who has research interests in the social and cultural history of education and is an Emeritus Fellow at Homerton College, approached the Library Team about creating a display for the Dewey conference – here’s the result:


The Library houses a curated archive of texts with relevance to the history and development of education. Within this archive, Peter found a number of titles which demonstrated the influence of Dewey’s works on education and those writing about it.  The Library Team worked with Peter to compile significant titles into a timeline for display in the Library.

The collaboration on this project also included the Rare Books Department at Cambridge University Library who kindly lent copies of key Dewey texts for display.


The project also fostered collaboration with local schools and we were delighted to host works of art from Wroxham School and the University Primary School in displays in the Library:


There was wider engagement from the international academic and education community during the conference itself and the Library Team found it extremely rewarding to show attendees the dedicated Dewey display in the Library.  Some kindly made donations to the Library too!


The lasting legacy of this shared enterprise was the installation of permanent double-sided display boards within the Library celebrating the impact of Dewey on educational theory and relating Dewey to the work of the Library within the Faculty.

dewew board inside

Following on from this success, we were contacted by Dr Arathi Sriprakash about creating a window display to highlight her race justice research as Arathi explains below:

“The Library’s exhibition on Race Justice and Education emerged from a collective of graduate and postdoctoral scholars at the Faculty of Education who are engaged in research on issues of racism in education. We are involved in a number of activities that are helping to establish race justice scholarship in education at the University. Our members have conducted workshops on racism and pedagogy, led teach-ins about Islamophobia, and convened a fortnightly reading group on theories of race and racism. We share our ideas through public engagement, blogs and news outlets, as well as through academic scholarship. And we present our ideas in public forums and seminars.

We wanted to celebrate the work of critical race scholarship that inspires us – which led to the collective curation of the Race Justice and Education exhibition. The texts and authors we have included in the display have – for example – been inspirational figures in black feminist movements, contributed critical perspectives on the political limitations of the concept of ‘diversity’, and brought new ways of understanding the racial dynamics of young people’s lives. Our reading group has recently been discussing the need for decolonised research methodologies and non-western theory in educational research. 

With this exhibition we hope to encourage scholars – both staff and students – to join us in conversation about the possibilities of an anti-racist agenda both in the field of education and in our university itself.

The collective: Amina Shareef, Amberley Middleton, Arathi Sriprakash, Christy Kulz, Michael Meaney, Sharon Walker, Daphne Martschenko, Anna Nti Asari

The Library space was once again transformed with both a physical display within the Library, showcasing the breadth of resources from within our collection, and visual displays on the Library windows.

Race Justice window

Both displays generated a lot of discussion and interest both in person and through our social media channels as can be seen in this Storify.

As part of this discussion, Sara Baker (University Lecturer at the Faculty) posted the following tweet:


We hope to continue supporting the Faculty through collaborating with academic staff in promoting their research in the future.  Who knows what the Library window will reveal next?