“Above all else, develop your students’ presence of mind and offer them an education of hope”
Martin Illingworth
Martin Illingworth

In a text Martin wrote for the London’s renowned Goldsmith’s Institute he said, ‘Teachers are the means by which children gain access to their cultures... this is a shatteringly large responsibility and it needs some thought’. It is getting teachers to think about what they do before they do it that makes Martin such an important and thought-provoking speaker.

An experienced teacher and now teacher trainer at Sheffield Hallam University, Martin is known for his work on the teaching of English language and literacy. His humorous, no-nonsense, practical approach not only to teaching English but to teaching generally is winning him fans across the country but it is when he shares his insights into the absurdities – and dangers – of government policies that he is at his most engagingly acerbic. For him, the antidote to the rubbish, though, is ‘pre-teaching thinking’ - getting teachers to think before they teach. Then there’s hope.

New: Martin is also available for booking in partnership with spoken-word performance poet Mikey Markham.

"We must offer children an education of hope; that their lives right now have purpose and delight, and that the future is looking bright…’ - Think Before You Teach

To read more please click here

  • Martin has been with Independent Thinking since January 2014 and is one of The 33

  • For details of Martin's DBS Certificate please contact us

  • Click here to see our price guide

Feedback from recent events include:

"Please pass on my thanks to Martin Illingworth for the film "The Only Fresh Air..." I run a schools outreach programme, seem to meet hordes of young people I meet who have no idea how talented they really are and, after 20 years of teaching, your film struck a deep resonating chord in my soul!"

"There were some great comments from Yr11: ‘really motivating’, ‘I enjoyed the challenges and it made me think’, ‘very inspiring’, ‘BRILL!’. It has certainly reminded us how important it is to make the time and the opportunities to take a step back and just inspire students, all too easy to get caught up in syllabuses and numbers and neglect the awe and wonder!"

"Very inspiring, creative and motivational. Something we need more of!"

"I came along to the ITL conference in Brighton last week and came back feeling really inspired! Your presentation on grammar was very entertaining but also extremely thought provoking"

Great external speaker – motivating and inspiring but most importantly engaging. A very thought-provoking talk!”

Martin Illingworth was very motivational…pinning knowledge to emotions or feelings…laugh – cry – remember


Governor Event

Being a governor is an incredibly important task these days so we are delighted when we are asked to support them in their work in all sorts of schools around the country. Apart from ensuring the event is an entertaining and enjoyable one for all, especialy as it is so often on a rainy Saturday, we make sure our input is informative, relevant, up to date and guarantees all governors go back into their schools knowing what to look for, what to do and the rights sorts of questions to ask.