Mr. Eliot Bamford
M.A. Education Simmons College, MA
Eliot Bamford is the new English teacher and English chair this year at Gunston. Originally from Nottingham, England, he has been in the USA since 1998, living in Massachusetts and New Hampshire before moving to Maryland last year. Eliot has taught at a mixture of public and private schools in various roles with training in remediating reading and writing as well as outdoor and experiential education. He has a B.A. (Honors) from Middlesex University in London, and a Masters in Education from Simmons College, MA. His wife, Meg, is from New Hampshire and is also an educator, and two of his three children, Annie and Lucy, began attending Gunston last year. Eliot is an avid soccer fan (Nottingham Forest and England), occasional player, and is coaching the Gunston Boys JV team. He has also grown into a passionate New England sports and US Soccer fan after nearly 20 years. After living and working in Australia in 1995 and 1996, and traveling to Africa and Asia, Eliot remains interested in current affairs, media, and politics, and he occasionally contributes articles to local and national newspapers and websites in Britain.
FAVORITE PROJECT YOU'VE EVER ASSIGNED AND WHY?
"The Dickens/Miss Havisham cakes! They were great - but I also made a Catcher in the Rye board game that was great."
Mr. Bamford’s ninth grade students recently completed a creative individual project focused on the novel Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. Students picked from a variety of options centered around four different themes including:
- technology (create a social media feed for a “modern” Pip; create a video game that includes characters and plot from the book using your own coding; or make an online comic strip)
- art (create your own graphic novel; organize an infographic of the characters; or develop a brochure for visitors to 1800s London promoting the locations Pip visits)
- writing (craft letters that could come from the characters in the book; compose a poem, rap or song summarizing a character’s journey with a recording or music video; or develop a news report as a Victorian journalist covering the death of Compeyson)
- hands-on activity (make Miss Havisham’s wedding cake; recreate her dining room in your house; or build a scale model of the Satis House and grounds).
WHAT IS THE #1 THING YOU WANT STUDENTS TO TAKE AWAY FROM THEIR TIME IN YOUR CLASS?
"I would say how to use a structured approach to their writing - and Dickens and Shakespeare are funny!"
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