A Century of Teaching Creative Writing in Schools: the Newbolt Report and teaching creative writing

16 April 2024
Academic articles

Abstract or Description

This chapter focuses on the nuances and affordances of The Newbolt Report, looking in particular its recommendations for the teaching of creative writing. Newbolt, perhaps surprisingly, strongly advocates imaginative ways of teaching writing but warns against ‘artificial’ learning activities, offering an emancipatory vision of the teaching of writing, championing self-expression above rote-learning. The Report illustrates that an effective teacher of creative writing should be well read, sensitive, cultured and open-minded. It is liberal in its views about creative writing, offering no prescribed method for its teaching, but rather suggesting that teachers need to have acquired a set of practices in order to be effective. This chapter explores The Newbolt Report’s recommendations for the teaching of creative writing, considering what it can tell us about the teaching of creative writing in the education system today, at primary, secondary and university levels. The discussion is located with reference to recent research into creative writing and looks at the wider remit of creative writing in society today.


Macleroy, Vicky and Gilbert, Francis. 2021. A Century of Teaching Creative Writing in Schools. In: Andrew Green, ed. The New Newbolt Report: One Hundred Years of Teaching English in England. Oxford: Routledge. ISBN 9781003141891 [Book Section]

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