About us

Our Story

The Seed that Grew the Tree...

Back in 2009, Co- founders Lynn and Anthony met when working for an Inner London Local authority school improvement team.  They quickly bonded over a love of words, books and coffee, but essentially they loved developing and running training for teachers together.

Scratching their heads to find a resource they could recommend to teachers, they realised that what they had created for their training events couldn’t be found in one single resource; time and again, they were creating something that combined high quality children’s literature, drama and grammar which also helped reduce teacher workload, and this simply didn’t exist elsewhere – the whole English curriculum taught creatively through quality children’s literature.

When the opportunity to work independently arose in 2012, they decided, over several flat whites in their favourite coffee spot, to take the plunge and create a consultancy based on this core principle and so what started as a seed of an idea grew into The Literacy Tree.   With Anthony’s experience of language and literature – knowing exactly how to embed the grammar – and Lynn’s extensive background of drama in education – knowing how to bring a book to life – they then began to write their own resource, using books they loved that they knew worked in the classroom.  This became the Teach Through a Text pedagogy and the core values that underpin the Literary Curriculum.

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The Seed Becomes a Sapling...

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Starting out in a small room in a school in Kings Cross, they began developing more and more resources using books they knew and loved as well as selecting new texts they discovered.  Before they knew it, there were enough planning sequences to fill a website and for schools to adopt as a whole school approach. Soon, all teachers could access the plans they had written – all this alongside full diaries working in schools in London and before across the whole of the UK.

Branching out…

Before long, they realised they couldn’t do this by themselves and, through their work with schools, they brought together a team of like-minded experienced and passionate teachers. This creative team were all committed to improving children’s lives through quality literature and teacher’s lives by creating consistent high-quality resources to improve work-life balance. By now they had acquired so many books that they needed a bigger office too! And before long the Literacy Tree website evolved into the Literary Curriculum – a place where teachers could access all the book-based resources in one place.

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Putting Down Roots...

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The Literacy Tree remains a small, friendly and approachable company with UK Headquarters still in central London, but now, as well as supporting teachers in the UK, they’re also lucky enough to regularly travel around the world (or on Zoom!) to work with schools as far flung as Brazil, Costa Rica, Hong Kong and India. The teaching of high-quality literacy remains the focus and they continue to pride themselves on exceptional customer service. They are always happy to chat in person, or jump on a call to talk about teaching through a text.

Meet the Team

Allow us to introduce ourselves…

All our consultants are children’s literature enthusiasts and experts in planning using text. They have all contributed to writing planning sequences, Literary Leaves and Spelling Seeds.

Lynn: Director and consultant

Lynn has taught from Nursery to Y6 and was a Literacy coordinator and an Advanced Skills Teacher in Southwark before becoming a Local Authority Consultant and a Deputy Head. Lynn has a background in drama-in-education and is always looking for ways to engage children within literature to use as a platform to inspire high quality writing. This inspired her focus for an MA in Achievement and Equity in Education from the Institute of Education which she completed in 2001 whilst teaching. Lynn is a KS1 and KS2 moderator for writing and runs training for moderators for Local Authorities. She’ll admit that she’s slightly obsessed with words and their origins, and is particularly geeky about homophones and portmanteau.

Get in touch lynn@theliteracytree.co.uk
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Anthony: Director and consultant

Anthony has taught children in Key Stages 1 and 2 in Primary Schools across London. He became an English Subject Leader and then, as an Advanced Skills Teacher, working with schools in Merton and Islington to develop their book-based provision. Anthony became a Local Authority Literacy Consultant and within this role led on the development of new training using engaging, high-quality texts to create equally high-quality written outcomes.  Anthony is also an experienced Key Stage 1 and 2 moderator, running training for KS2 moderators. When not reading or writing, he can found to be playing with idioms and creating puns to use in training.

Get in touch anthony@theliteracytree.co.uk

Pippa: Senior Consultant

After qualifying from Edinburgh University in Scotland with a BEd Honours in Primary Education and specialisms in English and Music, Pippa started her teaching career in London and taught across the primary age-range in several schools. Prior to joining the Literacy Tree, she managed a nursery, was a Deputy Head and a Local Authority Advisor in Merton. Pippa is an experienced Key Stage 1 and 2 moderator and adores seeking out the best in new children's literature to be included in The Literacy Tree's monthly Literature Reviews. 

Get in touch pippa@theliteracytree.co.uk
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Donny: Senior Consultant

Donny has taught in Scotland and England across KS1 and KS2 since qualifying from Glasgow with a PGCE and previously from Edinburgh with a degree in English and Philosophy. Donny has led English in schools as well as holding leadership and phase leader roles and most recently has been a lead practitioner of English teaching for a Local Authority. He is an experienced KS2 writing moderator and can often be found in bookshops finding new poetry books or graphic novels.

Get in touch donny@theliteracytree.co.uk

Katie: Resource Developer

Since qualifying from Roehampton University, Katie has gained extensive experience teaching in primary schools in the South East.  Katie has led English and Curriculum teams and held a lead practitioner role for English, as well as supporting teachers across Key Stages through working as a Specialist Leader of Education for a national academy trust.  Katie finds it difficult to pass a bookshop without stepping foot inside.

Get in touch katie@theliteracytree.co.uk
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Nicola: Consultant

Nicola has taught across the primary age range as well as being a primary English lecturer and a Reading Recovery teacher.  She has an MA in Education (Applied Linguistics). Previous to joining The Literacy Tree, Nicola was a Deputy Head in Tower Hamlets. Nicola spends her time browsing picture books in bookshops, never being able to leave without a new addition for her collection.

Get in touch nicola@theliteracytree.co.uk

Alex: Associate Consultant

Alex is Assistant Headteacher and Curriculum Lead at Winston Way Academy in Redbridge as well as being one of our associate consultants. She enjoys exploring texts though the use of drama, giving children the creativity and freedom to investigate different characters, emotions and settings. As a class teacher, she can often be found in disguise wearing a hat, cloak or outrageous wig.

Get in touch info@theliteracytree.co.uk
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Hannah: Associate Consultant

After graduating from Durham University, Hannah undertook an MEd at Cambridge.  Based on pedagogical research practices, this training had huge impact on her early teaching career where she taught in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 and led literacy. In recent years, Hannah has led literacy at Highgate Primary Academy in South Yorkshire and has been Assistant Head, Deputy Head, Head of Academy and Headteacher.  She is an SLE, has moderated in two local authorities and now works as Primary Literacy Lead at Astrea Academy Trust. Hannah believes that if everybody read children's fiction the world would be a better place.

Get in touch info@theliteracytree.co.uk

Sarah: Office Manager

Sarah has a degree in graphic design from UAL and is our first port of call for all design-related questions! A stationery obsessive, Sarah has the ability to get hold of just about any shaped post-it note, sentence strip or tote-bag at a moment’s notice. She can often be found - rooibos in hand - fixing the photocopier.

Get in touch admin@theliteracytree.co.uk
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The Literacy Tree™, Literary Leaves™, Spelling Seeds™, Home Learning Branches™ and #TeachThroughaText™ are all Registered Trademarks of The Literacy Tree Ltd.
The Literacy Tree, LF 1.9, The Leather Market, Weston Street, London, SE1 3ER | Company Registered no: 07951913
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