I do most of our Philosophy, Debate, Philosophy Explorers, Writers' Room and Book Club sessions. Many moons ago, I briefly home-educated myself for my A-levels before studying philosophy at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge. I now live in Cambridge again, on a narrowboat, so if I'm at home when I zoom, you might see the odd swan flying past, or hear me voicing the boat's shrieks of pain as an incompetent rower scrapes the paintwork.
Before going into teaching, I ran various businesses including a firework shop. I taught English at secondary schools for a few years but prefer being my own boss, so I run P4HE, Gift Courses (long history of residentials for bright, curious youngsters, hoping to get back to that soon), Outspark (DofE and such for schools) and The Philosophy Man, where I write and train teachers to do philosophy in schools.
I'm currently in the "Oh my goodness what have I bitten off" stage of writing a series of young adult novels involving time-travel, climate change and the occasional riot. My hobbies mostly revolve around slow inconvenient ways of moving from one place to another for no good reason - narrowboating, sailing, kayaking, cycling and caving. Also musical improv and writing riddles.
Charlie Sturgeon hosts Improv, Chatterboxes, Shakespeare and Dungeons and Dragons, and sometimes Debate or Explorers.
He is an actor, improviser and teacher. A leading actor with the Australian Shakespeare Company and recognised as “a master of improvisation... a leading force in Melbourne’s improvised comedy world” (Herald Sun), Charlie moved to London to complete his MA in Acting at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.
Since graduating, Charlie has been endorsed by Arts Council England for the Global Talent visa and performs across the UK with Impromptu Shakespeare, teaches improvisation with the Nursery, and acts and directs for Inventive Productions’ series of immersive experiences. Charlie has taught for Australia’s National Institute of Dramatic Art, the Australian Shakespeare Company’s Young Bards, 16th Street Actors Studio’s Youth Program, the Victorian School of Performing Arts, the Pauline Quirke Academy of Performing Arts and The Improv Conspiracy Training Centre.
“Charlie is stupidly talented – quick, smart, with acting chops and an infectious joy. He’s a pleasure to workshop with and super fun to play with.” Cale Bain (Managing Director, Improv Theatre Sydney; Improv Director, Whose Line Is It Anyway? Australia)
Tom Bigglestone Following a degree in Philosophy, and PGCE in RS, both at Durham University, I began my teaching career in Staffordshire as Head of Humanities. After a hugely enjoyable time there, I worked in two London schools as Head of Religious Studies, teaching English, History and Geography, too. I sat on the Senior Academic Management Team at one, as Co-ordinator for the More Able.
In April 2014, I was awarded the prestigious Walter Hines-Page Scholarship by the English Speaking Union. I chose to research methods of assessment in P4C at its birthplace: Montclair State University in New Jersey.
I've had articles published in leading Headteachers' publications, and I was honoured when the UK government chose my words to lead their advice for talking to children about the war in Ukraine.
I've co-authored three books to date, including Thinking Moves A-Z - a game-changing approach to metacognition written with Roger Sutcliffe and Jason Buckley.
I have also worked at the Economist Educational Foundation, supporting schools to develop students' news literacy.
As Lead Trainer at The Philosophy Man, I work with schools every week to help them embed P4C into their curriculums and by offering ongoing consultancy. also write many of our free P4C resources which are sent out by email each week.
In my spare time, I can usually be found engaging in sport or training for some kind of endurance event, or writing my debut children's novel.
Ruth Stanway Woodings, Course Coordinator for P4HE and GIFT Courses, Parent of Curious Children
Hello, I mutter incantations to get our websites and booking systems to work. I have a particular interest in supporting students with additional needs.
I have two children - both have been partially home educated.
One now attends mainstream secondary part time with the support of an EHCP, and the other is at university.
I didn't have a great time at school - I was always in trouble for asking questions or staring out of the window. The headmaster wrote in my leaver's report that I had "a cavalier attitude." Fortunately I was able to bumble through until university, when someone (a properly bearded professor) sat me down and explained that some people have brains that work a bit differently - sometimes faster, often taking a different route to a conclusion, able to link ideas that other people might not expect.
I've worked in theatre, corporate strategy, business intelligence, with dementia patients, on international conferences, for a famous newspaper, in the energy sector, as a lobbyist in a Whitehall office, for a giant PR firm, for a tiny charity....and I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up!