Archive for August, 2016

The Together We Grow Conference, Northern Ireland

| August 26, 2016 | 1 Comment 



THIS was what it’s all about. Real, practical, inventive, balanced, effective teaching and learning, helping people who are “up for a challenge” and open to new ideas, that can have a positive impact in their classrooms. Children add a valuable perspective to the learning, and keep us all firmly focused on the true purpose of creative teaching: to inspire, motivate and engage all of our charges in a way that enables powerful progression. A true delight to share with colleagues, from Northern Ireland. Thank you all. AND WELL DONE!

We enjoyed starting off this academic year with colleagues from NI, in Eglinton, County Londonderry, for a pacey, interactive, collaborative day.

Our theme: TOGETHER we grow, ~ with many layers of technology, packed with ideas and… a good laugh!

A huge thank you to Donna Vaughan Curriculum Services Team who has been crucial in the run up to today’s event (and knows a good pint of Guiness whenever she sees one too! 🙂

Host School Eglinton Primary School and their Principal Mrs Lorna Blair.

We were joined by colleagues from Ballykelly Primary School, Cumber Claudy Primary School and Limavady Central Primary School.

Education can sometimes be a little slow in its uptake of new technologies. Can we some times be “Early Adopters” of tech that’s been around for a decade.

Whatever format, whatever degree of complexity, there has been a slight history of initial reluctance, before, eventually, some have involved “this new stuff” in their classroom environments. Whether it is a stick and sand, wax tablets, scrolls, books, slides, film, video, computers, PowerPoint, YouTube films, and beyond, …they have all been integrated in to teaching sessions, in some way though.

All the way through, however, these new tools have often been used to modify the way a teacher presents facts, and information, to their pupils. They have had more impact on TEACHING, than on LEARNING.

In many educational settings, the relationships, and interactions, stay unchanged: A teacher, as “Sage on the Stage”, imparting their wisdom, information, and knowledge, to an unsuspecting audience sat in front of them. Are we training our children how to come to school, sit, bored, for a few hours, and get away with it without being spotted?

In the same way, challenges (or, sadly, what we more often call “Tasks”), the independent elements of a lesson, can remain, rooted to the spot, for a long time.