If schools kill creativity then why haven’t we transformed?

I spent time revisiting some old podcasts. One of those was Sir Ken Robinson’s TED talks in 2006 and 2010. It was particularly striking that he spoke about traditional schooling ‘dislocating people’ from their natural talents. The solution? Create the circumstances for natural talents to flourish by transforming schools into something else. The message is … More If schools kill creativity then why haven’t we transformed?

The task of teaching

The task of teaching is multi-faceted, complex and never neatly contained.  It continues long after the bells ring and the lessons finish. Most teachers work long into the night marking assessments, providing feedback and planning lessons. However, as we shift towards more evidence-based approaches, the goal is to become more effective to ensure we deliver value because working harder may … More The task of teaching

A global village

I’ve just returned from the UK where I had been invited to participate in the CSCLeaders conference.  CSC is an annual global conference that brings together about 100 leaders from across the Commonwealth.  The conference is run in partnership between Common Purpose and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh’s Commonwealth Study Conference which began in 1956. … More A global village

NAPLAN: friend, foe or on the fence?

Late last year, the University of Western Sydney’s Whitlam Institute commissioned  a national survey of over 8,000 educators on the impact of the annual National Assessment Program for Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN). There were very few surprises in the results which found that many teachers believed NAPLAN had negatively affected their practice and narrowed the … More NAPLAN: friend, foe or on the fence?

Teachers at the centre

Is student-centred learning a given when we are talking about schooling in today’s world?  Our system’s theory of action has the student at the centre but in recent times, I have begun to rethink whether the teacher should be at the centre.  Without good teachers and leaders at the centre, can you improve the learning … More Teachers at the centre

The vocation of living

There have been some wonderful highlights for me from the recent World Youth Day in Madrid.  Many of the themes extend beyond religious and cultural divides. I thought the address by Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson last week to 3000 young Australians contained some powerful messages for educators. The Archbishop spoke eloquently about the symbolism of icons and … More The vocation of living

Succession management

Dr Dean Fink was in Sydney last week as part of the Leading Educators Around the Planet (LEAP) program.  Fink co-authored ‘Sustainable Leadership‘ with Andy Hargreaves in 2005 and last year published ‘The Succession Challenge’. Leadership succession is a challenge faced by schools as well as business.  Fink believes succession planning is too short-term. Rather, … More Succession management

Wisdom of the crowd

As always, Michael Fullan and Andy Hargreaves were excellent at The Quest Conference.  They managed to engage an audience of a thousand educators on the core work of school improvement.  It’s why their work resonates with so many people around the world. Fullan and Hargreaves continue to build on the foundations of their work – solutions are found … More Wisdom of the crowd

Meaningful learning

One of the defining elements of a 21st century education is personalised learning.  The ability to create the right classroom conditions that enable students to work independently, collaboratively, creatively and to think critically. According to the OECD (2008) these are important skills not only for successful economies but for ‘effective cultural and social participation and … More Meaningful learning