IDEA: What can teachers do to ensure the well-being of their students in today’s world?

5 practices to increased happiness

In this Ted Talk Shawn Achor discusses how to achieve the belief that we should be happy, and how happiness inspires greater productivity.

But how can schools utilise this to support their student’s welfare and learning?

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THEORY: Carol Dweck, the growth mindset for children (Part 2 of 3)

In part 2 of the series we learn about the “DIP” and how to get out of it.

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THEORY: Carol Dweck, the growth mindset for children (Part 1 of 3)

Discover these vibrant and fun cartoons from Screen Shot 2016-05-01 at 17.34.47 to explain Carol Dweck’s theory on the growth mindset, proving that IQ is not fixed and that children (and adults) can become more intelligent if they challenge their brain.
In 2016, Carol Dweck’s lab at Stanford, PERTS, partnered with ClassDojo to bring this important lesson to classrooms everywhere through a video series. Watch the first series here or click on the following link for a more detailed discussion about Carol Dweck.

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INSPIRATION: Education is not about filling buckets but about lighting fires!

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This TEDtalk is by Stuart Fierstein a neuroscientist who promotes the need to “fart around in the dark”. He discusses how knowledge is not e.g. the iceberg model where what we know is just the tip and there is a set amount below the surface waiting to be uncovered. Instead, he believes that science (or knowledge) is more like the magic well where no matter how many buckets of water you take out there is always another to be had.

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THEORY: DAP Developmentally Appropriate Practice (Part 6): The Social Domain

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In today’s society we can see technology has made it so that some people spend less time socialising with others and instead engaging in solitary activities, so that their social skills are not practised. What would society be like in the future if we no longer needed to interact with others?

From birth through to 8 years old, children are discovering how to establish and maintain relationships with others. As time passes, they are also exploring their contributions to the well-being of the social

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THEORY: Understanding talent

This film has been developed by “SportScotland” to help young athletes understand what “talent” is and how you can get good at sport.

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IDEA: How do we let children experience danger without wrapping them in cotton wool?

I came across this TEDtalk by chance whilst looking for videos on acquiring social skills and feel that it is very relevant in today’s society where children are not getting the experiences that we had as children, to learn about danger and calculate risks involved.

How often do children get to climb a tree nowadays?Screen Shot 2016-04-27 at 12.20.14 PM

In fact, the University of Florida has found that climbing a tree and balancing on a beam can actually dramatically improve cognitive skills.

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THEORY: Carol Dweck, fixed vs growth mindset and why IQ does not matter.

RSA animate present Carol Dweck’s lecture: How to Help Every Child Fulfil Their Potential.

*** This is an update to an older post. In the coming weeks we will be posting videos about the growth mindset including the free lectures from the Dweck team.

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Just a thought for educators to consider.

What are you teaching your students?

Do you “do as you say”?

SUMMARY Deslea Konza – Understanding the reading process


Research into Reading

** UPDATED see below


Learning to read as an important (if not, the important) educational outcome of primary education.

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IDEA: “Genius Hour”

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Given the time, what would your students like to spend time working on?

Genius Hour has many names (passion projects, an hour of wonder, Montessori method, 20 percent time, 80/20, curiosity time, innovation day) but the philosophy behind it is the same. Google (the search engine) allowed its employees to spend 20% of their time at work to work on any project that they wanted to. The theory behind this is that if you allow people to spend time working on things that interest them or their are curious about, then productivity will go up as intrinsic motivation is increased. These principles can be applied to the classroom.

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THEORY: DAP Developmentally Appropriate Practice (Part 5): The Physical Domain

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We are at a stage in education where we are (some say, again) questioning the physical environments in which we facilitate learning and what is best for our students. I wonder though, whether we think enough about the physical needs of our students, especially when they are in the more “formal” setting of primary school and no longer early years playful environments.

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IDEAS: Visible thinking – Thinking routines part 3

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Research has found that  teachers who are successful at promoting students’ thinking tend to develop, adapt, and make use of specific routines to scaffold and support students’ thinking (Ritchhard, R. (2002). Intellectual character: What it is, why it matters, and how to get it, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass).

Below are some of the thinking routines suggested by The Project Zero team and the Cultures of Thinking team. Read More…

SUMMARY: Reading Next: A vision for action and research in literacy

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A report to the Carnegie Corporation of New York in collaboration with the Alliance for Excellent Education, 2006 (2nd edition). This report preceded the Writing Next (2007) report by the same authors.

Biancarosa, C., & Snow, C. E. (2006). Reading next—A vision for action and research in middle and high school literacy:A report to Carnegie Corporation of New York (2nd ed.).Washington, DC: Alliance for Excellent Education.

RecommendedEleven elements of effective adolescent writing instruction that were  “found to be effective for helping adolescent students learn to write well and to use writing as a tool for learning. It is important to note that all of the elements are supported by rigorous research, but that even when used together, they do not constitute a full writing curriculum.”

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