Plus ça change, plus ce la meme chose!
The more things change…the more they stay the same.
Lockdown, social distancing, shielding, family bubbles. How quickly these words have become part of our everyday vocabulary. With the arrival of the covid-19 coronavirus, the world changed and the world had to respond to change.
Just days before lockdown, we witnessed education professionals, grappling with the challenges of how they were going to provide some kind of education continuity for their learners. How? When? What? Who? Why? All valid questions which were often met with responses which would sometimes be invalidated the following day.
It was, and still is collaborative problem-solving, which we could not have imagined three months ago.
However, despite the unprecedented nature of the challenge (perhaps requiring specific, new knowledge and technical skills) the ‘big questions’ remain the same and so do the generic skills and attitudes required to respond to them successfully?
‘How do make sure this is learning environment is fair?’ ‘How do make sure this learning environment is safe (both physically and emotionally).’ ‘How do we make sure everyone feels valued?’ ‘How do we make sure everyone engages fully?’
However different the ‘new normal’ appears, if we are able to respond effectively to these ‘old’ questions, then continuity will be achieved.
We are currently in the middle of a two-week project with Classes 7 and 8 in Aberbargoed Primary School - Year 4, 5 and 6 (P5, 6 and 7). It has been both a pleasure and a privilege to witness the progression in learning - attitudes, skills and knowledge.
A website has been set up specifically to capture the essence of the project - providing a place for children, parents and staff to access materials, share experiences, evidence children in action and capture the learning, reflections and connections of all involved.
A privilege to be invited along to the RSA Creative Collaboration/NAHT event in Cardiff Bay this afternoon. Keynote by Processor Graham Donaldson, schools sharing practice in a #speedlearning carousel...and sweets handed out by Andrew, of course! If anyone is interested in downloading our 'Big Picture' overview of 'A Curriculum for Wales' (127-ish pages on 2 sides), visit our 'Training Events in Wales' page. It seemed popular today. 😀
The RSA Creative Collaboration - Education in Wales conference will take place tomorrow (Thursday 23rd June 2016) in the Pierhead Building, Cardiff Bay .
We are delighted to be both attending and participating in this event. The afternoon will include schools sharing their practice and innovations, along with a keynote speech by Professor Graham Donaldson. We are excited about the potential and direction of education in Wales.
As Single Steps Learning, we will have a display table and be able to talk to delegates about 'Designing for Learning'. Information about our services will be available to take away, along with a 2-page 'aide memoire' of 'Successful Futures' by Donaldson, 2015. As busy teachers and leaders, we would always read new documents, guidance and reports - however we knew the benefit of reducing this to one sheet holding all the key points for future reference. If you are attending the event, come and say hello...and request a copy.
And, as always, we will have sweets available. :-)
Really excited to sign up as participants for this free online course focusing on Assessment for Learning within STEM - led by Dylan Wiliam and Christine Harrison. If you are interested, registration is still open and the start date is 22nd February 2016.
On 1st September 2015, the 'Draft National Improvement Framework for Scottish Education' was published - 8 regional consultation events are being organised for locations across Scotland. National standardised assessments on the horizon for P1, P4, P7 and S3 as part of this framework.
We have just completed and submitted our views on the future proposals for education in Wales. We can't emphasis enough the importance of contributing to this debate about moving forward with curriculum changes. It is an opportunity for everyone to voice their opinions on how the future is shaped - whether working within education or not.
The first phase of the 'Great Debate on Welsh Education' is almost over - there are only a few days left to make your contribution. Click here to find out more and submit your thoughts by 8th May.
If you are already familiar with the proposals in the 'Successful Futures' document (Independent Review of Curriculum and Assessment Arrangements in Wales by Professor Graham Donaldson, February 2015), this link will take you directly to the official survey.