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School’s Out...beware the summer slide

The summer is a time for fun and relaxation but research has shown that many children’s academic abilities drop over the break, therefore undermining all the hard work they, and their teachers, have done over the year.

“While it can seem a little daunting at first, it’s very important for parents to actively encourage their children to keep learning to avoid the negative impact it can have on their return to school in September.

Navigating the education moral maze

Learning is a social activity and has the greatest potential to flourish when it is co-constructed with others’ participation, engagement and common ownership of problems. An ethical, relational approach to leading schools is also strengthening teacher agency between what we do and why we do it.  Outcomes matter but should never be used to define the work of teachers per se.  The real worth of teachers’ work can be found in the behaviours and exchanges we adopt through learning centred relationships.

Engagement. Engagement. Engagement. But does the iPad improve learning too?

Research around the impact that iPad has had on education is limited and, one could argue, biased. In one case Apple even acknowledges having no idea of the methodology used to collect the data of research published on its own website (iPad in education, 2017). Yet schools continue to buy into the device and its advertised rewards. Through the many conversations I have on Twitter it becomes apparent that the problem doesn’t lie with the technology but with the teachers using it. Teachers need to be better trained in the capabilities that this type of technology could provide them and their students. And this will no doubt be an additional cost to schools.

So you want to learn another language?

As formal language teaching has moved towards more communicative approaches to language learning, learners are turning to such apps where they can make mistakes in a private setting. However, what really makes language learning a rewarding experience is not the promise of virtual rewards, but rather the ability to connect the culture, the people and the language of the new country with one’s own experiences, knowledge and values.

Have we lost the art of great storytelling?

Storytelling may be as old as the hills but it remains one of the most effective tools for teaching and learning. A good story can make a child (or adult) prick up their ears and settle back into their seat to listen and learn. These are certainly some of the lessons I remember most from my school days and which, I am sure, contributed not only to my knowledge and understanding but also to my interest and enthusiasm. So if you are thinking of using storytelling to help your pupils to learn, now is the perfect time to start.

Louder than Words

Studies here in the UK and in the USA have revealed that children who have mild to moderate hearing loss but do not get intervention services are very likely to be behind their hearing peers by anywhere from one to four grade levels. And for those with more severe hearing loss, intervention services are even more crucial; those who do not receive intervention usually do not progress beyond the third grade level.
What are the reasons behind this education gap

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