Why aren’t us parents seeing any benefit in smaller class sizes?

I have just responded to this post by a parent: As a parent, the Bloomfield Public School system has sold smaller class sizes as part of their narrative. The experience of my two children has been a DECREASE in group interaction and all of the other good things that should… Read more“Why aren’t us parents seeing any benefit in smaller class sizes?”

Choosing Schools

Parents choosing schools based on the ‘vibe’ and community rather than test scores and fancy facilities This newspaper article attracted my attention over the weekend as it resonated with my experience as both a parent and school leader. In my last school as principal I conducted at least 150 sixty… Read more“Choosing Schools”

mobile/cell phones on school or summer camps

that sixth graders who spent just five days at a tech-free sleepaway camp developed greater understanding of real-world interpersonal communication cues, including a better ability to read facial expressions, make eye contact, and interpret tone of voice and other prompts, such as posture and keeping an appropriate spatial distance with… Read more“mobile/cell phones on school or summer camps”

Shirley Clarke says tell students the truth if their work needs work.

  I’m re-reading Shirley Clarke’s book first published in 2008 on active learning and formative assessment. One of the points she makes in the book is the link between higher self-esteem and a growth mindset. We need to show enthusiasm for challenging tasks and ensure failure is followed with celebration… Read more“Shirley Clarke says tell students the truth if their work needs work.”

Extended family holidays – an opportunity or a threat to learning?

Last week I was engaged in my school’s peer review process and we tossed around a question on extended student absence from school for family travel purposes. You see extended family holidays are close to the number one reason why young people miss school at my school. Just last week… Read more“Extended family holidays – an opportunity or a threat to learning?”

the strap!

I was searching my back storeroom at work recently I came across one of the original straps used by Principals and some teachers who were delegated to “dish out” corporal punishment. Corporal punishment (that is legally striking a student with wooden cane or leather strap for misbehaviour) was banned in 1985… Read more“the strap!”

Federal Government changes University funding – I fear for the worse!

It was with some trepidation that I write in this weeks school newsletter on the recent proposed changes to university funding arrangements. The links between primary schools and universities is not obvious in many cases. Quite a few of our parents at EPS either work in or attend courses at… Read more“Federal Government changes University funding – I fear for the worse!”

“Ability alone does not lead you to success – you have to work for it!”

Thanks to James Nottingham’s Facebook page I came across an article by Carol Dweck , author of Mindset, where she talks about how she was influenced by and connected to 5 different published works. People may remember 2 prior posts ( mindsets , James Nottingham ) where I wrote about Carol’s work on… Read more““Ability alone does not lead you to success – you have to work for it!””

“What would you do if you could change the world?”

I have just picked up on the documentary now out at the movies “I am eleven” that poses this question to 11 year olds around the world. Why 11? I think Genevieve Bailey thought 11 years of age is a unique period where young people are not quite teenagers yet… Read more““What would you do if you could change the world?””

Appreciative relationships in schools.

I’m writing this post with a few reservations. My intent is not stir up the vast majority of parents (I am one too) for I feel they (or should I say we) generally have good relationships with our child’s teachers and the school and have our child’s interests at heart…. Read more“Appreciative relationships in schools.”

Susan McLean presents on cyber safety at Elsternwick PS.

Last week as part of Education Week we held our second parent and teacher forum on cyber safety. The presenter for this session was Susan McLean. We had 50 parents attend Susan’s presentation and this combined with the first cyber safety session earlier in the term means about 20% of… Read more“Susan McLean presents on cyber safety at Elsternwick PS.”

Selecting schools is not like shopping!

In writing my last post on community I’ve come to reflect on a phrase I used on school tours “please shop around before considering this school”. I’m wondering whether I contributed to a consumerist way of looking at education or schooling.  In saying “shopping” where you buy goods was I painting a similar… Read more“Selecting schools is not like shopping!”

Why are we still asking questions about students repeating or being retained in the 21st century?

I was requested to publish an updated post on the research around students repeating or being retained in the same level class. This post was first published some 3 years ago and surprise surprise the issue hasn’t gone away.  In summary I reported then, using  a research article by Helen McGrath on the topic titled: “To Repeat… Read more“Why are we still asking questions about students repeating or being retained in the 21st century?”

Implications of the “still face” experiment

Thanks to John Connell for this clip which I think has wider implications for all those working with our youth – not just parents with babies. I think this experiment along with a few others like the little Albert Experiment were banned some time ago. In the process of getting to… Read more“Implications of the “still face” experiment”