Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from 2020

A thought on 21st Century Education

One of the educational buzzwords that I am attached to is ‘21st Century education’. I love it. And, while I am partly sure it is connected to my love of sci-fi and watching the Jetsons as a child, I think it encapsulates the idea that known-unknown that is how people will live and work in the near and far future. As a teacher, this interests me for several reasons. The first being that, as technology transforms our society at breakneck speed, this uncertain future is actually quite close. The second being that growing conviction that the way we educate children is not preparing them for this future.

A challenge for educators has always been how to make education as relevant as possible for learners; relevant not only for their future but also for their present. Contending with a society that is being rapidly transformed by technology, education has difficulty maintaining its relevance. I want to avoid cliched generalisations, but there is much truth in the idea that many of the jobs t…

BERA blog post on creativity and teacher identity

My first BERA blog post 'Teacher identity in a performative age: Coming to research through autoethnography' was published this week. In this piece I reflect on the themes of my recent MRes which explored the experiences of my teaching career using a personal, reflective research method - autoethnography.

The main question is how can teachers promote creativity - which thrives on risk - in a competitive education that prioritises performance.

The feedback to this post has been really positive. Please access my blog post here: https://www.bera.ac.uk/blog/teacher-identity-in-a-performative-age-coming-to-research-through-autoethnography

Tweeters and twitter: a creativity debate

A few weeks ago, the Twitter algorithm fairy threw a discussion about creativity into my feed. I have a natural aversion to putting my hand into this kind of hornets' nest, but on this occasion I couldn't resist. The discussion that was playing out reflects the evidence that creativity is something teachers care about and see it as a skill to be valued in education, and yet it is still something misunderstood and misappropriated.
It went something like this...
A primary school teacher had posted to Twitter a picture of an art display in her classroom. See a snippet of the picture below. The display showed pictures of birds the children had painted in watercolours and was captioned with a comment to praise her class for their work.

Not so, said Twitter. The birds are all identical: how is this going to develop creativity in children? Wrong, came the counter-argument: children in primary school need to be fluent in skills before they can attempt to be creative. Independent ar…