The tour guide on the side – inquiry outside the classroom

Field trips. Barking at the children to not touch, wander off, fidget and listen attentively all while in the public eye. It's stressful. Does it need to be? Inquiry learning is something teachers plan for in the safety of the school environment. However, once we take children on field trips, it's easy to slip back into... Continue Reading →

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Decluttering pedagogy – creating space to spark curiosity

I'm about three years late reading Marie Kondo's Joy of Tidying Up. The thesis of the book is that if an item doesn't spark joy, then dispose of it. To an international school teacher, living light is a necessity.  Sentimentality goes in the bin along with your unwanted possessions when you are under a strict... Continue Reading →

The long days…

Most of my days seem to whip by in a flurry activity - I arrive early in the morning and before I know it I'm waving the children off at the end of the day wondering where the day went. But then there are the days that seem... to...  drag.. on... forever. The kids are bickering,... Continue Reading →

What the kids think they know… unlearning in science #edsketch15

This article really resonated with me. At present my class is looking into how forces shape the planet. As I watched excepts from the film Private Universe, I found myself being overly optimistic about the effectiveness of my own teaching. I immediately wondered if the misconceptions highlighted would be so widespread in the southern hemisphere where seasons are seen... Continue Reading →

You can’t force collaboration 

One of the joys for me as a primary teacher working in an international school is that I have access to the specialist knowledge and resources from having a secondary school on site. When preparing for the current unit of inquiry into forces shaping the planet, I sent an email asking one of the physics... Continue Reading →

Who watches the people watching teachers?

A few years ago I was in the room with a very senior member of the teaching profession who joked they used so little modern technology they didn't even have an ATM card. That comment bothered me for a long time. How can you be a senior member of a profession devoted to learning but be... Continue Reading →

Putting together pieces of the learning puzzle… 25/365

Over the weekend I presented at the Google Apps for Education summit in Bangkok. Since I was going to be in the city, my principal kindly gave me a release day to observe the teachers at the New International School of Thailand (NIST) in action. Spending time in another school observing teaching in other schools... Continue Reading →

Weekly Reflection: The power of provocation #ishcmc

This holiday I was annoyed that the PYP workshop I had to attend was at the same time as learning2 conference where one of my favourite thinkers on learning, @sherrattsam was speaking. However this setback turned into a huge learning opportunity by visiting the International School of Ho Chi Minh City (ISHCMC) where Sam teaches for a week. My... Continue Reading →

Weekly Reflection: Inertia

My knowledge of physics ends at barely scraping through a pass in high school. However over the last week I've been thinking a lot about inertia, the principle that every object has to preserve its present state whether in movement or not. The bigger object, the more energy there is needed to get moving. What on... Continue Reading →

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