Trapped inside a Polytunnel

Recently, we invited 29 educational professionals from an inner-city primary school, to go for a silent walk with us. The purpose of the walk was to facilitate a conversation around the curriculum, and teacher agency. But what actually happened was completely unexpected. As seasoned educational facilitators, practitioners and consultants, we knew it was something amazing.

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Hagrid’s armpits smell of chocolate

I first read Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone when I was 22 in a backpackers’ hostel somewhere in Canada. I could perhaps be a little embarrassed to reveal that I was reading Harry Potter at the age of 22, but the reality was up until that point I had never found reading enjoyable. Throughout school, college and university I experienced reading to be perfunctory, just about tolerable, and always dictated by someone else.

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What do we do now?

Not knowing what to do can be uncomfortable – if left long enough it can be distressing. We like knowing what happens next; cliff hangers only work because they suspend time encouraging us to come back for more to discover what happens next. We love weather forecasts to discover if it will be sunny tomorrow. We want things to be calm and peaceful as it suggests certainty. Disturbing images only last a finite time within the media as they present a ‘not knowing how to deal with it’ or ‘but what can I do?’ scenario. We tie things into a bow and go to sleep knowing that tomorrow will be like today and much similar to yesterday. Continue reading

CPD in a Shopping Centre

Hidden Giants and West Lothian Creative Learning Network will dare to take an alternative approach to addressing the current big issues in education: curriculum design, raising attainment, and participation. We invite education professionals to join us, to collectively reposition our thinking and challenge our core beliefs. We propose meeting in everyday spaces on three different days.

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The Missing Part

My step-son, amongst a number of other conditions, is diagnosed with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD). He finds it difficult to deal with uncertainty and change. Hence, as I sit here and type this blog we are dealing with heightened confusion arising from school being cancelled due to the snow. As other children find fun in the white stuff we must remember those who struggle with moments of significant disruption like this.

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