Developing a Minecraft Mindset

What’s in this post: How I used Minecraft to discuss Mindset with kids for whom mainstream education doesn’t work Access to the materials I created in order for you to do similar if you wish Of late I’ve found myself working with kids from some fairly tough backgrounds. Whether it’s kids who are wards of the […]

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Should You *Reward* Good Behaviour?

I’ve been doing a lot of work around Carol Dweck’s Mindset theory of late. This complements the approach I take to engagement in school (or any environment) which I largely base on Ryan & Deci’s Self Determination Theory. The essence of what I explore is that authentic engagement is achieved when: Relationships have been established […]

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Learning about Mindset from Stan

Up until around 12 months ago – unless you were a tennis fanatic – you’d probably not heard of Stanislas Wawrinka. The reason being, Stan is the second best tennis player in Switzerland. The best being… oh you know. Anyway, it was at the 2014 Australian Open when Wawrinka was drawn against Novak Djokovic – a bloke who had […]

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Engaging the Student Voice

The basis for student voice is to be found in Article 12 of the United Nation Convention of the Rights of the Child, which sets out the right of children and young people to express an opinion and to have that opinion taken into account when decisions are being made on any matter that affects them. […]

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3 Common Myths About Innovation in Education

1. We’re innovative. The kids all have iPads.  To do what? To do what you already did quicker, more efficiently or on a larger scale? In many schools the power of the iFad or whatever technology has been wheeled into the school is compromised by the way in which they’re allowed or – more importantly – […]

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I regularly annoy math teachers by questioning why I would need to learn Pythagoras’ Theorem as a kid. Or Calculus? Seriously… does that even exist? And just to prove I’m not being mathsist, why should we care about Shakespeare? Whilst you might this I’m being facetious when I’m doing this, I’m trying to highlight that […]

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Hear No Evil, See No Evil

One of the most common questions I get asked by schools, is along the lines of how can we teach “Cyber-Safety?” Leaving aside the fact I’m not keen on the use of the work cyber as whilst it may have suited our needs a decade ago, nowadays it’s pretty much irrelevant. Why do I say irrelevant? Because […]

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Do we get Engagement Wrong in School?

I’m really pleased to say that in 2014 I’ll be writing a regular column, School of Thought, for the Australian Teacher Magazine. My first column for 2014 is now up! I say engagement is overused because I witness, all too often, schools confusing conformity for engagement. Measures such as attendance, grades, homework, and adherence to uniform […]

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At last!

As posted on the YouthEngage site… One of the main reasons for my leaving full-time teaching was to establish YouthEngage, and at last we have been given approval by the NSW Dept of Education & Communities to research the effectiveness of one of our programs.

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