Conferences for Professional Teacher Development
During the past week, many of us had the privilege of participating in various professional learning opportunities. These conferences and workshops have been inspirational and often incorporate ideas on best practice based on the latest research in the field of education, world-wide.
Thinking Schools South Africa (TSSA) Roadshow hosted at Kingsmead, 8 May
The subject of the conference was Developing Growth Mindset Classrooms. The full-day workshop was presented by James Anderson, the Australian author of ‘The Agile Learner’ (amongst others), international speaker and trainer. Anderson works closely with Prof Carol Dweck, the originator of Mindsets. We hosted almost 200 delegates for a fascinating and insightful workshop. We interrogated our deeply held beliefs and prejudices about intelligence and innate abilities. We were challenged to develop our understanding of the complexities in nurturing a Growth Mindset environment – contrary to the quick-fix slogans so often presented in social media. As this philosophy forms the basis of our approach to learning and teaching at Kingsmead, we were delighted to support this event and to have six staff members attend from both the Junior and Senior Schools respectively.
The CEO of TSSA presented Kim Lowman with the plaque for our Advanced Thinking Schools Accreditation with Exeter University. Ingrid Beekhuizen was acknowledged for her contribution in developing authentic Growth Mindset environment in schools.
Raising Boys and Girls Conference hosted at St Stithians, 10 – 11 May
Several members of our staff had the opportunity to attend a two-day conference held at St Stithians College, entitled “Raising Boys and Girls to Confidently Engage in a Changing World”. The conference focused on cognitive, emotional, social and cultural trends in society and particularly within South Africa and in education.
Delegates were given the opportunity to hear from well-known speakers such as Redi Tlhabi, Roy Gluckman, Sue Langley and Vusi Thembekwayo; and were witness to powerful personal stories, the latest neurological research, and critical debate. It was an exceptionally worthwhile two-days with excellent emphasis on the South African education system, transformation, and girls’ education (for our particular context).
Passionately Curious Conference for Early Childhood Educators hosted at Cornwall Hill College, 11 May
Four of our ECD teachers attended a variety of workshops from: Hands on Science, Robotics, Developing Listening Skills to Interactive Mathematics. As passionate educators, we need to ensure that our children are encouraged to discover, explore and experiment. We need to show them that we value problem-solving, seeking answers, questioning the unknown and innovating … in a nutshell, just being passionately curious.
In the words of Albert Einstein “I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.”
iPad Summit hosted by St Andrews School for Girls, 14 and 15 May
Four of our teachers are attending the iPad Summit at present. We look forward to their feedback next week.
Mrs Beekhuizen – Head of Academics Junior School