New Video: Vice Principal, 10 weeks into the Skills & Mastery programme

In this short video, Ben Rogers, Vice Principal, discusses Norwich Primary Academy's experience with Skills & Mastery. Norwich Primary Academy, situated in one of the most socially challenged areas of the city, is now using Cooperative Learning to develop key human skills; resilience, mental toughness, sense of duty, service to others - without compromising academic performance.... Continue Reading →

Cooperate Be Literate

As mentioned in the previous post, a dream has come true for me. I am working with a highly experienced science teacher to discover how Cooperative Learning can further literacy skills in science from KS2 to University. Given the routine assertions that Cooperative Learning denotes wet talking exercises, some science and maths teachers I have spoken to have... Continue Reading →

The International Association for the Study of Cooperation in Education

During the 1970s, the work of many pioneering educational researchers centered on what we know today as cooperative learning and led to the creation of the IASCE (International Association for the Study of Cooperation in Education). Researchers and practitioners convened in 1979 from Australia, the Netherlands, and Canada, the Philippines, Mexico, England, the United States and... Continue Reading →

21st Century Skills;  delivered by Cooperative Learning since the 1930s

The term 21st Century Skills refers to a broad set of knowledge, skills, work habits, even character traits, that are believed — by educators, school reformers, college professors, employers, and others — to be critically important to success in today’s world.* While the definitions are fluid, the cornerstone is the drive to independently and collaboratively... Continue Reading →

Seminar at IEC2014: Opening Minds, Closing Achievement Gaps

- Empowering Identity and Community Building through Cooperative Learning I am very honored to be invited to present a seminar entitled "Opening Minds, Closing Achievement Gaps - Empowering Identity and Community Building through Cooperative Learning" at the Islamic Education Conference at Queen Elizabeth II in London on June 2. The conference looks to be the largest gathering of educationists... Continue Reading →

It Was the Worst of Times; It was the Best of Times: Are Our Schools and Kids Awful?

The similarity to my own childhood experiences are in fact, well, surreal… Sociopathic skills

Trivium 21c

In yesterday’s Daily Mail they ran the following headline:

The worst behaved pupils in the world? You’d better believe it: As a study says schools are even more anarchic than we thought, the shocking testimony of a once idealistic young teacher.” What followed was an article reflecting on a survey about how our pupils are rated amongst the worst behaved in the developed world. The article was written by Robert Peal, a person who I have a lot of time for and I think has a valuable contribution to make to our current debates. In the article he seems to put the blame on this classroom anarchy on the Sixties and the rise of “progressive education.” Robert quotes an earlier Daily Mail Headline from 1974: “Stop these trendies before they ruin ALL our children,” to which he adds the thought: “But the rot had already set in — and has endured.”

View original post 407 more words

Realising the Potential? Ofsted goes spiritual!

The controlled and guided enquiry and real-time assessment of thinking processes afforded by Cooperative Learning do provide the tools for enquiry in RE while driving the "hard" elements of the curriculum. This Thursday, Alan Brine of HMI opened up the discussion of RE vs. P4C at the Realising the Potential conference at East Anglia University. Highly relevant to the preceding posts from Edinburgh... Continue Reading →

Realising the Potential?

Visitors from Thursday's Realising the Potential conference at the University of East Anglia, there's a couple of related summaries and posts in the pipeline,  especially related to the scope and remit of RE discussed by Mr Brine's keynote. Follow on twitter for updates. RE & P4C on the other site. Some interesting related posts reblogged... Continue Reading →

Christian-centred, atheism-centred… or just Student-Centred? Making RE relevant at all

Of relevance to participants of today’s UEA Realising Potential conference, this comment on a young non-Muslim RE teacher’s presentation at Edinburgh University is being reblogged.

“…making religion and Religious Education relevant to children in a full-on atheist society – and in a school where the preceding science lesson makes a mockery of the spirit and the following history books are crammed full of religious massacres and greedy popes – can only be done via discovery exercises which gives children space to investigate from the perspective of their own relation to spirituality, and work outward from there.”

Matthew Vince (University of Exeter): Expressing Islam within a Christian centric education system : Lessons from a young British Muslim RE teacher (PART 1)

(Notes from BRAIS conference, University of Edinburgh 10-11 April 2014, Panel 3: Islam in UK Institutions/Organisations and Everyday Muslim Religious Lives)

Executive summary*

According to Matthew Vince, who is doing his PGCE at Exeter University, current RE is aimed more at political aims of community cohesion than subject knowledge. On top of that he cited the 2010 Warwick report that suggests that Christianity is presented as the default religion of this country. As a consequence, the representation of Islam in the current state administered RE is vulnerable to perpetuating negative stereotypes of Islam and other religions and that Muslim RE teachers find they must “navigate between negative conflicting spheres at times.”

His study concludes that the current curriculum is set primarily on knowledge and not the attainment of understanding Islam…

View original post 857 more words

Deradicalisation; it’s not about what you do, it’s about who you are

Mohammed Elshimi (University of Exeter) : Identity, Citizenship, and Security: What is Deradicalisation? (PART 1, read PART 2)* (Notes from BRAIS conference, University of Edinburgh 10-11 April 2014, Panel 3: Identity and Integration In Muslim-Minority Societies) This is the most controversial presentation in the entire conference, bar none, and the most pertinent to our theme of... Continue Reading →

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: