BeSmartOnAir #22: Challenging Learning

Audio-only? Sure thing, scroll down!

High quality professional development for educators is a very good thing – especially if it happens to be free(!) and there’s no sales pitch attached. Some time in the autumn of 2015 I got the word from my good friend and London colleague Lisa Taner to check out Challenging Learning, an educational consultancy connected to John Hattie‘s Visible Learning ideas and now looking even more in the Nordic direction. After a quick web search I got definitely interested, especially since those folks offered us teachers in the Nordic area a – yes, free – PD day in Stockholm. I’m fully aware of the fact that most often you get what you pay for but it seemed that this thing might be an exception to the rule. The way things played out, it was.

The Stockholm meetup did introduce the Challenging Learning ideas – guess it would have been strange otherwise – but we also discussed and tried hands-on several ways of, well, actually challenging students more than we teachers perhaps normally do. Part of the deal offered to the participants in Stockholm was also to shoot a video clip of ‘a teacher in action’ and then get feedback from one of the CL consultants. Of course, I had quite a few more urgent matters to attend to – until I noticed that I had just two days to get the video done! Well, I did get it done and then I shared the clip with Richard Kielty whom I had already met in Stockholm. We mailed a bit about how to arrange the feedback part and then I figured that we might just as well do it On Air. Richard’s response: sure!

Our virtual meeting turned out to cover lots of more ground than just what I was trying to achieve with my students when I shot my video. I really enjoyed talking with Richard about the role of the teacher and the way ‘traditional’ education works – and why it does not any longer. I was a bit tired before we got started but, somehow, I got fired up with all cylinders once we were On Air. Thanks for a great PD hour, Richard!

So, you prefer audio only? Absolutely, go ahead and listen to our chat directly through the web – or download the mp3 file so you can listen to it on the go – using this link.

See you folks On Air!



About niiloa

Language teacher, GSuite superadmin, YouTuber, podcaster, advocate for international school collaboration, sea kayaking addict
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