Eighteen of our primary teachers were at the Gold Coast on Saturday 22 July for an amazing conference with Dr Jo Boaler who is a world renowned speaker on the subject of Mathematics. Dr Boaler has done extensive work with students in brain science and the benefits of having a growth mindset when it comes to learning Mathematics.
All teachers who attended this Conference (myself included) were so challenged and inspired by the research data which Dr Jo Boaler shared with us. Below is some information on her work in USA and UK.
“Dr Jo Boaler is a professor of Mathematics education at Stanford University. The author of seven books and numerous research articles, she serves as an advisor to several Silicon Valley companies and is a White House presenter on girls and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). She is a regular contributor to news and radio in the United States and England and recently formed youcubed.org to give teachers and parents the resources and ideas they need to inspire and excite students about mathematics”.
So, if your children come home talking about synapses and how the brain actually grows the most when it is challenged and actually struggles, providing we persevere, they are simply repeating some of the discussions which are happening here in class. That’s why in the Primary school we promote having a growth mindset ie I can’t do it YET – but I’ll keep working on it until I can.
Class Lists for 2018 ( Email sent out last week)
Families who have been in the Primary College for some time will be aware of the lengthy, complicated process which teachers undertake at the beginning of Term 4 in the preparation of class lists for the following year.
Over the past years, we have given students an opportunity to write the names of three friends, one of whom we promised would be in their class for the next year.
However, as most of our classes are now at capacity this constraint has created incredible difficulties for teachers as they try to balance classes taking the following into consideration: learning support, behaviour concerns, social issues, IEP students and children’s academic results. Having an extra layer of a specific friend has sometimes made this almost an impossible task.
As a result, from this year on we can no longer continue with the previous process regarding friends when class lists are being prepared. Teachers are actually very aware of friendship groups in their classes and will keep these in mind when preparing the 2018 class lists. Broadening children’s friendship groups is often a very positive by-product of mixing the class groups each year.
Please start the conversation with your children now to prepare them for this change for 2018. Teachers will also have discussions with their classes over the next six or seven weeks of Term 3 so students will be very aware of the new process.
Cheryl Bryers, Head of Primary