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Metacognition, or cognition about cognition, is the ability to reflect upon how we process our thoughts.  One important trait of academically successful individuals is their ability to employ a variety of thinking routines or strategies for different tasks.

Australia’s attitude to education and learning, that most students focus upon grades rather than the abilities or dispositions that need strengthening. Part of our job is to start by refocussing such students. As Educators, we know that a focus on external goals such as Grades is less impactful than reshaping students’ understanding of learning and the skills and dispositions required to achieve external measures.

Researchers Richard Ryan and Edward Deci, articulated the Self-Determination Theory in the 70s.  It is a theory of human motivation that argues that intrinsic motivators are  more powerful than extrinsic motivators such as rewards and punishment. Self-Determination Theory argues that classrooms should aim to ensure students satisfy three primary needs: ownership, competence, and connection.

Create a plan of attack from now (yes, this week) until the day of the examination. Break your study up into manageable daily chunks. Keep spending a little time regularly practising and studying. This could be as simple as updating vocabulary lists, or re-doing a question you couldn’t do in class. Study one subject at a designated time.

Teachers should not take the powerlessness that students may feel because of perceived deficit for granted. This may, indeed, colour every aspect of their engagement with education and schooling.

In this blog, we discuss survival strategies for secondary students.  Strategy One  Use tape to divide a whiteboard into the 10 weeks of your term. Write the due dates of Assessment and exams in the appropriate week. Backwards map from these dates to draft dates, plan dates, finished research etc. Put all school check dates in the appropriate place.

In this blog I will discuss the company for whom I have decided to work as a home educator, and why I chose to work for this company rather than others. Consequently, I acknowledge that this blog is based upon my own experiences as an educator rather than more traditional independent research.

We often hear the word ‘leaning gap’.  When a child is struggling to understand content or falls behind in academic areas, we refer to learning gaps as a reason why they are having trouble in the classroom.  But what exactly are learning gaps and how do we fix them and get our students back on the right track.

Parent teacher interviews are usually held at the beginning of Semester Two to maximise the time a student has to improve. While it is usual for parents to attend, it is probably more effective if older students can also attend, as it is they who must implement the advice offered.

The question of what makes an excellent teacher is a significant one, given the depth of research suggesting that the quality of teaching is one of the most, if not the most, significant factors in student learning.

It doesn’t matter what subjects you study at school or what you want to do when you are finished school, developing a good habit of learning is an essential tool for success. There are no holidays from learning!

Full Spectrum Education’s Holiday Workshops provide a range of programs for students of all abilities and ages to develop their skills, interests and creativity. 

10 STRATEGIES FOR TEACHING THE 21st CENTURY LEARNER: Part two.  Try using Edward De Bono’s Six Thinking Hats to examine a task using different thinking styles and modalities.  Introduce "hats" one or two at a time and have students approach a question from these particular perspectives.

Inquiries designed to provide differentiation must be designed to offer support for those learners at risk while challenging those who require extended learning opportunities.  Through a differentiated inquiry, the teacher can explore similar contexts with all learners, but challenge students to achieve different levels of outcome depending on the students' individual abilities.

Teaching empathy to children is one of the most important lessons we can give them.  Empathy is the awareness of the feelings and emotions of other people. It is the ability to see things from others perspective and it compels us to relieve another person’s suffering.  

Vygotsky would argue that full development during the "zone of proximal development" (ZPD) depends upon full social interaction.  Vygotsky states: "Every function in the child's cultural development appears twice: first, on the social level, and later, on the individual level; first, between people (inter-psychological) and then inside the child (intra-psychological).

Andrew Seaton argued in 2002 that research into educational innovation in Queensland reveals that” little of significance [had] changed” (2002: 33).  While new schools, especially those with purpose designed middle schools may be on the road to a successful transformation of education for young people, the reality is that older, conservative schools (particularly many private schools) have changed little over the past decades despite the significant cultural changes which have radically transformed our society and, consequently, the needs of learners in the twenty-first century. 

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