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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. 


A core philosophy which drives recent initiatives in pedagogy is a developmental responsiveness to the learning needs of adolescents in the middle years of schooling (Beane, 1999:5).   Cummings has described this period as “a phase of schooling that bridges the conventional primary/secondary divide with a view to responding more effectively to the specific developmental needs of adolescents” (1998: 5).


Certainly, Educational digital learning management platforms have become a lucrative business this century- it is a shame that professional learning for teachers in how best to organise effective teaching and learning experiences in this environment seems less a priority.


Now that exams are over and the term is winding up, it is time for students who are series about academic success to reflect honestly on their approach to their studies ad to plan the way forward next term. This blog contains ideas about strategies you can use to focus yourself on behaviours designed to maximise your potential.


Test anxiety is a psychological condition experienced during testing conditions.  It is an intense worry or fear of failure during an exam.  While some degree of nervousness is normal and can actually be helpful making you feel both mentally and physically alert, test anxiety can hinder learning and cause poor test performance.  


While the use of ICT tools in schools is potentially one of the most significant changes to face education in the 21st century, it appears to be a change for which many schools are ill prepared. London School of Economics Academic, Sonia Livingstone pointed out recently that, “children [are] often the ‘canary in the coal mine’ – experiencing life in the digital age before parents, teachers or governments have caught up.” (2019).  Given that the internet is now 30 years old, making it the same age as the key formulation of children’s rights, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, it is timely to evaluate and discuss the significance challenges and opportunities posed by learning in the digital age.


Stephen King once said, “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to anything else. Simple as that.” .Recently, I read some wonderful advice from blogger Ryan Holiday about how to ‘punch above your weight’ when it comes to reading. As someone who understands the value of reading, I thought I would pass this along to you with my own ideas thrown into the mix.


HOW CAN TEACHERS HELP STUDENTS FIND THEIR ZONE?  Explore collaborative learning with your students.  According to Vygotsky, students learn best in socially rich environments which provide them with opportunities to explore subjects with their teachers and peers. (Zimmerman & Shunk, 2001, p.220) Such an environment may be created using collaborative learning models where, research has shown, such learning environments are conducive to learning higher-order cognitive tasks such as analysis, synthesis, evaluation, and problem solving.


HOW CAN TEACHERS HELP STUDENTS FIND THE ZONE?  Begin with pre-testing of students.  In his seminal text, Basic Principles of Curriculum and instruction, Ralph Tyler pointed out as early as 1949 that “Without knowing where the students were at the beginning, it is not possible to tell how far changes have taken place “(p. 106). He further argued that, “It is clear that an educational evaluation involves at least two appraisals-one taking place in the early part of the program and the other at some later part so that the change may be measured.”


We all want to raise responsible children. After all, it’s a vital trait for success in school and in life. As they learn and develop, children want and need responsibility.  It’s an important part of their growth and development.  The primary and pre-teen years are a prime time for children to acquire the skills to plan, meet deadlines, follow through on promises and make sensible decisions. 


Educational research often makes much of Vygotsky's theory that the potential for cognitive development is limited to a certain time span which he calls the "zone of proximal development" (ZPD). Furthermore, Vugotsky claims, full development during the "zone of proximal development" (ZPD) depends upon full social interaction.


It is a disappointing fact that for many academically able students, Primary school offers little if any challenge. Many students cruise through primary school achieving high grades with little if any effort. It might be thought that this was a good thing for such students. Nothing could be further from the truth! In particular, where primary school has required little but rote recall and compliant behaviour of students, such students are ill-prepared for both higher education and the real world.


The Flipped Learning Global Initiative (FLGI), a worldwide coalition of educators, researchers, technologists, professional development providers and education leaders, are committed to flipped learning and explains its key principles as: “Flipped learning requires a radical redefinition of the role of the teacher, the student and the best use of time between them… Successful implementation of flipped learning requires a mastery of the pedagogy and best practices of the flipped classroom.”


Effective feedback requires teachers to be alert to both learner behaviours and ready to respond in the most appropriate manner. Most effective teachers have moved well beyond behaviourist models of punishment and reward and towards more constructivist models of targeted feedback. This requires developing within the learner a sense of personal agency and the development of a growth mindset.


Starting the new school year brings a mix of emotion for both parents and kids – from the excitement over the promise of new beginnings to anxiety over the fear of the unknown.  No matter how your child faces the new year, you can help him or her to make the most of the experience.   Now is a great time for parents and kids to start getting set for success in the classroom. 


As one school year ends and we wait for another to begin, every student risks summer learning loss.  Research has shown that children can lose their mathematics and literacy proficiency in the long summer break, meaning the first few weeks of the new school year is spent catching up.  So what can you do to stop all of that hard work from being wasted?   Whether your child loves to read, play outside or get 'techy', there are many exciting but effective ways to promote learning over the holidays.


Homeschooling in Australia is growing at a rapid rate.  Nationally, homeschooling numbers have doubled and these numbers are increasing every day.  Among the benefits of homeschooling is the flexibility that comes with a learning program tailored to suit the individual child and delivered in a supportive home environment.   Tutors are a wonderful asset to homeschooling students as they can tailor their service to suit your child's individual requirements and goals.  


Cyberbullying is a huge concern as it can be more hurtful and dangerous than offline bulling.  It is often anonymous, can feel relentless and can be seen or read by many people quickly.  


End of term breaks are a time when your child can clear their head, relax and stretch their brains in different ways. However, letting study routines slip means your child is missing out of a huge opportunity to get ahead. 


Goal setting is a vital skill for your child to learn.  Goal setting allows children to become active participants in the learning process, empowering them to become independent learners, and motivating them to achieve their full potential.  The process of setting goals allows children to choose where they want to go in school and what they want to achieve. By identifying this, they know what they have to concentrate on and improve. Goal setting gives students long-term vision and short-term motivation.


Anxiety can show up in countless ways and many children slip under the radar, go untreated, and are often misunderstood by their parents, teachers and peers.  Anxiety disorder can be misunderstood as behavioural issues, cause discomfort, poor academic performance and feelings of inadequacy and unhappiness. 


We all solve problems on a daily basis. Problem solving is not a skill that we are born with – it’s cultivated over time with practise and experience.  Children need to be taught how to identify problems, generate ideas for a solution and then learn to couragously try and solve the problem.  They are faced with decisions and learning opportunities every day during every stage of life. One of the best things we can do is to nurture these opportunities and encourage them to solve problems on their own. Teaching problem solving as a general skill is invaluable to children’s learning, confidence and independence.


Learning styles is a term that refers to different ways in which we learn, process and retain information.  There are many models and theories about learning styles. This particular system about an individual’s learning preference is known as VARK.  It is one of the most widely used categorisations of learning styles. 


When your child is overwhelmed or frustrated by homework, it can have a negative impact on his or her ability to focus and retain information. It can also lead to your child procrastinating on his or her homework (or simply not completing it), creating an ongoing cycle of stress.  Homework and study can actually be a rewarding, satisfying experience if done in an organised and efficient way.  Here are 10 tips on how to achieve that.


When students have trouble reading, it can affect their performance in many subjects. Every subject relies on students having the ability to understand what they're reading and then use the information in a certain way. Poor reading skills and comprehension can lead to frustration, low self-confidence, and poor grades. The good news is with regular practise, reading and with comprehension is something that can be improved. Reading enriches a child's understanding of the world around them and benefits students in all other aspects of learning as they are more readily able to comprehend the materials they encounter.


There are many reasons parents turn to tutoring for their children. Some parents feel that they are unable to help their children with their homework. Others may find their children are more receptive to working through school struggles with another person. Tutoring can help strengthen subject comprehension, improve work and study habits, increase confidence and attitude and build important learning skills. These skills are the building blocks to achieving success in the classroom and beyond. 

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