This article in the Guardian suggests a dramatic dip in ebook sales. This is perhaps an example of how people are beginning to value the tactile and embodied feel of real world ‘analogue’ objects over the disembodied feel of digital technology.
It was good to read a report in The Guardian on the use of a “restore” process in a school in Gloucester to break the cycle of sanctions and exclusions. As part of the research and development undertaken for an Erasmus+ funded project, staff from Crossfields Institute have taken part in a training session led by teachers from Finland, who use Restorative Mediation widely in their schools. It had a significant impact on the group of 50 teachers gathered from four countries, and we could see the value of the process for both student and staff conflict or difficulty.
Charities that rely on EU nationals and EU funding must speak up, says the guardian. Before the Brexit referendum, voluntary organisations felt gagged by the rules on campaigning. But now we must make our voices heard
We welcome the increased interest in the use of dogs as educational support “staff” in schools, as reported here https://www.theguardian.com/education/2017/mar/28/teaching-support-dog-school-teach-read
We offer several qualifications that accredit practitioners working with horses and dogs to facilitate human development, develop mindfulness practice and use horses in therapeutic work. Developing these qualifications has allowed us to see at first hand the amazing ways in which trusting relationships between animals and humans can lead to increased health and well being.
Next time you see a learning styles questionnaire, burn it – began a typically forthright article in The Guardian back in July 2006 by Professor Frank Coffield. He had published results of a large research project into the use of learning styles questionnaires two years previously, but the UK Department of Education was firmly wedded to the use of learning styles, and his results were not publicised by the Learning and Skills Development Agency which had commissioned the research. Nearly 11 years later The Guardian has published a plea from scientists, educationalists and psychologists to “ditch the neuromyth” of learning styles.
At Crossfields Institute we are developing a qualification for 16 and 18 year olds focusing on developing a range of creative thinking skills. The focus of this is on building capacity and developing skills, whatever the style and preferences of the students.
Article in Monday’s Guardian about the rise of biodynamic agriculture and how it treats the farm as a whole organism. As the developers of the UK’s only qualification in biodynamic agriculture, we feel proud to be doing our part:
The UK government initiative to introduce University Technical Colleges, to create centres of excellence for vocational education is under scrutiny, following news that seven have recently announced their impending closure. The impetus for these colleges came from the 2004 Tomlinson review into secondary education.
Significantly, Tomlinson did not recommend separate pathways for academic and vocational education, rather the replacement of multiple exams and qualifications with a single, integrated Diploma approach, utilising an extended project as a significant component.
Crossfields Institute is working on an Erasmus+ funded project with schools in four countries to develop a Diploma that combines academic and practical learning, and requires students to complete an Independent Project and, in doing so, seeks to respond positively to the recommendations in the Tomlinson review and create an integrated approach to learning that will enable a wide variety of students to achieve their full potential.
Brexit has put charities under enormous pressure. Government makes noises about underwriting EU funding that represents ‘value for money’ … But whose values are our hard-won projects going to be judged against? Read the full story here.
Ofsted’s new Chief, Amanda Spielman, who used to be the head of Ofqual has just given her first interview. She talked about being aware of the huge pressure schools feel when Ofsted inspection time arrives. As a charity committed to holistic education, we would like Ofsted to improve in measuring how a school performs in all sorts of ways that are not just about the academic achievement – how is the school developing the social and emotional intelligence of the young person, how are they doing in building confidence and curiosity? Let’s watch this space…
We are proud to be working in partnership with established and innovative Universities like Alanus University in Germany and University of the West of England.