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This session discusses a short history and principles of blockplay; what block play offers: reflecting on practice; a celebration of children’s wonderful ideas; practicalities of blockplay organisation.
Dr Deborah Albon is an Honorary Fellow of the University of Roehampton and writer.
Ann Bridges was formerly headteacher of a nursery school and consultant.
Solveig Morris was formerly a headteacher of a nursery and infant school, a local authority inspector for early years education and consultant. She is also a co-ordinator for London ReFocus – a regional network group of Sightlines Initiative.
Helen Tovey was formerly a headteacher of a nursery school and principal lecturer at the Froebel College, University of Roehampton. She is a Froebel travelling tutor and author of early years publications.
A free recorded introduction to our summer conference series investigating the shaping of education from ethics of relationship & listening.
This recorded session is a free introductory to the ideas which we will be exploring in the series. Discussants are Prof. Peter Moss, ioE; Robin Duckett, Sightlines Initiative; Greta Ellis & Cathering Reding, Kirkoswald Primary School; Louise Lowings, Madeley Nursery School; Rachel Oakshott-Evans, Growing Places Early Years Centres.
Education in England, including early childhood education, is increasingly narrow, instrumental and technical, subject to a culture of managerial accountability obsessed with targets, testing and readying, and that sees nurseries and schools as ‘outcome factories’. In the words of Sir Ken Robinson, “we are living with a construct of education based on an outdated model of training for an industrial, growth economy…capacity for divergent thinking deteriorates with schooling…children alienated, not engaged, lacking aesthetic experience." Changing Educational Paradigms
Emphasis is on the individual and on an educational norm of transmitting pre-determined information and skills from educator to child.
But other types of relationship are available. Great educators, such as Reggio Emilia’s Loris Malaguzzi, have built their education on the importance of groups, of dialogue and listening, of creativity and research, and of children and adults working together to co-construct meaning and empathy. Instead of a pedagogy of transmission and conformity, they have chosen a pedagogy of collaboration, conviviality, democracy and enquiry: this is the heart which will be exploring in our June - September conference series.
Tues 6th July, 4pm (uk times) 'Reggio’s theory of interactivity and relations.' Dr. Lorenzo Manera, Reggio Emilia, Italy
Tues 13th July, 4pm 'The humanness of conviviality in learning.' Professor Colwyn Trevarthen, Edinburgh
Tues 7th Sept, 4pm 'Dividing the brain: the dimming of sensibility in the West.' Dr. Iain McGilchrist, UK
Thurs 9th Sept, 4pm 'Democracy in education: steps in reality.' Harold Göthson & Malin McConnachie, Stockholm, Sweden
Tues 14th Sept, 4pm 'Education for Happiness' Dr. Satish Kumar, UK
Thurs 16th Sept, 7pm (uk time) 'Te Whariki: A woven mat which empowers the child.' Dr. Lesley Rameka, Waikato, New Zealand
Tues 21st Sept, 4pm Panel: Steps in Transformation
Series info & registration link:
The humanness of conviviality in learning from children
Professor Colwyn Trevarthen, Edinburgh
Abstract reasoning about the brain as an organ for 'cognition', just recording information, creates barriers to understanding of the playful and affectionate motives for learning in early childhood.
As teachers and parents we need to appreciate how, in every human community, impulses for play inspire rituals of artful creativity and their celebration, and to consider how the source of this imaginative vitality born in our children may be best supported. ... Does the ambitious world of adults searching for profits in knowledge and skills become toxic for the spirit of many children?