Monday 10 September 2007

Learning how to learn in Bierton

Bierton Combined Church of England school today. There's a great partnership with the Church here. Irene Corns and a young, very committed staff are doing some wonderful work with language development and special needs. The school's work with autistic children has been written up in the Times Ed, and it was good to see children with hearing and sight difficulties absolutely in the swing of things. The best schools make integrated education look easy, but of course it isn't. Bierton is a really caring school with very high standards.

In its buzzing learning environment, I also noticed the use the school was making of Mind Maps. I haven't seen these being used by children as young as year 3 before. They are part of a well thought-out strategy throughout the school to help children learn, not only information, but also how to learn, in ways that can really unlock greater creativity and potential in everyone — I was reminded of that great TED talk by Sir Ken Robinson.

My time there was a real joy, with an assembly theme of "ourselves" which alowed me to begin the revolution Raj Patel inaugurated at Greenbelt with his battle cry — That which God first created you to be that you must become. Sadly I couldn't (yet?) do it in Gujarati!

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