Getting Children Writing: Story Ideas for Children Aged 3-11
Mon, 17 Jun This is a new professional book by Dr. Simon Brownhill, a Senior Teaching Associate in the Faculty of Education. It has been written in response to the numerous headlines in mainstream newspapers, findings in OFSTED reports, and claims made in educational-based publications that current standards in children's literacy attainment, particularly in relation to boys' writing, are 'concerning' (Hill, 2012).
'Getting Children Writing' has been is written to 'arm' teachers, practitioners and those training with an exciting array of Ideas to stimulate story writing composition in the 3-11 classroom. This book offers readers a wealth of creative Ideas (both established and new), innovative learning and teaching strategies, top tips, refreshing activities, practical suggestions, quality advice and 'tested' resources that can be used to 'reinvigorate writing practice' (OFSTED, 2009: 48) and increase the engagement levels and attainment of children they work with. Complemented by noteworthy theoretical perspectives, thought-provoking research findings and links to fascinating professional literature, 'Getting Children Writing' will help readers recognise the benefits, both personally and professionally, of putting the 'theory into practice' and the 'practice into theory'.
The book was published by Sage Publications at the end of May 2013 (ISBN: 9781446253304, £21.99).
Relations between teachers’ learning and students’ learning
Mon, 17 Jun Professor Jan Vermunt, in his Inaugural Lecture 'Teacher learning and student learning: are they related?', talked about relations between research on students' learning and teachers' learning and professional development. He argued that these research domains are currently largely disconnected, which severely limits the impact of educational research on classroom practices.
Jan discussed different models of the relation between teacher professional learning and student learning. He argued that an important criticism on the main existing model is that it is a black box model, in which the processes of teacher learning and student learning are missing.
As an alternative, he presented a multi-layer model of teacher learning and student learning and their interrelationships, and discussed studies on both students' and teachers' learning that departed from this common learning model.
Mongolia-Cambridge Education Initiative project: Special Appreciation Award
Mon, 17 Jun The Mongolia-Cambridge Education Initiative project, which involves colleagues from the Faculty working in partnership with colleagues from Cambridge International Examinations and the Mongolian government, has been presented with a ‘Special Appreciation Award’ by His Excellency the Minister of Education and Science. This award was presented in recognition of the “technical support work provided in improving the capacity of teachers in Mongolia”. It was accepted by the British Ambassador to Mongolia, Chris Stuart, who contacted us to say how they were “delighted to act as our proxy in receiving this accolade which recognises our invaluable work here in Mongolia".
Recognition by this Minister is particularly significant, because such recognition comes from a new administration, commenting favourably on the outcomes of an initiative started by their opposition. The work in Mongolia is ongoing, mirrors our initiatives in Kazakhstan, and is contributing significantly to reforming public education as well as to widespread social and economic transformations in both countries.
Perspectives on Diversity and Belonging in Primary Classrooms
Thu, 13 Jun Supporting Early Career Teachers in the Development of Inclusive Pedagogy. Kristine Black-Hawkins and Ruth Kershner have been awarded funding by the British Academy / Leverhulme Trust to undertake a study that aims to support Early Career Teachers (ECTs) in developing their inclusive pedagogy in the primary classroom (June 2013 to September 2014). Linda Cooper has been appointed as a part-time research assistant to join the research team.
The project involves a teacher research network comprising a group of ECTs and senior management colleagues in each primary school. There is particular interest in understanding children's and practitioners' experiences of diversity and belonging in the classroom.
As well as the research findings key outcomes will include materials for wider use in the network's schools and in initial teacher education.
Kaleidoscope - Graduate Student Research 10th Annual Conference
Tue, 11 Jun The Kaleidoscope Conference 2013 was a two-day event hosted by students at the Faculty of Education between the 30th and 31st of May. Celebrating its 10th year, this conference embraced the diversity of ideas and research directions of 146 delegates from 17 different universities.
This year's theme, 'Turning the Kaleidoscope: Educating Research and Researching Education', envisioned by the Kaleidoscope committee, investigated educational perceptions and research priorities in the current political and financial climate.
The metaphorical image of the 'kaleidoscope' alluded to the idea of bringing multiple perspectives to both research on education and education per se. Fundamentally, the space provided for the observation of such tensions and negotiations through ingenuous deliberations between students and staff with the aim to encourage critical reassessment of education and 'self' as a researcher.
A full report is available at The Kaleidoscope Conference 2013
'Importance of Play' Research Contributes to EU 'Play Day'
Thu, 06 Jun 'Taking Play Seriously' is being incorporated into the EU 'Play Day' for the first time, after taking input from Dr David Whitebread's research, 'Importance of Play'.
The report was launched at the European Parliament in April 2012, and Dr Whitebread is receiving the International Toys Research Association's BRIO Prize (2013) in Denmark in August as a result of his work in the area.
Teachers as researchers: the ultimate continuing professional development?
Tue, 04 Jun Head Tom Sherrington has written in the Guardian about his school's involvement with CamStar, which is co-ordinated by the Faculty's Sue Brindley, stating that 'The high quality support from Cambridge is invaluable - the gains are mutual: through this process, we are adding to the sum of human knowledge. That is what research is all about'.
The report has brought numerous enquiries from schools nationally and internationally, wanting to be involved. Guardian 'Highlights' have recently republished this report.
The future of quantitative methods in education research
Tue, 28 May Professor Anna Vignoles at her Inaugural Lecture 'The importance of number: the future of quantitative methods in education research' talked about the importance of number and quantitative methods in education research and particularly the role of quantitative methods in evaluative research that seeks to inform policy and practice. She presented an historical perspective to this important issue and argued for both more evaluation in education and for more research that adopts quantitative and mixed methods.
Whilst she made the point that there has been a shortage of quantitative studies for many years in education, she was optimistic about the prospects for quantitative education research going forward. In particular she talked about the data revolution that has provided researchers with amazing 'big data' that can be used to analyse a wide range of research questions.
She highlighted the opportunities for further application of administrative data and birth cohort data in the field of education and illustrated applications from her own work on the large socio-economic gaps that occur in education achievement in most countries. Anna acknowledged that the main barrier to increasing the amount of quantitative and mixed methods research in education was the lack of people with sufficient quantitative analysis skills and she talked of ways in which schools and universities need to work together to solve this problem.
British Educational Leadership, Management and Administration Society 40th Anniversary
Tue, 14 May Megan Crawford, former Chair of BELMAS, and Panayiotis Antoniou attended the BELMAS 40th Anniversary Reception at the House of Commons on May 7th, where they were speakers.
BELMAS is an educational charity which aims to provide a distinctive, independent and critical voice in the pursuit of quality education through effective leadership and management.
One of the invitees, Ross McGIll, Assistant Head at Grieg Academy London, wrote the occasion up on his TeacherTookit blog - it also tells the unusual way he met Megan!
Collaborative research with a school in Qatar
Tue, 07 May Mark Winterbottom and Elaine Wilson together with Alan McMurdo of the Thomas Deacon Academy have won a grant to engage in collaborative research with a school in Qatar.
The study forms part of a school improvement process initiated by Al Khor International School, and engages teachers in the process of action research.
The research study begins in October 2013.
Teaching comprehension strategies using animated film
Wed, 01 May Fiona Maine has been awarded a small Cambridge Humanities Research Grant to explore the use of animated films in the teaching of comprehension strategies to primary-aged children.
The project involves five partner primary schools and will run over the summer term, with an afternoon conference for research participants (children and teachers) in July. The research has also attracted funding from Filmclub, a national educational charity.
Play, Learning and Narrative Skills (PLaNS)
Wed, 01 May David Whitebread, Mary Anne Wolpert and Helen Bradford have been awarded a grant by the LEGO Foundation to research the potential role of constructional and pretence play in the development of metacognition and narrative skills in primary-aged children.
This two-year project will involve working with Year 1, 3 and 5 teachers from three local primary schools. Writing well-structured fictional and non-fictional texts is a key skill within the primary English curriculum, and one which causes difficulty for many children. This research builds on earlier work by the research team, and will investigate the effectiveness of a newly-designed intervention in supporting children's learning in this area.
The Research Associate on the project is Marisol Basilio (firstname.lastname@example.org) who can be contacted for further information.
The Guardian discusses the Cambridge PGCE Course and the uncertain future of the teaching training
Tue, 30 Apr The illustrious secondary PGCE course is one of those facing an uncertain future after the government's changes to teacher training, the Guardian interviews Elaine Wilson who runs the renowned PGCE for secondary teachers.
View the full article on the Guardian Website
Cambridge in Africa - Funding Opportunity
Thu, 18 Apr The Cambridge in Africa Programme is inviting applications from principal investigators in the University of Cambridge to apply jointly with a partner in a Sub-Saharan African university or research institution, for grants from the Cambridge-Africa Alborada Research Fund.
This fund was established to help researchers from Sub-Sahara African institutions and the University of Cambridge, across all disciplines, to initiate or strengthen collaborations, by providing funding for research costs. Amounts for eligible activities include: - research costs (including fieldwork and equipment: £1,000-20,000) - travel funds for exchange visits (up to £2,500) - research training activities (e.g. setting up a course/workshop in Africa: up to £5,000). The closing date for receipt of applications is Wednesday 1st May 2013. Further details are available through the Centre for Commonwealth Education website.
More on the Cambridge in Africa Programme...
Cambridge in Africa
Centre for Commonwealth Education
Cambridge in Africa Programme pdfs:
TPD in Crisis Series: Open Educational Resources in sub-Saharan Africa
Thu, 18 Apr Sara Hennessy and Bjoern Hassler are participating in an online forum on Teacher Professional Development in Crisis: How can we give teachers in fragile contexts the learning they want and need?
The forum brings together international experts, practitioners, and teachers to address the poor quality of professional development available to many teachers across the world, and aims to build an online community around research, ideas and strategies so hlep teachers everywhere to get high-quality professional development.
This three month special forum is hosted by the Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies (INEE).
Educational Achievement, Language Education and Disadvantage (EALead)
Wed, 10 Apr Madeleine Arnot, Michael Evans and Yongcan Liu are collaborating with Dr. Claudia Schneider from the Faculty of Family and Community Studies at Anglia Ruskin University on a project funded by the Bell Foundation. The year-long research brings together a multi-disciplinary team of researchers with expertise in second language education, migration, sociology and community studies to investigate and improve the educational outcomes of children with English as an additional language (EAL). The findings of the research are expected to contribute to the development of EAL practice in schools and to the social integration of children from immigrant communities. Further information can be found on the EALead website.
Government enthusiasm for educational research is offered a qualified welcome
Mon, 25 Mar Last week the Department for Education published a paper, 'Building Evidence into Education' by Dr Ben Goldacre, on the importance of research and evidence-based practice to teaching as a profession. The Royal Society of Chemistry's 'Education in Chemistry' invited Dr Keith S Taber of the Faculty of Education to comment on the DfE paper.
Taber welcomed the general message of the Goldacre paper as being broadly supportive of longstanding thinking within education, although he warned that the paper over-emphasised the potential of randomised trials given well-recognised difficulties with using such approaches in educational settings.
Taber also expressed a concern that an important argument in the DfE paper that teachers should be taught about educational research processes in their initial teacher education - something that is already an integral part of Masters level postgraduate courses based in University - School partnerships - would be undermined by government intentions to shift more teacher preparation to school-based on-the-job training.
National Curriculum Proposals Consultation Event
Thu, 21 Mar Stefano Pozzi, Assistant Director, Department of Education, will be attending this open event, held by Cambridge Primary Review Eastern Regional Network. You will have an opportunity to express your views or concerns directly to him as a senior representative of the DfE.
22nd March 2013 10.30-12.00 Auditorium, Mary Allan Building, Faculty of Education. Flyer pdf.
All are welcome, with no charge for attendance, but please contact Penny Coltman by email if you plan to attend.
Assessing Children's Spoken English - new funding
Mon, 18 Mar Neil Mercer and Paul Warwick have been awarded a grant from the Educational Endowment Foundation to work with School 21 in East London to develop a tool for assessing children's capabilities in using spoken English, across a range of contexts.
They will also provide advice on aspects of oracy in relation to the design and implementation of the School 21 curriculum and the training of teachers. The grant is worth £106k and will last for one and a half years.
Sustaining Teachers' Professional Growth
Thu, 07 Mar This international seminar was the second in a series that has brought together practitioners, researchers and policy-makers committed to enhancing the development of the teaching profession. They are planned by Leadership for Learning: the Cambridge Network (LfL) together with Education International (EI), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and Open Society Foundations (OSF). After the success of the 2012 seminar on the Future of the Teaching Professional, the agreement to hold a second demonstrated a shared recognition that system-wide teacher policies are vital to the success of education in every country.
The 2013 seminar on Sustaining Teachers' Professional Growth was intended to pursue in greater depth some of the areas explored at last year's seminar. It examined how governments, school communities and wider societies, alongside teaching professionals, can create the optimum conditions for sustaining teachers' professional growth so vital to enhancing the learning of children and young people.
The timing of the seminars is not accidental, organised as they are immediately prior to the Annual Summits on the Teaching Profession. They are intended to strengthen the discourse on the future of teaching and teachers which the Summits focus on at a government and teacher organisation level.
A report on the event and podcasts from each session can be found at LFL Cambridge Seminars. the sessions are also available on iTunesU and The University SMS.
This year's seminar, as with last year's, was made possible by the generous support of the Open Society Foundations.
Book Launch: Teachers Learning: Professional Development and Education - Edited by Colleen McLaughlin
Fri, 22 Feb
Teachers Learning: Professional Development and Education is part of The Cambridge Teacher series, edited by senior colleagues at the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education, which has a longstanding tradition of involvement in high quality, innovative teacher education and continuing professional development.
Funding Opportunity: CCE Reciprocal Visiting Scholar Fellowships 2013
Tue, 19 Feb CCE are pleased to announce the launch of a Fellowship programme intended to support the pursuit of collaborative research between the Faculty of Education in Cambridge and colleagues in Commonwealth countries.
The fellowship would offer funding towards travel and accommodation for a visiting to scholar to come to Cambridge for up to one month, and for the Cambridge academic to make a reciprocal visit.
Further information is available on the CCE website.
Book Launch: Art, Education and the Built Environment
Fri, 15 Feb 26th February, Room 2S8, DMB, time 17.00-19.00
The seminar will present Dr Catherine Burke's recently published book 'A Life in Education and Architecture. Mary Beaumont Medd 1907 -- 2005', and Professor Rhor will talk on the subject of Outstanding American Women: Shaping Chicago's Public Schools through Murals in the early 20th Century. About the book
Times Higher Education Review
Book Launch: Teacher Education and Pedagogy Theory, Policy and Practice - Edited by Michael Evans
Wed, 13 Feb
This book is part of The Cambridge Teacher series, edited by senior colleagues at the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education, which has a longstanding tradition of involvement in high quality, innovative teacher education and continuing professional development. Teacher Education and Pedagogy focuses on teacher education through key themes of research, theory, policy and practice feeding into critical discussions of transformative processes of teacher education policy and planning.
Assessment for Learning across International Contexts - ALIC
Fri, 01 Feb The ALIC project, carried out by Paul Warwick and colleagues in Cambridge Assessment and CIE research, is reported in the Autumn/Winter edition of BERA’s Research Intelligence (BERA Research Intelligence 2012).
The project sought to extend earlier understandings around AfL by gathering evidence across a range of national contexts, using an adapted version of a survey tool employed by James and Pedder (2006). A range of publications are currently being prepared.
Book Launch: Professional Knowledge in Music Teacher Education
Fri, 01 Feb Internationally renowned contributors address a number of fundamental questions designed to take the reader to the heart of current debates around knowledge, practice, professionalism, and learning and teaching in music as well as considering how all these elements are influenced by economic, cultural and social forces.
The book will appeal to those interested in the development of appropriate professional knowledge and pedagogic practices in music teacher education.
Edited by Eva Georgii-Hemming, Örebro University, Sweden, Pamela Burnard, University of Cambridge, UK, and Sven-Erik Holgersen, Aarhus University, Denmark.
Sample pages for published titles are available to view online. Click here to link directly to the Ashgate web catalogue page for this book.
To order, please click here. All online orders receive a discount.
Cambridge team help prepare students in Kazakhstan to be independent 21st century learners
Tue, 29 Jan The Centres of Excellence programme of in-service education for teachers has been developed in collaboration with the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education and expert colleagues in Astana. The overall aim of the Centres of Excellence programme is to work alongside Kazakh educators to prepare teachers in the public school system so that the young people of Kazakhstan will become critical independent learners who will be able to flourish in the 21st century. The Cambridge team have written a three level programme introducing new approaches to teaching and learning so that the trainers are then capable of developing knowledge and practice of teachers throughout the regions of Kazakhstan. The three levels are designed to meet teachers' individual needs for implementation and
leadership of change various stages of their career and position within the school.
Contact Elaine Wilson for more details
Book Launch 29th January 2013: A Common Wealth of Learning
Tue, 22 Jan Book Launch: To be held at the Faculty on Tuesday 29 January 2013, Room GS4, 18:00-19:30
A Common Wealth of Learning: Millennium Development Goals Revisited Edited by John MacBeath and Mike Younger, Published by Routledge.
Arising from the Centre for Commonwealth Education's 2010 conference on Millennium Goals Revisited: Transforming Teaching, Learning and Leadership in Commonwealth contexts, A Common Wealth of Learning uses a series of far reaching case studies from Commonwealth countries, to examine what the colonnial legacy has left us with and how to achieve progress.
The Book Launch will include short presentations on some of CCE's current initiatives.
Further information available from Talks.Cam.
Book Launch: New Chemistry teaching book considered 'indispensable'
Tue, 22 Jan A new book with major contributions from Faculty of Education academics has been described as "absolutely indispensable to all teachers of chemistry" in a review in Education in Chemistry, the periodical for teachers of chemistry published by the Royal Society of Chemistry.
The book is a new edition of the Association for Science Education's guidebook to 'Teaching Secondary Chemistry' (published by Hodder Education, 2012) and it is also an Open University Set Book.
The book was edited by Dr Keith Taber, who also wrote several of the chapters; and it also includes a chapter contributed by Elaine Wilson. The book discusses and exemplifies principles of effective chemistry teaching, informed by research, for both new and more experienced science teachers.
Transformational Peace Education - 21st Century
Mon, 21 Jan Hilary Cremin's talk on Transformational Peace Education in the 21st Century which she gave in Sept 2012 at the International Conference on Peacebuilding through Education in New York, is now on YouTube: