Cambridge Conversations: When is a school not a school? Education during the COVID crisis
Hello and welcome. To, this third event. In our series, of conversations, I. Think. Just Umbridge, thinking, on Kabat, 19, and its, implications for us our families, and communities. My. Name is Madeline, Atkins I am, the president, of Lee and. I. This. Particular event. Afternoon. I spent. All my professional life in education, but, a particular interest, in new technologies. And how, they can, enrich. And. Really. Enhance. The learning of students, and pupils. I'd. Like to introduce our, two expert. Speakers, dr., James Biddulph, the, head teacher of the groundbreaking. Cambridge. University, primary, school which. Is up, at Ellington, or northwest Cambridge, as some of you may remember it and also, dr. Ames Lord, who, is a member of the Faculty of Education here. At the University is a research, fellow at, Clare Hall but. To the point of the event this afternoon, is director. Of enrich. Probably. The, largest, program, in the world for. Mathematical. Outreach. Education and. Certainly, the best, now. In addition to listening to our expert, speakers, we very much hope that we will hear from you at. The bottom of your screen there, should be a, rectangular. Box marked, Q, & A and if, you click on that you should be able to type a question that, we will then see and be able to answer, or to put at least to, our expert, panel, we, have about 30 minutes of Q&A time, I hope. That we can do, justice to a large number of your questions, but, I'm sure you'll forgive us if we don't have time for them or just, one. Reminder, before we get going this, event, is being recorded and, will be shown through, YouTube, next, week complete, with the presentations. So. What. Is school, for. Kovat. 19, has raised a number of questions about, schooling. At home its. Benefits, and dispensed, and also. What, it is that, the community, of a school can, do and achieve, in learning which, perhaps, homeschooling. Cannot. We. Know that copied, 19 has raised questions about the, purpose. And design, of traditional. Office workspaces. For example, is this the moment we should also be asking, about, the, physical, nature, and, environment and, design of school. So. Time. I think to listen, to our two speakers, first. Dr.. James bit off as i said the head teacher of our. Fantastic. Primary, school in the university, of cambridge, just. After qualifying. Doctor. Bid off, received, the award of the most, outstanding, young. Teacher of the year in london, but. He's also taught, in primary, and secondary schools, in nepal and india he. Has been the, inaugurating. Head. Teacher of a hindu based primary, school and he's, in his spare time turned, around a couple of failing schools in East London and we, are delighted that, he is the head teacher of our, outstanding, primary. School at, Eddington, and, then. Doctor. M's Lord, she. Is the immediate, past president of, the mathematical, Association. And a, member of the very, prestigious national. Joint mathematical. Council, as I. Said at the beginning she's, the director of enrich. And both. She and James. Were, founding. Fellows of the Chartered, Institute for. Teaching which. Is the professional, body for, professional. Teachers, in this country. So. Without, further ado I'd like to turn to James, for his presentation. James, over to you. Thank. You Madeline and, good, afternoon to you all and I hope you are all well wherever you are as. Mellon's and I'm talking from my office in, at school in Cambridge and it's very eerily, quiet at the moment even though we never, really shut but we. Have fewer children than normal and so. The question is very important. For us at the moment and in my short presentation I'll. Touch upon some of the thoughts gathered, through, our experience, but also through, conversations, with educators in, my team and, children. Next. Slide we will see that and I'm, only. Used to reading stories to young children and as. I said a school where children every. Place to be and this. Whole period now collective history has prompted many questions, about the purpose of Education, of life of death, of politics, of histories of inequalities. And social justice and this.
Brilliant Book by Charles and mukasey called the boy the moral the Fox and the horse which. Our children love very much it's. Got its full of messages to invite us to rethink remember. And unlearn. So that we can see the world afresh again, and. We at UTSC, University, of Cambridge Primary School have often engaged in dialogue about such questions, and at, this vital, time to, ask more questions is, it the time to do some unlearning. Changing. What we thought we knew about education. Learning. To be different, to think differently maybe. To explore new possibilities that, were unshackled, by the often, restrictive narrow policy, definitions of Education so. I wonder, now is this disruptive, pandemic, prompting. Us to reconsider. Not only what school is and what it's not but also what education, is and when, is education, not education, fit for the time and for the people it serves its, required us at this moment to be experimenters. And possibility, thinkers. If. You look at the, next slide the. Question when is at school this is our school it's a beautiful design. And. Now if you think of what is a school that's around the. First, thought is it's a physical space it. Becomes a place for learning somewhere. Where children go where, educators go to engage. In teaching and learning it's. A place where parents, put their trust in us and teachers. Teaching assistants, school administrators. To, support. Them to. Support, us to create memorable experiences, for children so. Perhaps the rudimentary response, when is a school at school at school is not a school, when, the people who go there for this purpose, are no longer going there as is at the moment it. Seems a loss increasing. Feeling of disconnection, and despite, the efforts educators. Are making to, provide learning opportunities at home, we, consider it as a, verb to. Be schooled or the notion of children's, schooling the. Whole notion of schooling seem to have a limited view about the engagement between educator, and learner as, well about instruction. Or passing, on information or, delivery, of a curriculum, a more didactic, conceptualization. Of what happens in the school so. The. Next slide you'll see a picture of our school this what it normally looks like for us full. Of children we have about 500 children here at moments, we. Engage in the habits of mind to helping children become, independent. Learners the ability to think and consider, ideas, by developing, orosi and dialogue. Importantly. To develop. Opportunities to, play and enquire and imagining create, but. What school looks like is in the next slide. Our. Teachers, are in boxes on the screen trying, to create the same meaning, sense, of community, and challenge, and support that we can do in the children with us and at. This time I've looked out its let the parents, and navigate, and translate, for us for their children, and there's, huge pressure and anxiety and, the, sheer overwhelming, feeling of inadequacy has, arisen and, even. Teachers at home are saying that it's a struggle to teach their own children, and they, have a pedagogical, egde that. Many parents wouldn't have it. Raises questions about what parents and wider society think, about, what happens in school is not just a transaction, of knowledge it's, something much more we. Don't know the answers yet and but. You, know we're asking the questions, you. May have heard of the Cambridge primary review and the next slide and the. Biggest piece of academic research into primary education, since the 60s, and, there, are three recurring, concerns. That they identified, this notion of childhood, as being in crisis how do we understand, childhood. Better whether. Society, in the wider world is. An anxiety and disempowerment, and how do we empower that in schools or whether policymakers. Are providing. Solutions, or problems, and this, seems most relevant now. In slide 7 we're, living through a monumental, moment in history. Maybe go to the next slide please and you. Know Isaac in 1665. Social. Distancing, orders were. Made in Cambridge because of the bubonic plague killing, a hundred thousand people and I, think Newton, had to leave Cambridge, at 24, forced. To, live in his childhood home, but. He said that freed from the limits of the Cambridge curriculum, Newton, found that. He had the breathing space to reflect and develop all the theories, that he. Then eventually created an optics in calculus, the laws of motion and gravity he. Described this as the most of. His, life so. When is a school a school in covent 19, and a postcode mid-nineteen world a school.
Is A source a fountain of expertise, to facilitate, exploration, and learning and. How. In this moment when homes are now the space for that learning can. Parents, be supported, by teachers, to facilitate, the learning as well. As doing their own work and trying to manage their lives it's. An enormous task but. I think we'll look back and, understand, the rich learning that we're, having because. It's at home they haven't got the same structures, and routines and expectations, or dynamics. That we have in school nor, do they have the pedagogic knowledge and understanding, so. This is global pandemics, interested or change in school such, a dramatic shock, and. Has. Left parent reeling, as well as teachers trying to do their best if they, have resources and unable to if, they don't but. There are inequalities that, are growing and you know as a head teacher I'm increasingly, concerned and of, course we must remember there are a hundred thousands, of children who don't even know what a school is let. Alone have, a sense of loss about not going there so. Like Newton has covered 19 provided, the catalyst, to consider what, a wholesome, education, is for the most valuable source and out in our world our children but, all our children everywhere, is. This our gravity, moment I asked. One of our children in our school his name is Shane he's, an advocate, speak. And a visionary, he's, only nine years old and he said we shouldn't ask the school when a school not a school we, should ask when as a school more than a school and, in. My last slides, and. More than a school is a question that we've taken from Shane this is what our future thinking looks like it's a school that is a center of research a possibility, thinking place it's. A place for children to develop their environmental, literacy digital, literacies, and a, notion of Democrat Democratic, literacies, and we. Think these are sustained vital. New, knowledge is sustainable, for the future and in, a post Kovac nineteen world and also the, next time children are faced with a. Catastrophic, moment in history. Children. Could be empowered to see environment, the environment and the health of the planet differently, to, be agents of change through. Digital literacies, and to develop new technologies.
And. Also, to develop understanding, and a responsibility, of the democracy and that. They can be part of and have their voice heard, so. A future coded nineteen world needs us all to explore what is more than a school but. For now parents, can help their children make sense of this moment, through stories, and discussions, they can help their children, build, sense of connected, with a global community that we're all struggling, together we can all find. Ways to, solve. The challenges that we that, we come across that. Learning, at home is different, from learning in school and it can't be the same that we're trying to make. A. Murder ocean, I think. Parents can stop judging themselves or, one another and they can use social media for, sharing positive, stories and acknowledge the struggles, because, no one really has an answer at. This time and I, think they can be comfortable but. They they're, not replicating. School instead. They can help their children explore play and written choir and most, importantly, to speak and question, and discuss to, develop a love of reading to. Be independent. They. Can listen to Maya Angelou, who says do your best until you know better and when you know better make, that your new best and, yet. In all this there remains a really real challenge, that there are vulnerable, people and people. From disadvantaged, backgrounds who, the inequalities and, gaps will widen. As schools. Are shut down and. That's. Play, the place on my own mind as a head teacher and it does of my team but. There really has been a shift for. Us and unlearning, in many cases, about how, we could educate children in, this new world. I think there was a reimagining, taking, place a hopeful, opportunity, making about, the meaning of relationships. In education, the, centrality of community. In learning, and teaching and a, really system that interconnects, interconnectivity. Of humans so. That's. That's kind of my reflection, on when, is a school not a school I hand, you over to. Thank. You James, so, as James for say, one. Thing that is really important, that the school are focusing, on is developing habits, of minds for young learners and that's, very much what we're about to to enrich so, I'd like to explain a little bit about what universities, enrich project, is doing to, support both, teachers. And families, at this time if, at joining. Us this week it's been a very hectic week, for enriched working with teachers, we. Announced a few days ago that we're going to do our very first, teach webinars. Because, we can't go into work with teachers face to face in schools but, we have a go online, we. Advertise, them and within. 10 minutes we were oversubscribed. So. It's been a fantastic week, working, with those teachers people we'd normally see, in the classrooms, but, we're, reaching out from working in different ways, just. To show how busy, we are right now soon. As we realize the school closures, were inevitable, we set up a special area to enrich called maths at home it's, advertised, on our home page and it, doesn't do what it says in the title it's, repurposing. And rich sources. Analyse. And the, graph that you can see there shows. The, number of people visiting, in rich this time last year and then.
This Year now. As Madeline kindly said enrich, our world leaders in math. Education, support. And this. Time last year on a, third Monday March over. A hundred and thirty thousand, people were looking at our resources which is fantastic that is a huge figure. For, word winder year to the first day of the lock downs here and I, think old. Overnight. We. Welcomed, a quarter of a million people, to our resources, teachers. And parents. So, our decision to go with us, at home and organs or resources seemed to be a really good decision and that, audience is, worldwide so wherever you're watching this broadcast there'll. Be people near you accessing. In, rich resources, maybe even in your own household, and we. Have huge audiences, in Kenya. Canada, New Zealand Australia. India. And rich, is a worldwide. So. We. Talk habits, of mind and James. Has mentioned those as well so what does it look like so. If I show you this diagram which. Has a, rope model, on it on our next slide there. Are five, strands, to the road because a rope which is just single strands has no strength in it at all and it's the same if the children only have one aspect, of their mathematical, skills then. They struggle, a trauma solving. So. I wrote model highlights. The Phi there is the habits we want to develop so, we want them to know their facts we. Also want them to understand, their work two, key aspects, but. To become mathematicians. To develop habits which, are transferable, to other areas, of the curriculum and their own lives we. Want them to be able to explain, their, ideas to, others. We. Also want them to be flexible when. They hit a problem sometimes. Try, try, and, try again can, be a great way to approach problem, but, if you haven't quite got the right strategy to begin with then that can become very, frustrating. So, we encourage the children to think about different strategies, that work, flexibly and, then. The fifth strand that brings it all together I think is really important, from my subject, of maths it's, to enjoy, what, they're doing and to be enjoying it so much they. Want to keep coming back to it so, that's what we look for within, rich resources, we ain't design, resources that. Every, child can get started, on and it. Will stretch, them so we call it a low threshold they, can get started and then a high ceiling to, extend, their learning and that's, what we've been doing with maths at home and to. Recognise some of the challenges, that families, are facing, accessing. Resources not. Everybody has cobbler, or can go online we've. Organized, them feature in. Four ways the. First way is we've, identified resources. That can be done with pencil and paper so. Many schools are printing, those off and sending them home and some. Families, are using the time that they've got on the laptops, and computers to, prepare, them later in the day because, as James are saying school. Life home life they're, very different and, we need to be able to work flexibly so, the resources, we provide need. To be able to use whatever time of day suits, families. So, there's pencil and paper is all this we. Also have an area for each age group called, home made maths and that's, taking, ideas and activities that they would normally do in the classroom but, identifying, ways they could do it at home the, resources, at hand so.
Hopefully That makes it very family-friendly. We've. Got some extended, asks then their families. Are telling us that they're dipping in and out of teaching during the day so. What we've done is we put activities, that, children can get started, on come, back to later and, maybe work on over several days again. A family-friendly approach, and then. There's it our interactivities. Which enrich is really, well known for and some, recent research we, did actually sure they have a significant. Impact on family. Engagement. So. With our own interactive. Days let's have a look at one of them so the, next slide shows a screenshot. Of, I think my favorite, activity, on everything it's got, it, it's, a game I used to play as a child and many of you probably know it well it's. A target game start. At zero take. It in toast add a small, number and the. Winner is the one who adds per number to get to twenty three it's. No threshold. Most, children who get started, on it the. High feeling, is thinking, about a strategy to, win and then. When they work that out what. The children can then do is go on the settings tab and they, can start thinking I, wonder, what would happen if I, went second. It's the first I wonder, what would happen if I change the target, number I wonder. What would happen change. The totals. Added on so we're, developing those habits, of, being curious, in. Creative. Those, transferable, skills, that the children, can use across the curriculum and. Got. It is in the example, of an activity due, on pencil and paper but. The children using. Interactivities. On a researcher shown that, this is an activity just, like many of the others on enrich where, the children, keep coming back to it I've been told by some ministers, we've spoken to that they love teaching it to older brothers and sisters because, they can beat them at it what strategy. They, love teaching it to older members of their families, too one, child told me he taught it to his mom and then, he went and taught it to his granddad, so, the children are engaging with mathematics. For an extended. Period of time and that's really important. To nurture these habits, or skills, that we value enrich, and are valued by the university, primary, school as well. So. What, we're doing - then, we've, got the maths at home website we're. Looking to continue, that website, during. The school term over. The school holidays and, we. Realize that things will be very different next term I'll be supporting that as well and, we're also supporting, the BBC's, bite-size initiative, that, children, wherever they are and, access and daily maths lesson, we're working closely to, identify activities. On enrich that the BBC can, use in that initiative, as well so. I suppose, the best thing to summarize it's, just to say it's a very exciting time it's, beauty rich and I'm very proud to be the director, of a project, that is making such, a difference to so many children's, lives they, may not be able to take their exams at the moment but, what they can do is learn those habits, of -, those transferable, skills, they'll, hopefully put them in a very strong position when. They can go back to school and, continue. Their normal lives Thank. You Madeleine, over to you. So. Thank you both very much indeed for those present. Insights. And some. Really useful and practical, suggestions. As to how to prove the homeschooling, particularly, around mathematics. Now. We've been getting in a series, of questions, from all over the world and I'm, going to start putting, those questions, to our two panelists. Goth. Who, is an, alumnus, of Jesus, and some, fellow. Italian, both. Asking, about, educational. Inequalities. That have widened, potentially. During, this period and what, we do to combat that whether. It is in terms of a school taking, back pupils. Or indeed universities. Seeking. To make good any deficit. Over these last few months I wonder. Whether. James. You'd like to start us off on that. Because. Safety, is the most important, consideration at, the moment. We. We, are, we're. Considering, how. The. Most vulnerable children in our school those disadvantaged. Will, be returning to school and how. Looking. At. Interventions. That. Our research informs, that we know that they would work and. Those. Individual. Children to. Be providing, coaching. And tuition. Also. After the school day so. I think there is definitely a. Requirement. For additional, support and obviously. There, are funding implications and, that and we would be challenging, government, to to say that they need to support.
Schools In in, being able to do those things but for us really as a school that. Aspires. To be research informed, is, to go to the University, and find that from my colleagues academics, and from, Lourdes. And others, how, do we how, do we best, support. The most vulnerable children because. Of we, know what we know works because often in schools we just we, try, our best and we don't always know whether it's the right strategy for the needs of the those individuals. To say that they all need the same thing there's. Also, tokenistic. And simple way of trying. To understand, the inequalities, that are definitely arising, and during, this period of time. And. Half of you. Think. One. Project we've done with, a bitch recently. In working with hospitals schools and there's. An interesting parallel here, because, at the moment we've got all the children off and but, as James knows and I found when I've been teaching there's, always one or two children in your class who are missing extended, period of Education, it could be due to family reasons illness. And, we've been working very closely with the hospitals to think what it is we can do to support those children firstly. We gaps in their education but. Also then, sing out on those opportunities, to, collaborate with others, and learn those personal, skills so. One, thing that we've looked at and it's. Developing, collaborative. Learning skills, I know the University, primary schools is looking at this as well so when they're teaching it's, very much thinking about the dialogue, and a communication. So, we encourage the children who, tasks that are collaborative, will. Encourage, those skills while also covering, the curriculum, now we've done that as a pilot project and we've done that with an Hospital, schools one, thing that we're looking at going forward is, thinking how can that work how can that research then. Inform supporting, children, going back from working at home where they're by and large themselves. To, going back into school, or working again, with others so, I think what we've learnt for the hospital schools will be very good going, back into the schools when everyone returns but. Hopefully the little project. There continue. Helping those children, who, are ill or otherwise, unwell, and then able to go to school now so maybe that would be one of the benefits, to come out of this that, we'll have a National Bank of resources, to support those children. That's. A really interesting crossover. From a very particular situation. To something that may have much, wider implications. And along. That line we're getting a number, of questions in from. Our, alumni including. From Wishon, who is an. Alum from Jesus, and is in, Singapore at the moment and putting his question from Singapore, and that's, really about the, use of, technologies. In learning now and whether we have a different, you of that as a result, of curve at 19 and particularly. About blended, learning is, this, a transition we are on the cusp of making are we, ready for it as teachers, are, we ready for it as parents, and educators and. Would. You like to start us off on that one I, think. Jim, by the response, to our webinars, this week the teachers and the schools are very ready for it and they've made huge, efforts, to, make sure the lessons continue, what. We have a huge issue is, ensuring. That everybody, at home has access. To the resources they need to do, the online lessons so, an example is I know a local school, was, very proactive and got in touch with families, with all the closures and said okay what, have you got have, you got broadband, do you have a lat and they. Found out the numbers that have those but. Then of course now, we realize there, may be more than one child in the family and if there is a laptop, there could be two, or three adults, trying to use them to work from home and the, children is going to use and as issues with band width so, I think looking at that aspect is another. Way forward, to support, children make sure everybody, has access to high quality education.
Have. Three children they have an iPhone, and. They. Have to work on the children I'm trying to work on the iPhone. With. The things we're, doing but in terms of is, this the way forward I think there's a transition period of blended, learning where in our intention, you, know, as. We move into the next term is to is, to have children returning. To school but, maybe as a part time and having blended, digital. Resources. For, them to do at home but. What it's. Consistent, with the messages coming from parents, and from. My my team and is, that this, sense of disconnection and, the, lack of relationship, and community making is. Causing. More earth and and, loss, then. Whether. They've. Done an English lesson or a math lesson on a certain day and, you. Know parents are kind, of yearning for that to come back and I know the children are as well. So. Well, we're on that to that point we've got a question here forgive. Me I just need to flick the screen, on. This. About. How, can we measure, those. More, intangible. Aspects, of in-person. Interaction. In the classroom outside, the classroom but, still within the school setting which. Instinctively. Many, people, feel are missing, in the homeschooling environment. But, are important. To the development of, the, pupil. Or student, do, we have any research on that do we have any ways of measuring that. It's. Tests who, asked this question, she's an alumnus, from Claire. In. Our school we have five values, that guide our work of empathy respect trust, courage, and gratitude and. You. Test what you value you assess what you most value so we're constantly, exploring, how do we value some, buddies and. Empathy. Skills or their ability to be courageous and, it's. Very challenging I think because they are sometimes, not. As tangible as whether they've got the answers right or wrong or they can write a narrative. So. We're. Looking at kind, of research from the doobly Center in Birmingham for example and. Working, who, look. At character. Education. And, values and moral. Ethic ethical, education to. See whether a frameworks, to to. Indeed, assist those kind of things. In. Terms of our own, team we created a people. Strategy, that looks. At how the, adults are being. In. The examples, and models of those values, so that children can, learn from that but how we assess it is yet is. It is complex because it's you. Can't do a test about it with you're courageous, enough. Within. The regulations. The national government probably not know do. You have any view on that. It's. Been an area that we've been actively, exploring, so I was really pleased, that Tess asked this question, yep.
We Encourage, children to be creative to, be curious but how do you go about managing, that how do you know they're improving. And what does it look like so. We've, done some projects, where we work with all zombies and, actually explore if you're being curious what needs to be happening first so, getting the children engage. Asking. Questions, talking, about what they noticed, we've worked with schools on this and we've, developed some curiosity. Scales we've, looked at resilience. Because we can say to them try tried again, but actually, getting them to understand, the problem in the first place have a first attempt, know, what to do when they get stuck we've, developed. Scales working with schools and children are sticking in their books teachers, have been using them with classes, so, the children can see where they're up to how resilient they're being and identify. Next steps and, with collaborative, learning we've also run some focus groups where, we've been asking the children after all effort asks how, do you think he got on with that and I'm. Sure James will know there will be some children, who put their hands up straightaway and say their five out of five at collaborative, learning and as a teacher you might think they might have one or two more things to learn yet and. There's others who'll say I think I'll give myself for three or four out of five and I'll explain, why maybe they didn't listen to their friend or they could have tried another approach that someone said so, we try to get the children involved in reflecting, on their learning and by. Developing some scales that, helps the children identify. Their next steps as well and also recognize, the, progress that they're making because. I think that's very important, as well just to stop and think about how well they're doing and this. Week with the teacher webinars, the, rope model I showed and during the presentation. The, team have developed our own version, of their child-friendly one that, children, can start to fill in and think how resilient, they're being how, many, times they're working flexibly, so, getting the children involved as much as possible with that I think is really important. We. Have a follow-up question which i think is very, pertinent to that last point from ends which is all, this. Collaboration. And dialogue. Between, pupils. Or, students, have, either of you seemed really outstanding. And, compelling, examples, of how, to do that online and, remotely, or is this really only possible, in the in-person, situation. In the classroom, this is from Lucy and alumna, from Christ. Our. University. And, the Faculty of Education, has.
Contributed, Groundbreaking. Research Neil Mercer, professor Neil Mercer's work with good web Earth's work and. Major. They've. Contributed a huge, rattling. International. Digital. Literacies, and digital, orison dialogue could be developed, so. I'd really recommend you, to search. For you, know Mercer, and. Majors. Work at. This University, so. There is lots out there what, we're trying to do in our school is how do we translate that. Robust. Research, into. The. Practicalities, of a primary school. Newton. Again having, this space is giving us a living. Online learning and all the other things that are trying to engage with young people in. Their living. Rooms and homes. We're. Trying to really. Research. Thank. You for those answers now, we've been looking at some really positive, aspects. Potentially, of online, learning remote, collaboration, and, so on but, we've got a question here from Becky who is a graduate, from hommerson, here. In the UK, looking. At the other side of the coin what, do we do in the home with. Our children whatever. Age who, are not engaging, with the, remote, learning or the online learning, that is being set and how, do we get, them motivated to complete that, these tasks, without this turning, into something, that's very negative, and. Tobler no, doubt a very, bad vibe, in the family relationships. Emmons. Your your excellence, of motivating, children. Which. Is probably one of the hardest of all the tasks perhaps, you'd like to go first on this one, well. I think any rich were incredibly. Lucky with the team of educators who, work on the project, and what. They've done is they've started recording videos. Too short two or three media minute, video clips of some, of activities, so, that parents carers. Grandparent. Can, watch those videos see. How to do the activities, and, then, sit, down with young at home enjoy. Them together so, it doesn't even have to be introduced as a maths activity, in fact it's fair to say a lot of people can look at a rich activity, and initially. Not even see where the maths is because. We designed very engaging activities. Which use, the mathematical, skills but, it might not be apparent so, we've got a lovely example called frocks and you, can imagine frogs, on lily pads facing, each other and you're trying to get them for a warm side to the other it's a lovely problem-solving. Activity, it can be set up as a family game and the. Video that we put online parents. Models. Different approaches, how to go about it what to look for and there's some guidance notes as well so, sometimes. I mean I love my subjects, sometimes mentioning. Maths straight, off might not be the way in but, having an engaging game, and understanding. How to bring the mathematics, out maybe. That would be a nice way forward to consider as well. It. Reminds me it, reminds, me of a. Story. That somebody. Told me yesterday actually that and their, neighbor and has, a six-year-old child and. She she's very independent and, she says things like I'm gonna go upstairs now and the parents say how, many steps do you think that will take how many jumps would it take go. You you, have a guess go and work it out and then come back and tell us so they are constantly asking, very, small questions, that are building a sense of spatial. Awareness and, understanding and, but. One, of the things I was going to add is my. Own. PhD. Research was about looking at learn in the family home and. Well. I I found, other. Side like Mandy Swan from the Faculty, of Education is that we don't really know what. It looks like because. There's no real. Definitional. Home because. They're all so different and. The. Notion I came up with diverse, creativity's, in, the home. Indicated. That we, as teachers and educators we need to help. Children, bring their home into school rather. Than always trying to put school into the home so, we all know that in primary in primary, education.
Homework. Doesn't. There's, not huge, evidence, it says it raises, the standards. It actually. Sunday, nights is where the tension and the family arises, because they won't have to do that before Monday so. This is like an extended version of Sunday nights and, it's, very difficult so I. Learned. So much more I'm, great from visiting children's homes and sitting with them and seeing what they did it was much richer, what, they were doing with Lego and woodwork, and I would ever imagine a worksheet. From school whatever, provide. That's. Not really exciting, now. We've spoken quite a bit so, far about parents. And the home schooling. Environment. But, we have a question here also from Helen who. Is a graduate, from Clare, College and she's put, this question to us from the USA, and that is how can teachers be, better supported, to work with primary, students, in these online learning, situations. Both, of you founding. Fellows of the chartered College of teaching, I wonder, what your responses, to that question. Perhaps. Emma's, would you'd like to go first. Again. It's an excellent, question and enrich. Our main, role has always been supporting. Teachers, so, from. The point of view of our activities, we always provide teacher. Notes to, give, an idea of how maybe to start the activity in key questions, and we. Clicks and, solutions. From stood. Which me useful, remodeling, in class our starting. Points, or through the children gets stuck, but. With moving, to online certainly. It's very different, approaches, needed a lot more flexibility. As needed. They. Think the other issue at the moment is when the schools go back it's not going to be easy for teachers to go out and get extra, support and attend the normal PD, so, I think part of the responsibility, we have enriched. And, supporting. Teachers is to think again about our support, and, offering. Webinars. Offering. Newsletter. Sent, out electronically. So the teachers can get them in their homes. Making. Sure that we have opportunities for teachers to talk to us and reaching. Out so using social media to see what it is they're using and how it's going I think, it's very much that two-way, discussion with, the teachers. James. What do you think I. Have. Been astounded, by the creativity. In the imagination, of the teachers in my team but, I know people like Dame Alison peacock who's the CEO. Of the charter, college of teaching there's a much broader understanding of. Colleagues. Around the, UK and further, afield saying that this. Time teachers, have and teaching assistants and and works of schools have really embraced opportunities, to. Find ways, through for every child using, technology, but I think what may have arisen is that. Despite. The kind of roll your sleeves up and get on with it we. We haven't attended enough, to, providing. The right kind professional, development in schools for. This. Blended approach because, I think there could be some really exciting things that come forward out of this and. I, think as I'm said you. Know finding, opportunities, for professional, learning that really. Come. As, foundations. To the creativity that has arisen from teachers would, be really beneficial. So. How, do we take the positive, changes. The positive. Creative. Developments. That we've seen in this period and make, sure that they continue into. The future we have a number of questions around, that, are we going to go back to the narrow constraints. Of the curriculum, which. James. Usually eloquently, said you were trying to escape from within, your school but, or, is, there a way that we can seize these. Improvements. And embed, them what do you think. James. Sorry. Last. Question. Do. You think and if so how should we take, these, positive. Changes, that we've seen this creative. Bursts. Of blended. Learning and so on are, we going to be able to seize those things and embed them into school, and schooling, into the future or are we going to revert. To the, rather narrow and standardized, curriculum. That we had in the past I. Mean. I think we have to be bold and take, the initiative in a context, where governments, are trying to work out their, the best approach for the countries, that we, live in and.
You, Know there's, critique about all those decisions but. In that space where governments. Are trying to work out that you know the people on the ground the professionals, and that's why the Charter, quality of teaching is a real is now here, in the UK and is. For. Us to say there we have a professional, capitalist, teachers we understand, young, people, we, understand, how to engage young people and, to, motivate them and we. Need we need we need accountability, but we need the right kind of accountability that they're actually unleashes. The possibilities, rather, than an accountability. System which. In the UK tends, to oppress, people to, be creative and that's. What you know I think we have an opportunity to be bold and state what is important, for us as a profession and because. We, want them you know we all want the very best it's to children and it's. Unfortunate, that headlines. Say things like and there's. A lost generation of, children or you, know you know it's fine you know and take the rest of the year off because it implies that teachers are sitting at home in. Their, hammocks waiting. For the, government to let us go back to school again you know my school has never shuts no. Schools I know have shuts they've, remained open to key workers so. I think, we need to be bold and, articulate. We. Need to articulate better why. It's important that we have a group we haven't we have professional, knowledge we have professional capital we, can seize this opportunity. It's. Not easy though meddling that's for sure, I. Think. That's right MS what was your view on that. Well. James is touching, on the, assessment, system and I, I think that's a very good point to look at we, have an assessment system that focuses on one aspect of those five strands I was talking about it talks focus, is a very heavily on procedural, knowledge but. We know from, the worldwide. And, global, trends in education that. What the children are going forward to thrive will, be problem-solving. Skills, and collaborative. Skills so, maybe this is the opportunity that we need to, go back and look at how, we're assessing the children, and are we assessing the skills that they need so. Yes they need some, facts they need that basic knowledge so they can apply it but. How much are we actually considering, things like how well they work with one another what. Their attitudes. Are how resilient, they, are and how well they, collaborate, because those are the skills they're, going to need because. The world is adapting, and changing so. Quickly right. Now that, having, some knowledge is good, but. Having those habits, of mind, that. Will make them thrive and if we have an assessment system, that values them just as much as James, his, team enrich. As. Much as we value them I think, then when a really. Good position to go forward but I think it's the assessment, system that we need to look at I, agree. Names I mean you know the in, the UK we have a times table test that happens in year four and ends. We'll know the rich evidence, that maths anxiety. Actually. Can cripple young people from conduct. From continuing, their maths education when. You have an assessment tool that gives children 10 seconds, or whatever it may be to, answer a rapid-fire. Question, and navigate. The digital. IPad. To be able to answer that question it's not really, helping, us as. Teachers assess. Whether, children have the times table knowledge which we can do that in many other ways and still, be held to account and robust and all those other things but, the way and, governments.
Often, Do it is not attending, to the research that Emma's will know fully about. So. I'd like to end, with a. Question, from Carlos, who, was. As, an alum from Churchill. And sends. Us this question from, Mexico, so. Would. You say either. Of you or both of you that, the most important. Lessons, that we learn in school is not actually, about skills, and skilling but, about how to be and become as an individual. Well. I. Think. I would I would agree with Carlos, in many ways I think this with, schools. We. Know we teach knowledge and we teach skills but. We all we also teach in our, school have to be a compassionate, citizen, so how do we interact. In a community, that, can support one another that. Could challenge one another in you know in respectful. Polite ways and can. Disagree together, and. We. Eventually. Have 600 children here in a school that's a big community. Conflict. Of ideas, and conflicts of opinion, so. I. With. Carlos schools as Shane. The, child of my school says what, schools are more what's, more than a school it's, not just a place for you. Know teaching English, and maths it's all which is vital and important, it's, also much. More complex and about, being. And. Would you agree with that or would you still think that there is a very important, role for skills, and skilling I. Think. I would agree, with James when. You're in school it's an opportunity, to, build. Your strengths, but also to. Address your weaknesses, and and. That means it's very much about the individual, because we will have different skills, and different areas, to develop but. Once, we've developed those and we, learn to use them work with others then. We can make a really great contribution. To our society, so, I think the individual is incredibly. Important, and that, comes back to the assessment, system, looking. At how we consider. Those and we value them is very important, we don't want to lose that because. At the moment individuals. Are coming out so strongly, with, blended. Learning that we have with the schools and the home so Carlos, thank you very much for such an 18 question. And. I'm afraid that that completes. The time that we have for questions I'd. Like to thank all our alumni. For putting, those questions, through to us and I apologized. For those of you we haven't had time actually, to take, the questions, into the panel discussion, but, thank you all very much indeed for participating. And engaging, today, I would, like once again to thank our, two speakers and to. Invite, you to, join us this join. Us on June the 18th for. The 4th Cambridge. Conversation. Which, is at 3, p.m. at, British, summer time and, the. Topic, for that will be urban 19, and its impact, on mental health in. Particularly, the mental health of young people, one, final point if I may before I go and that's another thank you that's, a thank you to all of you our alumni. Who, have so generously, donated. To the university's. Kovat. 19, Research Fund or, indeed, to the student hardship, funds either, in the university, or in, your colleges, if. I may say so as a head of house we, are enormous.
Ly Grateful, for, those donations. And they are making a great, difference to, the lives and indeed. To, the sense. Of of, performance. And the sense of calm. Of. Our students, so thank you very much indeed for that that. Completes, today's. Cambridge. Conversation. And it remains for me to wish you all our. Very best here from cambridge, keep. Safe and well until, this time next week not, only of course yourselves, but also your friends, and families, so that's, goodbye. You.