Explorations of contemporary teaching and learning contexts, including 21st century learning skills.

Reflections On Visiting Wooranna Park Primary School

Preamble Early evening, 23rd May 2017. The Victoria University’s Metro Centre on Nicholson Street in Footscray and the Mitchell Institute is hosting an address by Professor Yong Zhao, who the Institute has appointed a Professorial Fellow for his work focusing on the implications of globalisation and technology in education. The topic is “In an era…

Where Are We Going With Drama in the Primary Classroom?

The whole school plan presented by the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority shows how the primary school curriculum still provides Visual and Performing Arts through specialist instruction. However, are surrounded by literally thousands of articles, blogs and dozens of reports and books on that advocate accessing Drama and The Arts for every primary student in every Australian school through generalist teachers become more arts aware.  How should this come about? In this blog, I look at the important work of Professor Robyn Ewing and ask will her vision of an unrealised arts education potential ever be realised in the current climate in which we are re-defining the relationship between generalist and specialist in more than the Arts in primary schools.

Blowing Off Steam On Arts Education & Declining PISA Standards

The ‘battle’ to give every child an arts education for those of us who have been working in drama education since the 1970s and 80s has meant joining with colleagues to advocate for resources, funding and formal recognition of drama and other performing and visual art forms. The need to act as advocates for the value of arts and drama education, however, has not subsided.

Thinking & Doing Are NOT Separate Things

I find the categorisation of people into ‘thinkers’ and ‘doers’ rubbish: depending on the context, you can be damned or praised for being either. More significantly, the separation diverts us from dealing with a more important question of how thoughts and actions are inevitably, even if inexplicably, related. According to cognitive linguists George Lakoff and…

What Does Doing ‘The Basics’ Mean Today?

What do you think the phrase ‘doing the basics’ means? A debate rages on what constitutes essential knowledge and skills at every level of schooling – from early years to higher education. I want to propose that the arts sector has the ability to shift the debate by showing how there is no knowledge, skill or process more fundamental to teaching & learning than the elements that form the performing and visual arts.