A few months ago, I was asked about what started my interest in curriculum design and change management. I don’t that there was any one moment, but I do remember the moment, a few years ago, when I knew that there was ‘something’ in these books that I was reading, and when my belief that change was needed- and now- was cemented. This, combined with being a mother whose daughter was just about to enter primary schooling, was a powerful motivator for change. This moment occurred when I was at an ‘Aspiring Principal’ course and I was seated with some primary school colleagues. I had with me a book – Daniel Willingham’s ‘Why Don’t Students Like School?, who as a cognitive scientist was answering the key questions about how the mind works and the implications this has for the classroom.
One primary teacher glanced at the title and said, ‘I don’t need to read that- kids love primary school!’ That comment really got me thinking, one- do kids love primary school and lose that feeling in secondary school, and if I was going to try and make a difference, what would this book tell me? Continue reading