One of the best educational projects in recent years and one which I’ve referred to a few times is the Enquiring Minds project. The project has just released its year 3 report and it is worth a look – even if you just read the summary and recommendations. The project worked with staff in 2 UK schools over 3 years with an emphasis on the “interests, experiences and concerns of students” i.e. they tried to get teachers to change their teaching to pay more attention of what might interest students more than the “normal” assignments that had been done in the past. The results show that students can become more motivated when more involved. My own recent research has shown that students in the Australian schools where my research was based, were of the opinion that if teachers could give students more choice with assignments and the option of doing assignments which interested them, this would result in students being more motivated but also more likely to use information literacy skills.
Tonight (UK time) is November 5th and not only meaningful to my sister (Happy Birthday Lizzie) but is bonfire night when the British celebrate the prevention of Guy Fox’s attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament. Most of the bonfires and firework displays happened on Saturday and there were some fireworks going off over the town tonight but, compared with years ago, there are now very few individual houses where fireworks are let off in the back garden. This is no doubt a lot safer and fewer accidents are caused but it’s also less colourful.