The Trust hosts an annual conference, bringing all the schools together in the MAT as a celebration and collaboration as part of a comprehensive professional learning programme. The Festival is led by eminent Keynote Speakers who have in the past included Dylan Wiliam, Sue Cowley, and School 21. Staff are involved in workshops and break out sessions.
For the last three years we have welcomed experts from the literacy field to deliver keynote speeches and workshops, such as David Didau, Debra Kidd and Hywel Roberts for our event in 2015; Professor Neil Mercer in 2016; and Sue Cowley, Chris Curtis and Paul Clayton in 2017.
This year Archway Learning Trust was delighted to be welcoming Ian Gilbert, Jaz Ampaw Farr and Jackie Beere as our keynote speakers as our focus across the Trust is resilient learners and teachers. This topic resonates with schools around the country due to the change in the examination system.
These events have been a huge success and have been positively received by staff, as they aim to offer practical strategies for staff to use in their classroom. It is an eventful day on our calendar, which we follow up with time for dissemination among faculty teams in directed CPL time following the event.
Festival of Learning 2018
On the 26th October Archway Learning Trust welcomed keynote speakers, Jaz Ampwar Farr, Ian Gilbert and Jackie Beere. Along with the CEO, Sian Hampton they all delivered inspirational speeches to the staff of the Trust. The theme of the day was resilience. The speeches were described as “thought provoking”, “inspiring” and “engaging”. One members of staff stated “Jaz’s speech was incredibly moving. Ian Gilbert gave some really interesting and practical strategies”.
Jaz Ampaw Farr delivered an emotional speech on the Power of Everyday heroes. Jaz was an ex-student of Bluecoat Academy and challenged staff to consider why they do what they do. She reinforced how important the job of a teacher is, explaining some parts of her difficult upbringing. Jaz explained how school actually saved her life. It was important that school allowed her to belong and loved her first.
Ian Gilbert modelled creative techniques to encourage us to consider creative thinking and independence in the classroom. Ian explained the importance of warming up the brain to allow students to think so hard that their brains would hurt! He discussed the importance of emotions in the long term learning journey.
Jackie Beere describes her journey through education from a primary school TA to a secondary English teacher to a Head teacher. She has been involved with Learn to Learn and metacognition programmes. Jackie states that we are all hardwired to be resilient and that it is important that staff model strategies to students so that the students are inspired. Students need to see struggle as part of a growth mechanism rather than a negative emotion.