“School Special Education Needs is Suffering”. Okay, so what now?

State schools have long been used as a political football by successive politicians – a lot of whom, it can’t be ignored, were themselves educated privately. 

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The last ten or so years have seen austerity measures used as a reason (some may use the word, ‘excuse’) for starving schools of cash.  Funding has reached breaking point and last year some 4,000 head teachers wrote to parents explaining just how short of money their schools were.

The real losers in all of this, however, are those students who have a Special Education Need (SEN) such as dyslexia or autism.  At this point it’s fair to declare, for anyone who doesn’t already know, that I have an interest here as I am the mother of a SEN child.  My son was diagnosed with autism when he was five. Continue reading ““School Special Education Needs is Suffering”. Okay, so what now?”

Group Work – Great or Gruesome?

Some of love it, some of us loathe it, very few of us are ambivalent.

I must admit that, when I attend training sessions as a delegate, I’m not a massive fan of group work.  Generally I find it quite stressful and prefer to just listen to the training and learn what I’m there to learn.

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Does Teamwork always make the Dream Work?

But we’re all different and some people really enjoy it.  They find it a good way of getting to know new people and picking up useful first hand information in in relation to specific shared interests.  

From a professional trainer’s point of view, I’m undecided about the merits of group work.  I completely see the value of asking delegates to practise, in groups, a specific skill I might be showing them.  I can also see that group practise and pair-sharing is very useful if we’re working towards a test or exam.   But for general information gaining or knowledge building type talks or training sessions, I’m less convinced of its value – other than to allow the trainer a short break, obviously. Continue reading “Group Work – Great or Gruesome?”

5 Top Tips for Terrific Employee Training Plans!

5 ways to get the best out of your employee training programmes and staff development plans.

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This is probably the single area I get asked about more than any other.  Most employers know that an employee training plan is  important. As well as being a given expectation for Millennial employees, it is an effective way of creating employee engagement.  But what exactly is a proper employee training plan (ETP)? And how do we make one? Here are some ideas to get you started: Continue reading “5 Top Tips for Terrific Employee Training Plans!”

“So What Exactly is E-learning, then?”

Despite e-learning having been around for approximately two decades, this a question which I still get asked.  People know that it is ‘something to do with your PC and …’ well, what … ?

L&D practitioners commonly understand e-learning (the ‘e’ = ‘electronic’, though I’m sure you knew that!) as any type of self-directed learning away from the traditional classroom setting.  So, on this basis, making some notes from Wiki about the stock market is a piece of perfectly valid business focussed e-learning.   You could also have looked at a website and online discussion such as Money Saving Expert, or even joined a themed Facebook or Linkedin group.  It all amounts to the same thing, which is learning from computer based sources. Continue reading ““So What Exactly is E-learning, then?””

Plus ça Change, Plus ça Doncaster

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If only all AI were this cute!

The Guardian published an article a few weeks ago about how Doncaster, once a coal mining heartland, then a waste-ground, has now reinvented itself as a hub for distribution centres.  Fittingly, it has three of the beauties just for Amazon – the website which has been accused of destroying high street retail. Continue reading “Plus ça Change, Plus ça Doncaster”

5 Reasons Why Your Learning Won’t Stick

We’ve all tried at some point.  Whether it was revising for exams at school, or attempting to learn Spanish by attending evening classes or downloading language podcasts.  Somehow, it just didn’t work.

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Learning any new skill can be a challenge!

Despite trying our very hardest, we struggled to retain anything beyond the first few sentences.  Then promptly forgot those as we got up to fetch a cup of tea.

Why is this?  Why is it that sometimes, despite trying as hard as we possibly can, learning just won’t stick?

And why is it just so easy for other people?

Continue reading “5 Reasons Why Your Learning Won’t Stick”

What’s Your Learning Style?

learning-styles

Most of us like to be presented with information in a way that is personal to our own individual learning style.  For example, if you asked for directions would you prefer:

  1. To be told how to get there?
  2. To be given a map?
  3. To be personally escorted?

Depending on your answer you might say that you were an aural learner who needs to hear information (option a); or a visual learner who needs to see it (option b); or a kinetic learner who needs to get up, move about, and physically do the new thing (option c). Continue reading “What’s Your Learning Style?”