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John Catt at the Alliance for International Education World Conference October 26, 2012

Posted by Jonathan Barnes, editor in Conferences, International education.
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John Catt’s managing director Jonathan Evans has recently returned to Woodbridge from the World Conference of the Alliance of International Education (AIE), held at the International School of London in Qatar.

Here, he explains what he took away from his trip from the Middle East (aside from quite a selection of delicacies which the team here are still working our way through):

“Most of all it has been great feeding back all the ideas, the pedagogy,  the enthusiasm, enlightenment and thrill of international education, interculturalism and seeking the place where we come from – the World.

“Ian Hill’s keynote presentation on the final morning put much of the previous two days’ strand sessions into perspective and introduced us to the giants on whose shoulders we stand: Comenius and Dickens et al.

“A medley of student performances made up the finale, sword dancers, virtuoso violinists, singers, drummers, African beats, and guitar strumming; from a variety of international schools in Doha the students put on a great, great show and sent us away with much joy. The presenters through the strands were inspiring and thought-provoking – assessing intercultural competence, the curriculum, global developments and technology, aspects of teaching and learning, culture, language and local and global citizenship. It was a treat.

“In its small way, what did John Catt bring to the party? Learning and teaching about Islam (edited by Caroline Ellwood), with contributions from leading international educators on the teaching of Islam in schools ‘– a step towards improving intercultural understanding’. Mind Your Head (by David Boddy), brought a lot of interest: ‘how the Head Teacher can best cope with the enormous mental and emotional challenges of the job, while reaching for the best in everyone.’

“The four International School Journal Compendiums were admired and it was pleasing to meet university dons regularly using EBSCO to access the ISJ on line; those schools that have a copy of Empowering Kids to Shape Our Future (by Briony Taylor) use them extensively and flicking through the pages of practical exercises its easy to see how inquiring minds of both young and old can gain much.

“The AIE World Conferecne only takes place every other year – watch out for the next in 2014, it’ll be a treat.”

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