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Human Ingenuity – Pedagogy for 21st Century Learners

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Presentation on theme: "Human Ingenuity – Pedagogy for 21st Century Learners"— Presentation transcript:

1 Human Ingenuity – Pedagogy for 21st Century Learners
AAIBS Conference Prince Alfred College 17-19 April 2008 Mr Ross Featherston (IB Coordinator) & Dr Mathew White (Head of Positive Education)

2 Positive Education A pedagogy for the 21st Century?

3 What I will discuss today
The science of Positive Psychology Geelong Grammar School’s journey towards Positive Education Links between the International Baccalaureate and Positive Education Two practical applications of Positive Education for the classroom

4 The IB Mission Statement
The International Baccalaureate Organization aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.




8 What do you hope your school’s International Baccalaureate programme
will help students achieve?

9 Positive Psychology

10 Professor Martin Seligman
“Father” of Positive Psychology (1998) Fox Leadership Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania Elected president of the American Psychological Association in 1997

11 What is Positive Psychology?
Positive Psychology focuses on the empirical study of positive emotions, strengths-based character, and healthy institutions.

12 Positive Psychology Positive Psychology has the following three pillars that are required to “do well in life” i. Positive Emotion: LIVING THE HAPPY LIFE ii. Engagement: LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE iii. Meaning: LIVING THE MEANINGFUL LIFE

13 Positive Psychology An approach to psychology that focuses on what leads to life satisfaction (wellbeing). -5 to +5 Depression ………..OK ……………Flourishing

14 Geelong Grammar School and Wellbeing

15 Geelong Grammar School in 2009
An Australian school with an international outlook Four campuses: Bostock, Toorak, Timbertop, and Corio (ELC-Year 12) Boarders and Day Boarders International students Varied curriculum (VCE and International Baccalaureate-PYP and DP) Strong pastoral care and service focus Staff role in pastoral, co-curriculum and academic programs

16 Handbury Centre for Wellbeing

17 GGS Wellbeing Positive Psychology Positive Education 2005 2008 2009

18 Positive Education

19 What is Positive Education?
Taking Positive Psychology into a school context A whole school approach to teaching and learning from kindergarten to the final years of senior school. It aims to increase the experience of positive emotions in our students and encourage them to engage their strengths for personal and community goals. Previous studies have demonstrated that an optimistic outlook can be taught to schoolchildren. It involves implicit and explicit teaching programs and pedagogy.

20 The aims of Positive Education
To increase the experience of positive emotions in our students. To encourage students to engage their signature strengths for personal and community goals. To engage students to live meaningful lives to find purpose and make a difference to their communities at large.

21 How are we tackling this?

22 The IMPLICIT program Seven over arching topics:
i. Emotion ii. Gratitude iii. Strengths iv. Creativity v. Self-efficacy vi. Resilience vii. Mindfulness The development of a Positive Education pedagogy within each Department, at each year level and at each campus in the classroom, on the sporting fields, on the stage and in every interaction with students

23 The EXPLICIT program Involves Positive Education programs being taught (timetabled into the academic program) at various year levels at each campus. The vast majority of students in years 11 and 12 will have experienced some explicit Positive Education programs. Explicit skills taught to help students tackle life’s challenges, such as: Realistic Optimism Explanatory Styles Thinking Traps Detecting Icebergs (Underlying and Surface Beliefs) Challenging Beliefs Putting It Into Perspective Real-time Resilience Character Strengths

24 Practical Application 1 The 24 Universal VIA Character Strengths

25 Character Strengths Character Strengths are positive traits; individual differences such as curiosity, kindness and gratitude (Peterson) There are 24 Character Strengths which are universal and cross-cultural (Peterson and Seligman) Knowing and using one’s signature Strengths can help lead to a more fulfilling and engaged life Strengths can be discovered via a 240 question test on

26 The six core virtues The 24 Character Strengths fall under six core virtues………

27 Wisdom and Knowledge Creativity Curiosity Love of Learning
Open mindedness Perspective Vocabulary that may need to be defined – within the context of Positive Psychology - for students. (You may want to have students who know the words help with the definitions.) Ingenuity Perspective

28 Humanity Kindness Love Social Intelligence

29 Courage Valour and Bravery Perseverance and Industry
Integrity and Honesty Vocabulary Valor Perseverance Industry Integrity

30 Justice Fairness Leadership Teamwork Vocabulary Equity

31 Temperance Self-Control Forgiveness Prudence and Caution
Humility and Modesty Vocabulary Prudence Humility Modesty

32 Transcendence Appreciation of beauty Gratitude Hope Humour

33 My top five (signature) Strengths
Your Top Strength: Love of learning You love learning new things, whether in a class or on your own. You have always loved school, reading, and museums-anywhere and everywhere there is an opportunity to learn. Your Second Strength: Forgiveness and mercy You forgive those who have done you wrong. You always give people a second chance. Your guiding principle is mercy and not revenge. Your Third Strength: Caution, prudence, and discretion You are a careful person, and your choices are consistently prudent ones. You do not say or do things that you might later regret. Your Fourth Strength: Curiosity and interest in the world You are curious about everything. You are always asking questions, and you find all subjects and topics fascinating. You like exploration and discovery. Your Fifth Strength: Fairness, equity, and justice Treating all people fairly is one of your abiding principles. You do not let your personal feelings bias your decisions about other people. You give everyone a chance.

34 Character Strengths and the IB Learner Profile

35 How many of these 24 Character Strengths can be found in the IB Learner Profile?
Creativity, Ingenuity, Originality Curiosity Judgement and Critical Thinking Love of Learning Perspective Valour and Bravery Diligence/ Perseverance Integrity, Honesty Vitality, Zest, Enthusiasm Kindness and Generosity Loving and being Loved Social/Emotional Intelligence Citizenship, Duty Equity, Fairness Leadership Self Control Forgiveness Modesty Prudence, Caution Appreciation of Beauty Gratitude Hope, Optimism Playfulness Sense of Purpose

36 Strengths in the classroom
All year 10 students complete a questionnaire ( to determine their own Strengths. Taught about Character Strengths as part of explicit year 10 Positive Education course. The importance of Character Strengths are reinforced by subject teachers (implicit) and by pastoral care tutors. Possibility of list of student’s Character Strengths being available to that student’s subject teachers.

37 Practical Application 2 Real Time Resilience

38 The skill of Real Time Resilience
What does this skill encourage? The ability to fight back against counter-productive thoughts as they occur by: i. Generating more accurate alternatives ii. Using evidence to prove the belief is false

39 Key terms That can’t be true because … Another way to see this is …

40 A student activity teaching the skill of Real Time Resilience

41 In conclusion…….

42 The Future of Pos Ed and GGS
By 2011 over 900 students will have completed explicit Positive Psychology programmes in Years 7 and 10 This includes all Year 10 students before the IB Diploma or VCE Ongoing training for staff Appointment of GGS Head of Positive Education Creation of GGS Positive Education Department with 16 teachers , campus coordinators Developing a Positive Education pedagogy across all campuses, year levels and faculties within GGS

43 Want to find out more?
The Resilience Factor (Reivich) Positive Psychology Primer (Peterson)

44 Measurement + Research
Bill Hallam, PhD student, the University of Melbourne Study: the link between Character Values and Adolescent Wellbeing. What is the role of character values including kindness, honesty, courage and respect in adolescent wellbeing ? Is adolescent wellbeing associated with the adolescent’s character values and attitudes towards self, others and the environment?

45 Measurement + Research
Collaborative project. Research supervisors: Prof. Glenn Bowes, the University of Melbourne Prof. John Toumbourou, Deakin University Dr. Craig Olssen, the Murdoch Institute

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