Category Archives: Events

iJADE/NSEAD Conference

The 3rd iJADE/NSEAD Conference takes place on the 19th and 20th of October in Liverpool in conjunction with Liverpool John Moores and the University of Chester.

It promises a range of interesting papers and discussions on ‘creativity and democracy’.

On Saturday I will be presenting a paper titled ‘Creative Differences: How art education encourages difference and supports democratic education through collaborative teaching & learning’.

Hope to see you there.

Presenting at ProPEL

So, finally it was time to present a paper!  Spurred on by my supervisor and having actually had a paper accepted to a conference I was set to travel to Scotland and present my paper titled ‘Acting In-between: the Professional Identity of an Art Educator’ as part of the ProPEL International Conference from the 9-11 May at the University of Stirling (

Having been a lecturer and presented to a variety of groups previously I hadn’t thought that this would be an onerous task; however, I think that I might have been slightly ambitious since a discussion with others mentioned starting with the graduate student conferences because they were ‘nice’ venues to present papers that would help build our confidence.  Well, I headed straight for the main venue and the potential for heavy questions and direct criticism.

Arriving in Stirling was great, since it was the middle of exams at school and Scotland was a nice reprieve from all my stressed out students.  In addition, there was a great line up of speakers, staff and doctoral students in attendance that made the event really great.

I was paired with another art-based paper by Maureen Michael (University of Stirling).  Her work is not only philosophically insightful but also visually stunning.  The drawings that support her approach to evaluating the studio environments of artists are perfectly aligned with her methodology.   Following her with my collages made for a session that was aesthetically stimulating.  Our ideas were challenged by the resident philosopher at Stirling but all in all we faired well.  The experience of answering questions has definitely helped to clarify key directions for my research and reminded me of the initial objectives of my research.

I am already looking forward to another conference opportunity … despite the butterflies.

Information and abstracts for the conference can be found on the propel website (as above).

Gardner in Somerset

Howard Gardner, Professor of Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, visited Millfield School on the 12th of March to present the ideas in his new book Five Minds for the Future, as well as review his thoughts on multiple intelligences.

In reference to Five Minds for the Future, Gardner outlined the five minds (disciplined, synthesizing, creating, respectful and ethical).  He noted how the first three minds were mainly centred on cognitive attributes that helped to add depth, increase breadth and help stretch us as individuals.  The other two, respectful and ethical, were seen as essential qualities for the 21st century.  With the increase in globalisation and diversity it is essential that we learn to develop gratiousness and forgiveness in order to develop a respectful mind.  The ethical mind is more complex, but important in order to develop an understanding of how we need to “behave in roles that are not historically founded.”

In a second lecture Gardner enjoyed dispelling some of the myths about multiple intelligences such as its associations with learning styles, and the true meaning of ‘kinaesthetic’ learning.  One key point was his comparison to the intelligences as computers with different strengths which are not connected to the sensory systems.  Another was his insistence that multiple intelligences was not about curriculum, but rather a way of thinking.

In a later conversation with Gardner he recommended a recent article from the NY Times by Elizabeth Green titled ‘Building a Better Teacher’.  If you have a few minutes it is a nice read:

An inspiring day.