Sue Dixon is a practitioner of philosophy for children (P4C) and primary trained with a specialism in literacy. Everyone who is associated with Thinking Child wants the same thing: to support children and families to face the enormous challenges of the 21st and 22nd centuries by becoming critical thinkers and life-long learners.
In 2012 she launched Thinking Child - an organisation that provides resources and training for schools and parents - literacy, numeracy philosophy with thinking skills running all the way through.Honest, pragmatic, inspirational - yet grounded in reality is how she would like to be known.
One pleasing outcome of Innovate My School’s ‘30 great British education-innovators to follow on Twitter’ article was that it got some of our followers talking about the use of Twitter by educators. Sue Dixon of Thinking Child is particularly interested in the different kind of tweeters that education offers. While it’s a humorous topic, it’s interesting to examine the different characters to whom we’re all now accustomed.
Twitter is a relatively new concept but it is a social media platform that the world of education has massively embraced. And you can see why; there are obvious advantages to being able to connect with so many other people from the same sphere as you; swapping ideas in real time, catching up on latest news and theories etc.
When I was little and chattered too much, my mum used to say “Susan Ellen! (She always used my ‘Sunday name’ when I was in trouble) You know it’s no accident that you have two ears and only one mouth. Do shush and listen for a moment.”
And then, by no surprise, I became a teacher: traditionally a role perceived as more about talking than listening. Listening isn’t something that is overtly taught in teacher training college, but I believe it should be.
Homework is often an emotive and divisive issue in primary schools. How much is appropriate for a certain year group? What forms should it take? How much parent involvement is required? To what extent should it be tailored to individual children? And so on.