Ian Wood’s visit to Spain last week was not only a wonderful opportunity for him to get the message out about changes to the Cambridge exams. At our Madrid and Seville events he also did us the added favor of looking at teenagers, teenage brains and exams with this thought-provoking talk:
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The teen brain is a topic which I’ve written about before, and so it was great to be able to follow up his talk with one of my own, Helping students help themselves with assessment. It focused on implementing technology via the SAMR model to foster a Blended learning approach in exam preparation courses by giving students more autonomy and protagonism.
At the center of both of our talks was an emphasis on the teen learner as a doer actively constructing their own learning in a social context which is relevant to them. Voice, choice, grouping, creativity and personalization were words that really jumped out at me on slides 18 and 19 of Ian’s presentation, for example. And when he spoke about using media teens relate to, like texting for practicing writing skills, it really resonated with me as it is also similar to something I’ve been thinking about recently.
I know I speak for both of us when I say we sincerely enjoyed giving these talks and getting a chance to meet and speak to many of the teachers who came out to see us. Thank you for all the energy and good vibes!
Last week Pearson took its Learning Journeys on the road in Spain, visiting almost 250 teachers in Madrid, Bilbao and Seville. The topic was exams and so we considered ourselves extremely lucky to be able to count on Pearson’s very own Ian Wood (Product Development Director Assessment). Few people have spent quite so much time in and around the world of ELT assessment as he, so his knowledge proved invaluable as he tackled an area of particular concern to his audience – Changes to the 2015 Cambridge Exams.
Some are minor changes on familiar exercises, others are entirely brand new tasks (Cross-text multiple matching anyone?), and still others are subtle (or not so subtle) changes of focus. But all of them are going to impact the way we and our students prepare for these exams.
Thanks again to Ian for laying this all out so clearly. Changes are always a bit stressful, but being well informed is a great way to reduce some of that anxiety. You can have a look at his presentation by clicking on the image below.
And our deepest thanks to all of you who came out to see us. We certainly enjoyed meeting and talking to you.
For those of you who would like to view Ian’s other talk on teens, the teen brain and getting them ready for Cambridge exams, you can find it here.