Briar Lipson is a research fellow at the New Zealand Initiative. Prior to this, Briar worked in think tanks, became a teacher and assistant principal and was involved in the Free School movement in England. In this episode, Briar talks to Greg Ashman about he newly released book, New Zealand's Education Delusion, and her thesis that child-centered teaching approaches have led to the decline in performance that New Zealand has suffered on international assessment such as PISA. Along the way, Briar and Greg discuss teacher training, the New Zealand curriculum and John Hattie's comments on her book. Briar's book is available for free on this link.
Doug Lemov has been a teacher, a school principal, a researcher, a writer and played many other roles in education in the U.S. He is perhaps best known internationally for his practical teaching guide, Teach Like a Champion (TLAC). In this episode, Doug talks to Greg Ashman about the genesis of TLAC, making content relevant to students, reading instruction and the importance of reading, Charter Schools, the tumultuous state of U.S. education debate and his efforts to help teachers maximise the potential of the remote learning that has been forced on them by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.
Emily Hanford is Senior Correspondent with APM Reports at American Public Media. Over the last few years, Emily has been researching, broadcasting and writing about reading instruction in the United States and it is fair to say that, as a result, she has shifted the dial on the discussion there. In this episode, Emily talks to Greg Ashman about how she became interested in reading instruction and what she has learnt from her research. Along the way, Emily and Greg discuss explicit and direct teaching, balanced literacy, the nature of the evidence on reading, models such as the simple view of reading and what teachers have told her about how they were prepared to teach reading.
E. D. Hirsch Jr. began his career as a literary theorist. As a result of this work, he became aware of the importance of background knowledge for reading comprehension. However, when he looked to the education system, he found knowledge was undervalued. Since then, he has worked to highlight the importance of knowledge though his numerous books, including the best-selling Cultural Literacy, and the Core Knowledge Foundation that he set-up to further these aims by developing the Core Knowledge Sequence, now used in many schools in the US and beyond. In this episode, Don talks to Greg Ashman about knowledge, education, the importance of a 'speech community' and commonality more generally, as well as his new book, How to Educate a Citizen.
Jasmine Lane is a teacher and education writer based in the United States. In this episode, Jasmine talks to Greg Ashman about how she became a teacher, why the killing of George Floyd makes it even more important for Black people to fight distraction and disengagement from education, what Shakespeare has to offer kids in the inner city and why learning standard English is important. Along the way, Greg and Jasmine discuss the literary canon, researchED and so-called 'carceral pedagogies'.
Calvin Robinson is a teacher, podcaster, journalist and consultant to the UK's Department for Education. In this episode, Calvin talks to Greg Ashman about his switch from the computer science industry to teaching, the events surrounding the Brexit referendum and how this played out in the school where he worked at the time, the wider issue of balance in the curriculum, the Free Schools movement in the UK, computing as a school subject, STEM subjects more generally, educational research and Calvin's role in the 'Don't Divide Us' campaign.
Dr Jennifer Buckingham is Director of Strategy and Senior Research Fellow at MultiLit, a publisher of evidence-based reading programs and interventions, where she also heads the Five from Five project. In this episode, Jennifer talks to Greg Ashman about how her interest in literacy developed, the evidence for synthetic phonics and the Australian phonics check, modeled on the check used in the UK, that has been rolled out in South Australia and is about to be trialed in a third of primary schools in New South Wales. Along the way, Jennifer and Greg discuss why it is that teaching methods become lumbered with ideological baggage.
Professor Dan Willingham is a psychologist at the University of Virginia. Dan started out as a cognitive psychology and neuroscience researcher, but an encounter with E. D. Hirsch Jr. led him to take an interest in the application of cognitive psychology to education. In this episode, Dan talks to Greg Ashman about his interest in education, his book, Why Don't Students Like School?, a new edition of which is in the pipeline, reading instruction and critical thinking.
Pam Snow is Professor of Cognitive Psychology at La Trobe University in Victoria, Australia. In this episode, she talks to Greg Ashman about her new role in bringing cognitive science to teacher education students and her earlier research into the oral language competency of young people in the youth justice system, before Greg and Pam discuss literacy in general, so-called 'balanced literacy' and what motivated Pam to write a book with Caroline Bowen dissecting 'neuroflapdoodle'.
Dylan Wiliam is a world famous educationalist and author probably best known for his research on formative assessment. In this episode, he talks to Greg Ashman about how he became interested in formative assessment, what it is and how it became deployed by the UK government as Assessment for Learning, as well as the importance of a knowledge-rich curriculum, 21st century skills and the issues surrounding educational meta-analysis.