What is good work?

Had an interesting meeting today with two co-presenters from a forthcoming education conference coming up in October. I’ve been working on what’s called the Ithaka Project for a couple of years now and have enjoyed the focus on reflecting on teaching practice. The project involves teachers from more than half a dozen Melbourne schools and they have an annual conference in October each year.

This year I’m part of a presentation reflecting on several key questions, including ‘what is good work’. I thought it was obvious, but the discussion got a bit spirited over a skinny latte or two in Glenferrie Rd today, so maybe it isn’t so clear after all!

The questions we’re going to try to address:

  • What do we remember most about our education?
  • What do the public think about teachers and schools?
  • What is good work?
  • What gets in the way?
  • What is our day like?

I’ve got another couple of weeks to put the ideas down in writing so any suggestions or insights are more than welcome. I’ll publish my thoughts here, after the conference.

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  1. Hi Warrick – just checking up on what has been the focus of things educational before heading home tomorrow (makes a change from all the postcards I’ve been writing and the tourist brochures I’ve been collecting)..the first thing that springs to mind is a question (typically). Why is the first question of yours about what we remember most about our own education? Sometimes it is the intangibles (ie the things we may not be able to pin down as actual memories) that affect us the most. The hidden methodology, if you will…that which created within us the desire to know more, to do more, to articulate and share that ‘knowing’ and to aim higher. And, of course, we can also learn more sometimes from the shadows created than the entities themselves. We may be able to clearly recall ‘the bad’ in the shadows of those memories and, in so doing, steal a glance at ‘the good’ by way of contrast. “Good” luck!

  2. I guess it was a starting point into the conversation; moving from the real and remembered (or nostalgicised and fictionalised) into what teachers and teaching are on about now. I’ll post my response online here AFTER (:-) the conference.

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