IBSC Action Research Leadership
I am an English teacher by trade and have taught at nearly all grades in different schools, from year six to year 12. For the past 13 years, I have worked as deputy head of academics and staff learning at St. John's Preparatory School (South Africa). My first experience with the IBSC Action Research Program was as a member of the 2008-09 team, researching the topic: How can programs that promote safe, just, and inclusive classroom and school environments improve the learning experience for boys? My research report focused on programs that combat bullying in schools.
Being part of the global research team proved to be such a wonderful experience, and I made so many new friends, that I have stayed on ever since, first as a team advisor and now as the program coordinator. It is so easy to keep in touch across the world, and there is nothing better than hearing news from a team member, or meeting up for a drink and a catch up at the IBSC Annual Conference. The special friendships established with the other four team advisors and with Di Laycock, my mentor, have enriched my life, both professionally and personally. I have also learned so much about the importance of action research in schools to enable us to continue reviewing best practice in educating boys.
I am looking forward to meeting the new team of researchers who will begin their research journey in Montreal, examining the topic Developing Agency: Boy Voice and Choice. It’s also with a sense of real anticipation that I look forward to sharing the findings of the outgoing team, researching Boys and Stories.
I spend my days as Head of Libraries and Research at Crescent School. My role encompasses leading a team of library professionals in the development of an information literacy skills continuum and team-teaching many courses with an inquiry-based approach, as well as, build a reading culture amongst the boys. I’m leading our own action research program and we are already reaping the benefits of our first experience. In 2010, I began my own IBSC Action Research journey with a project examining the use of audio books to support reading habits in boys. It is very rewarding to see that, at Crescent, we continue to build our audio book collection as a result of my action research project.
I also fill my days as Head of Grade 9. My job is to support the transition from middle school and welcome new to Crescent boys to ensure their upper school experience starts as smoothly as possible. My husband and I have a daughter in third year university and our son, a Crescent alum, is in second year. Yes, we are empty nesters and we have joined a curling club to fill our new found time!
I am very much looking forward to being part of the IBSC AR team for my 8th cycle, it is the most enriching professional development experience for teachers interested in improving their practice. I am grateful for the ever-growing network of global colleagues I am a part of due to my involvement with the IBSC.
I am a Drama teacher at King Edward’s School in Birmingham, England which, as well as teaching, involves directing productions over the year and running the props department of our stage crew. Alongside this I coordinate the Creativity, Activity (CAS) section of the IB Diploma for our sixth form and oversee the weekly student Well-Being blog and termly bulletin. I love encouraging students to develop their own performance and CAS projects so am delighted that this year’s topic is: ‘Developing Agency: Boy Voice and Choice’. I can’t wait to meet my team of researchers and hear their project ideas. I know it is going to be a hugely enriching experience for us all.
Two years ago, I joined the IBSC Action Research family researching a project which explored how using digital, oral or video reflection might help boys’ confidence in the Drama class. The topic was ‘Adaptability in the 21st Century’ and it was an invigorating process both for the boys and especially for me. I had no idea how much it would change my teaching life! We have expanded the project across year 8 and are in the process of implementing it into year 9.
The Action Research Programme has had a massive impact on my PD and I am in constant contact with my cohort and mentors – we have become great friends. I am really looking forward to collaborating with the new Action Research team on the journey ahead.
I currently serve as the Director of Enrollment at The Browning School in New York. Prior to my work in enrollment and admission, I was a member of the science faculty at Browning for seven years, where I taught Lower School and Middle School science classes and an Upper School science elective in geology and environmental studies.
I had the pleasure of participating in action research during the 2015-16 school year on the theme of global citizenship. Being a part of an action research team afforded me the time and space to plan, execute, and reflect on my teaching practice while seeking to develop transformative experiences for the boys on an important topic. I was also delighted to meet and work alongside a group of like-minded, caring educators from all over the world. This will be my third cycle as a Team Advisor and I look forward to many productive and thought-provoking conversations ahead!
I am a Librarian at St. Christopher’s School in Richmond, Virginia, USA. Our school enrolls close to 1,000 students in grades JK-12, and I have the pleasure of teaching boys in grades JK-5. I teach within a Learning Commons model, integrating technology, library, and information literacy skills in the context of classroom curriculum. This format provides a wonderful opportunity for teacher collaboration, and our team strives to design engaging, innovative student-driven projects.
I’m thrilled to be in my fourth cycle as a team advisor for our 2019/2020 Action Researchers. Six years ago I completed a research project focused on creativity, technology, and boys, in which students used multimedia digital tools to create social awareness posters. What an amazing experience! I value the wealth of information and the wonderful relationships I gained through the process and look forward to meeting and working with a new team of researchers in Montreal this June.