Teachers Talking Teaching

John Catterson (@jfcatto) and Pete Whiting (@mr_van_w) are two Australian Flipped Educators. Together they talk education, pedagogy and current practice. Find more of Pete and John: Website - YouTube - YouTube -
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Teachers Talking Teaching


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Sep 14, 2017

John (@jfcatto) brings in a meta-study of the relationship between seating arrangements and "on task" activity and links to how we can use these seating arrangements to inform practice in the classroom. 

Pete (@mr_van_w) ponders the NSW government plan to put business professionals in charges of the business of running a school. Taking the load off school principals and allowing them to do what they do best, educational leadership.    



John: Seating arrangements that promote positive academic and behavioural outcomes: a review of empirical research - Rachel Wannarka and Cathy Ruhl 


Pete: $50 million shakeup so principals can spend more time on education - Bruce McDougall 


Sep 11, 2017

Pre-service teacher and listener Sean (@readingpixels) sent us an email asking a few really good questions. Pete (@mr_van_w) and John (@jfcatto) thought would get in friend-of-the-show Matt (@smedboule) to discuss.

Sep 7, 2017

John (@jfcatto) looks at some things that you should and shouldn't do to gifted students in your general classroom. Some he and Pete agree with and some, not so much.  

Pete (@mr_van_w) asks the question "What is the moral obligation of a school, as a public institution, to have an opinion on current issues? 


John: Teaching Gifted Students in General Ed Classrooms - Dr Elissa Brown 


Pete: Abbott swipes school on gay marriage - AAP 


Sep 2, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) presents a listicle/infographic addressing ways of fostering a Growth Mindset in the classroom.

John (@jfcatto) discusses how the LATE model can be used to frame conversations when students turn to you for help with welfare issues.


John: What kids *really* want from us when they ask for help... - Dan Haesler (Donna Cross (Michael Tunnecliffe)) 


Pete: Foster a Growth Mindset in Your Class Using These Strategies - Marcus Guido 



Sep 2, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) presents a listicle/infographic addressing ways of fostering a Growth Mindset in the classroom.

John (@jfcatto) discusses how the LATE model can be used to frame conversations when students turn to you for help with welfare issues.


John: What kids *really* want from us when they ask for help... - Dan Haesler (Donna Cross (Michael Tunnecliffe)) 


Pete: Foster a Growth Mindset in Your Class Using These Strategies - Marcus Guido 



Aug 24, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) asks the question "Who is responsible for students success/failure?" and the problem of competition being of detriment to collaboration. Teachers now also feel social pressure for their students to perform.

John continues to draw from the work of @cultofpedagogy and explores some different ways to engage all students in meaningful class discussions.



The Big List of Class Discussion Strategies - Jennifer Gonzalez 



'On GCSE results day, teachers now need the top marks as much as the pupils do' - Nikki Cunningham-Smith 

Aug 17, 2017

John talks about the trouble of "Fish-eye Syndrome" during class discussion and how to avoid the "big personalities" to dominate the conversation, whilst other fade into the background. 

Pete (@mr_van_w) whines about the "relentless" job of teaching, knocking off at 3 in the arvo and getting 10 weeks holidays a year.



The Fish-eye Syndrome: Is Every Student Really Participating? - Jennifer Gonzalez 



The Hardest Most Demanding Part of a Teachers Job - Jane Caro 


Aug 10, 2017

John (@jfcatto) and Pete (@mr_van_w) decided last week that they wanted the podcast to be less about parochial political issues, to allow them to focus on classroom pedagogy and be more globally relevant. This week they throw this out the window when John discusses their local members plan to introduce shooting as an "elective" in schools and Pete counters by discussing the state governments minimum graduation standards and the idea of introducing selective primary schools. So much for strategic direction.  



Shooters, Fishers and Farmers party calls for firearms permits for 10-year-olds - Andrew Taylor 



NSW should have "selective primary schools" for gifted children: academic - Pallavi Singhal 


Aug 3, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) has a look at the relatively new concept of tutoring companies helping 4-year-olds to "Prep-for-prep" in Queensland. While John (@jfcatto) discusses the need to teach students how to regulate their distraction by tech in the classroom.  




Prepping for Prep - should children play or study to get set for prep year - Tony Moore 




Digital Tools and Distraction in School - Mary Beth Hertz 


Net Smart: How to thrive online: Chapter 1 Attention - Howard Rheingold 


Jul 20, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) and John (@jfcatto) return from the winter holiday to discuss FlipCon NZ the Flipped Classroom and teachers using Twitter to build a Professional Learning Network.   



Flip Your Classroom - John Bergman and Aaron Sams 



3 Things Teachers Can Do To Get More Out of Twitter - Karen Nelson 



Jun 20, 2017

In an uplifting episode of the podcast, John (@jfcatto) talks about some of the traits that can be found in the "best" and "worst" teachers. Pete (@mr_van_w) talks briefly about ways in which to get students to think in the classroom.   




John: The 'Best' and 'Worst' Teachers, According to Reddit - Brenda Iasevoli 


Pete: Cultures of Thinking: Project Zero - Ron Ritchardt 

via Ryan Gill (@ryanagill) & Carla Gagliano (@carlagagliano)

Project Zero Sydney (#pzsyd)

Jun 8, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) highlights the lack of flexibility and possible victim blaming of school uniforms. John (@jfcatto) worries that exam stress may be completely unnecessary and pose little benefit to teaching and learning at a whole. Then Pete leaves everyone on a downer with a new study showing the worryingly high rate of teacher suicide.  



Pete: My conservative school uniform does not protect me - Jacqueline Rousselot 


John: Majority of teenagers have cried due to exam stress, poll finds 


Pete: Primary school teachers' suicide rate nearly double national average, figures reveal - May Bulman 

Jun 1, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) calmly deals with the downfall and reinstating of Healthy Harold before asking; what are we expected to teach at school? John (@jfcatto) then replaces the outdated concept of digital natives with three further tech subsets of modern students.   



Pete: Australian 15-year-olds declining in financial literacy PISA report - Pallavi Singhal 


John: Forget "digital natives." Here's how kids are really using the internet - Alexandra Samuel 


May 25, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) is back and unsurprisingly primed for a rant despite feinting to the contrary. He then espouses the benefits of corporate-speak in the classroom. John (@jfcatto) discusses the complicated issue of specialty teachers in primary education.

Spoilers: Together the solve "Australia's Primary Challenge" #yourewelcome 



Pete: Why My Classroom Needs A Mission Statement - Joel Speranza (@JoelBSperanza) 


John: Time For Teacher Educators to Step Up on Primary Specialisation - Jacqueline Magee (Learning First) 

Affirmative: Should We Have More Specialist Teachers in Primary Education? - Greg Ashman 

Negative: Secondary Science and Maths Teachers in Primary Schools are Not the Solution - Dr Charlotte Pezaro 


May 20, 2017

This week Pete (@mr_van_w) is busy, so John (@jfcatto) is carried through the podcast by first year teacher, colleague and regular listener Rich Watkins (@Cambourne26).  


John: Where is the evidence to support differentiation? - Greg Ashman 

Rich: Energy and Calm: Brain Breaks and Focused-Attention Practices - Lori Desautels 



May 11, 2017

In an episode discussing the dangers of taking absolute and polar opinion; Pete (@mr_van_w) talks about the Michaela School and the torrents of vitriol that are directed at the school and more importantly the staff. John (@jfcatto) presents a point of view that he surprisingly doesn't agree with.



Pete: I reject your experiences and substitute my own - Mark Johnson (@markxsyst) 

John: Are Progressive Teaching Methods A Bit Like Fast Food? - Andy Warner  

May 4, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) continues talking about the politicisation of education on the release of Gonski 2.0. John (@jfcatto) brings to the podcast some hard evidence about the benefits of 1:1 computers in Science whilst trying not to mention the DER.




Pete: "A range of articles that quote slightly different numbers"


John: Direct link between teaching and learning with laptops and HSC results in Biology, Chemistry and Physics - Simon Crook 


Apr 26, 2017

John (@jfcatto) looks at some of the ways you can tell if Personalised Learning is working in your classroom. Pete (@mr_van_w) laments the end of the Safe Schools program and discusses the politicisation of education.



John: 3 Simple Ways You Can Tell If You're Suceeding Wityh Personalized Learning - Lee Watanabe Crockett 

Pete: Safe Schools program ditched in NSW, to be replaced by wider anti-bullying plan - Nour Haydor 

Apr 14, 2017

After some catching up after missing out on recording an Ep last week, John (@jfcatto) talks about some of the enthralling tabletop games CIA recruits get to play. Pete (@mr_van_w) talks about L3 and other one-size-fits-all solutions sold to schools by corporate interests. 



 John: The CIA Uses Board Games to Train Officers - and I Got To Play Them - Sam Machkovech  

Pete: What We Can Learn From the L3 Debacle - Greg Ashman 

Mar 31, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) is amazed that there are teachers that still believe in learning styles and John (@jfcatto) tries to see the half-full cup in everyone and other "hippy nonsense".





Pete: Letting Go of Learning Styles - Amber & Andy Ankowski 

John: Assuming Positive Intent - Laura Thomas  

Mar 23, 2017

For a change John (@jfcatto) and Pete (@mr_van_w) bring in a couple of good news stories. Well kind of good news.





Students in Countries with High Religiosity Perform Lower in Science and Mathematics - Gijsbert Stoet & David Geary 

Why the Most Successful Students Have No Passion For School - Jihyun Lee 


Pete: Students Today, Employees Tomorrow - Kristie Kellahan 


Mar 17, 2017

At the end of a busy week for everyone:

John (@jfcatto) discusses the difference between coding thinking and thinking coding. Whilst Pete (@mr_van_w) bemuses slipping enrollment for private schools.  


John: In Finland Kids Learn Computer Science Without Computers - Emily Deruy 

Honourable mention: @linjdaliukas 

Pete: Private Schools are losing their magnetic pull 



Mar 9, 2017

John (@jfcatto) questions whether we are using technology to substitute or redefine teaching methods and Pete (@mr_van_w) embraces International Women's Day by raising the issue of the lack of girls choosing to learn Science #womanoftheyear 



John: Are We Innovating or Just Digitising Traditional Teaching - Beth Holland


Pete: Girls and Science a Dream Deferred - Ainissa Ramirez 

Mar 2, 2017

Pete (@mr_van_w) critiques a woman he knows nothing about for doing the right thing and speaking up about problems in education and John (@jfcatto) imagines a scenario where we taught how to play baseball as inappropriately as we teach how to do Science. 



Pete: The Way We Teach Our Children Is Truly Crazy - Elizabeth Farrelly @emfarrelly 

John: Why Isn't Science Class More Like Learning to Play Baseball? - Alison Gopnik 

Feb 21, 2017

John (@jfcatto) brings in a few ways to prepare students for jobs that don't yet exist and Pete (@mr_van_w) discusses the newly released NSW Syllabus. 



John: 5 Ways to Prepare Your Child for Jobs That Don't Exist Yet - David Dodge 


Pete: Stage 6 Syllabuses - NSW Education Standards Authority 

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