Friday 26 October 2018

Surviving and Thriving in Tokyo

Early Years IEYC
Verity Welch,
Head of International Early Years Curriculum
Verity  Welch

Here I was in Tokyo, Japan ready to attend the ACE 2018 Conference “Surviving and Thriving” Education in Times of Change.

It’s very easy to survive and thrive in Tokyo! Arriving at Haneda airport I was impressed on how easy it is to travel into city using the monorail. After a quick 12-minute journey, I took an enjoyable walk from Hamamatscucho station, admiring the mix of old and modern buildings.

Over the next three days I made my daily pilgrimage along the picturesque Benkei canal towards the Toshi Centre, home of the ACE 2018 conference. I had such an enjoyable time. Adult learning is great. I gained new knowledge as well as revaluing old ideas and concepts. Seventy-two hours in the company of over 500 academics from 50 different countries, sharing inspiring discussion and debate about the latest developments in education.

My personal highlights included:

  • A fantastic Leadership and innovation debate with Kay Irie (Gakushuin University, Japan) Peter McCagg (Akita International University), Kristin Palmer (University of Virginia), Ljiljana Markovic (University of Belgrade, Serbia) with Session Chair Joseph Haldrane (IAFOR, Japan).
  • Listening to Mikio Brooks in supporting English language at preschool level, where he expelled bilingual myths and had us reflecting on our current definitions of what bilingual means.
  • Some incredibly enjoyable Parallel sessions on ‘Curriculum Design and Development’, ‘Nurturing Creativity’, ‘Support in Reading for SEN’, ‘The Beauty of Failure’, ‘Relationship Between Emotional Intelligence and Leadership’.
  • I even stepped out of my comfort zone to listen to PHD students reading their papers on ‘Implementation of Technologies’, ‘Educational Reforms’, ‘Pedagogical Practices’, ‘Education Inequality’, ‘Traditional and Innovative Differences!’

I was impressed by the energy of the speakers and the passion of these academics to drive continuous reflection and improvement.

I even did my own presentation, ‘Creating an International Early Year’s Curriculum to Explain Our Research Leading to the Development’ of the IEYC.

So, what did I take away? I took away fresh ideas to implement our international curriculum which I’m looking forward to sharing with our wonderful curriculum educators and teachers.

Find out more about our International Early Years Curriculum