"If they can’t see it, smell it, taste it, touch it, hear it, don’t do it."
Ever since Simon first came to our attention as a primary headteacher at a south coast estate school, he has been impressing us with his ability to reduce education down to something quite simple.
For him, unless you make it real – that it is to say hands-on, multisensory, relevant, unexpected and exciting – then really don’t bother. But when you do bother to bring the learning to life in a genuine and authentic way, as Simon has done throughout his career in education, then special things really can happen in the classroom.
And this is all the more the case with some of our hardest-to-reach children.
Since leaving his full-time headship to peruse his solo career, Simon has been always one of our most requested speakers as well as building up a reputation for his longer-term work with schools across the UK with a particular focus on coaching and school improvement.
What Simon excels at is putting across his ideas and strategies about what makes great teaching and learning in a way that shows them up to be simply common sense, approaches that can be easily translated into classroom practice regardless of your setting.
At its heart is the idea that if you can’t see it, smell it, touch it, hear it, feel it, then what’s the point of doing it? From recreating a trip to the Caribbean in the classroom complete with check-in and departure lounge to covering the Great Fire of London in an approach that involved a skip full of burning wood, to the tell-tale signs of the unexpected and very exciting arrival of aliens overnight – there is no limit to the manner in which you can bring the learning alive. The starting point is to set out that breathing life into the curriculum, and not just delivering it, is what you want to do.
Excellent, engaging and thoughtprovoking, could have listened to him for longer
Lots of information imparted in a fun and engaging way
After 15 years of teaching it is great to go to a seminar that makes you feel inspired and makes you realise just why we love our job! A reminder it is about the children and not all the paperwork!!
Inspiring, relevant, excellent. Ideas I can take away and try in my own school
Simon delivered such fabulous training that I am excited about the future and fully intend to use all the strategies he went over with us
Another huge thank you for last Thursday - the evaluations are off the scale in terms of positivity and impact on practice in schools!
Whether it’s inspiring children to learn or inspiring teachers to want to develop professionally on an ongoing basis or supporting heads to keep the excitement and momentum going at a time when the pressures are immense, Simon has the experience, wisdom and ideas to make a difference in all schools.
For an enjoyable, energetic and practical speaker who really does take your brain for a walk when it comes to reflecting on the very essence of what school is all about, then Simon Cooper-Hind is who you want.
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