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Nina Jackson

Well-being - Adaptive Teaching and Learning - Digital Tools for Learning

Education is a world of very special people but you will meet few as extra special as Nina ‘Ninja’ Jackson.

Her work in the area of mental health and well-being has had an overwhelming impact on children, teachers and parents alike. She has rescued many who were on the brink of despair and given teachers the motivation to carry on when they nearly walked away from their careers.

When you hear her own personal story and all the amazing strategies she has employed to overcome the very worst experiences in life, you’ll then understand how she has managed to help so many people and why she is known as ‘The Ninja, who moves in mysterious ways’.

With a background in mainstream and special needs education and many years’ experience in schools as a pedagogical and pastoral champion, Nina has a breath-taking grasp of what makes classrooms - and all the people in them - tick.

She is a highly creative educator and, whilst her first book explored her research on how music can improve learning and motivation in all classrooms, her latest best-selling book, Of Teaching, Learning and Sherbet Lemons: A Compendium of Careful Advice for Teachers, is helping put the ‘fizz’ back into classrooms for thousands of teachers.

Recent titles include:

  • Engaging all learners - the ‘Learning Buffet’ of pedagogy, practice and purpose
  • Leadership is a 'work of heart'!
  • There isn't a plaster for that! Improving mental health & well-being in your school

For Nina, it’s all about the sherbet lemons. Classrooms need to have the ‘hard stuff’ in place - rigour, systems, expectations and a professionally inclusive approach to the achievement of all children. But there also needs to be the ‘fizz’ – the magic, the excitement, the emotional engagement, the sense of wonder, the passion for teaching and learning, that special energy that Nina personifies when you hear her speak.

What’s more, as an Apple Teacher and Book Creator Ambassador she works globally to help teachers embrace learning technologies in a way that actually makes a difference. Sharing simple strategies and accessible hardware and software, Nina shows how simple it is to build technology into great lessons to bring the best out of all children, including those who might otherwise have trouble accessing the curriculum fully.

Yet it is her work as an international emotional health and well-being ‘ambassador’ for which she is currently most in demand. With ongoing rise of high-stakes testing and market-driven education, the impact of these so-called school improvement approaches are taking their toll on young people and adults alike. Speaking with compassion and drawing on experience and expertise drawn from across the UK as well as from her time in challenging classrooms as far apart as as Chile, Ghana and China, Nina shows schools a way forward to ensure everyone can actually thrive in this toxic climate.

Whether it’s receiving standing ovations from audiences of school leaders, running whole-school INSET days and twilights or working directly with children in their classrooms, Nina brings warmth, humanity, honesty, humour and fun to every environment, making a truly lasting impression wherever she goes.

For a speaker who moves in mysterious ways, you know where to look.

NB Trigger Warning - Nina covers some traumatic and harrowing experiences from her life in her talks on mental health and emotional well-being which some delegates may find distressing.

Absolutely honoured to listen to Nina Jackson talk about her mental health this afternoon. She brought us smiles and tears, what an inspiration

Phenomenal words from Nina Jackson at the conference today. Mental health matters. Check in, check out and never forget unconditional positive regards for students. Nina - you blew me away

You are inspirational - staff were in awe of the power of your message

Just wanted to say what an inspiration you are! I have never listened to a presentation so brilliantly pitched and from the heart. So many things to take away I wish my whole school could've heard it!

Thank you soooo much for yesterday – staff are raving about you!! It’s the most inspirational training we have ever had!

I just wanted to give you a personal thank you for your beautiful session today!

I think I speak for everyone within the learning support team when I say we really needed to hear you today

Often as learning assistants you get overlooked, overworked and unappreciated. You made me feel so valued today, I felt choked up within the first five minutes!

I felt like you healed us today so we can go into a new year feeling good about what we do.

It was a pleasure to be in the same room as you today!

You were fantastic! I think your workshop was one of the highlights of the conference for many!

It is clear that you have the capacity to leave a lasting impact on many. Keep doing what you are doing! You have an important message to convey to others.

Nina was a fantastic speaker with a wealth of knowledge, skills and understanding

Nina Jackson – absolutely amazing. I could have listened to her all day

Often as learning assistants you get overlooked, overworked and unappreciated. You made me feel so valued today, I felt choked up within the first five minutes. You're such a fantastic person inside and out and I could have listened to you talk all day long

We have had training over the last two days but meeting you today was the highlight of it all. I felt like you healed us today so we can go into a new year feeling good about what we do

Nina Jackson In Her Own Words


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