Next week is set to be an exciting week of learning and sharing as teachers from across the globe make their way to Miami for the International Conference on Thinking (ICOT).
Hosted by Florida International University, ICOT is the ideal opportunity to share stories from the classroom, learn from current research and develop a deeper understanding of how we might best prepare our learners for success in their futures. Three years ago, I was fortunate to attend ICOT when it was in the beautiful Spanish/Basque city of Bilbao. I came away from that conference with new ideas of how thinking may be leveraged to enhance all aspects of learning. I met many inspiring educators who generously shared their ideas and knowledge.
This year ICOT once again deals with significant issues confronting educators. Its themes are:
- Education, Learning and the Brain
- Health and Well-being
- Environmental sustainability
- Population movement, integration and global citizenship
Throughout the five days of learning participants are asked to grapple with a dozen ‘big questions’. Undoubtedly we will leave with some answers, some still bouncing around in our minds and others which we have added to the list as we think about applying what we have learned to our contexts.
The BIG Questions of ICOT 2018
- What should be the purposes that guide our educational goals?
- What are essential life-skills for success in school and in life, now and in the emerging future?
- How do we foster dispositions that support thoughtful learning and understanding across disciplines?
- How should we as human beings truly connect in a digital age?
- How do we thoughtfully confront civic, moral and ethical problems?
- What are the implications of the digital-age in our thinking process, problem finding and problem solving?
- What type of graduates is the world expecting from schools?
- How should we prepare and equip students for jobs that do not exist now?
- What practical strategies are you using to prepare creative and innovative citizens to solve current and future global issues?
- What strategies and tactics promote the connection between global citizenship and global engagement?
- How should we design and build sustainable environments for security, enjoyment and play?
- How do we create and promote a political arena driven by thinking, innovation, and ethical approaches?
I will endeavour to share my reflections over the coming week through this site and through Twitter. You can follow along with all those tweeting from the conference using #ICOT18.
On 18th May I will be presenting a Workshop titled "Thinking and learning in the postnormal era”. If you are in Miami and attending ICOT, do join me and say Hi.
By Nigel Coutts