The event, on Saturday 23 June, will honour the programme’s unique history and mark its legacy. Many current and former members of TAEDS and Theatre of the Deaf are expected to attend and the world premiere of this production of Moonbird, an adaptation of the children’s story by the deaf author Joyce Dunbar, will be performed by Handprint Theatre Company, which was formed by programme alumni and employs deaf actors and workshop leaders.
The IoE’s annual ATP* Conference featured an inspiring array of our students’ research presentations. As always, there was also a little nostalgia as we waved off our class of 2018 into their bright futures.
These conferences create a stimulating environment in which our final year BA Primary Education (QTS) students can showcase their lively, interesting and thought-provoking research around issues in primary education. Above all, the conference is the culmination of three years of intense hard work.
Our annual ATP conference is a happy day in the calendar, as Programme Director Nasreen Majid hears and sees the fruits of her students’ study and research over the last three years as the students demonstrate the sheer quality and variety of their projects. The research is broad and accomplished and the posters in particular visually appealing and lively.
Nasreen Majid, Director of the programme, who leads the conference and research output on the BA Primary Education (QTS) course said:
“The research project showcase the outstanding contribution to educational research the BA Primary Education (QTS) students undertake with us here at the IOE. Each project is developed with an eye on how the focus will make a direct impact on the students’ practice as a trainee and beginner teacher. The impact is further amplified as the conference is designed as a platform for peer learning for the part 2 students who are just starting their ATP journey. I am so proud of the confidence and authority of students presenting their work, this shows a great insight into the area they have studied and ultimately a passion for teacher education.”
Our key note speaker to the conference, Dr Diana Dos Santos Sousa, Senior Teaching Fellow at UCL, IOE, delivered a timely key note, closely linked to her career trajectory from an early years practitioner to teaching fellow at UCL, IOE. Her presentation used evidence from three diverse Portuguese Early Years settings that illustrated how conceptual understandings of democracy reflect individual school philosophies She noted the tensions of international comparative testing, closely linking this to the upcoming comparative testing for 5 year olds.
The best ATP candidate was Anna Wheatley, who received The Professor Rhona Stainthorp Prize for outstanding achievement in undergraduate research.
After the ceremonies, everyone was finally able to kick back and relax over a picnic on our London Road campus’s beautiful green quadrangle, enjoying the chance to be together one more time before our fantastic Year 3 students head off into their bright futures.
We are proud of our five presenting students, who did such sterling work at the conference. Congratulations to you all!
*ATP = BA Primary Education (QTS) Advanced Teaching Project
The five final year students who were chosen to present their work at this year’s annual conference represent a broad cross section of the type of research undertaken. Here the five are interviewed on their work:
Will Hatton Project: The extent to which mathematics is enjoyed by higher and lower attainers and the impact of their teachers’ attitudes towards the subject.
Lauren Rose Project: The perceptions of the social inclusion of children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder: How do the children perceive their relationships with their peers and how does this compare to the perceptions of the adults who work with them?
Bethanie Matthews Project: What is it about mathematics that causes anxiety for pupils?
Anna Wheatley Project: How does music intervention impact the social development of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder?
Ellie Walsh Project: An Exploration into the Use of Appropriate Children’s Literature to Support Upper Key Stage Two Teachers’ Delivery of the English Writing Curriculum.
Mums in Reading have shared their stories of success after taking part in an initiative aimed at improving their self confidence and prospects. A total of 15 mothers were joined by their families at a celebration event at the University’s London Road campus on Tuesday (29 May), where they were presented with certificates by Vice-Chancellor Sir David Bell for completing the Marvellous Mums course.
Dr Carol Fuller at University of Reading’s Institute of Education, who leads the Marvellous Mums course along with colleague Dr Maria Danos, said:
“We are proud of all the women who completed our first ever Marvellous Mums course, and pleased to see the success they are achieving as a result. This is one of several schemes we have introduced to equip people with the skills and confidence they need to make positive differences in their lives. Doing this allows them to change their own story, and ideally that of the community as a whole.”
The scheme, led by the University of Reading and Whitley Community Development Association (WCDA), aims to tackle social inequality by
building confidence among mothers in the Whitley area of Reading, as well as offering some employability skills sessions.
Shamyla Amjad, 29, has used the confidence gained from the course to complete a Prince’s Trust Enterprise Programme and start her own jewellery business. She said: “I’m very excited and looking forward to a brighter future for me and my family. I’ve enjoyed attending the Marvellous Mums Unite programme. It’s been so inspiring and fabulous to attend.”
The 10-week Marvellous Mums course is supported by WCDA, HomeStart Reading and Workday. Participants meet weekly in Whitley Community Centre Café to discuss challenges they face and ways to overcome these, such as by engaging with local government or charities. Those struggling with unemployment are also put in touch with local employers.
“The effectiveness of the course was demonstrated by the fact we had a zero drop-out rate, and some of the mums have expressed an interest in returning as mentors to help future recruits.”
Funding has been secured to run further Marvellous Mums courses over the next two years. For more
“I came to the programme as I was very devastated and stressed. I needed someone to talk to, build my confidence, meet new people and not to be isolated by myself. Now I can proudly say I gained self confidence” – Adama Jatta Camara
Shamyla Amjad, age 29
I came on this course to help me get my confidence back and to decide what to do for my future. So from attending the Marvellous Mums programme, which was for 10 weeks, was amazing for me and Carol has been my inspiration. She’s superwoman, always full of wonderful ideas and she’s been a great support and help for me. I have just recently completed the Prince’s Trust Enterprise Programme and submitted my business plan which was successful. I’m now in the process of starting my own jewellery business. I’m very excited and looking forward to a brighter future for me and my family. I’ve enjoyed attending the Marvellous Mums programme. It’s been so inspiring and fabulous to attend and all the other mums yet to come will enjoy the mums programmes as all us mums enjoyed doing.
Adama Jatta Camara, age 30
I came to the programme as I was very devastated and stressed. I needed someone to talk to, build my confidence, meet new people and not to be isolated by myself. Now I can proudly say I gained self confidence, feel loved by Marvellous Mums, learned so many things from wonderful ladies like Carol, Maria etc. They inspired me a lot. I used to think that I couldn’t achieve my goals but after attending the 10-week course I know that I can achieve anything that I want to achieve. I need to have the confidence and be strong.
Larissa Wiggins, age 28
I started this course because I was at a very low point in my life and a lot of issues going on. Even though I have my daughter and partner, I felt that I didn’t really have much for myself. Since joining this course, I’ve gained so much. It’s helped my relationship with my partner we have got a lot closer and are more happy. I’ve learnt more about who I am as a person and that there’s whole wide world out there for me to see and try new things. I know my worth and that I can do anything that I want to do if I just try hard enough. I’ve met some amazing people on this journey and some friends for life. I’ve gained so much confidence and feel so much happier within myself. Carol and Maria have done such an amazing thing for mums like us. I wake up every morning happy and knowing that I CAN do it no such thing as CANT DO IT.
Jennie Ashworth, age 35
I always worked around my kids. Mental health problems three years ago left me less secure in my abilities. HomeStart have help me rebuild, and introduced me to Marvellous Mums who have inspired me to chase my dreams and apply for jobs I wouldn’t have considered before.