Unique collaboration focusing on deep learning
Advania Skolepartner is the only company in Norway to have entered into a cooperation agreement with Challenging Learning. In Sweden, a similar cooperation is already established. "We like to work with people who have their mission at the heart, rather than their margins. Like us, Advania Skolepartner brings something different. Together, we are striving to create something new in the field of learning,” says James Nottingham, world-renowned educator and founder of Challenging Learning.
Photo: James Nottingham founder of Challenging Learning.
“Advania Skolepartner brings knowledge of schooling in Scandinavia and a digital learning lens,” Nottingham continues. “Challenging Learning works on education worldwide. There will be overlaps in digital competence and general pedagogy, but what we represent together is an interesting proposition.”
Challenging Learning is a recognised and award-winning company that shares teaching and management practices with a major impact on learning development. The company pairs global excellence with local strategy and practice. Everything Challenging Learning does is designed to inspire and challenge people to develop effective learning strategies. The company works with schools, local authorities and other companies all over the world. James Nottingham is also known for his work with John Hattie and Carol Dweck.
Nottingham expresses concern about a trend that education is becoming more business-oriented, with competition between schools and local authorities rather than an open access approach. As a result, Challenging Learning does what it can to seek interaction, and the collaboration with Advania Skolepartner is part of that.
The collaboration between Advania Skolepartner and Challenging Learning will use successful methods such as The Learning Pit in combination with proven effective research-based measures to develop digital competence in and methods for teaching. A particular objective is to contribute to students’ in-depth learning.
According to Nottingham, Challenging Learning is conscious of not taking a political role and does not take part in discussions on national curriculums. He also stresses that there are far more similarities between school cultures in different countries and continents than there are differences:
“How can we engage students, how can feedback be improved, how can we encourage students to rise to challenges more, how can the ‘growth mindset’ and resilience in learning be developed and how can we get discussions between students to be more productive? If you just take those as examples, tell me which country wouldn`t want any of those?"
Opportunities in new curriculums
Frida Monsén is Educational Manager at Advania Skolepartner and the responsible for the agreement with Challenging Learning. She emphasises that Advania Skolepartner’s attitude to new curriculums and subject updates is to look for the opportunities they provide for in-depth learning, supported using digital tools.
“We are concerned that there has to be time for learning, because it takes time to master something,” she says. “And, for us, that all starts with the teaching. We do not believe that – in themselves – new computers or software can solve the challenges. First, we need to know what we are aiming to achieve, what benefits students’ learning,” says Monsén, an educator with extensive experience in managing digital development in schools.
Teaching is key
“We know that the ability of a teacher to integrate digital resources into their teaching in a thoughtful way is key to the degree of success students enjoy in their digital learning. In fact, this is the only research that there is agreement on when it comes to digitising our schools. That’s why the digital training offered by Advania Skolepartner has as much focus on the planning and implementation of teaching, as on how digital tools work,” Monsén concludes.
The collaboration between Challenging Learning and Advania Skolepartner is underway at the pilot school, Kirkevoll, in Bergen.