On May 11th 2019 the Lexonik team descended onto the 38th COBIS Annual Conference to share Lexonik methodologies internationally. This has been our 3rd year at the COBIS conference and arguably our best yet!
The conference kicked off with Katy Parkinson (Lexonik Founder Director) speed dating with delegates! She had 8 minutes, per cycle, to showcase Lexonik which she did with her usual enthusiasm and flair. Her “dates” spanned the Nations, all of which were gripped by Lexonik’s ‘Literacy at The Speed of Sound’ and keen to delve deeper into the methodologies and how they can develop students, teachers and schools across the globe.
During the Speed Date we were also fortunate enough to be joined by Kai Vacher, Principal of British School Muscat, who spoke eminently about his experiences of implementing Lexonik within his school, focusing not only on the gains seen in the students but the gains seen in his teachers in terms of their literacy delivery, skills, knowledge and confidence.
Day 1 didn’t finish with dating, but spilled out into an informal networking buffet, giving the Lexonik team more exposure to international colleagues, discussing our and their beliefs about the future of explicit literacy instruction and hearing of the curriculum developments worldwide. The conversations were brilliant, but the mini Shepherds Pies and puddings were the highlight!
The Sunday allowed the Lexonik team to share their work even further afield, with Katy running a live demo to a group of delegates from France, Brussels, Oman and Dubai. Yet again she put them through their paces with all participants seeing the benefits of Lexonik and eager to discover more.
As the conference progressed, we were fortunate enough to join in on some of the key-note discussions. We were impassioned by Professor Tanya Byron’s presentation on ‘Educating The Whole Child’ which was music to the Lexonik ears when she spoke of her concerns that children are “not taught to learn, but taught to reproduce” which mirrors Lexonik beliefs of the importance of explicit literacy and vocabulary instruction to enable students to “know what to do, when they don’t know what to do”.
This was then promptly followed by an address from Andreas Schleicher, Director of Education and Skills, OECD who spoke on ‘Trends Shaping Education’ and explored many fascinating things, but the lightbulb moment came when he spoke of the need for children now and in the future to have the explicit reading decoding skills in order to construct knowledge. He spoke of how in our instant Google world we need to teach children how to find the truth within what they read. To decode the meaning in order to construct the knowledge and truth. Not only was this fascinating and mind blowing, but so in tune with Lexonik and our principals and methodologies.
We were honoured to be part of the COBIS annual conference and experienced so much that we can now ruminate on in order to continue our growth and developments. We had a fantastic opportunity to invigorate a passion for literacy in all of those we spoke and demonstrated to and now look forward to developing our working relationships with different and varied schools across the globe.