Mairead, Karen and Gail (Barnardo’s NI), along with Julie Healy (Head of Programmes, Barnardo’s NI) and Lynda Wilson (Director, Barnardo’s NI) had the pleasure and privilege of attending the ‘Tenth International Learning Conference’ in Lisbon earlier this month and as you can see from the photo we all had an informative but hugely enjoyable time!
We enjoyed a Keynote speech from Dr Mark Greenberg who focused on Bullying Prevention. Mark stated that “Bullying programmes tend not to work - they need to be bed-rocked in SEL learning. Bullying programmes tend to treat the symptom and not the cause.” He went on to explain how SEL is a predictor of success in life e.g. relationships, jobs and socio-economic grouping. However, teacher well-being, a caring whole-school approach and children’s SEL development must be improved as a whole to have the optimum conditions for SEL growth and development.
The conference had a truly international feel with practitioners and researchers coming from Italy, Sweden, Canada, USA, Croatia, Slovenia, Pakistan, Brazil and the UK. The overriding emotion that came across from each of the presenters was that of enthusiasm, pride, passion and enjoyment of using the PATHS® curriculum and watching the impact it has on children and communities. We thoroughly enjoyed listening to the experiences of each of them, and were delighted that we, too, could share our experiences with the programme.
Many thanks to our friends at SEL Worldwide for another wonderful learning conference. We look forward to seeing you again next year!