The panel will begin with Dr. Schneider's presentation of his experience in leading an innovative pedagogical approach in his school. The in-service teachers, who were exposed to Dr. Schneider's project alongside their instructor Dr. Goldstein, will then describe how they promote wellbeing in their educational settings and the impact it has. Finally, the participants will talk about their practices regarding the learners' well-being in school and other educational settings. Members of the Research and Development group (RDC) in Teacher Psychologies of the Association for Teacher Education in Europe (ATEE) will also participate in the discussion.
Part I: Our Responsibility – Balances and Integration
Lecturer: Dr. Alex Schneider
As in the past, the weighty responsibility of training future generations to conduct themselves as meaningful and significant adults is placed squarely on the shoulders of teachers today. We cannot even predict to our students how the world will look in 30 years, the timespan during which they will be required to demonstrate their abilities and make a contribution to society. The environment in which our students will grow up and spend the major part of their lives is unknown and unimaginable to us.
Therefore, we should seek those elements we believe will furnish them with the optimal abilities for the future in an environment of wellbeing that will shape their development. We attempt to do that by balancing a variety of methods of learning and integrating several pedagogical approaches. This should enable the students to develop "emotional literacy", i.e., the ability to understand and relate to other people (Gardner, 1983).
We should try to develop our students' multiple intelligence in the belief that the development of those personal traits will enable them to understand other people's social dynamics and interact effectively with them, thereby providing them with a key to successful growth.
According to our perception of the learning process and enhanced academic achievement, which we set as a goal, educating in an emotional environment, namely "wellbeing", is very significant.
As we approach the end of the second decade of a new century, we believe that given the right tools – both technological and emotional – in the right environment, our children will be able to present themselves in the optimal manner, develop into meaningful and significant human beings, and implement those abilities as adults in the future.
Dr. Alex Schneider
Dr. Schneider is an educator, an educational researcher, a lecturer and coordinator of a Principals' Course‚ and a former school principal. He served in the Israel Defense Forces (Colonel, Rt.).
His knowledge and expertise lie in principal training and in leadership, management, and pedagogy including mentoring and coaching; aspects of education including multiple intelligence and emotional intelligence; independent learning and research methods; team development and leadership styles; socialization processes; the family in the education system; multi/intercultural learning; social education and informal education in schools; communication control command and computerized systems; and applications in computerized educational systems.
Part II: Teachers' and students' wellbeing go together
Presenters: Dr. Olzan Goldstein, Mira Geva, Dikla Baum-Feldman, Racheli Shwartz-Gorali, Dalit Nisim, Racheli Shtermer Ashush and the group of in-service teachers.
In-service teachers in Israel suffer day-to-day overload throughout the academic year. They prepare lessons, teach, check homework, give and check tests, tackle innumerable bureaucratic forms, participate in numerous meetings, supervise excursions and trips, organize celebrations of national and school events, and decorate classrooms and school corridors. When in-service teachers decide to continue their education in the framework of the M.Ed. program, they experience further pressure since, as a rule, their school obligations continue, and they have to cope with every new academic requirement.
Being in charge of the M.Ed. program, "Education in the Era of Information Technology" at Kaye Academic College of Education, Dr. Goldstein was exposed to and saddened by students' frustration. Her students visited the innovative school in Kfar Shmaryahu, headed by Dr. Alex Schneider, and were excited by the implementation of wellbeing principles there. This encounter inspired them to introduce their pupils to some fun exercises during lesson breaks. The reaction was amazing, and it was decided to integrate such activities and discourse into the College to accord the students a sense of wellbeing.
During the webinar, we will discuss our new experience with the participants and invite them to share their vision and practices regarding wellbeing in education.
Dr. Olzan Goldstein
Since 1995, Dr. Olzan Goldstein has been engaged in teacher education at Kaye Academic College of Education (Beer Sheva, Israel). Her research and publications deal with evaluation of teacher education programs, professional development of teacher educators, ICT integration into education, project-based learning, and implementation of innovations in organizations. Dr. Goldstein coordinates the School of Advanced Studies and the M.Ed. program, "Education in the Era of Information Technology" at Kaye College. She is a Co-Chairperson of the Research and Development Group in Teacher Psychologies of the Association of Teacher Education in Europe (ATEE).
The M.Ed. students in the "Education in the Era of Information Technology" program at Kaye Academic College of Education.