Todd Whitaker Inspires IEGS Teachers
Teachers from Internationella Engelska Gymnasiet met up on Friday with the rest of Internationella Engelska Skolan for an All Staff Conference held at Stockholm University's Aula Magna.
Founder of IES Ms Barbara Bergström welcomed a packed audience of IES teachers from across Sweden to the conference before announcing plans for the continued expansion of the organisation with new IES schools set to open in Nacka, Gothenburg and Borås in August 2010.
CEO Mr Peter John Fyles then introduced Dr Todd Whitaker, the keynote speaker for the day who spoke about what great teachers do differently.
One of America's Leading Educationalists
Dr Whitaker, professor of educational leadership at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, and the author of numerous books including What Great Teachers Do Differently and 50 Ways to Improve Student Behavior (with Annette Breaux), is one of the leading authorities on staff motivation, teacher leadership, and principal effectiveness in the USA.
His two one-hour talks were met with thunderous applause from IES and IEG staff.
"It was a pleasure to speak here today," Dr Whitaker told IEG News. "My talk was very much aimed at getting teachers to think about the difference between what's right and wrong when interacting with students."
Whitaker outlined an approach to improving the communication and relationships within a school community which relies on management and teachers "never arguing, never yelling and never using sarcasm" with each other or students.
Mixing anecdotes from his own career, which included years as a teacher and principal, Whitaker illustrated how important it is for schools, led by their principal, to take a positive approach to communication and classroom management.
"It was an extremely inspiring day," said Dr Margret Benedikz, principal of IEGS. "We got a lot out of Todd's talk and we'll definitely be purchasing his books. There was a lot of interest from teachers in following up on what he talked about."
"My hope is that after listening to the talks today," said Dr Whitaker, "that teachers and school managers will think differently about the way they approach their work. The best way to have an exceptional learning environment for students is to have outstanding teachers working with them in the classroom."