Positive Teaching Practices & Strength based Parenting
In line with our ongoing focus on positive education, at the start of the new year, BBIS faculty and staff took the opportunity to work with Dr. Ron Lalonde, who ran several workshops on Positive Teaching Practices. The former Middle East Regional Manager of the Institute of Positive Education also took the time to present to our BBIS parents on Strength based Parenting.
Here is an interview with Dr. Lalonde by Berlin Brandenburg International School:
BBIS: Dr. Lalonde, why are Positive Teaching Practices so important for schools today?
Dr. Lalonde: It has always been very important for teachers to build healthy relationships with students, to be aware of emotional wellbeing and to look after the whole student. The science of Wellbeing is growing rapidly and although teachers learn about psychology in their initial training, there is so much new research around practices that teachers can use. Like turning inwardly and reflecting on their own wellbeing, taking care of themselves and being their best selves when they are in the classroom, but also being role-models in looking after yourself and flourish. Positive Teaching Practices are also a great way to put teachers in connection with one another to realize that they are doing a lot of things already, and to support them with the evidence that comes from the latest research on Wellbeing.
BBIS: You also worked with our BBIS parents, what is the concept behind Strength based Parenting?
Dr. Lalonde: It is critical that wellbeing is a whole school approach and that means that all stakeholders get involved. The parents are usually very grateful to be included in that process as they are facing the complexity of life in their own world, their work, family life and when raising children. Providing models of how they can focus more on their children’s strengths, being aware of their own strengths and how they can change the nature of relationships at home, there isn’t anything more powerful out there right now to provide assistance to parents in the hard work of helping children to grow up.
BBIS: We have been focusing on Positive Education for some time now, how does BBIS fare in comparison to other schools?
Dr. Lalonde: I see a lot of schools and each school does have a different tone, about how their culture already is and how open they are to new ideas and how deep they want to go with their Positive Education. Teachers and staff here met each other with warmth and hugs, and great stories about missing each other during the holidays. The work we do allows them to see that they are in this together, to support each other. I found that BBIS has a strong team mentality and a culture of support for one another, it is a warm and welcoming place. During the seminars participants gave great feedback and made me think and slowed me down. They were engaged with the work deeply and that is really encouraging. Schools who do that are very likely to make it their own and to stay with it.