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Background to Practical Pedagogies

Educational conferences can be prohibitively expensive for ordinary teachers, and often focus on abstract theory delivered by academics with little hands-on classroom experience. In contrast, "Practical Pedagogies" believes the best training conferences are delivered by , for the benefit of each other and their students, at an price.

practising teachers affordable

Practical Pedagogies 2015 and 2016 took place at the International School of Toulouse, France. Teachers from delivered upwards of 100 sessions in a vibrant, friendly and enriching event lasting two days. Hot lunches, refreshments, an after day 1, and a after day 2 provided for carrying on the conversations with old friends and new acquaintances.

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The feedback was so enthusiastic that it's been decided to take the show on the road, with scheduled to host the next conference in November 2018. as from January, a will be drawn up in February, and delegates will be encouraged to book their places from March onwards.

Session proposals will be invited Russel Tarr, conference organiser ()

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Ticket sales are strictly limited and sell out well in advance in order to allow all attendees the maximum opportunity to attend their first-choice workshops . Book early to avoid disappointment!



Location 2018


Hywel has been a teacher for over twenty-five years. He is an experienced teacher in Special, Primary and Secondary settings. His award-winning book ‘ Oops! Getting Children to Learn Accidentally ’ is published by Crown House Publishing. He writes a regular column for the Times Educational Supplement about his encounters as a ‘travelling teacher’. His new book ‘ Uncharted Territories ’, written with Dr Debra Kidd, was published in Spring 2018.

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To submit a workshop proposal, click here .

Delegates will be able to attend eight workshops over two days. A timetable will be produced in September avoiding obvious clashes between similar workshops.

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Increase your vocabulary and you’ll make your writing much more precise. That’s why I provide a word of the week. Today’s word: sycophant…

My word-of-the-week column doesn’t just address new and unusual words. It also focuses on ones that many of us know and use. I mention them because most of us are probably unaware of their etymology or origins.

My word-of-the-week column

My word today, which is from the novel The Secret Chord by Geraldine Brooks, falls into that category. The word is sycophant . Here is how Brooks used it:

My word today,

For a long time, it seemed, he had moved in a press of people: members of his household, the men of his army, his sons, servants, sycophants .


As you likely already know, a sycophant isa person who acts in a servile or subservient manner toward someone important in order to gain advantage. The photo at the top of this post presents an image of such a person.

a sycophant isa person who acts in a servile or subservient manner

The word originated with the legal system of Classical Athens. Having no police force and only a limited number of officially appointed publicprosecutors, most legal cases of the time were brought forward by privatelitigants. By the fifthcentury BC, however, so many litigants had brought so many unjustified prosecutions, that they became labelled with the term “sycophant.”

The word originated

The etymology is particularly interesting. The Greek word sukophantēs, which means‘informer,’ comes from sukon meaning ‘fig’ and phainein meaning ‘to show.’ The association was with informing against the illegal exportation of figs from ancient Athens.

The etymology is particularly interesting.

The word retains the same meaning inModern Greek , i.e. “slanderer,” andFrench, in which it also can mean “informer”; but in modern English, the meaning of the word has shifted to that of an “insincere flatterer.”

The word retains the same meaning inModern Greek


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