May 2008

Program summaries for Learning Works, and for selected programs, some additional resources for listeners to follow up on the program.

Monday 28 April / Friday 2 May

Guy ClaxtonEducation and Schools
Developing Innovation in Young People

Our Learning Work’s guest this week is Guy Claxton, Visiting Professor of the Learning Sciences at the University of Bristol Graduate School of Education. Professor Claxton is the UK’s leading expert on ‘learning to learn’, and on practical ways of developing young people’s learning and creative capacities.

As an academic, he is the author of a dozen well-respected books on the mind, including Hare Brain, Tortoise Mind: Why Intelligence Increases When You Think Less (1997), Wise Up: The Challenge of Lifelong Learning (1999), and The Wayward Mind (2005). He holds degrees from Cambridge and Oxford, and is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society and an Academician of the Academy of the Social Sciences.

No mere theorist, Guy Claxton regularly works directly with teachers and schools throughout the UK, as well as overseas. Much in demand as a speaker at education conferences, teachers’ most common reactions to his presentations and workshops are ‘challenging’, ‘inspiring’ and ‘practical’. They appreciate his down-to-earth humour, as well as his eloquence and authority.

Learning Works’ producer/presenter Tony Ryan was in Tasmania recently for the National Conference of the Australian College of Educators, where Professor Claxton was a keynote speaker –

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Media Film and Technology
Two films starring Abigail Breslin

Learning Works’ resident film reviewer John J McGowan reviews two current films starring a 12 year old girl with much promise for a great future in films – Abigail Breslin. The two movies are Nim’s Island, and Definitely, Maybe.

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Monday 5 May/ Friday 9 May

A Learning Society
Meet Julie ….. and her note-taker

Julie is a student at the University of South Australia, studying for her degree in Tourism and Hospitality and planning for a career in hospitality and tourism. As you will hear in this extended Learning Works interview, following gaining a diploma through TAFE SA, Julie tells what it is now like for her, as a blind student, to undertake tertiary studies. We also hear from her note-taker Geoff Pullan, who, through the university’s Learning Connections program, supports Julie in many ways, including attending lectures with her, taking notes, and then emailing them to her. We also hear about the technologies that have been adapted for students like Julie to make it possible for them to work towards gaining a university degree.

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Justice and Legal Studies
What’s on in Law Week?

On Saturday 10 May, the Sir Samuel Way Building in Victoria Square will be open to the public, providing an opportunity to see areas not usually accessible, including prisoner cells, court rooms and jury deliberation rooms. It’s just one of many events to mark Law Week 2008. In Learning Works this week, South Australia’s Commissioner for Victims’ Rights and chair of the Law Week Planning Committee, Michael O’Connell, gives an overview of the many activities planned for Law Week (8 – 20 May), both in the Adelaide metropolitan area and in regional South Australia.

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Monday 12 May/ Friday 16 May

All items should be available online as mp3 audio, by mid-week

Arts Literature and Music
Grammar Gremlins – Part 1

Have you ever wondered what is meant by a split infinitive? Or how to use correctly the words its and it’s? In this short series, Dr Isobel Grave from the School of International Studies at the University of South Australia demystifies some of the difficulties in current English usage.

A Learning Society
Neighbourhood House Week

To mark Neighbourhood House Week in South Australia (12 – 18 May), Gill McFadyen (Executive Officer, Community and Neighbourhood Houses and Centres Association of South Australia), Heather Hewett (Pooraka Farm and Paddocks Community Houses) and Lee Prestwood (Reedbeds Community House), talk with Tony Ryan about the role of community houses and centres in SA. This Learning Works item will also be heard at varying times this week on many community radio stations across South Australia.

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Arts Literature and Music
A Good Read – with Robert Rungkat

Crime, Thriller, Murder and Mystery! Why is that people love reading about it, being absorbed by details of the lurid underworld as well as watching those spins offs of the original mid Twentieth Century television shows and black white thriller movies. From the Salisbury Library Service in Adelaide, Robert Rungkat introduces Truth or Bare, by author Richard Cahill.

Transcript Audio

Monday 19 May / Friday 23 May

Social History
Convict Hulks – Life on the Prison Ships

Convict Hulks
Photograph © Harold David. Network Agency, courtesy of the Historic Houses Trust

In 1776, ex-naval ships known as ‘hulks’ were proposed as a solution to overcrowding in English and Irish jails and became a common sight on the rivers and estuaries of England and Ireland in the 18th and 19th centuries. Often unseaworthy, the hulks were converted into floating prisons with cells for convicts.

The Dromedary arrived in Bermuda in 1826, was converted to a hulk for 400 convicts and remained there for 37 years, a short distance from the quarries and construction sites where the convicts laboured. With hundreds of prisoners and guards coming and going and living on the hulks, many of their day-to-day items ended up overboard into 30 feet of water and remained buried treasure for the next 150 years.Brad Manera

Rare convict artifacts recovered from the underwater excavation of the Bermuda hulk Dromedary are now in Australia for the first time for Convict hulks: life on the prison ships, an exhibition currently at Sydney’s Hyde Park Barracks Museum until 26 July 2009. For Learning Works, Tony Ryan visited the Hyde Park Barracks and spoke with Brad Manera from the Historic Houses Trust of NSW.

Brad Manera, Curator, Hyde Park Barracks Museum. Photograph (c) Leo Rocker, courtesy Historic Houses Trust

See Historic Houses Trust website -

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Monday 26 May 2008 / Friday 30 May 2008

Education and Schools
Teacher Stress

Dr Deirdre Duncan and John EdwardsThere are many stressors on schools and on teachers thesedays. Researchers from The University of New England and the Australian Catholic University have found that many teachers also say they have experienced bullying in the workplace, from the attitude of some parents and students through to unmanageable workloads or being belittled or having their ability to cope questioned. For Learning Works, Tony Ryan visited the Strathfield Campus of the Australian Catholic University and interviewed team members Dr Deirdre Duncan and John Edwards about their research, with team leader Dan Riley from the University of New England. Download audio file

Associate Professor Deirdre Duncan and researcher John Edwards, pictured at the Strathfield Campus in Sydney of the Australian Catholic University, speaking about their research, in conjunction with Dan Riley at the University of New England, into the bullying of teachers.

Arts Literature and Music
Grammar Gremlins – Part 2

In this short series, Dr Isobel Grave from the School of International Studies at the University of South Australia continues to demystify some of the difficulties in current English usage. This is the second of three segments on our use of the English language.

Media Film and Technology
Film Reviews - Iron Man and The Painted Veil

Learning Works’ resident film reviewer John J McGowan reviews two movies that provide very effective magic carpet rides - but to totally different worlds. The movies are both high quality productions but they are as different as chalk and cheese. One of them, The Painted Veil, is a finely-crafted love story set in 1920’s China while the other, Iron Man, is an exciting adventure story based on a comic book superhero.

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Tony Ryan
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