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Jo Boaler and Cathy Williams visit Scotland

Dr Jo Boaler and Cathy Williams, the world renowned mathematics experts who support hundreds of millions around the world to use growth mindset in numeracy, visited Scotland in September as guests of Winning Scotland Foundation. 

In that time, Boaler and Williams presented their ‘mindset mathemtatics’ ideas to an audience of more than 1,000 teachers and educational leaders, raising the awareness and practice of growth mindset principles in Scottish maths classrooms.

On Tuesday 18th September, Boaler and Williams delivered a full-day conference at Murrayfield Stadium to 357 teachers and practitioners.  They focused on a range of topics, including:

  • Understanding the context for teaching maths (e.g. 58% of Scottish pupils say maths makes them anxious)
  • Relating mathematics to Carol Dweck’s work on fixed and growth mindsets
  • Looking at how the brain works, how it reacts to challenges and mistakes and that there is no such thing as a ‘maths brain’.
  • Approaches to teaching ‘open maths’: that is multi-dimensional, includes visuals, discussion, connections, and gives the idea maths is a growth mindset subject.
  • You can view and download the full presentation from Jo and Cathy's Murrayfield conference here.

On Wednesday 18th September, in partnership with Education Scotland, Dr Boaler delivered a keynote speech to a packed auditorium and via live webcast at the Scottish Learning Festival in Glasgow.  Dr Boaler focused on how we can motivate and inspire children to love maths by developing a positive mindset, celebrating mistakes and flexible, creative, visual thinking.

Over the course of their visit, Jo Boaler and Cathy Williams also met a number of key figures in education, including education secretary and deputy first minister, John Swinney MSP; leaders from Education Scotland and Scotland’s local education authorities; representatives from the ‘Making Maths Count’ group; and several of Scotland leading business people.

Winning Scotland Foundation will continue to raise awareness of Dr Boaler and Williams’ work through their Mindset in Education project, which supports teachers and education management to develop a growth mindset culture across whole schools, clusters and regions.