ABSTRACTS 

2nd SESSION – FRIDAY AFTERNOON, FEBRUARY 23rd 2024 2.30 pm – 6.10 pm

STUDENTS, THE INVASION OF “THE TEMPLE”

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Adolescents as subjects-active in life contexts and school as an important community node for establishing a network of meaningful accompanying relationships toward adulthood: these are the two theoretical assumptions underlying the data that will be presented, drawn from the “Generation Z” research surveys of the Toniolo Institute’s Youth Observatory.

Drawing onto Positive Youth Development, the research conceptualized the adolescent as a bearer of hardships but also of resources.  His or her life context, taken as a whole, can be a physical and mental place of possible growth and formation if the adult generation that inhabits it proves capable of “risking a joint responsibility” and laying on Generation Z a look of trust and hope. Hence the need to foster a non-fragmented reading of this relational context and intergenerational in nature in the full sense.

Therefore, during the report, the relational characteristics of the life contexts of the adolescents – family, peers/friends, associations, local community – with special attention to the school – will be presented; their needs and demands to the adult generation as a whole and in the specificity of role of each of its components (parents, teachers, referents….).

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A number of students – from Italy and other countries, ranging from Germany to California – all in upper secondary school, tell us what has been most significant in their education and what they think should change in school.

This is not an exhaustive picture; these are the voices of some students speaking on their own behalf and, in some cases, on behalf of their class. It is interesting, however, how in different words some themes return…

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Every CHILD CAN makes a compelling and inspiring case for taking a design-led approach to empowering and educating our children.

Founded by Kiran Bir Sethi, an alumnus of the National Institute of Design and an award-winning educator, the keynote will share the story of how she set up the Riverside School, and the unique design process (FIDS – Feel,Imgaine,Do,Share) that places the focus of education on developing a child’s agency and character. Through visual case studies, Sethi will share examples of how Riverside school graduates confident, empowered and humane citizens with an I CAN mindset.

The talk will also share how FIDS has become a tool of agency for children across the world – empowering them to be agents of change in their communities – with one simple belief – Every Child CAN.

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What might motivate an 18-year-old student to choose philosophy as a university major/ field of study/ faculty? Certainly, a good relationship with questions-and perhaps an attraction to broken paths and unseen goals, those that compel the toil and joy of research. As well as a stubbornness to curiosity, cultivated and encouraged by the teachers he met along his path.

Of that very path, in a narrative that starts from her experience but aims to widen to a myriad of other possible experiences, Ilaria Gaspari – who actually graduated in Philosophy and then embarked on a career devoted to writing and research – retraces in her talk stages and junctures, dwelling on indecisions, doubts, desires; and on the fear of failure, which is sometimes experienced but can open to a new path, if it is not given the power to be paralyzing.

The presentation is intended to allow those who teach to reflect on the importance of an educational itinerary, trying to look at the issue from the perspective of a student who ends up finding her way partly thanks to the support of those who help her orient herself without yanking her.

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Recent years have seen an explosion of scientific evidence showing that there is a different way to learn, lead and live, available to us all. When people take a limitless approach to learning – in learning and in life – different pathways open up, leading to higher, more equitable and more enjoyable achievement.

It is important to dispel the myth of the “math brain” and for students to develop a growth mindset, but messages that all students can learn and grow often fall flat when they are accompanied by narrow mathematics questions with one answer. This presentation will share the ways we can open mathematics questions, to honor the different ways students see and think, and to allow the brain to connect and develop in different ways. This “mathematical mindset” approach, based on neuroscience, allows students to develop growth mindsets and flourish.

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The presentation focuses on the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in enhancing mathematics education, both in lesson preparation and in-class teaching. We explore how AI can aid teachers in creating more engaging and personalized learning materials, and in developing innovative problem-solving exercises.

In the classroom, AI’s role in providing real-time assistance and adaptive learning experiences is examined, emphasizing its ability to offer personalized feedback and assess student performance. The session also addresses the challenges and ethical considerations of AI integration in education, including data privacy and the necessity for teacher training in AI tools. The goal is to equip educators with practical strategies for leveraging AI to improve teaching effectiveness and student learning outcomes.

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