Edx Education in conversation with Brantley Turner
Episode 50: Brantley Turner, Education Management Expert, Currently Principal, American International school Shanghai Qibao Dwight High School, In Conversation with Edx Education.
Brantley is recognised for her pioneering work with East-West school leadership and impeccable Chinese communication skills. A pending Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) focused in International Business with a specialization in Higher Education from International School of Management.
Today we are chatting with Brantley about her adventures working in Asia, global citizens and trauma informed teaching in international context.
Highlights from this episode:
(02:55) Beginning my path of discovery in China
(06:44) A very Anglo-Franco anchored curriculum
(12:51) Learning t engage with diversity
(15:58) We must innovate to create value
(17:52) Teaching by standing in someone else’s shoes
(23:54) The long-lasting ramifications of Covid
(29:36) Parenting the parents
#internationalschool #teachers #education #edxeducation
You’re listening to education experts with Edx Education. Education is evolving. Join Heather welch from Edx Education, chatting with teachers, psychologists, parents, authors, creatives, and other tons of experts to keep up with the trends and what’s happening from around the. This podcast series, discusses home learning, school readiness, being creatives, changes in education, and discussing what’s next in hands-on learning.
Or as we like to say, learning through play.
Welcome, everyone. I’m Heather Welch from edx education and today being a conversation with Brantley Turner education management expert, and currently principal at the American international school in Shanghai. I’m going to say this. It might not be correct with Qiabo Dwight high school. Brantley’s recognized for her pioneering work with east-west school leadership and impeccable Chinese communication skills, upending her doctor of philosophy, a PhD focused in international business with a specialization in heart, and higher education from the international school of management.
Today, we’re chatting with Brantley about her adventures working in Asia, global citizens and trauma-informed teaching in the international context, which I think we can all relate to. Welcome, Brantley. Thank you for joining us today.
Wonderful, thank you, Heather. I’m so pleased to be here. It’s wonderful to join from Shanghai.
Nice to have you, but can I ask you to talk about your passion for education and the adventure that you’ve had, you know, overseas, particularly in Asia? How did you get there?
Absolutely. I think, you know, I, I have come at education from the standpoint of cooperation and I feel like this, this path, this journey of being engaged in China, is engaged in. Has always been trying to figure out how to get things right. You know, getting it right, as opposed to being right. And the aspect of education that allows for that journey, right. That exploration that not everything is about outcomes and the end game I’ve just found. It has kept me engaged and excited.
Just thinking a little bit about the podcast and a connection to play. You know, there are so many different interpretations of. And really in my case, the play has always represented what sparks, joy and sparks connection. So my passion for education was consolidated. As I realized, I could use it as a tool to cooperate and collaborate and it’s playful and fun.
I have a lot of funny stories about being a bad English teacher and all sorts of things, but it’s about that, that connectivity and that, that moment when you’re in the classroom where you’re working with teachers and, and how. Just for me, it just sparks joy and connection. So
When did you first go over to Asia? What did take you over to Shanghai?
So I, first took a trip to Beijing in 1994 and I had an opportunity. My mother was on a business trip and I had an opportunity to go with her and I just was blown away. I mean, honestly, I had a great education, but I’m not sure that I knew Beijing was the capital.
If we think about 94, we were starting to get connected with the internet and email, and I landed in this place and it was so new and different and exciting. So I wound up doing various stints in Beijing as a student, you know, just typical language learning. And then as I was graduating from undergraduate in 1998 in us, I thought, you know what?
I just want to move to China, and joined a graduate school program, uh, at the Hopkins Nanjing centre, which is a joint venture program between Hopkins Johns Hopkins University and Nanjing University. And it was a cooperatively run, graduate school. And I think that’s really what transmitted to me, how little understanding there was, how, how little connection, how much misinformation and it, and it really just put me on this path of discovery.
I absolutely know how much I don’t know about it. Right. And I would not even profess to be able to interpret on a daily basis, even the simplest things. But it’s pace and the speed of development and the change. And I feel like I became an adult as I, as I went on this China journey and have been lucky to get to step out and spend time in the west.
And, you know, I haven’t only been here, but, really it’s was an, you know, an avid Explorer in China. Just ticked the boxes in so many different ways.
Asia is an amazing place to be. I know that you know, there are a lot of misconceptions at times from east to west and west-east is a nice way to put it.
I mean, we, edx education is actually based in Taiwan over the years I have learned many different, you know, just different cultural changes. Differences that we have, really beautiful ones too, in the ways that. From all the different festivals, the cultural festivals that come and even living in Singapore, there were some amazing, I always loved anything from it was a tomb sweeping to the moon lanterns, mid-autumn festival.
They’re all beautiful. And there’s so much behind it as well. You know, I mean even, oh, dragon boat, dragon, boating, everything like everything was just, there’s always, there’s so much culture behind all that when you’re from Australia, you know, our country is not even at all.
So for me, it was always amazing to see all of this, but listen, let’s have a chat about global education in the 21st century. I understand. That’s something that you’re interested in that you’ve been looking at, especially where you are now.
Well, for sure. Really when we start to think about global citizens, essentially the mission of my school is to give Chinese students access to international education.
They do leave China to go to university. It’s this great gift for these 15 to 18-year-olds, right? You get them at this crucial stage where they’re becoming. When they leave us, they go on to university, they leave their home country, they go on this grand exploration and you really want to feel that you’re equipping these young people with the tools and the awareness, to flourish in those challenges.
You’ve obviously spent so much time around the world and I’ve had that privilege. Think about young folks, my students, and parents, for the most part, who don’t speak English. And they’ve made this amazing decision to put their child in our school, which is an international baccalaureate curriculum, which is a very Western right.
It’s a very Anglo-Franco anchored curriculum. And I think that as global citizens, we have to start saying, okay, we have this responsibility to these young people and how do we treat that responsibility? I’ve always worked on these kinds of key questions right around is this internationalization of education in whatever country that sits.
Is it, it isn’t the westernization of education and what are the lessons and the values and the understanding, and even the content that we can pull from different cultures. You know, we spent time in the, in west talking about decolonizing the curriculum. Okay. What’s our starting point. If we need to think about how to bring responsibility into the curriculum and honour the home.
The home culture. Global citizen, global citizens start with the idea of honouring and respecting. We live in a world with a lot of young people and frankly, a lot of adults that don’t come from that starter.
The evolution of education. We’re at a tipping point now where it does need to, we do need to change. It does need to change, not just internationally, it needs to change in home countries as,
So just a few kinds of easy ways to think about it. Right. And I think that educators and parents would agree with, we must help these young people to understand conjecture from a. Right. Who, what are, and what are people’s opinions?
What are the facts? What is the meaning behind what think of how much digital consumption our young, our young people are experiencing? Right? So one is how do you make it as, how do you know what you’re being told? How do you distinguish that? Also, how do you, how do you deal as a digital citizen? How do you deal as a person in interactions?
Face-to-face interactions? We’ve been given so many amazing benefits by the connectivity right. Of digital citizenship, but at the same time, how do you really think? Others. And how do you learn in those spaces? I think in my case, right? I’m a very, we’ve talked a lot about in the world in the last two years, this kind of Buka idea, right?
Volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity. And I think in my, in my situation, I’ve been in a Buka state in China for multiple decades. And so I’ve sort of with my global, you know, trying to help, help raise global citizens as students. Right. Force that grey force, that discomfort and sort of relishing right.
Find the beauty in the complexity and the uncertainty. So these are just all different pieces that I think we, we have to transmit and transfer to, to young people to serve their futures.
Global evolution of, they do say, I think it was, was it Lego or someone did a big study with one of the big groups. And they were saying that by 2030, our education systems are not built for the jobs that actually coming about because of this, this fast-tracking of. The digital world. So there, they do talk about this a lot that are we developing.
This is something that broadly you may be developing faster than say our stagnant systems over here that, you know, do take a long time. And you’d know that with the American systems as well, the curriculums don’t change overnight, they do take a long time. I know in America, you’ve got the districts, you’ve got the, and it comes down to each state and everything.
So we might find that where you’re doing. Global citizens have more of the skills that we need for this change is digital. This evolution of digital citizenship, really that we’ve got, has been fast-track to younger years. I know with my own children Brantley that, you know, during COVID, when the schools were locked down, they didn’t have that.
They weren’t interested in talking to their friends on social media, not social media, but more like, you know, on these different systems, but that’s how they are forced to have their friendship group. So it’s been really interesting how the trends have changed. You know, I suppose that’s something to ask you, you know, have you seen a massive change in education in the last two years?
Especially international. With all of everything that’s happened.
I think that in a lot of ways, you know, what you’re getting at with this sort of idea, are our schools keeping up it’s this balance between, is it about the content or is it about skills? Right? The reality is that we can’t, we can no longer learn for a world that leads.
We need to know the content. We have content at our fingertips, right. Was adapt the education for the skills. And how do you teach young people to learn? The only way to keep up is to learn how to learn. And that sounds silly. But that is what is so challenging because you’re dealing with each unique individual, right?
It’s like each child is an artist. And how do you create, how do we say it? The Dwight schools globally, their spark of genius. How do you find that? And uncover that when situations are so difficult when so many people are suffering or do not live in ideal circumstances or do not have tech the technology access that, that some do.
Right. And I think. One of the, one of the sorts of pieces, you know, I would almost say that certainly, I wouldn’t speak for China to say China as a whole is getting it right on how to educate young people for the future. And we could have a whole other podcast to try to kind of hash that. But, but the point is though that when you’re given these, these beautiful opportunities of two cultures or two ways of thinking meet.
You learn this sort of ability, to sit with paradox, right? You learn. And I think if we can help young people hold two conflicting ideas in their minds and tether it out, get out of their echo chambers work to think about what is global ethics. I mean, it’s all fine. And well, if we in the west or, or separately in the east, come up with ethics that work for us, some sort of expedient morality.
Right. But the problem is that isn’t the world that our young people are facing and they can’t expect. To, live without engaging with diversity and diversity of thought, diversity of culture, ethnicity, or race. And so I think that what I’ve been given a gift is to have a very small laboratory of a school to, to, to try to discover these, these things.
But I do feel that the world of tests and assessment and grades and comparison and rank, never leaves these young people behind. Right. The way in which young people are validated. And that’s something that I’m really interested in exploring and seeing how that’s changed in the last two years, how has this disrupted learning online learning?
How has that changed the way in which young people feel that they can be validated and successful? And, and for me, the jury is out, the jury is out.
I know that still there was a whole lot of talk about scrapping, all the assessments here. I don’t know what you’d call them in America. We had like common assessments and common because the children just didn’t have the same opportunities, especially in the first, our first lockdown, particularly in the UK.
And they asked for the assessments not to be, to be more of a competency-based and not so much as this national-based. We, you know, if you get ABC, right, you’re there in the top there, see, or their assessment, there was really sort of. Um, it was, it’s just been a really interesting time, but they still, we still do.
We’re still doing it over here. Like whether it’s going to be changed in the next few years, I think it’ll be quite late. I think it’s going to be quite late for any change like that. Especially the earliest system has changed. So that’s good for the early years, but it’s for the older years, it hasn’t for the high school.
It has not at all. It’s still that very much assessment by the algorithms are saying, this is what you’ll get at university. This is what you’re going to do. So it’s been really interesting. I do believe that the jury is out. It needs to, they need to think about how the systems were.
Absolutely. I mean, I think you’ve addressed this in a lot of your other podcasts time, right?
At the end of the day, if you, if you give an assessment, you, you know, you’re. Meeting, uh, an end result and that there’s no time to, to explore all things with all people and all students.
Right. So, but I do think you’ve seen tiny little interesting pockets. I’ll just give two examples that may be relevant to listeners that are teachers.
You get a bunch of us in a room we could argue forever about how. But if you look at what Cambridge and the international baccalaureate did, respectively Cambridge went with this alternative two exams called portfolio of evidence. And the international baccalaureate went with non-exam route to four countries, unable to sit the external assessments.
And while that took some time. And it was very complex in 2020, without those systems in place. Those movements give me hope that there may be some way to provide alternatives. And I think that I wouldn’t say scrap it all right now. I’m, I’m a pragmatist, right? There’s 220 million students in China.
They’re literate. And I consider that incredibly extraordinary achievement, right? So I think we have to, to, to, to temper our, our sort of disdain for the lack of the evolution at the top of the. And make sure that we’re not leaving kids who have no access behind. And so I do think that there needs to be a lot of thinking around that, but, but certainly being forced to innovate is a huge part of what you’re probably trying to do in helping young people play more.
Right. That we must innovate. And if we are forced by extremely challenging circumstances to innovate, it is my hope that at the very least we do it because otherwise we’re completely squandering we’re wasting young people’s time and not bringing the value that we could to be taken up to their lives.
So I think, again, you know, I’m passionate about this topic because. I don’t think the answers are easy, right? Solutions are not easy. And there isn’t a size fits that’s education.
Is it the way that you’re talking, the way that you’re talking about? What, what was it that you say at Dwight? The geniuses you’d find the inner genius.
The spark of genius.
[00:17:13] Heather Welch: I think that’s such a lovely way to put it. Cause not everyone’s an artist, not everyone’s a mathematician, but they’ve all got their own way about them. They’ve got something amazing about them. We just have to find it, it might be dance. It might be music. It might be something that traditionally is not seen as a, you know, we want you to be a lawyer or.
You know, a doctor or anything like that. So, and parents might have to get around to all actually they’re going to be a dance. So they’re going to be a choreographer. They’re going to be, there are so many other things in life that they could have their genius for.
We just continuing on with this kind of witness, with the sense of where we’re going?
Picking up on the last statement that you were making about, you know, some students are artists, some students are great at math. The interesting thing about that is how we connect our learning with a sense of. Standing in someone else’s shoes, right? If we want to talk about a global citizen and we want to talk about how do you do that?
Because not everybody’s going to get on a plane and fly around the world. I mean, that’s an extremely privileged position. So the point is how do you create that ability to empathize, to care, to recognize that if you lose cooperation, right? The world is in a situation right now where decoupling seems to be the direction.
And I mean, you know, massive, massive decoupling across many nations and many ideologies. But if we move into that, that is, I would argue badly for world peace. So how do we help each young person have the tools to recognize that? And I think a lot of it comes from those educational opportunities that they’re given.
I’m a huge advocate for arts education. I believe in empathy. If I want to understand my students who don’t want to talk to me, cause they’re teenagers who are uninterested in a conversation with me, you know, I just look at their artwork. I just look at what they’re creating and, and try to understand and care about what’s going on with them and it, and it can gender huge empathy for others.
Reading programs at the fundamental level, because you step into literature, you step into stories, and you start to be able to look at things from someone else’s point. And so, and so to me, these are all these micro needs that help us grow global citizens. As opposed to saying the program itself must be all about, you know, global mindedness.
It’s, there are little nuggets that you can pull from each discipline that help students have more access to that learning and understanding. Okay, really? I just want one.
I just can you, for our listeners, can you let them know what your definition of a global citizen. Just for the everyday teacher that’s maybe only ever teaching you one country or the teacher that maybe teaches overseas and come, they, then, you know, is it the same as third culture kids?
Is it a global citizen? What are you classifying as global citizens? And when we’re talking about
Today, so sure. Just to clarify, I think the global citizen is understanding diverse perspectives period. Right? And it’s whether it’s in your home country and you’re working to understand different cultures within your home country.
With different backgrounds and different perspectives, how are we going to drive towards a real understanding and embracing of diversity, and real inclusion, be that cognitive diversity, ethnic diversity, or gender diversity. How are we going to get there if we don’t have the ability to understand things from different perspectives?
So I almost would use perspective synonymously with global. Yeah. Because to me, if you’re doing it in your hometown, You can apply that more broadly to the world. It gets, it helps work on bias and discrimination. And so that’s what I would offer.
Um, for you. What’s the, what’s the secret ingredients for students to be global thinkers are sort of touched on it.
What do you think the secret ingredients are?
So again, it’s, I’ve been kind of reiterated this idea of the echo. Right. Let’s talk about learning world languages. Okay. Do you learn a world language just to learn the language or what do you learn the world language for?
You learn the world language to engage with the culture. AI is going to replace the need for light, for language learning. Right. We can translate online anything, a text, a vote, a verbal document subtitles for a movie.
I mean, there’s, there are apps to do all of that now and they do it extremely well. But do understand that the feeling behind the language can you, can you, so again, I think language learning as a part of a global globalized curriculum is also extremely powerful.
Um, it helps students start to, to take on understanding a culture from, from, from the inside out and not to say that you can then become a, you know, a native member of that other culture, but you, at least you at least start to change your viewpoint. You know, you learn words that you don’t know as well in your own language, fun ways of saying things.
I mean, there are so many, I think there are so many advantages to young people who still have access. And I, and I guess maybe in some ways I’m, I’m bringing up three areas that I feel. Get under art students are often underserved. And as I said before, arts and reading and by reading, I would say library programs, right?
Library programs introduce students to different perspectives, even if they can’t leave their hometown or their school. And then also that language learning, you know, why push second languages when a computer can ultimately do it for you, because you’re trying to instill a different value of. It’s funny when we first..
Met, when we were just leaving Dubai a few years ago, the library is now being cut.
They’re not calling them libraries. They in international schools, they’re calling them sort of like your stem or your make and do, and they’ll have a library, but they’re also having stem activities and things like that to try and engage more students to come into the area and then get brought back into the books.
So it wasn’t just, it was sort of more of like an area they could hang out and do lots of things rather than just a library. So really interesting change that they were trying to do with. Per that two or three years ago and will leaving divine. Some of the international schools just they’re putting in more of a stem or steam, probably a better way to put it and activity.
So it brings in the arts as well so that they could do within the library. This one, as you know, it’s just another way to address the area. Um, just something. Quite passionate about this. And I just, I know I’m conscious of time, so I want to have a quick chat with you. It’s probably not a quick chat, but you know, let’s have a chat about trauma-informed teaching in the international context and your ideas around
This. Sure. Yeah. Obviously a huge topic, but the reality is that is what we’ve experienced, right. Or all organizations globally in the last two years, in particular, have faced. Trauma. So that looks different in different countries, but it is a global reality. And I like to think a lot about the way schools or organizations support people during periods of trauma because you have opportunities to be uniquely powerful.
Right. And the ramifications are long-lasting because we have become captains. Whether we’re teachers in the classroom with young people or we’re administrators in schools, we become captains. Psychological safety and avoidance of portrayal. And in this to me is, I mean, and just, just to sort of talk about it from the personal level, I really I’m very comfortable with messy and gray, as I said before.
Right. And complicated. And I think type thinking about vulnerability, thinking about how vulnerable students and teachers have become globally and trying to work to step into that vulnerability is something that doesn’t sit comfortably with everyone, right? It is. Not all teachers want to be vulnerable with students.
And I’m certainly not suggesting that they become inappropriately vulnerable. Right. But at the same time, you’ve got to recognize the vulnerability and you’ve got to learn to address it. And I think for teachers that start with their administrations, you’ve got to lead that way. You’ve got to accept the messy, ugly, raw sides of life because that frees people to be messy.
Right. And I think that that freeing and we see it with, with our young people who are having social, emotional challenges. You know, they did not come into the world of the last two years as an adult with a broad range of experiences. Many of them came into it as very young people. I mean, students who’ve been denied socialization at the kindergarten level for three years.
I have friends in Shanghai who were in other parts of the world first go-round, and now they’re here and online learning and they’ve barely been in school. And so again, when, when I think about trauma-informed teaching, I think first. Can we agree that vulnerability is good in leadership, but can we come to that agreement?
Because the traditional construct of leading doesn’t make space for vulnerability. And I don’t think that works. And so I think again, it starts at the top and then you’ve got to work down to your teachers. You’ve got to make it safe. You’ve got to make the space so that you can hope those teachers have the courage to walk into the classroom and face all of those vulnerable challenges that their kids are facing.
Support and education is that support and education in them giving them education to the teacher.
So there’s so many, I mean, we, as our school designed a lot of different tools and quick lit laundry list, you know, I started to realize in 2020, when Wilham locked down, that a lot of my finance, my faculty was in dire financial straits because they were sending a lot of money home.
They were sending money from China to the Philippines, to India. And all of a sudden they needed access to money to, to deal with, you know, changing circumstances here and they didn’t miss it. So we hired a financial planner to work with teachers on how to do a savings plan, right. How to, how to learn, how to prepare for your retirement.
And these are young people, right? They’re like, I’m 30. Why do I need to think about this? And I say because now you understand what happens when you’re facing a crisis. Mental health counselling. I mean, I was terrified. I woke up on, on January 24th when Mohan was closed and I thought, oh my goodness, teachers are going to be trapped with their spouses and they’re going to fight and relationship problems are just going to boil over.
So we reached out to a relationship counsellor to be kind of on-call for teachers. And we wound up investing. I gained a ton of weight in 2020 in the first lockdown. I was just eating my way through it and fine. It is what it is. Right. But. I think it was gone and all of these things. And then I sort of rectified a bit and lost some weight and all my teachers started saying, my goodness, how did you do it?
Not that look, I shouldn’t give diet advice. I mean, not everybody has a different body. Everybody has different goals. So we hired a nutritionist to give some sessions with teachers who were really worried. The way in which set being sedentary had impacted their health. And I think with the one other thing that we found, and I think this, this holds true for everyone is we realized, you know, teachers have all this amazing opportunity to work on their pedagogy, right?
They can work on ed-tech, and they can learn to use all these tools. I mean, goodness gracious. How many, how many seminars have been launched in the past two years to help us be better at what we do? But leadership was something that was meeting. We had so much, we had so many leaders in school who were afraid to.
Right. And we needed, so we did a leadership sprint with an intercultural trainer because in my context, we’ve got a lot of people from different countries, leading diverse teams. So, so there’s a lot of, it’s not just about speaking English, right? There’s a lot of cultural connection that needs to happen to make leadership successful.
So we, we did that now. None of these initiatives was particularly expensive because the reality is only, you know, 14 people chatted with the nutritionist and maybe a couple called the mental health counsellor. And 18 came to the meeting. With the financial planner. And then, you know, and these were all programs that we negotiated with people that we trusted, who felt like their repayment to society during the pandemic.
And during a very rough period was to provide support for teachers at a reasonable amount. We were not going to go in for the high end. We were going for people who were willing to sit with our teachers and help them. And so there’s a bit of that social networking thing. Again, another bit of a kind of complicated topic in schools.
Sometimes teachers. Yeah, because teachers are trained and they have all their own expertise. And then you get someone like me, who’s worked in business and is not the same level teacher that many other people are that work for me. And I’m not the smartest person in the room. And I don’t always understand what my curriculum director understands.
But I think that I sort of position myself as somebody who wants to take care of people. And it’s like a parent being a parent
you’re parenting that you don’t get to tell them how they feel when they wake up in the morning, you got to learn to sit with it and sort of.
And look, we made a lot of mistakes along the way, and we’re in a really hard lockdown right now in Shanghai. And I’m sure we’re making many, many mistakes as well, but, but just as a, as a sort of the last piece on that, that trauma piece is how available are you for people?
How much do you deeply care about whether their fundamental needs are being met and you can’t meet them all? So, you know, you can’t please everybody, but at least you can try to care deeply. What you’re doing. And, you know, the reality is for the great resignation of teachers, if you can’t do it, and if it’s too hard and you need a break, you gotta take a break, you know, and it can be hard financially, but you can’t.
Forced this, it is an incredibly challenging job that requires huge courage. And, and the only final statement I would make on that is I would love, I know that so many parents globally have really walked into the shoes of what it feels like to have a child trying to learn in the home. And that’s created huge frustration.
Many, many moms in particular have had to leave their jobs and that’s been painful. Or they felt that they were failing at being a parent all the time. Right? I mean, because you want to be a good parent, but when you’re completely fried yourself, it’s very, very hard to be a good parent. And so I think that I’m hoping that there’s a further and deeper understanding by the rest of society, of the vulnerability and challenge of teaching.
And I’m not sure we’re there yet. I’m worried about teachers being misunderstood. And, you know, maybe we can grow some respect for the craft through this pandemic. That would be great. Absolutely.
I mean, it’s the one role that it teaches it. I mean, teachers, this, it builds every single profession.
Realistically, every profession has come from a teacher, someone they’ve learned from, I mean, it’s amazing as a parent and you know, I’m a trained teacher, but as a parent, I had my children at home and actually.
I’ve got a deep respect for teachers now having my own children at home, I think it’s much easier to teach other children than your own it’s because of the emotions then there are really deep emotions there.
But also I think as parents, we realized, you know, the areas that our children probably weren’t, we sort of had a blind eye with. We didn’t really know. We weren’t that involved with it. So sometimes it’s, we’re involved in a different level, but kind of a, a good level, I suppose. Now there’s been a happy medium for us.
It’s not, everything is done at school. It’s, you know, there’s, uh, there are experiences that we give our children and the way that we talk to them about it, when it comes to having just general experiences, you know, there’s sort of more of an education element, which I think sometimes we lose as parents and we just get so involved in.
How can I put it like a busy life having so many things on making ourselves busy instead of taking the time at the moment? But it’s an, I know that we’re getting out of time here. And what I want to know is I think broadly, I’d love to hear that you’re writing a book about all this. However, what is your next adventure?
So for now, my interest to get through this term and possible will be out on July one. You know, look, I, I have this degree that I’ve been working on for a long time. I enjoy writing. Um, and I’ve written a lot about China and education in China and what I’ve learned from it through this, this doctorate.
And I’m hoping I can finish it. I think I’ve still got a ways to go. That would be an accomplishment. And, and a lot of people say, you know, what can you, you know, can you write about China and you know, what can we learn? And I think for me right now, it’s a pause on processing, right? I think I need some distance and I need some new experiences that then we’ll have.
Process all of this, this, this time that I’ve spent here. And so I’m always looking to just get better at what I do and learn from others and stay open and bright when I can grab a few minutes and try to be a good mom to my eight-year-old, 10 year old and 13 year old, I’m already feeling like, oh goodness.
My 13-year-old is going to be leaving home. She’s going into high school family time and having joy together and celebrating and being happy when the sun is out. I’m very, I’m very content too. To just be and worry about checking a lot of the tick boxes that I feel like are out there at somewhere the, down the track. Anytime I can, I can grab for myself.
That’s good. That’s very important too. If your batteries are empty, then you can’t serve anyone else. Can you? We can’t do anything for anyone else, but this is how can people get in touch with you? Brent leaves. They’re interested in you, and what you’re doing for your PhD.
Trauma-informed teaching international context, or if they are interested in the system that you’ve got in place with Chibo Cibao Dwight into
The highest. So look, I think LinkedIn is probably the easiest, just because the social media that we have access to here in China is behind the firewall. So it’s going to be hard on Instagram and, and stuff, but LinkedIn, Brantley Turner, definitely here in Shanghai that I do check that when I jumped the firewall and I’m happy to connect with anyone would be one.
Riley. Thank you so much for chatting with us today. We really appreciate it. And good luck with your PhD. It sounds like you’ve got some time and also for the work that you’re doing, getting through this term and maybe having a break over the summer and have you a little bit of travel when it’s over.
Absolutely. So thank you so much, Heather. It was really a pleasure. There are so many exciting developments happening right now in education. edX education would love to hear from you. So do get in touch with us, and subscribe to our podcast, which is available on apple beams, Spotify tune-in and so many others.
This podcast series is brought to you by Heather welds for media X education. She’d like to say let’s create lifelong learners.