Lifting Vision | Leaders Learning – SCIL Study Tour 2011

Vision becoming reality
I am energized when a dream or vision for the future, one that I have been working on for some time, finally becomes reality. In less than two weeks we embark on the next big adventure

About 1 year ago I was traveling with my colleagues from SCIL/NBCS on the study tour, primarily looking at award-winning museums and libraries as places where the community choose to go to learn.

We were inspired by The Third Teacher quote:
Emulate Museums: An environment rich in evocative objects–whether it’s a classroom or a museum–triggers active learning by letting students pick what to engage with.

It was during this trip that we started to think about providing these opportunities for educational leaders from other schools to join us on a similar trip, to lift vision, sharpen each others thinking and engage in rich conversations.

This was how the SCIL Study Tour 2011 came into being.

Since that tour, just 12 months ago, I have been working on shaping a travel experience for other educational leaders that will lift vision, and get them thinking about change, transforming schools and making a difference for this generation and the generations to come.

10 people, 11days, 4 countries, 8 schools, 2 libraries, 2 museums (at least)

One of the scariest things about organising this was wondering if anyone would want to come. Well they did. There are 10 in the group – 8 Australians from NSW and Victoria and 2 Canadians.

The tour commences in Copenhagen on Sunday 9 October and we run (literally, I think) until the Friday of the next week.

We will start in Denmark, travel to Sweden, The Netherlands and spend the final week in the UK.

In Copenhagen, Gothenburg and England we will visit schools, each chosen for a particular reason – outstanding design, exceptional leadership and rethinking the school experience. One in particular is the Kunskapsskolan model of school. It started in Sweden, now with 30 schools and has rolled out a franchise-type model in London and New York. If you have watched Charles Leadbeater’s TED talk, you will recall he mentioned Kunskapsskolan as a model for innovation.

The two libraries are in the historic city of Delft in The Netherlands. One is the acclaimed design of the university library, the other DOK Library Concept Center, is reinventing the concept of the library in the community.


The museums are both science-based, Danfoss Universe in Nordborg Denmark and Universeum in Gothenburg, Sweden. When we visited each it was the mid-term vacation week and there were not only children, but adolescents actively engaged in their learning. Choosing to be there.

I will share our journey with you and maybe you can join SCIL Study Tour 2012. I will let you in on a little secret, I am planning to spend some time in Finland – visiting schools, talking with educators.

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