Professional development that really works

Our focus is on systematically teaching the physical, behavioural, social and emotional skills needed to become a mentally healthy leader, a successful teacher, a reliable student, a valued administrator and a supportive parent.

Student TALKS
Teacher TALKS
Parent TALKS



The setup!

The problem with difficult , hard to reach, complex students is that we try to find quick solutions to complicated issues and end up exhausted.

This workshop shows how changing routines, altering expectations and teaching students how to master key social interactions can transform confrontation into positive growth.

Loaded with strategies, techniques, and ideas designed to prevent motivation and discipline problems this workshop enables you to set your class up for success and better understand those challenging students that cause you to struggle.


Developing better change management plans.

This 90 minute workshop builds the basis for ongoing improvement in teachers’ interactions with the most difficult of classes.

This workshop helps you:

  • Recognise what the behaviour is communicating.
  • Understand how this effects the rest of the class/school/life.
  • Pinpoint the causes and needs that motivate that behaviour.
  • Manage a plan for specific changes that avoids making mistakes that inflame the problem.

Participants will discover specific strategies and techniques designed to change attitudes and ignite a passion for success.


The art of how to respond to negative behaviours.

How you respond to a negative behaviour determines whether you use can transform your relationships with a student into a positive future or become locked into an eternal negative battle that will deplete and defeat you.

The art of the prompts builds your skill through a series of simple interactions that can translate into a positive outlook and a much happier class.

This fast paced 90 minute workshop zeroes in on understanding nine levels of simple interactive skills that you can learn to master.


How long-term learning can be enhanced by intentionally impairing short-term performance.

Forgetting is an essential part of learning, in fact the harder it is to retrieve a memory the greater the learning becomes. This is what Robert Bjork call a “desirable difficulty”.

“Forget about forgetting.” Bjork states, ”People tend to think that learning is building up something in your memory and that forgetting is losing the things you built. But in some respects the opposite is true.”

This workshop uses a “Station Rotation Model” of teaching students how to edit and assess their own work which details how teachers can intentionally make learning harder in the first instance, increases retention, resilience, and achievement in the longer term.

For this to happen teachers need to:

  • Explain how learning works.
  • Teach student how to study.
  • Create opportunities for learning (“desirable difficulties”).
  • Explain to students why you are using the strategies you are using.


Building memory and understanding learning.

Why did the restaurants La Parisian, The Verandah and The Palm Court all close on the 15 April 1912?

Good question?

This is the tone of the type of question that I like to slip into retrieval practice sessions with all ages of students of children. Retrieval Practice is a strategy in which calling information to mind subsequently enhances and boosts learning. Deliberately recalling information forces us to pull our knowledge “out” and examine what we “know”.

Retrieval practice can be used to introduce new aspects to old material and prime the brain for new learning. Research demonstrates that Retrieval Practice benefits both low and high ability students. Retrieval Practice is a simple, flexible learning strategy, and it can be adapted to a wide variety of situations including special education and gifted classrooms.


According to Russ Quaglia’s meticulous research on student voice, when students believe that their teachers know their students’ goals, hopes, dreams, and desires their students are 18 times more academically engaged than students who do not!

This workshop examines the conditions that can be used by all educators to improve their relationships with students, make teaching and learning more relevant and engaging, and create a renewed sense of purpose in their classrooms and schools.

The workshop details practical and doable ways that your school can implement:

  • Greater teacher student connection.
  • Student voice and leadership
  • Better interactions with complex students.
  • Transitioning strategies that enable change to happen.

You will also meet a plethora of creative strategies that involve students more in the daily running of life, the making of decisions, the process of school discipline and the course of change.

You will meet, amongst other strategies, how to set up:

  • A Student Senate
  • Safe School Super-Heroes
  • Genius Hour
  • Classroom strategies

Autism in the Mainstream Classroom

People with Autism do not suffer from Autism, they suffer from people who do not understand autism!

This interesting and highly practical workshop is designed for teachers and teacher assistants who work with autistic students and who would like to help with unlocking the puzzling aspects of motivating students who do not respond in a commonly expected way.

This workshop focuses on ten aspects of Autism and practical ways to deal with these characteristics and help Autistic Students thrive. These are:

  1. What Autism is and is not.
  2. How not to teach social skills.
  3. How understanding deep defense mode changes a teachers perspective. Are they defiant or overwhelmed?
  4. What it feels like to be scared, dysregulated and shut down.
  5. How to help a student get out of defense mode using a different approach
  6. Defrosting the freeze loop: why are they stuck and shutdown?
  7. How to motivate Autistic students without manipulation.
  8. Why rewards & punishment don’t work for people with Autism.
  9. The trust building process: 4 steps to building trust.
  10. Exploring the science of expectation.

Fearful, Worried and Scared to Try – Teaching Students with Anxiety

How the most anxious and vulnerable children can exceed expectations and thrive.

Australia, along with the rest of the world, is facing an ever increasing tide of anxiety, depression, and loneliness in more and more children at younger ages than ever before.

This fascinating workshop invites teachers to learn strategies based on ground-breaking research which shows how the most vulnerable of children can learn how to be the most resilient of adults.

Framed around Dr Thomas Boyce’s seminal book The Orchid & the Dandelion, it details how six parenting practices can be used to guide schools into making students more resilient than you ever thought possible.

Those strategies are:

  • Creating consistent routines.
  • Expressing love & care.
  • Recognizing & honoring the goodness in human differences.
  • Accepting fear and affirming effort.
  • Treading the fine line between protection and provocation.
  • Embracing the power of play.

Girl Versus Confidence

How to guide your female students to start taking risks, mess up, and become their amazingly imperfect, totally powerful selves!

Confidence is the bridge between thoughts and actions and confidence for girls is very different to confidence for boys. Part of this is the result of genetics but a large part is determined by socialisation and social mandates which become enabled and expected in school.

US research is showing that girls lose 30 percent of their confidence between the ages of 8 and 13. In Australia it gets worse as girls get older with mental health research telling us that we have a real problem.

This workshop details how if being confident is just as important for getting the job done as competence, it is completely necessary that all teachers who teach girls know:

  • How confidence is developed.
  • Identify the ways we can develop culture that builds ongoing confidence into future ongoing success.
  • How we can be great role models for a students to follow.
  • What the risk factors are.
  • The signs that confidence is being lost.
  • How to make ”perfection” a swear word!

This workshop is packed full of interesting insights, practical ideas and fascinating research. Did you know that fathers are better at identifying a lack of confidence in their daughters than mothers?

I was at the conference and just LOOOVED your presentation, it was so fascinating and insightful. Your session has inspired me to attempt to change the way I practise not only in my classroom but also in my personal life . Teacher

From Classroom Teachers