December 31, 2009

Just looking back

New Year's Eve is celebrated at many different moments in the world.
Time zones may be different but some things unite us.
From New York to Sydney, from Senegal to Warsaw the fireworks will
be lit and people wish each other Happy New Year.
It is good to realize that under the Dalton flag we have met so many
friends, from so many different cultures.
They are all in our hearts this evening.

December 28, 2009


In Dutch Dalton schools the weekly program of assignments
is listed on a form. And it is obvious that these forms got
The selection of work the student has to perform is made by
the teacher.
The student is responsible for the production of the work,
has to make all the assignments within the agreed time.
The 'ASSIGNMENT FORM' seems to be top-down constructed.
Only in strong Dalton schools also the sudents are involved in
composing the tasks.
Reading "The Dalton Laboratory Plan" more accurate I come to
the conclusion that the influence of the student himself on
the assignment has to be stimulated.
Therefore in many different publications from that period
several authors are speaking about CONTRACT.
I would like to encourage we start to use 'WEEKLY CONTRACT'

The characteristic of a contract is that it can't be drafted
unilaterally. There has to be influence from both sides.
To fulfill a contract both partners are responsible.

December 26, 2009

Good intentions for the New Year

What a great idea to bring flowers after Christmas Holidays for
all the children in your classroom.
They will be surprised with your kind initiative.
And as a good teacher you realize that instead of bringing cut
flowers it is necessary to learn them how to grow their own plants.

Enjoy the rest of your holidays.

December 18, 2009

International impact of The Dalton Plan

We have reports from hundreds of schools using the Dalton Plan
in Great Britain, Germany, Austria, Norway, Sweden, Holland,
Russia, China and Japan.
In each of the last three countries there are now over 1000 schools
which have put the Dalton Plan into operation, and in Great Britain
a much larger number.

An explanation of the Dalton Laboratory Plan
by its originator Helen Parkhurst - 1926

The international impact of The Dalton Plan was huge during the
time of educational reform.
Already more than 10 years Dalton International is stimulating a
network of innovative initiatives. Sharing good practice and
exchanging brilliant and creative ideas.
The number of Dalton schools in Europe is growing exponentially.
But it is not that quantity but the quality of the education
that counts.

December 16, 2009


The mediocre teacher tells.
The good teacher explains.
The superior teacher states.
The great teacher inspires.

William Arthur Ward

December 15, 2009


Yesterday official representatives of the City of Brno, the Region
of South Moravia and the City of Utrecht signed a memorandum in which
the cooperation between schools in both cities is established.

Daniel Rychnovsky, First Deputy Mayor of Brno, Milos Sifalda, Councillor
of the Region of South Moravia and Marka Spit, Deputy Mayor of Utrecht,
signed the memorandum.

During this ceremony Hans Marcelis as co-ordinator secondary education
and myself as co-ordinator primary education were honoured by the
Executive Board of the City of Utrecht with a beautiful glass bowl for
17 years of active participation in the city link.

Mohamed Jaater got a book with pictures from Brno and Utrecht for his
efforts in planning and co-ordination from the hands of Gertrud van Dam.

December 12, 2009

Is there more than Dalton ?

Sometimes I have to convince myself that there is more than Dalton.
This is exactly the reason that I added temporarily some of the
paintings of my favorite painter Floris Verster.
He was a brilliant colorist connected to the great Dutch period of
'The Hague School'.
Finally a school again !

December 10, 2009

Dalton modules

After several years of giving seminars and lectures about Dalton
education in other countries, more and more school teams abroad
are asking for concrete workshops on the own school level.
These practical workshops can be found on my website

In the coming months Dalton conferences are organized in :
Zvolen / Slovakia on February 4. 2010
Györszemere / Hungary on March 24. 2010
Brno / Czech Republic on May 4. 2010

December 8, 2009

Gifted pupils

Working on the organization of a 'Dalton+Class'
in order to help Dalton schools to start such a project, I've found
an interesting article of the Marston Middle School Oxford.
The objectives of this school are very close to the Dalton principles.
The school wants to endeavour to provide teaching which makes learning
challenging and enjoyable and enables pupils to realize their potential.

In a Dalton+Class we try to organize a kind of
laboratory in which pupils from different classes come together once
a week to work on a common project on differnt levels.

Gifted pupils demonstrate a significant higher level of ability than
most pupils of the same age in one or more curriculum area or in any
of these :
physical talent - artistic talent - mechanical ingenuity - leadership.

The Dalton+Class will be one of the targets for
Dalton International in the near future, starting with a workshop
during the next conference in Brno.

December 2, 2009

International inspiration

Following the weblog of Chris Edwards from Education Leeds
I was happy to read his summary of an article in the Guardian
of last weekend.
In this article a film was mentioned.
The film follows five young people and asks whether our current
system provides young people with the opportunity to develop
their talents and abilities.
Chris gives the advice to all teachers to watch it here.
and his statement :

We need a new generation of teachers to
coach, guide and support our young learners and to make
better use of technology to stretch and challenge and
connect with young peoples interests.

This is the basis of the Dalton method and the Kunskapsskolan approach where we personalise
and customise learning to meet the needs of each and
everyone of our unique learners.
We will always need great teachers to teach great lessons
but these must be surrounded by a sea of opportunities
which individual learners can access, adapt and use to
reach their personal goals.

Thank you Chris for these inspiring tips.

November 28, 2009

November 27, 2009

Magazine Dalton International

Together with Vladimir Moskvan and Marek Sapik we work on the
Magazine 2010. Many interesting articles written by inspired
colleagues from differnt countries color the Dalton spectrum.
To produce this bilingual magazine is only possible thanks to
the translations done by Helena from Chalabalova Dalton School.
We are much indepted to our publisher : Bravissimo !

November 18, 2009

Dalton card

During our workshop in Brno teachers from three different Dalton
schools created their own 'Daltonská Karta'.
It is a concrete product in which the teams condensed their vision
on the Dalton education in five statements.
In Holland we worked on the same product in 'De Driekleur' a new
Dalton school in 's Gravenzande.
Vladimir Moskvan came with me to that school and was very enthousiastic
about this Dalton card.
A nice example of international inspiration.

Czech teachers during the workshop

November 6, 2009

Dalton in Brno

Tomorrow I go to Brno again.
Next week three Dalton schools are participating in a workshop
to create a 'Dalton card'. It is a specific school document in
which each of the schools formulate their Dalton level.
School visits are planned as well.
Together with the board members of the Czech Dalton Association
we will prepare the next International Dalton Conference and we
work on the next edition of our Magazine.

October 30, 2009

The best insitutes in the Netherlands

Every year in the month October the Dutch Magazine 'Elsevier'
brings out a special "The best studies of the year".
For many years the pedagogical institute KPZ is on the highest
place. Also in 2009 this PABO is the best in the country.
It is an honour to work for the Dalton department of this
institute : Wenke Daltonconsultants / KPZ

New website

At this moment our editor is working on a new website.
In short time it can be found under the name DALTONKNAP.
Just now I am busy to give input to this site and make new
material in addition to our latest book :
free choice assignments based on multiple intelligences.
Available at the end of November.

October 28, 2009

Dalton school " 'n Profiet "

One of the schools I worked with last year had an official
visitation in order to get the predicat 'Dalton School'.
This small school is named 'n Profiet and is situated in
The school was rewarded with the status excellent.
I congratulate the team of teachers with their great and
solide work.
Dalton International can be proud of such a member !

October 27, 2009

Dalton Plan Pädagogik

Today Hans Wenke and I worked on the German edition of a book
about Dalton education.
It is an actualized summary of the books we wrote until now.
The book will be available in April 2010.

October 26, 2009

Dalton development in Poland

Last week two very successful conferences in Lódz and Warszawa.
Anna Sowinska, director of the 'school4child', was host of 60 participants at the conference in Lódz.
The school is invited to be member of Dalton International and such
an invitation was also given to Kindergarten No 31 'Zdzisław Witwicki'
in Warszawa.
A delegation of 12 teachers from Ukraine participated in the Warszawa
conference together with 94 teachers from Poland and Slovakia.
PaedDr. Monika Minová from the University in Presov / SK wants to
restart the co-operation with Dalton International.

October 19, 2009

Dalton in Poland

Tomorrow Hans Wenke and I go to Poland.
On Wenesday we will introduce Dalton education during a seminar
in Lódz, and on Thursday we give lectures and workshops at the
first Polish Dalton conference in Warsaw.
Dalton co-ordinator for Poland is Anna Wröbel, she is also the
national representative in OMEP

October 17, 2009


Teachers nowadays can be happy that children don't bring
a remote control to school, because they would be 'zapped away'
during instruction before they realize !

In this context:
Homo Zappiens - Wim Veen

October 16, 2009

New Member Dalton International

This week Vladimir Moskvan was here and he 'shadowed' my program.
We spoke with Wim Kooyman, editor of our books.
Hans Wenke and I are writing a new book in German:
"Dalton Plan Pädagogik"
eine praktische Unterstützung für Lehrer
Together with Vladimir we spoke about the possibility to translate
our latest book "Dalton, do it differently" into the Czech language.

Yesterday we presented the official plaque to one of the new
Members of Dalton International, de Delftse Dalton School

October 13, 2009

International Dalton Conference

This week Vladimir Moskvan is here to prepare with me the
next Conference of Dalton International and the new
Magazine of Dalton International.
The conference is on May 4. 2010 in Brno / Czech Republic.
Theme of the conference and the connected magazine :
'Dalton in a practical way'

October 12, 2009

School management or school leadership

School management is to be efficient in climbing the ladder of success.
School leadership is putting the ladder against the correct wall.
Does schools need leaders / AVS - Kader Primair - jaargang 15 nr. 1
see also:

The Dalton Laboratory Plan

"In the past we have concentrated on the teaching of learning.
It was assumed that the teacher's duty was to do the work and
consequently the whole business of education was regarded from the
teacher's standpoint. . .
No wonder the pupil's mind invariably escaped from the class-room
into the outside world where a hundred invisible teachers waited
for him, teachers whom he felt instinctively held the answer to
all he longed to know. . .
The curriculum is dead without the live motive power of the child,
it must work by boy and girl power".

from : Helen Parkhurst
An Explanation of the Dalton Laboratory Plan
1926 Dalton Association

October 11, 2009

Effective instruction

The most effective instruction is to stimulate children
to find solutions themselves.

Dalton public schools

'The Dalton School' in New York is the mother of all Dalton schools
in the world. That excellent private school proves already for so
many years the value of Helen Parkhursts 'Dalton Laboratory Plan'.

Their Mission Statement:
The Dalton School is committed to providing an education of excellence that meets each student’s interests, abilities and needs within a common curricular framework and reflects and promotes an understanding of, and appreciation for, diversity in our community as an integral part of school life. Dalton challenges each student to develop intellectual independence, creativity and curiosity and a sense of responsibility toward others both within the School and in the community at large. Guided by the Dalton Plan, the School prepares students to “go forth unafraid.”

Interesting to find the website :
The Dalton Public Schools is a group of schools in the State Georgia.
Helen Parkhurst started to work out her ideas in Dalton - Massachusetts

October 9, 2009

New generation of learners

"The landscape for learning is changing - locally, nationally
and internationally. We don't know what the future holds for
the children who has started school this year.
We don't know what skills our children will need to do jobs
that haven't even been invented. Teaching more of the same won't
be enough to make the difference. We need a radical revolution
in learning and teaching. We need to think and act differently
if we want to continue to inspire our children and young people
to be passionate, enthousiastic learners who can reach their
full potential".
Sir Ken Robinson

October 4, 2009


Chris Edwards
formulated his vision on education with this statement and we decided that
this must be the title for the International Dalton Conference 2011.


'Building brighter futures in Leeds', this is te title
of a great brochure covering an ambitious target:
"We will work together to make sure every child and young
person has the opportunity to achieve their potential
because every child matters".
This is one of the many aspects that inspired me during
our visit in Leeds.
The department
hosted our delegation and gave us
the opportunity to visit several schools.
Together with Chris Edwards, Jenny Hill and Jody Driver
we discussed the possibility to organize an international
conference in which Dalton will be connected to aspects
like 'Global learning'.

May 20, 2009



Dalton Laboratory Plan

It is a great challenge to start a pilot in order
to design a 'Dalton Laboratory School' based on the
original structure Helen Parkhurst describes in her
An explanation of The Dalton Laboratory Plan.

April 21, 2009

Effective instruction

Under the Dalton Plan the teacher's principal job is to
instruct or teach by answering the questions asked by
individual children or by groups of children.
The teacher does not attempt to throw information into
their minds as one shovels coal into a furnace, but rather
studies their needs to discover what she/he can do and what
she/he should know in order to help their research.

From : An explanation of The Dalton Laboratory Plan
by its originator Helen Parkhurst
Dalton Association London 1926

March 7, 2009

Dalton, do it differently

Hans Wenke and I wrote a new book.
'Dalton, doe het eens anders' is a very practical book with lots of action guides, didactical structures and examples of 'free choice assignments' based on multiple intelligences.

March 5, 2009

Dalton International

In the new policy planning 2009 - 2012 of the Dutch Dalton Association
the co-operation with Dalton International is still not mentioned.
Chapter 9 - Internationalisation - is a demonstration of a non - strategy.
Many schools are far ahead of this narrow minded thinking, and have much more international outlook.
Co-operation, one of the premises of Dalton, is one of the main targets of
Dalton International and gives a wider view on education.
Ignoring the worldwide Dalton network is a typical example of Dutch presumption.