Menu

Education Today Logo


newsletter

Education Today Cover Browse Issue

Remote indigenous kids excited about 'powerhouse' teaching approach

News Image

The creator of Responsibility Theory, CQUniversity Alumnus Dr Ragnar Purje says his ‘Powerhouse’ teaching tool has been generating enthusiasm in a remote Indigenous community in outback Queensland.

Responsibility Theory is an immersive, systematic, self-talk sequence learning method of teaching where the students learn about the real power they have which resides in their brain, their powerhouse.

According to the trademarked theory, this power can be expressed in the following immersive systematic self-talk: ‘I am responsible for, and I’ve got power over what I think, do, say, choose and learn’.

He and his wife are currently teaching at a remote Indigenous community state school in outback Queensland.

“This is the start of a new school year, and I have only been at the school for seven weeks,” he says.

“Two weeks ago, two highly respected Elders at the school were – as usual – visiting classrooms.

“They said what I’ve been doing for their kids with the powerhouse teaching program is remarkable.

“They said in all of their life they have never seen anything like this before, saying: ‘You are giving our kids a sense of pride about themselves, and a regard for their future. This is unbelievable. The parents in this community and everyone else needs to see what you are doing’.”

Dr Purje says that he and his wife visited the local bakery, where there were children and their parents sitting outside.

“As we walked by, about to enter the store, three of the children placed their hands on their head, and shouted, ‘Dr Purje, I'm using my powerhouse’.

“This public utterance informs that the children are not only feeling good about themselves; it also informs that the children are advancing this feeling of well-being to advance their self-efficacy and self-confidence.

“I have been in the teaching profession for many, many years, and all of my educational experiences and all of my research informs me that there are no reports of any Indigenous children ever shouting: ‘I'm using my powerhouse!’

“The response from the Elders and my academic research in brain-based education suggest that something very special is taking place.

“These interactions are important to note because they are not only taking place at school but also outside of school hours.”

Dr Purje recently joined CQUni Professor Ken Purnell to co-present at the 2018 Hawaii International Conference on Education, which promoted brain-based neuroeducation principles.

"This presentation, along with Ken's presentation on education standards, has led to both Ken and I being invited to present chapters in our particular areas of expertise."


12 Dec 2018
Year 12 exam results aren't everything News Image

Year 12 is both a start and an ending and this period of change can be stressful. But there is help available if kids seem to be struggling with their mental health.
Read More

12 Dec 2018 | National
Bypass ATAR News Image

There are a few anxious school leavers right now, maybe they didn't get the ATAR they needed for the course they wanted or maybe they didn’t pass at all, but fear not there is more than one way to skin a cat. Read More

11 Dec 2018 | NSW
Rural school’s learning platform make for easy access learning News Image

Located on the Victoria-New South Wales (NSW) border, Wodonga Middle Years College (WMYC) has leveraged technology so every student can access education from anywhere at any time. Read More

11 Dec 2018 | National
Queenslanders best Young ICT Explorers News Image

The 2018 national winners of the Young ICT Explorers competition have been announced with teams from Queensland and Australian Capital Territory taking home the top prizes. Read More

10 Dec 2018 | International
Finland to use Aus education toolkit News Image

We’re often told to look to Finland for direction on education but the tables have been turned with the Nordic nation adopting National Excellence in School Leadership Initiative’s (NESLI) Staff Wellbeing Toolkit. Read More