Speakers for Professionals – INSET, Training & CPD

Su Adams

Using computing experiences to inspire the minds of the future, Su Adams from ‘U Can Too’ loves nothing more than seeing children’s eyes light up with excitement when they achieve creative results in her computing workshops.  Su is passionate about empowering students to believe that a future in STEM is achievable.  Su enthusiastically delivers this by designing innovative physical computing projects with cross-curricular links, using lights, motors and sensors to create tangible interactions in the real world.  Whether this is helping students to develop moving artwork, literacy-linked robots or simple solutions for real-world problems, she never tires of designing and delivering memorable and purposeful learning experiences.  As a ‘Subject Matter Expert’ for the National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE), Su enjoys empowering schools in developing their computing education offer through teacher CPD and advice.

Fiona Clark

Fiona Clark is an author, teacher, poet and workshop leader living and working in the UK. A teacher and school leader for over two decades, and now a member of the National Association of Writers in Education, Fiona regularly takes up the role of writer in residence in schools across the UK, running creative writing workshops. Evidence gathered through a Knowledge Exchange programme with UCL, shows that Fiona’s workshops improve children’s writing skills, improve well-being, boost self-esteem and increase confidence. All seven creative writing workshops are shared in full, with photocopiable resources, in the publication A Practical Guide to Creative Writing in Schools, available from Routledge along with her poetry anthology The Leaf and the Pea available from Amazon. 

Fiona is also a Fellow of the Chartered College of Teaching and has written for the TES. Her well-being book for youngsters Things Nobody Tells You When You’re Growing Up has received praise from children and grownups and after first publication quickly reached number one in the Amazon best sellers list of books for adolescents. Fiona can work with students and run training for staff.

Jon Hicks

Jon is an award winning performer and artist who has travelled the world with his diverse repertoire of deadpan, funny and stylish, artistic oddities.

Toy elephant wrangler, varieties answer to Picasso, Zen master of the obstacle course, contraption creator, friend to bullet catching (puppet) Frank the dog

Renowned for his speed painting act Jon works across a variety of areas, often comedic, always with an anchor in visual awareness and the joy of making; skills developed through Fine Art training and as a scenic artist and prop maker.

He performs across theatre, cabaret, street theatre, TV and corporate events. Solo, in collaborations and as a member of award winning variety troupe Slightly Fat Features.

He has appeared in sell out shows at The London Palladium and The Royal Albert Hall, made an Art Attack style video for The Kaiser Chiefs, performed at the Magic Circle, been on Blue Peter (twice), is a regular at the Edinburgh Fringe and been a guest act with Olivier Award winning La Soiree.

In recent years he has been sharing his knowledge with schools and can provide performances and workshops, both art and performance based, giving children an insight into the power and joys of lateral and creative thinking and an understanding, outside traditional academic structure, of the power in method, focus and practise.

Alexander Kemp

Alexander is a leading international safeguarding speaker, trainer, consultant and writer.  His last professional role was as Her Majesty’s Inspector of children’s social care.  He has worked in senior roles in the UK and abroad and has over 20 years’ experience of working with children and families.     

Alex is himself care experienced, having lived in a number of children’s homes in Lancashire in the 1990s.  He was the first known care experienced person to have held the role of Her Majesty’s Inspector of children’s social care and one of only a handful of care experienced people to have progressed into such senior roles in children’s social care. This unique blend of personal and professional experiences ensures Alex is well placed to support organisations and professionals across the helping professions.  He offers insightful, inspiring keynote speeches and accessible, evidence-based training. 

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Dr. Pooky Knightsmith

An internationally respected face of child and adolescent mental health, Pooky works tirelessly to ‘be the change she wants to see’. A prolific keynote speaker, lecturer, trainer and author, she develops and shares practical, evidence-informed approaches to promoting mental health – arming health, social care and education staff with the skills, understanding and knowledge they need to support the children in their care.

Pooky has a PhD in child mental health from the Institute of Psychiatry, is the author of many books, is the research and development director at Creative Education and is a former chair of the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition.

Cliff McNish

A multiple award-winning fantasy author published in 26 languages, Cliff’s ghost novel Breathe was voted in May 2013 by The Schools Network of British Librarians as one of the top adult and children’s novels of all time. Cliff’s sparkling talks and workshops cover ALL key stages. He teaches humour, animal story and descriptive writing for youngsters, as well as the essential structural steps to great story writing, fantasy, ghost story and thriller writing for upper juniors and secondary students. Based in London, Cliff is happy to teach virtually as well as visit schools across the country. He also delivers highly effective INSET sessions for literacy leads.  

Lucy Strange

Lucy Strange is an award-winning children’s author and an experienced secondary school English teacher. Through her work with primary and secondary schools, and organisations such as The National Literacy Trust, Coram Beanstalk and publisher Barrington Stoke, Lucy has become a leading voice on the vital importance of Reading for Pleasure. Alongside her inspiring author talks and creative writing workshops, Lucy offers highly motivating, practical and research-informed CPD and INSET sessions – on building a Reading for Pleasure culture in schools, and how we can get children excited about writing.

Lisa Cherry

Lisa Cherry is an author, researcher and leading international trainer and consultant, specialising in assisting schools, services and systems to create change that supports working with the legacy of trauma. Lisa has been working in Education and Children’s Services for over 30 years and combines academic knowledge and research with professional skills and personal experience.

Lisa’s MA research looked at the impact on education and employment for care experienced adults who experienced school exclusion as children in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Currently, Lisa is undertaking DPhil research at The University of Oxford in the Department of Education, asking the research question “How do care-experienced adults who have been excluded from school understand those experiences of being in care and school exclusion in relation to belonging?”

Lisa is the author of the hugely successful book ‘Conversations that make a difference for Children and Young People’ and ‘The Brightness of Stars’ 3rd Edition published in June 2022.

Christian Foley

Named as one of the ‘Top 10 teachers you won’t believe exist’  (The Richest), Christian’s career has clearly taken poetry to unexpected places. From PMQs at Westminster, to TED Talks and even the Premier League. Despite this, it is the classroom where Christian is truly at home. Christian is one of the only few poets in the world selected to complete a ‘Spoken Word Education Programme’ and Teaching MA at Goldsmiths University, an incentive which was created to transform professional poets into specialised facilitators. He has been the Poet-in-Residence in at St Elizabeth’s Primary School, Cardinal Pole Secondary School and The Complete Works School, all in East London, for the past seven years. Christian has been the editor of twelve poetry anthologies, written by his students since 2013.

Christian’s incorporation of Hip Hop Education and rap freestyles into lessons, has won him famous fans, from 50 Cent to Lin Manuel Miranda, amassed millions of views worldwide and made him a regular on British television and radio. When the cameras are off, Christian studies a PhD in ‘Poetry in Education’ at Goldsmiths University. 

Nerys Hughes

Nerys is one of the worlds leading sensory impairment Occupational Therapy specialists. Having worked in all areas of paediatric practice across the private and charity sectors and the NHS, she now runs a social enterprise clinic ‘Whole Child Therapy’ which she founded.  Nerys is an experienced and advanced clinical consultant. She provides consultation to schools, local authorities, sensory impairment services and associated professionals across the world.  Her training curriculum for health and education professionals, as well as parents, is widely valued and sought-after.  Nerys believes strongly in a ‘strengths and connection’ intervention process.  She develops tools that enable children.  Nerys is an experienced, knowledgeable and inspirational speaker and trainer who can cover an enormous number of topics with skill and confidence.

Zohab Zee Khan

Zohab Khan is an educator, spoken word poet, motivational speaker, didgeridoo player and hip-hop artist. Zohab won the title ‘Australian Poetry Slam Champion’ in 2014. That same year he was also runner-up in the International Poetry Slam championship held in Madrid. Zohab has performed and conducted poetry workshops in over 30 countries across the world and is the co-founder of The Pakistan Poetry Slam. As an educator, Zohab’s poetry and self-development workshops are in high demand. His workshops aim to inspire change and confidence in young people through spoken word poetry and brain hacks. With the incorporation of self-development techniques, spoken-word poetry becomes not just a platform for self- expression but also one to inspire change, acceptance and increase creativity.

Clare Luther

Clare Luther – The Daesy Dialogue (Using books to explore big feelings with young children)

For professionals, parents and carers it can be a tricky business working out how to help young children with their emotions. Their emotional wellbeing is closely tied up to how we connect with them and the conversations we have, so what we say and how we say it, matters.

If our words have the power to build up or crush, encourage or belittle, how can we use our dialogue to nurture and nourish their emotional wellbeing?

Clare Luther’s easy-to-use talking tool kit, ‘The Daesy Dialogue’, provides prompts and practical suggestions for how to get conversations started about everyday emotions using her picture books and beyond the stories. It offers a framework that can be used across many books (not just her own) guiding and equipping us to promote emotional growth in a constructive and healthy way.

Clare divides her time between author visits in nurseries and schools, and running parents talks and teacher training sessions about The Daesy Dialogue.

Michael Rosen

Former Children’s Laureate (2007-2009) Michael Rosen (PhD) is Professor of Children’s Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London.  His CPD sessions explore a rich mixture of text-based classroom activities with the purpose of creating ‘Reading for Pleasure’ cultures in schools and the wider community.  Michael bases much of his professional training on his widely available booklets for teachers.  Michael is in constant high demand and therefore we do hold a waiting list of Michael’s invitations.

Dr. Zachary Walker

Zachary is Head of the Department of Psychology and Human Development at UCL, with a 25-year career studying leadership and learning across the UK, US, Europe and Asia. He combines impeccable psychological understanding with MBA expertise to provide cutting-edge insights and strategies for businesses and organisations worldwide. Offering both substantive gravitas and real-world pragmatism, he is a captivating speaker who, unusually, still retains the ability to connect with audiences of all ages.

Zachary is an extremely experienced internationally respected speaker, who presents complex concepts in clear, concise, and easily relatable ways. He is a noted professional and academic authority on:

  • Diversity and Inclusion: thriving, safe spaces, belonging, psychological safety, intersectionality
  • Individual and Organizational Performance: culture, psychological safety, coaching, development
  • Generational Management: Gen Z to Baby Boomers, social issues, perspectives, mediation
  • High-Performing Teams: diversity, collaboration, teambuilding, interpersonal relationships
  • Leadership: communication, role models, servant leadership, coaching, styles, management
  • Neuroscience: established and progressive principles for Teaching, Learning, and Living
  • Motivational/Inspirational : overcoming, adversity, barriers, self-esteem, confidence, winning

He is confident and has extensive experience speaking to schools (all ages), universities, and public, private, and third sector organizations in numerous industries, from SMEs to Board Level.

To date, he has provided 200+ memorable speaking experiences to groups and individuals in over 40 countries worldwide. Zachary offers a range of engagements, from 10-minute introductions to keynotes, workshops, seminars and Q&As. He is comfortable working with interpreters in multilingual settings.