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Peter van Noorden

Co-author of Good Humanities 7 & 8

How long have you been in the education industry?
I’ve been working in this industry for 40 years.

How have you noticed your teaching style change over the years? Why do you think this is?
Following 10 years of teaching and authoring Humanities titles, I joined the educational publishing industry as a Publisher where I mixed with a huge range of teachers and was introduced to a wide range of learning styles. We introduced concepts such as Multiple Intelligences and Big Ideas to the general teaching audience. With each new project you hold on to what works well and add in new ideas and concepts that are proving successful in education. Working with classroom experts using learning ladder rubrics on the Good Humanities series has been fascinating.

What is the importance to you of good educational resources?
Great educational resources help teachers to engage students and break down what the curriculum is asking for. They must also be succinct to help teachers deliver sometimes impossible content and skill coverage in a meaningful way.

What has been your favourite part of writing an education resource?
For me it has always been the engagement of students. Learning doesn’t begin until the student is interested to learn. The best comment I ever received from a student was “Mr Van, this is almost interesting!”

What is your favourite part of being a teacher?
As a teacher it was the immediacy of the response from the 25 students in front of you – you knew you were on a winner or dying. As a publisher it was being able to influence thousands of students and teachers with resources that really make a difference in the classroom.

What are three things people wouldn’t know about you?
I rise each morning at 4:44 am, I write in InDesign and begin each spread with the visual stimulus and I am a passionate amateur photographer 

What do you like to do when you’re not teaching (or writing)?

I love getting up to photograph the sunrise and watch movies at the other end of the day.

Who are three people, living or dead, you’d love to have dinner with?
Antoni Gaudi (the amazing Spanish architect); Hannibal; Joan of Arc

What is your favourite book and why?
I am not a novel reader but a great consumer of educational magazines such as National Geographic, National Geographic History, All About History and How it Works – they know a thing or two about engaging readers!

Do you follow a sports team?
I am a tragic Collingwood Magpies fan. I told my kids not to barrack for Collingwood, so they didn’t have to go through the pain and suffering I’ve endured being a Magpies fan!