The commitment to children’s wellbeing is deep-rooted in the Danish school culture.

As evidenced by the recent school reform, wellbeing is considered as important as learning, and not to be separated from this equation.

This flows through all aspects of Danish schools from the very first day of school to regular class meetings and the role of parents throughout the school years.


Outsiders will notice a huge emphasis on student voice, trust and collaboration, on a well-functioning class community and the important role played by pedagogues until the middle years.

Even school architecture is designed to help students not just learn but also thrive personally as well as socially.


image014Margret Rasfeld pioneers a systematic change of how we build and use the infrastructure of schools to unfold individual’s potential by radically putting students in charge for both their own education as well as for opening up schools to society and to reach the Sustainable Development Goals.

image016Through this she fosters not only the selfreliance of youth against the background of 21st century challenges, but allows systematic  change in the school system by demonstrating how education can actually meet current challenges.



Every time someone talks about school innovation, there rise lively and vigorous debates on the present state of school transformation.
Many think that schools should defend and preserve the cultural roots of our country. Others believe school should also defend traditional habits and behaviours.
So from time to time cursive writing makes a come back, together  with the importance of handwriting endangered  by computers . Or there is a renewed focus on learning by heart, or on teaching Latin and its effective  impact on learning good Italian.
But what does cognitive  science think about this transformation. In these years has learning really changed? And have schools considered this transformation? What might a psychologist of learning suggest if he was asked about the strategies for leading change in the school system?


There is no doubt that the way people learn has changed.  Digital devices have made information  available anywhere and at any time, and even if such information is unrelated, that is to say not connected , it is however our present way of learning.

The presentation will discuss about memory and digitalization in learning processes and about the part played by experience in today’s school


Body and brain are unquestionably linked; scientific researches carried out by psychoneuroendocrinology (PNEI) in the last decades  have urged  us to reflect upon and to experiment with new ways of creating  a more favorable classroom environment  and fostering  a better cognitive and emotional growth of our pupils.

image026As a school teacher and  a Laughter Yoga trainer and Ambassador, I felt the need  to learn more about these researches and then  to experiment new  paradigms for a happier school. At last I have developed  a proposal which I have called: Educating to Happiness.
Is it a heresy for  Italian schools to start lessons with a smile and practise laughter with students so as to create a warm and positive climate for their bodies and their minds?


Laughter and school: bitter enemies or powerful allies? “The question is simple: when laughter and playfulness are inhibited, endorphins stop flowing, and children (not only children, I would add)find it difficult to interact and the learning process suffers”: these are the words of the neuroscientist Candace Pert.
Through my research and  teaching   I have become more and more aware that we must educate  students to Happiness,  the pursuit of happiness  is the most important  goal for  human beings!

A different school is possible and we’ll debate together how to  reach it.

Go to 2nd session abstracts >

<Back to ADi Annual meeting