On Saturday November 23, 2013, the School Board-University e (SURE) Network hosted the IGNITE: Research-to-Practice Festival at the Faculty of Education, Western University. This was the third Research-to-Practice Festival in the series of four festivals organized in the Southwest Ontario, funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council through the Public Outreach grant.Over 45 teachers, graduate students, ministry personnel, faculty of education instructors, researchers and research officers, School Board research officers, and research Librarian attended the event, making it quite a success.

The festival began with an inspirational, keynote speech by Doris McWhorter, Director of Research and Evaluation Strategy Branch, Ministry of Education. Doris’ presentation on Thinking-Like-a-Researcher showed connections among educational research designed and utilized by policy makers, by teachers and by academics. She illustrated continua and hierarchies of evidence and how these related to knowledge mobilization.

Afterwards, participants were invited to attend one of five breakout sessions of their choice, facilitated by researchers and research officers from London District Catholic school Board, Western, Windsor and Brock Universities. The five themes for these sessions were: Thinking like a researcher; Teacher research-forms and possibilities; Ethical teachers, ethical researchers; Models of collaboration; and Research reports: Easy access, efficient utilization. These sessions provided an opportunity for participants to network, watch a SURE video, view research posters, and discuss pertinent issues on the theme. There was an air of innovative dialogue and critical thinking as the participants actively engaged in the sessions.

Upon completion of the morning breakout sessions, participants attended a sing-a-long performance, Math songs for all ages by George Gadanidis with a team of musicians, Ryan Casselman, Ian Parliament and Alexander Gadanidis. What a novel way to share and celebrate research with teachers that is changing what it means to learn, to teach, to research and to tell stories about school mathematics and science.

The concert was followed by lunch, which allowed for further networking opportunities among participants. Two more breakout sessions then followed, allowing participants the opportunity to attend more theme-focused sessions. The event concluded with reflections. Overall, participants networked, consulted, shared, and celebrated research by, for and with teachers. It was a festival at which and key conversations about research were initiated and thinking about research ignited.