Maggie Dent

Commonly known as the “queen of common sense”, Maggie Dent has become one of Australia’s favourite parenting authors and educators, with a particular interest in the early years, adolescence and resilience.

Maggie’s experience includes teaching, counselling, and working in palliative care/funeral services and suicide prevention. Maggie is an advocate for the healthy, common-sense raising of children in order to strengthen families and communities. She is a passionate, positive voice for children of all ages.


Now an in-demand writer and speaker, Maggie is a regular contributor to Fairfax’s Essential Kids website and she can often be heard on commercial and ABC radio around the country including Nova 937. She also appears on national TV programs. Maggie is the host of the ABC’s Parental As Anything podcast.


She is the author of eleven books, including her bestselling 2018 release Mothering Our Boys. Maggie has also authored several e-books and is a prolific creator of resources for parents, adolescents, teachers, educators and others who are interested in quietly improving their lives.


Maggie is the proud mother of four wonderful sons, and an enthusiastic and grateful grandmother. She lives in the Illawarra region of NSW with her good bloke Steve Mountain and their dear little dog, Mr Hugo Walter Dent.


Event Program

Nathan Wallis


Brain Development at Primary School

With the huge emphasis in neuroscientific research in the early years, and more recently on adolescence, where does this leave those who work with (or parent) primary aged children? From the vast array of literature now available about brain development Nathan will explore with participants those aspects that most relate to the development of the primary aged child. With this research in mind we will explore how this changes how we interact with children.

Maggie Dent


Exploring Children’s Anxiety

The landscape of childhood and childhood stress is changing, and anxiety is now much more prevalent for our children. In this keynote, Maggie Dent explores what anxiety is and what we as parents and educators can do to help reduce anxiety and fear in today’s kids. Maggie has been writing about the importance of calmness and stillness in children’s lives since publishing her 2003 book Saving Our Children From Our Chaotic World. As well as helping you better understand anxiety, Maggie shares many highly practical, helpful and simple strategies to support a calmer home or classroom and, ultimately, calmer, happier kids.

Saurubh Malviya


Empowering Staff

This session will look at ways to empower educators within their workplace and discuss how to build their emotional competencies including resilience.  Educators are exposed to several challenges daily, and their social and emotional wellbeing should be at the top of any organisation’s agenda as committed educators are the biggest asset in building a high quality, sustainable service. It is crucial to discover what leads our educators to maintain motivation within the field of learning that is Outside School Hours care. 


Are our educators not interested enough? Do they feel supported, heard, confident to deal with the issue at hand? Do they feel included? Are they searching for their own identity among these ever-changing circumstances? These are all legitimate questions to be explored.


This program positions the “Educators” at the centre of the conversation and focuses on their primary need; a sense of belonging.  It will look at factors which can demotivate educators and cause a lack of confidence as they interact with colleagues and children in care and explore ways to inject consciousness in these disempowered moments thereby creating a sense of belonging for educators across Australia.

John Briggs


Cultural Learning Workshop and Embedding Reconciliation

We are grateful to partner with John Briggs, a proud Yorta Yorta and Gunai man to support us in delivering Cultural Learning and embedding Reconciliation in our work. John will explore activities we can do in our work as he shares with us Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, culture and inclusion, focusing on where we are today and where we are headed whilst encouraging us to have the honest conversations in moving towards a reconciled Australia. 

Bruce Hurst


Rethinking how to seek children’s perspectives…… playfully

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child provides children with the right to be consulted about all matters that affect them, including their OSHC settings. Consultation with children is nothing new in OSHC. Surveys, group meetings and suggestion boxes are all common strategies, but does their work-like nature clash with the play-based ethic that underpins OSHC programming?


In 2019, I commenced a research project that caused me to completely rethink how I saw my engagements with children. What started out as a relatively straightforward process became something completely different when children began to exercise their rights to play and have a voice. Traditionally consultation and play are seen as separate acts with distinct purposes, but perhaps the boundaries between the two are less clear. This session provides one example of playful consultation and invites you to consider ways of seeking children’s ideas that are slower, messier, more playful and less work-like.

Jennifer Cartmel


Intergenerational Practice in SAC

Many communities are developing intergenerational programs to bring together the young and the elderly with mutually beneficial consequences. However, while the health and social benefits are documented, little attention has been given to the operational aspects of intergenerational programs. It is important to consider models such as the Neuro-sequential Model for Education (Perry, 2006) which has a focus on a neurodevelopmentally-informed, biologically respectful perspectives on human development and functioning to help develop an effective intergenerational program in school age care services. This model could support the development of age-friendly communities including social participation, respect and social inclusion, and life-long learning, by bringing children and seniors together in purposeful, beneficial activities, and building on the positive resources that different generations have to offer each other.

Event Information

Event Registration is available below.


Discounts apply for multiple registrations.  See registration page for further details.

The cost of this event is:

  • $150 (inc GST) per participant for QCAN members

  • $185 (inc GST) per participant for non-members

Registration & Costs

Group Bookings

Platform & Access


Services are encouraged to make this a whole team event. Please contact QCAN for group booking (10+) conditions and prices. 

The event will be hosted via Zoom ( Participants will need access to a relevant device (computer or tablet etc) with adequate internet access. 

Participants will receive a confirmation ticket immediately upon registration. Participants will be sent a reminder email including login/access details seven (7) days prior to the event.

Refunds & Substitutions

No refunds will be given for participant cancellations, however, a replacement delegate may be substituted at any time without charge. Any request for replacement/substitution must be submitted in writing to by COB 21 August 2020.

Questions & More Info

Please contact QCAN via 1300 781 749 or



1300 781 749   |  |  66 Woodend Rd, Woodend  Qld 4305 | ABN 22 156 644 878 | ACN 626 211 925