It has been a challenging week in relation to air quality. Thank you for your support and patience over this frustrating period.
At Principal drop-in every week, I ask parents if there are any questions, queries or concerns they have about life in school and in KL. These questions often form the focus for these articles as, if one person is interested in the answer to a certain question, in all likelihood others are too.
This week, I also took parents on a tour of the Campus and fielded a number of questions about how our curriculum is managed and learning is led. This is the topic I have chosen for this week’s message.
Learning is a lifelong process. Anyone who has bought a new phone, upgraded the software on their computer or has travelled to a country where the spoken language is not English will attest to this.
Our students are pushed to spend the majority of every day in the ‘stretch’ zone of their learning circle.
“The comfort zone is the place where apathy thrives, where motivation dies and the status quo remains. The panic zone is the place where there is too much pressure, the stakes are too high and living here will burn you out. In between those two areas is the stretch zone, this is the place where we find the right amount of challenge and the right level of pressure.This is where we should monitor our goals, and make sure we carry out an ambitious view on where to set our goals.” provided by Dean Seddon
As adults, when challenged to learn something new, many of us are not always the most persistent or resilient learners. We find ourselves very quickly moving into the panic zone - calling for help, cursing technology and seeking reassurance from others.
This is why we are developing our school into a learning community. Teachers and parents need to remember and feel how it is to be a learner, to be faced with new challenges and constant change, to be able to show ‘growth mindsets’ and develop learner attributes in the same was as we expect this of our students.
Every Thursday morning, parents are invited to take place in workshops at school. They are taught, experience new learning, are challenged in their thinking and, for a short time, move into the ‘stretch zone.’ Please join us and see how it feels to learn a new skill or some new knowledge .
For our teachers, we also expect them to spend time in the stretch zone. We create focus groups who do professional reading about best pedagogical practice, create action research projects to test hypothesis and monitor achievement and attainment and encourage additional study outside of school hours. Staff meetings are learning focused, targets are set that require new skill acquisition and opportunities are created to put new learning into practice.
We are all learners at Alice Smith, not just the students. What learning can you model to your child this weekend?
Have a lovely weekend
Principal Primary Campus
Click here for this week's full issue - 2nd October 2015