Personalised learning and personal capacity
Chris Ivey / Academic
A warm welcome back to the first week of classes here at the College
29 January 2021
From Our Principal Reverend Chris Ivey: Personalised learning and personal capacity
A warm welcome back to the first week of classes here at the College and what a great start it has been. It has been fantastic to see familiar faces but also to meet our new students, our 2021 Prep parents and our Class of 2026 (Year 7) students and parents. I always love the sense of energy and optimism that exist at the commencement of a new year, although I recognise that in 2021 it is probably more appropriate to refer to is as cautious optimism!
You may hear the words of Personalised Learning and Personal Capacity as the year progresses so take the opportunity to check in with what we mean by using these catch phrases. As I shared with our staff earlier last week, one focus this year is on Personalised Learning. What we mean by this is, how do we ensure that we teach, provide feedback and create opportunities for our students with a clear idea of who the individual learner is, what their strengths may be, how they learn, what motivates them and where they feel less confident. It is a key pillar in our Learning in Action Framework.
At the same time, I reminded our staff and all of our students this week, that the central objective in our Strategic Plan is 'personal capacity'. Personal capacity is built over time, and no student is too young to benefit. Our rationale for building personal capacity is because we know from research and experience that when students are actively engaged in teams, ensembles, training sessions, camps, service opportunities and rehearsals etc, they learn so much about themselves, about the value of commitment, perseverance, having a go, working with others and it is done within a safe and nurturing environment. This is why we offer such a breadth of quality opportunities to all students, not just a select few. We encourage all students to take up as many of these opportunities that they can, even if its just to have a go, have a try and approach opportunities with an open mindset. We believe in the value of participation and encourage students to be open to challenges that move them away from their comfort zone.
We actually hinder our children’s personal capacity development when we don’t enable and encourage them to have a go, make a commitment to something, and to learn from their experiences which might not always be obviously or immediately positive. Further, as they move through secondary school, and towards young adults, we hinder even further their development by stepping in and trying to solve their problems for them. Children become stronger and more resilient when they feel listened to but then are encouraged to take responsibility for the challenges that are experienced both within and outside the classroom.
At St Andrew’s, our staff love what we do, and we bring that enthusiasm to our work, we try our best to make sure that our lines of communication are open and we aim to be responsive and collaborative. However please remember that no school is perfect, no teacher is a perfect fit for every single student and every student has some bumps along the way. So please join with us in a strong partnership between home and the College, as we work together to ensure all St Andrew’s students are able to move confidently into their futures. We will strive to provide a safe place for students to learn and grow, and I encourage you as parents to partner with us in 2021 as we work together to build a strong personalised learning journey and your child’s personal capacity.
Principal’s Welcome to 2021.
This year, as we look to re-connect I want to extend an invitation to all families to join us next Tuesday 2 February at 6.30pm for the first of our parent functions that we hope to host in 2021 as we encourage families to get to know each other. Further details are available in the newsletter.