Secondary News T1 W6 2021

Recently we have been going through an evolution in how we deliver content at the school. We are slowly moving away from that traditional classroom that was designed to get kids ready for an industrialised society to a more contemporary classroom that is preparing kids for life in a 21st Century environment. Essentially moving away from a class where the teacher lectures the students for the majority of the lesson to one where the students are inquirers who have greater control over their learning.

One of the major things introduced in Years 7 – 10 has been the use of Project Based Learning (click here) to read more about this. This has been done purposefully and deliberately to raise engagement in school, provide opportunity for students to develop contemporary skills of creativity, critical thinking, communication and collaboration, give greater ownership and choice to students and also to raise the achievement bar for our students.

Just last year students were involved in the following projects and more in our Secondary School:

  • Science Fair Project
  • Marketing the School
  • Polygon Park
  • Sustainable Packaging
  • My Perfect World

Project Based Learning (PBL) isn’t something new in terms of its use. Many schools around the world have been using Project Based Learning for over a decade. This has led to many research articles being written about the benefits of a more contemporary approach to education. The really great news is that not only does PBL improvement engagement it has actually been proven to lead to improvements in the achievement of students in standardised testing. Click here to read an article written by the Universities of Michigan and Southern California about exactly that.

As we move forward we are planning to provide greater opportunity for our students to learn through PBL.

Student Voices

We are continuing to explore student opinions on the curriculum and the question 'If you could learn anything at school, what would it be?' in the Student Voices workshops.

These students from across all year levels of the College are engaging well with each other as a team and are coming up with some great ideas. Common themes raised by these teams over the last few weeks are: How to pay taxes, Life Skills, How to get a job, Psychology. Some of the newer ideas included: sign language, palaeontology and dirt bike riding.

These workshops are providing a good opportunity for each student to raise their voice and be heard and give us, the staff, a better understanding of their perspective of the world and their future.

Stuart Needham
Head of Secondary School