The College has been selected as one of 20 schools in our region to be part of a global network of 1,000 schools across 10 countries, to take part in the New Pedagogies for Deep Learning project.
As part of this we have developed an exciting program for the students in years 5-8, run by Anne O’Sullivan, Sarah Douglas and Sue Harrington.
Middle Years represent a really important stage in a student’s development. They are the years where experiencing positive relationships, being genuinely engaged in learning, and developing high self-esteem have a major and lasting impact on each young person.
Students are often energetic and it is important to direct their energy, shape their self concept and raise their expectations. We want students to be successful learners, to develop confidence, resilience, and to love learning. We want to develop in them a strong sense of identity, know who they are and to develop a respect for others. A Middle Years community will help achieve this.
Students in Middle Years are moving from concrete thinking to abstract thinking. Our students have an intense curiosity and are able to use higher order thinking skills like analysis and reflection.
They want to be challenged, be engaged and self directed, to have a say in what they learn, how they learn and how they will be assessed.
They like to work co-operatively with their peers but also like independent time. Many have a great interest in information and communication technologies.
Middle Years students have a growing interest in ethical and moral questions, they like exploring real world social issues.
It is during this time that Middle Years students feel an intense need to belong and be accepted by their peers. They increasingly turn to their peers to define their language, attitudes, self-image and values.
Students do well connected to their teachers and gain confidence by having successful learning experiences. In Middle Years they need to have a strong connection to what they learn, how they learn and to see themselves in their learning.
In the community we need to balance their need for support with their desire for responsibility and independence.
At this time in your child’s education, strong family school partnerships need to be strengthened.
It is the aim of Sarah, Sue and Anne to create a strong and supportive Middle Years community for your child to engage in their learning, to develop confidence and respect for others, and to feel at home.
The Middle Years have had a very calm and productive start to the year. In our first NPDL (New Pedagogies for Deeper Learning) Unit we have been learning about ourselves as learners and developing a strong Middle Years Learning Community. The class have identified five values that they see as most important:
Patience – Honesty – Respect – Humour – Trust
We will all be working to embody these values in our lives at school and in our communities.
We have already had to use our values in a number of challenging activities!