From Deputy Principal – Teaching & Learning, Ms Gabrielle Smith
Teaching and Learning Spaces – Holiday Refurbishments
While students and teachers were on their 2021 January summer holidays, builders and landscape gardeners were diligently transforming teaching and learning spaces across the College ensuring our students continue to have the best possible learning opportunities.
Junior School Campus
An enormous amount of work was focused on the site of the former Waterford Preschool. The magnificent site commands views of the Pacific Ocean and its internal space is now repurposed as a state-of-the-art transparent, visible learning space. The space opens onto a Softfall wetpour rubber playground, facilitating an additional learning breakout space for outdoor furniture and possible future play equipment.
Fences and two palm trees were removed so that the playground outside this learning space now links with the Junior School playground in one fluid architectural relationship. Students can now seamlessly move from the north end of the playground to the ball area of the COLA at the south. The increased outdoor space was a priority to strengthen the work that was taking place to support the mental well-being, overall health and cognitive development of the boys.
Senior School Campus
Throughout 2020 the English department collaboratively designed new learning spaces for their classrooms and throughout the break they were transformed into more flexible, comfortable and collaborative learning spaces that support contemporary and innovative practice. It is these collaborative classroom environments that allow students to engage in social activities that are common in school and beyond. Collaborating with partners on projects, discussing diverse perspectives, and promoting student-faculty interactions are benefits that can only occur in collaborative classrooms. In 2021 we are excited to see how the boys respond to the 11 new English spaces.
Teaching and Learning Framework
As we move into 2021, we continue as a College to be guided by our Teaching and Learning Framework when making decisions around best practices for our staff and students. Our framework encompasses Visible Learning, Dynamic Learning and Lifelong Learning with strategies embedded to develop resilient learners who set SMART goals and embrace a growth mindset. A framework which encourages our students to be active, curious, critical and reflective learners rather than passive receptors of information. This framework enables us to move our students through to the higher-order levels of thinking of analyse, create, evaluate and predict.
To familiarise yourself with the Framework: click here.
S.M.A.R.T goals ensure that students set themselves up for success by making goals specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. The SMART method helps push you further, gives you a sense of direction, and helps you organize and reach your goals. I encourage you to talk to your sons about the goals they’re setting for themselves with their mentor, and take a look at the Term 1 S.M.A.R.T goals template on page 59 of the school diary.
2020 HSC: What did the markers say?
Please follow the link for a valuable resource for 2021 students. This document provides feedback on the 2020 HSC examinations and includes:
- the features of top responses
- areas where students can improve
- Higher School Certificate exam papers, with marking guidelines and HSC marking feedback
- HSC Study Guide