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Ashley turned five last week, and has fit into school wonderfully! I sure it also helps that her big brother Logan is here to give her a hand. Welcome Ashley!
PUKEOKAHU SCHOOL NEWSLETTER
Thursday 7th July
Taihape Cluster Science Fair We had our Taihape Cluster Science Fair last week. While our science schedule was slightly interrupted by certain famous people, all of our students managed to enter a display. An amazingly high standard was set, with entries from all of the country schools. I am also pleased to announce that in the Year Seven and Eight section, our very own Tristin Mallalieu came third! Tristin created a mouse trap for his wool shed. The judge was very impressed by the way he demonstrated his process of trial and error to correct and construct his working trap. Well done, Tristin we are all very proud of you! Ka kite ano, Marama and Carol
“I am learning to learn for life!”
Contact Details: Marama's eMail: email@example.com Office eMail: firstname.lastname@example.org School Phone Number: 388 0529 Up and Coming Dates: Term Two: Monday 2nd May - Friday 15th July Wednesday 13th July - BOT Meeting 7pm Friday 29th July - Pukeokahu Quiz Night 7pm Term Three: Monday 1st July - Friday 7th October From Marama Well, we’re past half way and my how this year has flown by! The students and I have been enjoying the last couple of weeks, with no famous people, helicopters or trips. Just some quite creative learning, with a bit of Cody and Marama versus the kids basketball at lunch time (yes, I do feel awesome that Juniors Weaving with Carol I can slam dunk a 6 foot hoop ;-). I was having a chat with the senior kids the other day, about how different primary school is compared to when I went in the Eighties. They were amazed that I had ask permission to leave my desk, or to go to the toilet or get a drink of water. For these kids who were sitting on a cushion in front of the fire, doing their math book work, while munching on an apple the thought of being confined to ones desk was just abhorrent. I guess that’s what much of education was like back in the bad old days. Children confined to a classroom, a year group, an achievement level, a set of standards or a desk. Learning was confined to Three Rs, and occasional PE. According to Sir Ken Robinson and many educational experts, this is called the Industrial Model. Schools were formed to create cookie cutter graduates that fit into an industrialized society.
Below is a link to a fabulous Youtube Video, which explains how education needs to change and move away from this industrial model (I have also added it to our school website). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcDGpL4U The wonderful thing is, that New Zealand is already way ahead of the ball game, with it’s world renowned New Zealand Curriculum. The Vision Statement for our curriculum is to have “young people who will be confident, connected, actively involved, lifelong learners”. How wonderful is that! I believe that it is really important that our community have a long hard think and begin a robust conversation about what we really want for our children in education. Lately the media has been full of accusations that our education system is in a ‘crisis’, and how we need to get back to the ‘basics’. Well, I say (and I will probably get in trouble for this but …) rubbish to that! Can’t you remember how bored and uninspired you were at school? Sure, if you were lucky you had one or two teachers who inspired you and broke the mold, but in general we were confined to our desks waiting for lunch time. As I watched the kids this term, bubbling with excitement while preparing the school fundraising fair, experimenting with technology and science, and interacting with Richie McCaw on our Richie Day a horrible thought occurred to me. If we went back to the basics, if we conformed to aspirational standards and league tables, if we turned to national testing like Australia, we wouldn’t have been able to participate in any of our exciting learning this term. We would have been too busy pushing our children into their prescribed achievement levels, so that we could report that they weren’t ‘failing’. I don’t know, but it doesn’t seem right to me. I just want the school I teach in to be a place that inspires children to shine in all areas of their life, not just where the politicians deem necessary. So that’s what I want for education, my question is what do you want? And do those suits down in Wellington know it? (So you can blame my little rant on Coke, she said I had to write a four page newsletter since I forgot last week ;-)