Wellbeing Hui

New Zealand as a nation has some very concerning statistics about the wellbeing of our young people. Whilst there has long been talk about our teen pregnancy rates and heart breaking ability to top youth suicide rankings, in 2017, Unicef still found major concerns around aspects of wellbeing including work prospects, suicide, health and bullying (https://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/RC14_eng.pdf)

New Zealand, far down the list in terms of childrens’ wellbeing

In 2015, The Education Review Office released a well-publicised report called Wellbeing for Young People’s Success at Secondary School (http://www.ero.govt.nz/publications/wellbeing-for-young-peoples-success-at-secondary-school/). This report highlighted the impacts that a lack of wellbeing education and over-assessment were having on students across the country.

At Lynfield College, we had also noticed rising stress and wellbeing issues amongst our students. These concerns resulted in an increased focus of how we could help our students. Continue reading

Ready, Set, Go!

After all that time deschooling, deconstructing and designing we have finally crossed the start line this week. Monday was our official opening day as Hobsonville Point Secondary School became a real school!

Most of the first 2 days has been spent with my Learning Hub of 9 students (for a great description of Learning Hubs and how they operate see Megan’s post). These are the students for whom I will act as academic and pastoral mentor for the next 5 years and I am rapt to have such an awesome bunch.

My Learning Hub, now known as Reweti

My Learning Hub, now known as Reweti

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A Crumbling Capitalist Schooling System?

On June 13th I was lucky to attend John Morgan’s inaugural public lecture at the University of Auckland. It was entitled “Schooling the Crisis: Education in the aftermath of the financial crisis.”

John Morgan preparing for his lecture

John Morgan preparing for his lecture

What follows is a synopsis of John’s lecture with my reflections integrated into it.

For the last 3 decades schooling has been thought of as preparation for the real world. So far, the post financial crisis of the last 5 years has not made people question what needs to change in schooling. Yet we need to acknowledge that we are preparing students for uncertain futures.
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What would do most to improve the status of the teaching profession?

This post is written as part of the May 2013 #blogsync click here 
to read more of the blogs in this series

Teaching is New Zealand’s 11th most trusted profession. This shows that we have a long way to go in the eyes of the public. This is quite critical as in our decentralised power system where Boards of Trustees are the governors of the school, it is the public that we are actually responsible to.
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#GeoEdChat

I may be biased but I feel that #GeoEdChat may be the best innovation of 2013 (well maybe so far!).

Based upon the large range of twitter chats that already occur, a group got together, led by Dan @RavenEllison to fill the gap in Geography chats.

A website has been set up (http://geoedchat.com/) and the chats will be hosted in a different timezone/region  each week so all parts of the world gain equal access.

A moderator takes control for each week and sets a poll of topics they are interested in. A week before the chat they will post a blog on the website with their thinkpiece to stimulate the chat when it occurs.

The first chat is happening 8pm London time February 6th and will discuss how geography can be at the centre of your school. The thinkpiece for this is by David Rogers, who will be moderating the chat, and has just been posted online now for reading and discussion beforehand. Have a read and then vote in the polls for the upcoming chats.

Intro week activities

The following are some start of year exploration activities that I am integrating into my Introduction to Geography and Social Studies lessons over the first 2 weeks of school this year. Many of these activities were inspired by the Hangout for Geography Awareness Week which focused on exploration.

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