Getting to Know My Learners

Day 2 of #28DaysofWriting and it was Day 1 of school for the year. That meant that today was spent with the 12 Year 9 and 10 students in my Learning Hub (our HPSS version of Learning Advisories). Part of the day focused on getting to know each other and part of the day on a challenge introducing them to one of our Hobsonville Habits.

I have 2 aims in the first few days of school every year:

  1. Get to know my learners
  2. See them go home happy

Today I got to know my Hub through a range of activities involving them speaking to each other, writing answers, drawing pictures and creating sculptures out of material such as play doh, paper, straws and pipe cleaners. I also learned a lot (possibly more) by watching how each of them approached each activity. Continue reading


Deschooling and Time as a Resource

According to wikipedia, deschooling “refers to the mental process a person goes through after being removed from a formal schooling environment, when the “school mindset” is eroded over time. Deschooling may refer to the time period it takes for children removed from school to adjust to learning in an unstructured environment.”

In this case it is the time for teachers to adjust to that unstructured, no bells environment where we don’t have to rush our thoughts in amongst catching a cup of tea while moderating an assessment, preparing a lesson and chasing up a missed attendance all at once. I should have been prepared for this to hit as Claire Amos had signalled it earlier in the year when she started as DP here in blog posts such as this and the other Leaders of Learning who started a week and a half before me had warned me I would hit this stage as well.

It is just such a foreign feeling for teachers to have the privilege of time to truly reflect, plan and think deeply that I was itching to rush a task along today and caught myself becoming frustrated with the (perceived) lack of progress. Today I have really struggled with deschooling and really taking the time the time to develop what are actually very important matters that deserve time.
Continue reading