In a recent discussion on innovation, one of the core Learner Attributes at the heart of our SOC2035 vision, I was reminded of an article that I shared some time ago. George Couros, author of the ‘Innovator’s Mindset’ (2015), explores avenues for schools to develop a culture of innovation that supports the building of innovative mindsets for both students and their teachers. Couros looks at different processes where innovation excels, such as design thinking, and identifies some characteristics that seem common amongst these themes.
Couros suggests that to develop students’ innovative mindsets these characteristics must be integral elements of the learning culture that we are developing.
- Empathetic –For us to create something better for our students, we have to understand what works and what does not work from the perspective of a learner, not a teacher. If anything, teachers have to have a deep understanding of learning before they can become effective in teaching. We need to put ourselves in our student’s shoes before we can create better opportunities for them in our learning environments.
- Problem Finders – It is important that we teach our students how to ask good questions instead of simply asking for answers. All innovation starts from a question, not an answer. If we want to be innovative, we need to look at questions first.
- Risk-Takers – Many would argue that “best-practice” is the enemy of innovation. To be truly innovative, you sometimes have to go off the beaten path. The reality of this is, that for some students, the “tried-and-true” methods will still work, but for others, they (and we) need to try something different. Is “best practice” truly “best”, or just “most well known”?
- Networked – Innovation does not happen in isolation, as it is often ideas that are being shared amongst many that lead to new and better ideas being developed. The best learning environments have always created networks where learners learn from others as they create new and powerful ideas. Networks are crucial if we are going to develop an “Innovator’s Mindset”.
- Observant – A practice normal amongst those that would be considered “innovative” is that they constantly look around their world and create connections.
- Creators – So many people have great ideas, yet they never come to fruition. Innovation is a combination of ideas and hard work. What you create with what you have learned is imperative in this process.
- Resilient – Things do not always work on the first try, so what are the tweaks or revamping that is needed? To simply try something and give up as soon as it fails never leads to innovation – only a definitive end.
- Reflective – What worked? What didn’t? What could we do next time? If we started again, what would we do differently? Reflection is probably the most important part of education – this is where deep learning happens – learning that goes well beyond the ‘surface level’ that is so often the focus when ‘we are trying to get through’ a curriculum.
Prep Water Orientation
Prep students (all 4 classes) have participated in a daily Water Orientation program led by the HPE and Prep Class staff teams this week. Congratulations to all students on their achievements through the week and thank you to all Staff who supported this program. In Term 4 this will be followed up with a 2-week Learn-to-Swim program in the school pool.
The theme of national Harmony Week this year is ‘Everyone Belongs’. Next week we celebrate Harmony Week and on Thursday 23 March, all Junior School students are invited to wear a cultural costume or item of clothing (eg hat, scarf or other), or alternatively something orange to support Harmony Week.
Staff and students are also encouraged to bring a culturally-rich lunch box that includes multicultural food or snacks throughout the week.
Students are also invited to share with their class the nationalities that are included in their family.
Also on Thursday 23 March, all members of the College community are invited to Harvest Harmony on the Middle School Campus (Penquite Road) from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm for a celebration featuring music, food and family fun.
Head of Junior School
The creativity on display in conneXions for the 2023 Brixhibition event was simply outstanding!
It was highly competitive, with 108 entries overall.
Students from Early Learning through to Year 5 voted for their favourite creation in each of 4 categories, with the Runners Up and Winners listed below:
Category A: Early Learning & Prep
Runner-up – Landy Maxwell McGinn
Winner – Isabella Perraton
Category B: Year 1 & Year 2
Runner-up – Alex Crosswell
Winner – Oliver Nicklason
Category C: Year 3 & Year 4
Runner-up –Mabel Handbury
Winner – Shayur Sadhabiriss
Category D: Year 5 & Year 6
Runner-up – Alesha Mahmud
Winner – Toby Holmes
Our overall winner, who received the highest number of votes in total, is Shayur Sadhabiriss. Shayur’s ‘Jungle Invasion’ creation will represent Scotch Oakburn College in the upcoming Brixhibition Kids Competition.
If you are interested in immersing yourself in LEGO creativity, then you might like to attend the event, which is being held at the Launceston Conference Centre (Door of Hope) on the weekend of April 15 & 16.
We would like to acknowledge the efforts of Tasmanian Brick Enthusiasts Inc. in creating this opportunity.