So… I had a 15 minute break today between 8.45am and 5.15pm.
This was used very wisely indeed.
In a long overdue visit to Rachel George’s #HSC3 learners.
A colleague tried to grab a word with me so I told him where I was headed and we dashed off together. I don’t even remember what we talked about- I was too excited!
We walked in just as they had come back from break- perfect timing! We arrived into a room of well-prepared and eager learners who were sat as parliament to listen to one another’s policies. I sat down and exclaimed, ‘I’m so excited to be here!’
Rachel asked Scott Reilly and I to be the king and queen and so we sat for about 10 minutes and listened to the learners’ policy proposals. All of these proposals were applauded and questions were asked too.
Rachel encouraged and supported the learners throughout and it was clear that they were growing in confidence and were prepared to plunge into the abyss of the unknown and risk potential disaster by standing in front of their peers. But they did so because they were all safe in the knowledge that they were respected by all in the room. It was obvious that all the learners understood the basis for policy and what was involved in creating one. They supported their confident statements with facts and figures from the existing situation and described clear visions for the future.
I absolutely supported their policies on bus and train fares as this was clearly an issue for many and myself included!
I’d be personally be very happy if these learners did end up entering parliament, discussing policy and doing it all in a confident, well informed and carefully considered manner.
I hadn’t seen Rachel’s classroom since she had first decorated it at the start of term and my, what a space?! It was plastered in the students’ learning and was a vibrant and welcoming place.
Over the summer, Rachel and I attended a talk at the Times Education Festival and I turned to her and said, you do all of these things in your classroom, you’re brilliant at all of that. And then I paused, turned to her again and said, ‘How do I know this? I’ve never seen you teach?!’ I’ve seen her now and I can confirm that she sets a routine and high expectations for her learners, she supports and praises them and ensures learning is fun and enjoyable as well as challenging at the same time. I can say that my initial expectations of her ability as a teacher have all been confirmed because any naturally great teacher just seeps out goodness as soon as you step close to them. There are many more of my colleagues whom I admire in this way and I hope to see them in action soon to confirm my suspicions.
I may get chance to visit some more green doors tomorrow and I can’t wait to see the great things that all of my colleagues are getting up to every day. Teaching is awesome but learning is even more awesome!