Teaching to Our Passions
Transcending curriculum requirements
We held a faculty meeting last week. This monthly event provides us with time to come together to discuss topics that impact our present and future actions in Senior School. As in most organizations, we have the usual standing agenda items, policies to be reviewed, deadlines to be met, professional development updates to be shared and then there is always new business to be discussed. Last week however we had a relatively short agenda and so we started by going round the circle and responding to the question, “What is exciting you in your teaching right now?” Here are a few of the highlights:
Some Grade 8 students have successfully created a sonar measuring device with a raspberry pi coding strategy. The Creative Writing 12 class will be presenting original work at the VICtorious Voices SLAM Poetry Competition this week where, over three evenings, they will engage in workshops with acclaimed poets.
Thirty one students are participating in a Model United Nations event next weekend and our Improv team has just returned from Victoria where they competed in the BC Finals of Destination Imagination and qualified for Globals.
Grade 8’s have taken on the personas of trial lawyers and are hoping to defend the actions of an assigned client before a jury of skeptics as they develop their persuasive writing skills. Our Environmental Studies students, having focused on the plight of the Resident Killer Whales are now taking action by lobbying shipping companies to change their behavior in our waters.
The Astronomy Club is using an online application to observe and predict planetary movement. The Grade 9’s will be releasing salmon fry into the Cowichan river system this week concluding many months of careful nurturing and observation of salmon development.
In Physics, students are immersed in building mousetrap cars to see whose car will travel the longest distance. Work experience students are out in the community learning how to do root canals and observing operations at local veterinary clinics.
And the list goes on…
As teachers shared, their personal excitement became our collective excitement. We paused to consider how passion for our subjects helps transform students’ learning experiences. We can find applications for new concepts at every turn because we know and care about the material we teach. And, happily our students in turn are exposed to a world of possibilities that goes far beyond the Ministry’s requirements.
~ Debbie Cook, Senior School Principal