I’ve been moving house these past two days. I never knew how much one person could accumulate over a lifetime! I’ve moved to a bigger house; in a great neighbourhood and near the river, surrounded by trees. It’s very peaceful.
As I’ve been packing, lifting, moving, and unpacking boxes I’ve had to sort through a lifetime of memories – some very precious; others best forgotten, lessons learned and experience gained. I’ve had to think about what comes with me to the new house and what I need to let go of.
At school, I’m packing too. As we get nearer to the finish date of our new school being built, I’m reflecting on what in my practice, as a teacher, will I take into the new environment; and what practices are best left behind.
I’m looking forward to working in an open space that will be used in a variety of ways with our students – from small groups to whole class teaching. I won’t miss the individual classrooms with the teacher’s desk that was once a staple of a New Zealand education. I’m excited about continuing to team teach with other teachers; of being collaborative and cooperative in our planning and teaching; the sharing of ideas, practice, and passion for learning. It’s certainly not the ‘one size fits all’ approach I had going through school. Now, it’s all about differentiated learning; with students having their own individualised programme and getting on with their learning independently. How times have changed; how I have changed.
I can’t foretell what the future of education will be like in years to come. The jobs waiting for my students when they leave school don’t exist yet. Change is the one constant we can all be sure of. Will my students be ready? Will I? While qualifications get you so far, it will be their ability to think and be creative in the world that will differentiate them from each other. I only hope I can do them justice.
The two things I’m definitely packing are an open mind and an ability to adapt.