At KCS, we have our very own Amazing Race in grade 7! And you’ll have to trust me that so many things about it are indeed amazing. In teams, students complete projects that span many subject areas. Because that’s how life is. We don’t learn things in silos. Everything connects! Learning includes information about: travel advisories and blogs, music, games, global challenges, comparison of statistics, environmental stewardship, maps, and more. Our students prove that when given the opportunity to learn and the adults get out of the way, great learning can happen. In grade 7, the culmination of this learning leads to the Amazing Race Challenge. Groups of students solve clues to get from one area of the school to another. Each challenge requires them to use their skills and knowledge, perseverance and group effort. It is a wonderful snapshot of their growth in learning in so many areas. Successful groups encourage each other, are empathetic, show leadership, and play to each member’s strengths. It’s a team game.
What happens behind the scenes is a team game too. Teachers excitedly work out logistics, research new technology, bring forward innovative ideas, and brainstorm solutions. Who is more excited on the day of the Amazing Race Challenge: students or teachers? It’s hard to tell. Although I’ve been at KCS for 15 years, I’m still very humbled by how willing our team is to: jump in, propose ideas, organize, supervise, take photos, offer prep time or materials, try new technology tools, and so MANY more little and big things. They put the students first in all that they do. I’m honoured to be part of the team. It is a team game.
Grade 7 Teacher and Citizenship Coordinator
“At first we argued consistently about what had to be done. Now we don’t argue and we compromise.”
– A student in the Lego Robotics elective
Being Active is how some people relax. Acting with empathy is second nature for others. We universally enjoy those adept at finding humour. And we all know people for whom share what you know is a lopsided strength…
The KCS Habits are everywhere. Even a cursory read of the daily paper is an immersion in the Habits, whether by their presence or oh-so-unfortunate absence in world events. The challenge we’ve undertaken at KCS is for every person to have all of the Habits. Every one. At once. While it may be asking too much to say that all of our young graduates will have every Habit firmly and forever established, we do believe they’re old enough to be aware of the Habits that matter in life, and to reflect on where they’re strong and where growth is needed.
A recent assignment asked our electives students to reflect on their growth in some key Habits. Our songwriting, Renaissance Art and theatre students are clearly growing in their ability to create. Our Lego robotics students are doing an impressive job persisting in building and programming their robots. And the baseball students will all be sharing what they know when they instruct and coach the grade three students in the upcoming Baseball Classic.
What Habit do the students find toughest? According to the reflections, the one most students seem to struggle with is seeking collaboration.
What’s one of the most important attributes for success in one’s career? The ability to collaborate.
Good thing our students are working on it, and realizing the need to do so.
Assistant Head, Academics
You can follow Andrea on Twitter @afanjoy.