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An Optimal Environment for Learning | King’s College

As I wander around the classrooms each morning I find a very settled and industrious learning environment going on. It warms a Headmaster’s heart! This can be one of the ultimate measures for a school –a settled environment in which students can learn and teachers can teach.

 

It is also the very reason we encourage students considering King’s College for their schooling to come into the place to ‘feel’ what it is like to be here. We recently conducted a school-wide survey, which reaffirmed our knowledge of parents’ most important factors in choosing King’s for their child -among others, quality of teaching, academic standards and balanced, challenging education.

 

Key to our ability to meet these expectations is our unique Teaching and Learning Philosophy. Our founding Headmaster Graham Bruce determined that King’s College should “provide the best all-round education it is possible to achieve”.

 

This commitment forms the basis of our Teaching and Learning Philosophy which is made up of eight dimensions: learning, internationalism, democracy, environment, adventure, leadership, service and spirituality. Each of these dimensions guides our approach to teaching and shapes the environment we create for our students. Simply, our goal is to prepare our students so that they can flourish in today’s rapidly changing world.

 

We teach skills that can assist our students in the future, giving them not only the hard knowledge to succeed independently but the soft skills as well —the sense of involvement in the community, the ability to be intuitive and collaborative —so they can make the most of the opportunities presented to them. This paired with the commitment of our teachers creates an environment that supports excellence.

 

We know this because we measure our individual students’ progress, successes and challenges online in real-time using a specifically developed piece of software.

 

Teachers and parents alike can access live data tracking, including co-curricular activities, and see how their learner is progressing in each area. We’re committed to personalising each students’ learning and recognise that the idea of a ‘one size fits all’ education is no longer appropriate.

 

We no longer see students in big cohorts and expect them to follow patterns –but recognise that they are individuals to whom we as their school should respond.

 

The data on each student’s progress that we access and make available enables us to meet their needs. Teachers, parents and the students themselves are empowered to note successes and celebrate them, or, where difficulties are being had, arrange an early intervention to help.

 

Where extra individual attention is required, our class sizes come into play. These are small, rarely exceeding 16 students per senior class, providing a low pupil-to-teacher ratio. Where extra individual attention is required, our class sizes come into play. These are small, rarely exceeding 16 students per senior class, providing a low pupil-to-teacher ratio. Our mentoring system, which allocates a staff mentor to every student, also provides an increased level of support.

 

Our juniors meet in small groups and follow a programme based on academic outcomes, wellbeing and positive education. Meanwhile, our seniors meet individually with their mentors and speak about academic outcomes, their future plans and their all-round progress and wellbeing.

 

All our students are encouraged to push themselves and to reach their highest potential.

 

We encourage you to come and get a feel for King’s -visit our website for details of upcoming campus tours.

 

Words: Headmaster Simon Lamb

www.kingscollege.school.nz  /  09 276 0600