It is the end of term 2 and I feel there are a lot of tired students and tired teachers around so the break is much needed. Term 2 is a time when our students participate in an astonishingly wide range of activities.
If you are a regular reader of our weekly wrap-ups you will already know this as our students have been involved recently in: the Toi wearable art competition, drama productions, Shakespeare Society, the Sheilah Winn Shakespeare festival, the secondary schools culinary challenge, the scholars cup, jazz festivals and our own music evening, Japanese trivia championships, debating, Wellington Young physicists, STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Manufacturing and Mathematics) student challenge, manu kōrero, 48 hour film festival, year 9 readers’ cup challenge, 40 hour famine, tramping and of course the Wellington regional kapahaka championships. And then there are the winter sports: table tennis, inline hockey, indoor bowls, mountain biking, badminton, basketball, football, underwater hockey, e-sport, netball, and hockey.
Almost all of these activities involve ‘teams’ of students working together for a collective goal and they are a reminder of the great value such activities have in building important competencies for our young people through their participation.
The New Zealand Curriculum is fronted by five key competencies which the curriculum states that “people use … to live, learn, work and contribute as active members of their communities.” These key competencies are:
- using language, symbols, and texts,
- managing self,
- relating to others, and
- participating and contributing
There are elements of all of these competencies required to participate in team activities and some are more important than others, depending on the type of activity.
I spend a fair amount of time stressing to staff and students the importance of students being connected in some way to the school through the activities that they do, whether they are extensions of their curriculum activities or sporting or cultural activities. The reason I do this is because these activities, and the competencies they develop, are such an important part in shaping good young people who will become successful adults. In addition, data that I collect consistently shows me that students who are connected in some other way apart from their academic studies, have greater academic success than those students who are not connected. If we look at the competencies developed by team ‘activities’ it is really not surprising that these activities are developing successful people.
At the end of the holidays, the Tokyo Olympics will be commencing and we are really proud that two of our alumni will be competing: Anton Jenkins (diving) and Josh Junior (Sailing). They are both fine ambassadors for our school who I am proud to have known and I am sure we will all share in their Olympic dream and wish them the best of luck (although it is never luck to compete at that level) with their respective endeavours.
Dominic Killalea, Principal