Monday, February 2, 2015

Key Competencies for the future

#28daysofwriting entry 2:

This book has been sitting on my desk at work for a while. It's common for me to have 3 or 4 different texts on the go. I prefer to read a bit, put it away, muse and then maybe read some more - as opposed to reading something cover to cover. A colleague borrowed the book when they realised I wasn't actually reading it and now I have it back. The title alone captivates me. Key Competencies are something I truly believe in from our curriculum.
Ideally, I'd like a school curriculum based on the KCs. A teacher identifies a KC that might be lacking in their class and designs an inquiry around it that focuses on learners practising that particular KC. Alternatively
At our school we have 5 values that are linked to the KCs - Respect, Communication, Life Long Learning, Contribution and Self Worth. These brought together make up our "Bridge to Life". (Read more about this here)
I think that the KCs can sometime be a little ignored with our assessment practices focusing on National Standards a lot of the time.
What I'm starting to think and talk about is the link between being competent at the KCs and achieving well in regards to National Standards.
At our school we had awards for students who had achieve well in each of the 5 values on the Bridge to Life. We put their photo on a wall of fame in our library/hall area. When we looked at those photos we realised that every one of them (about 20 students) were all either "above" or "at" standard for their year group. It dawned on us then that perhaps there's a link. Seems obvious now I know.
What it takes though is a "mental flip" from viewing the KCs as something that sits beside or even as an extra element to that of viewing the KCs as something pervasive, central and pivotal for a learner.

I'm wondering now how my views shape up against those of the authors of the book. Time to begin reading.

Also - wanted to mention how much I've enjoyed reading other posts from those who have shared #28daysofwriting via Twitter. I can see already that it's freeing not worrying too much about what I'm saying, and just getting ideas on here.

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Is school just preparation for life?