Opal School staff are currently collaborating on revisions to our goals and expectations for students. What an exciting process it has been, to revisit these statements, originally written over ten years ago, with great hopes for the children who would attend. We have worked together to revise them now, with the experience and research we have collected, and the relationships with children and curriculum we have a decade of history with.
This process is leading a transition towards a new format for evaluating and communicating student growth over time. The first phase will be sent to parents in March, and the transition will continue with revisions through the 2012-2013 school year. Over the next several weeks, I’ll use this blog to share the thinking behind each of our stated goals and expectations for Opal School students.
Here is the first one:
Discover, cultivate and express the joy and wonder of learning
We want Opal School students to be deeply and genuinely engaged in the wonder of learning. We believe that the pleasure of learning, innately born in all human beings, is of vital importance to sustain throughout the elementary years. Sustaining this capacity has the potential to carry students through future coursework and experience with the ability to cultivate their own interest and engagement.
It is important to contextualize this goal within an image of children that are competent and strong, and to remember that the pleasure of learning comes from challenge and authentic accomplishment. Curiosity is a deeply personal emotion that we can learn to employ by developing habits of slowing down, paying attention, and asking questions. These are habits of mind that we actively cultivate through curriculum design and evaluate by observation.