Sunday, 12 April 2015

Mark Osborne Discusses Albany Senior High School (Years 11-13)

Friday 20 March, 2015


(instead of Form time, we condensed all the form time during the week into two days to get a longer, more useful chunk of time)

We became sage on the side. We didn’t know necessarily what they were learning or the software they were using, but we did support them to problem solve.  We didn’t want the kids limited by a teacher’s knowledge or understanding of something new. We just opened the gates and let them go and had faith that they could do it.

Teachers were mentors on a ratio of 1:15 with students of vertical ages. They set goals and we did 1:1 interviews.  The philosophy was really relationship based.  During tutorial time we talked with students individually about their credits, where they were at and their learning goals.  Teachers had same group all the way through school.  Teachers were the point of contact for that student.  Tutorials were very much about pastoral care of students.  We had no Deans, no need to.  Tutors worked in teams of 6, cross curricular (1x English, 1x Science etc). These were PLG’s and we also did Teaching as Inquiry in these groups.  A lot of the learning to learn and study skills happened during tutorial time. Tuakana/teina teaching and learning is really strong.


3x periods per day for 100mins - 8.50-10.30, 11am-12.40, 1.30-3.10.  Kids do 5 specialist subjects and 2x impact projects per year.  The focus was let’s do less subjects but do them really well. E.g. get excellence in 80 credits not achieved in 120 credits.  Non contact times happened during the Weds project times and the kids became under passive supervision by the other 5 teachers.

Impact Projects

The impact projects became their 6th and 7th subjects. Credits were attached and we encouraged kids to credit hunt!


Because learning teams are cross curricular, this often means you don’t have 2x English teachers side by side.  Teachers would sometimes swap out so this could happen.

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