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The Frimley way

Duration: 06:37

Views: 1637

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Deputy principal, Kirsty Jones, shares some ideas they have used to understand and introduce key competencies at Frimley School.

The teachers came up with this visual representation of the Frimley Way where students develop their key competencies through their attitude to school, the actions they take and what they achieve.

Transcript

At Frimley School the key competencies started in about 2006. We have a BOT initiative fund of $5000, which anyone can apply for. Kirsty Jones applied for the initiative to kick start the key competencies at Frimley School.

What we originally tried to do was to come up with words that Frimley School felt each key competency to mean. We started to unpack it with each other, unpack it with the children and community. We developed a whole lot of words that were important to Frimley that explained the key competencies. For example every class would have the word ‘optimism’ and each class would then surround that word with others to help them understand the word in their context.  Optimism might mean something different when they were focusing on managing self than when they were focusing on relating to others etc.

We have now moved onto the Frimley Way model. The teachers said we need to live these words, which are the basis of the key competencies through our vision of attitude, action and achievement. They then came up with this visual representation where students develop their key competencies through their attitude to school, the actions they take and what they achieve. In order for the children to understand what these are the teachers use the white space around the Frimley way model to unpack words to help their children learn about each key competency. 

It has to be explicit at first so the teachers learn to understand it and the children learn to understand it. And then when it is embedded they are able to articulate and identify it. 

Your whole school culture has to be around the key competencies. We have had to make a shift in that aspect. What happens in each classroom is different but there is a whole school feeling. We changed our school wide behaviour management system to align with the key competencies. We have ‘Awesome Awards’. You receive an awesome award for one of the key competencies. The teacher identifies what you have done and what key competencies it is. They circle whether it is an action, attitude or achievement and then at the end of the week a couple get drawn out at assembly and they get to choose a prize for their class. There is an incentive to get something for everyone and then all students get their awesome awards to take home.

Once you start off a new initiative and you let the teachers have their legs they become quite inventive and creative. I have always been of the opinion that you have to trust people. If they have got something and they want to do it you need to trust them. Strong collegiality amongst the school is important, so they can share their ideas and get quality feedback. At the end of the year you look at all the ideas and celebrate the successes, and work out which ones you are going to run with.


Updated on: 12 Jun 2009


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