Mr Adam Bond
Junior Sub School Manager
Let’s think about what we, as teachers, teach at school. We teach our subjects of specialty such as Maths, Science, Humanities etc. but is the role of the teacher just to teach such content? I don’t think that anyone can argue the significance of these subjects. They are all imperative in the development of students to ensure that they can succeed in life after school. Our subjects prepare students with the skills to transition on to further studies as well as general day to day skills to succeed in life.
My experience as both a Student Manager and Student Wellbeing Coordinator tells me that we are also responsible for working with parents and carers to provide students with the opportunity to develop life skills. A key life skill that is never too far from the forefront of a teacher’s mind is that of resilience. It is because, as teachers, we can recognise that resilience is an area that many students may require further development. The new Victorian Curriculum also recognises the development of personal skills and it contains opportunities across a variety of disciplines and cross curricular learning.
All schools offer other experiences in their programs to build each child’s capacity in a range of personal attributes. These activities include: excursions and incursions, camps, leadership roles such as SRC, performing arts, and interschool sports teams. At NGSC we also have the HPV team, debating teams, Multicultural Football squad and Annual School Production. Resilience plays a significant role in how each child manages the ‘ups and downs’ associated with group activities and especially when they are challenged out of their comfort zone, for example, singing in front of the school at assembly, taking the midnight drive in the 24 hour HPV race, being the chairperson at a meeting or attempting a high ropes challenge on camp.
Each activity or opportunity can be about being faced with new and challenging experiences, or consolidating understating and strategies that assist student in understanding themselves and the world around them.
Being ready for some experiences isn’t formed in the weeks leading up to the activity. It’s in years of education, a life’s exposure to challenges and problem solving. These skills can’t be taught by an Xbox or PlayStation in the confines of four walls. Encourage your children to talk through challenges and expose them to experiences that will challenge them without breaking them!
Resilience isn't about being an impenetrable fortress, it’s about being able to identify challenges, working through ways (as it may take more than one!) to overcome these challenges and then being able to put them behind you and move forward.
This is why the car windshield is always bigger than a rear-view mirror.
Next article: The challenges we face within the digital world.