An Opal 1 parent sent me this short 11 minute video the other day. It was one I'd seen before, it had been posted on the blog last year, and I remember thinking it was good stuff. I hadn't watched it for a while and I went back and watched it again this weekend. It made me consider this idea of 21st century skills and preparing our children for an unknown future. And it made me think about how hard and scary it must be for parents these days to be sure they are doing what is best for their children. It made me think of all the mixed messages we hear about education daily and it made me think about how much pressure these is out there, even starting at kindergarten. And it also made me feel really thankful. Thankful that right on the front page of the Opal School website, these are the values spelled out for anyone to see:
- A powerful image of the young child as an intelligent, creative and present resource who offers a unique wisdom that the world needs.
- A belief that children play a central role in the development of their own learning.
- A deep respect for differences, however they may be expressed.
- A belief that listening, dialogue and collaboration open doors to unimagined possibilities.
- A view that learning happens in an environment where people form and nurture relationships with one another, with ideas, materials and the environment that develop and deepen in complexity over time.