Leadership Team Blog – Friday 6th March

Working as we do in a school, it is easy to take for granted how lucky we are that we work every day with teenagers for whom the adult world is brand new. I was privileged this week to facilitate some training in which we explored, amongst other things, the workings of the teenage brain. Apart from during toddlerhood, adolescence is the only time the development of the brain is in overdrive, forming new neural connections and learning how to process the world. The major change is developing an understanding of their place in the world, rather than always seeing issues from their own point of view.

The evidence of this in our day to day work is transparent. Every day we can see our students questioning, finding out, commenting, exploring, sharing, changing, thinking. Just this week I have had corridor conversations about the general election, the prime minister, suffragettes, robotic dancing, Northern Ireland, brain cell regeneration, the effects of alcohol on unborn babies, comic relief, baking, mindfulness and meditation and time travel and this doesn’t include any of the formal learning happening in classrooms! In no other job could we be lucky enough to engage with so much thinking and exploring or be able to access such a wide variety of ideas and interests.

Today it has been my pleasure to start the process of speaking and listening tests with my Year 11 class. I have been so impressed with their maturity, their preparation and their eloquence and also their resilience in the face of a real challenge. Good luck to the rest of Year 11 as their tests come round over the next couple of weeks.

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