Our Learning Story
We are all learners; parents, teachers and students. At GME it is our hope that parents, teachers, and students see themselves as lifelong learners, willing to take risks and learn from mistakes.
In the Spring of 2017, we did a scan of our students and asked them: Can you name 2 people at GME who believe that you will be successful in life? What are you learning and why is it important? How is your learning going? What are the next steps in your learning? Students answered the questions extremely positively. The biggest surprise was that students mentioned all of the 7 Principles of Learning as being important and a part of their life at GME, even though they had never read this international research. However, one thing that we noticed is that students did not understand themselves as a learner and having control of what or how they learned.
Research on learning conducted all over the world was used to develop the 7 Principles of Learning. You will find these painted in the hallway as you enter the main GME building. As a staff we strive to intergrate the seven OECD "principles of learning" into everything we do. Our goal is to provide a learning environment where these principles have a place to live. These seven principles are:
1. Put learners at the centre
2. Emphasize the social nature of learning
3. Understand that emotions are central to learning
4. Recognize individual differences
5. Stretch all learners...but not too much
6. Use assessment for learning not just of learning
7. Build horizontal connections across curriculum subject areas This document gives you some additional information- 7 Principles of Learning.pdf
In 2017-18, we began to investigate how we communicate student learning. As we gain a better understanding of learning, it is evident that we must change how we assess this learning. We are currently in the process of aligning assessment practices to the revised and renewed curriculum. Part of this process entailed surveying our parent community. We surveyed our parent community in the late Spring of 2017 and 2018 on the changes that we were making to how progress was being communicated. The vast majority of parents told us that they appreciated the many ways that teachers were using to provide ongoing communication of student learning apart from a traditional report card.
We continue to use this information as we develop a better way to communicate student learning. The goal with assessment is to move away from teachers controlling assessment towards students being able to articulate where they are, where they are going, and how they are going to get there.