This week perhaps I can share with you a little anecdote. It relates to an incident that occurred as we were preparing for this week’s Corporate Open Evening. It was an apparently trivial incident but I think in its own way it was actually quite telling so here it is:-
I am not sure whether I was trying to lead by example or motivate my team by showing that I was willing to “muck in” but actually some of the invites that were sent out for the evening were written in my own fair hand. I was busy working away at this task when a little girl of about 4, made her way into my office. Presumably she had been accompanying her teacher or teaching assistant to the photocopiers next door and seeing my door open decided to come on in and investigate. She made her way confidently up to the desk where I was working and surveyed me doing the job of addressing the invitations and envelopes and then said, “How are you doing it?”
Like I said, it was an innocuous enough moment really but afterwards one or two things about it struck me:
- Notice how inquisitive the little girl was to want to know what was going on in my office
- Then notice her confidence to overcome any obstacles to her learning – no fear of the scary Headmaster in his big scary office here!
- But most important notice what she asked- and what she didn’t ask…..she didn’t ask me what I thought was the obvious question “What are you doing?” she asked “How are you doing it?”
….and why is that so significant? Well for two reasons:
- She was asking a far more thoughtful, analytical question. She doesn’t want to jump straight to the obvious answer (I’m writing invitations) she wants to understand the process
- I suspect that her reasons for asking how I am doing what I am doing is because she wants to get involved and she wants to understand how to do it with me successfully
At KISU, we want our young people to be inquisitive, articulate and confident. We want them to have the resilience to take on and overcome obstacles to their learning. We want our students to be thoughtful and analytical- to want to understand by asking their teachers and themselves “Why?” and “How? And we want our students to be active learners, to be self-motivated, to engage themselves in their own learning journeys. We are proud to be an IB World School and we strive to ensure that the IB learner qualities infuse and inform our entire approach to learning and not just in the 6th Form but right throughout the school.
Judging by my interaction with this particular little girl we are doing not a bad job of it!