Today’s society is increasingly complex, fascinating and challenging and change is constant and rapid. In order to prepare our pupils effectively for their future lives, we need to provide a broad and multifaceted education. Above all, we have to help them become both intellectually adroit and emotionally intelligent. They have to think and feel deeply.
At Richmond Park School, our staff teach in ways that help pupils develop their thinking. Throughout the school, teachers devise activities which are challenging, interesting and varied. Pupils have to participate fully, work collaboratively and be creative. More than just remembering, they are asked to analyse, evaluate and create. In the secondary school, we are reinforcing these high-level skills as well through our communication and thinking skills project.
Blended learning also plays a vital role in the pupils’ intellectual development and their acquisition of key skills. Through this approach, which makes use of both traditional methods and modern technology, the pupils come to think and work in different ways, and communicate their knowledge, understanding and ideas by various means.
The school also focuses closely on children’s wellbeing and on the emotional aspects of their lives. Our mindfulness practices greatly improve the pupils’ awareness of feelings and empathy, of who they themselves are and the person they want to become. Our personal, social, health and economic education also helps pupils reflect on vital elements of their lives and of society. This year in secondary, for example, the programme will give great emphasis to relationships and social interaction. Through reflection, pupils can gain understanding of themselves and others.
Physical education and sport have a decisive influence. The Roman poet, Juvenal, invented the phrase ´A healthy mind in a healthy body’ and modern research has confirmed this vital link. For this reason- amongst others- our school gives considerable time to sport within the curriculum, through extra- curricular activities and competitions. We have created a healthy culture in every sense and, in addition, the pupils are already achieving impressive success, both as individuals and teams, in competitive sport.
Finally, our sustainability project brings together thinking and feeling. This year we shall be working on the goals relating to peace and equality. Through a wide range of experiences, the pupils will learn about these major objectives and how we can all try to create a more peaceful and egalitarian society.