Jamie’s dream school episode 5. “Sperm, Shakespeare and surgery!”
A big move this week as we (at last!) move out of the classroom a bit more. Jamie has really got it now as the penny drops that a lot of “challenging teens” are kinesthetic learners (they learn by ‘doing’).
We must let young people move around if they are to learn. Often when I work in school I get asked to do a presentation followed by a workshop, and the first thing I do in the workshop is stop taking and get them moving around the room. It’s a must and it’s biologically sound… e.g. did you know that testosterone levels in lads reaches it’s peak mid morning, and that doesn’t necessarily make them ‘randy’ (!), it makes them restless. Lads, in particular, get fidgety, but we routinely tell them to sit down and be quiet. Something we may have to re-think, if we are to reach the unreachable.
Jamie and his teachers really grasped this concept this week as we saw them doing cooking, surgery, art and acting (at The Globe theatre). Simon Callow struggled to get them engaged with Romeo and Juliet but when they had to read the words live on stage at The Globe, then it all changed for them. They came alive, even the grumpy lads who couldn’t connect with it in the classroom, acted their hearts out. Great stuff.
And when cooking Jamie realised that a ‘pre-amble’ before an activity is a waste of time and he twigged that he had to get them chopping vegetables straight away, he did, and it worked. And some of the young people started to love cookery, a possible career choice for some of them.
Robert Winston was on form this week as he put the lads semen under the microscope (interesting new lesson Mr. Gove!) and also brought in a surgery team to show them how surgery and medicine works in the real world. It was great and Chloe was very passionate and went on to do some work experience in an operating theatre, it was a bit of a shock for her but, again, it’s real world stuff and it might be an job option for her.
It was also good to see one of my childhood heroes back on TV – Daley Thompson, what a legend. He got the young people into the diving pool and deliberately got them out of their comfort zone and after a lot of practice and encouragement they started to love it. Proof indeed that we should always push young people beyond their current mindset – but we must support them while they are being pushed, and not leave them in the lurch! “They are not very confident, so little victories are good for them” Daley said.
Unfortunately in the human rights lessons with Cherie Booth/Blair they were very chatty again, constantly interrupting and talking over each other, almost back to earlier episodes, which made me think…I wonder whether some of the young people have no inner monologue?! I had a friend who hasn’t got one – she speaks out loud almost every thought, making it exhausting being with her. Can we help our young people to think a little more before they speak? I wonder when they watch the program whether they see themselves in a different light?
I’m not having a go at them I just wonder whether their lack of restraint was the biggest factor to their underachievement? Answers on postcard please.
Academia exists for the pure pursuit of knowledge but education in school surely should be more practical than that?
I think this program is proving that. Keep going Jamie you are doing well!