Jeff Hopkins is the founder and principal of The pacific School of Innovation and Inquiry right here in Victoria. I think this is something so special that we are able to have here on the island and I am super excited we get to have the opportunity to learn how the school is operated and its focus for the learners within.
I agree with Jeff’s ideas that inquiry is an effective way of helping students learn in an environment that provides them with adequate learning and resources for their own proficiency level and learning that aligns with their own personal interests. I think that inquiry allows the students to really deepen their understanding because they are genuinely interested in what they are learning about. Inquiry has the power to diminish that act of laziness and disinterest that is difficult to overcome in high school. You typically either get learners who are beyond interested and so in tune with their learning that they are more focused on marks rather than the actual content and if they are even interested in the learning, and then you get the students who just are completely checked out and do not want to be there because they are uninterested in the content.
I also really like the way this school is set up. It is not like a typical busy high school. It has space and places that allow your creativity to flow in a safe and welcoming environment. I think this is really important in an inquiry based setting. We as teachers in places like PSII need to allow the students their own individual spaces and areas where they can work individually on what they have chosen to work on, rather than seating in a traditional classroom with desks in rows that all face the front of the call. I like this approach to learning because I feel like it provides much more leeway in the learning and also in the ways they choose to go about the learning.
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