My last several weeks in New Zealand have been full: visiting schools, connecting with New Zealanders, learning about different NZ cultures, adapting to life in a new city, and exploring a new landscape. The more schools I visit, the more educators I meet, and the more classes I observe, the more I think about the importance of openness and flexibility.
I came here with some very specific questions about inquiry and project-based learning. The more I learn and experience the more I see a need to change my change my questions and develop new ones. It’s a good reminder about the messy, circuitous path of intellectual work and learning. I guess it is also its own lesson about inquiry.
Here are some of the new questions that have begun to fill up my notebook:
- How do educators create meaningful learning experiences in different contexts?
- How do student cultural backgrounds change the act of learning?
- In what different ways do teachers develop creative pathways to meet outside standards?
- How do teachers navigate the tension between building supportive learning communities and pushing for academic rigor?
In no particular order, here are a couple of recent pictures from various New Zealand schools. (I don’t have pictures of students because taking pictures of young people I don’t know well feels intrusive.)
Note: This is a personal blog. All views and information presented herein are my own and do not represent the views of the Fulbright Program or the US Department of State.