The teacher enters the classroom to row upon row of students seated and facing her desk at the front of the room, with an appropriately positioned chalkboard on the wall just over her right shoulder. She asks the students to wait until the end of the lesson to ask questions as she scrawls formulas over the blackboard for the children to absorb. Whilst some students can learn and have learned in this type of setting, it is not true of every student. And, even for those that do, how truly engaged are they in the learning moment? How compelling is the pedagogy and the learning environment to creating that engagement?
Seemingly, the only self-direction happening in this type of model and environment is the self-direction of whether a student feels comfortable enough to indeed ask a question, or whether they sit quietly and hope that at some point they can make sense of the lesson.
The above now seems a dated example of learning and teaching. It is clear learning theory has changed since the origin of this type of learning model and learning environment. Sadly, few learning institutions have deviated from the model.
OneSchool Global however, are pioneers and world leaders in self-directed learning and delivering modern learning environments that best facilitate this.
Dr Thomas (Tom) Frizelle joined OneSchool Global in January 2018 in the newly created Chief Digital Learning Officer Role. An academic from the University of Washington, with a PhD in Educational Technology, as well as primary and secondary teaching experience, it’s fair to say Tom knows a thing or two about technology and education.
“What drew me to this role was the opportunity to work in a truly progressive School – a school that was serious about placing a student’s learning at the centre of all that they do, and a school that was willing to deviate from outdated pedagogical models to deliver quality learning outcomes” said Tom.
Whilst pedagogy is the first critical piece to the puzzle, the learning environment follows a close second. OneSchool’s Global Design Manager Dave Mitchinson works closely alongside Tom and the Global Principal to ensure OneSchool’s learning environments are not only fit for purpose but, fit for a purpose that he and the Global Leadership Team believe is world leading.
“The work led by our Global Principal Hugo Vaughan and now contributed to by Tom Frizelle is absolutely outstanding. Delivering new learning environments such as Manawatu or even the adaptive reuse work for existing campuses is something we are all really excited to be part of,” said Dave.
“One of the highlights of my career to date was receiving a video from students in North America. The video was something they had put together showing ‘before’ and ‘after’ images of their campuses and learning centres. It was really pleasing to see how proud of their new learning spaces they were and to see that the spaces being delivered are helping the students to be more engaged in the school and their learning”.
And, there is no better example of this than the new, purposebuilt Manawatu campus in New Zealand. Due to open its doors in Term 2, 2018, the Manawatu campus is specifically designed with OneSchool Global’s Design Methodology at its heart. The cutting-edge design allows for future flexibility so that as technology and teaching methods evolve the space can be modified easily to suit. The new campus provides a fully integrated education environment which will allow teachers and students to embrace the OneSchool Self-Directed Learning framework.
“With around 60 building projects currently underway across the globe, and more planned, it is hugely satisfying to see how the wider OneSchool community has embraced the OneSchool methodology and are working together to push their education to the next level,”said Dave.