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Being a creative thinker is one of the attributes most sought-after by employers. We want children that can come up with new ideas – whether they are finding different solutions to a maths problem, composing a piece of music to reflect a mood or emotion, or deciding on the best tactic to use to put the ball in the hoop. Creative thinkers have open minds and are free thinkers and so they are able to express their thinking in different ways, producing new ideas or concepts.
We encourage children to take care and pride in what they do and to, wherever possible, produce the very best work that they are capable of. This is true whether this work is a piece of writing, a painting, a javelin throw or a speech. Craftsmanship means taking care to make sure that the quality of what is produced has been practised and honed and is the best job we can do.
Much of success in life comes from how confidently we approach things – especially things that are difficult or unfamiliar. We know that confident children make successful learners but also successful people. We build children’s confidence by making it safe for them to step outside of their comfort zone and we encourage them to try new things. Effective feedback – both about what went well and what didn’t – helps us to grow and gain confidence in what we are doing (no matter how old we are!).
The ability to think about what people tell you, decide whether or not it is true or reliable, or whether you agree or disagree is essential in your capacity to make good decisions. Nadeen children are taught to make decisions, to take calculated risks, to evaluate and compare and to solve problems. These critical thinking skills prepare children to be independent learners and change makers.
We communicate in different ways and these are all essential in developing relationships that help us throughout our lives. We teach children to be emotionally and socially literate through the way they communicate with and relate to others.
Our modern, ‘throw-away’ society does not always encourage or development commitment in children. We believe that showing commitment to your learning is one of the most essential elements of making progress and cannot be underestimated. We teach children not to give up when learning is tough and that the greatest satisfaction and pride come after you have had to struggle for it. Eureka!
We want children to be constantly questioning, reflecting, pondering, analysing and seeking to know more. This is what drives our passion and interest in the things we love and it makes us better learners. Our Big Question creative curriculum helps to encourage independent thinking and enquiry, as do sessions of philosophy for children, and many, many stories.
In life, we have to be able get on with anyone to get the job done. This requires a set of social and communication skills that aren’t always easy to master, but it also requires an understanding that people working effectively together can achieve more than the sum of those individuals working separately. We are like bees in a hive!