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In the world of education they don’t come much bigger than these three: Bob, Dylan, and Kate. Sorry if that led you to think of Bob Dylan but I really mean Robert Bjork, Dylan Wiliam, and a rising star in educational research, Kate Jones. 

In Secondary this year we began as teachers reflecting on what makes for great learning, thinking about how we can truly understand our students’ level of attainment, and how we want the school to feel to them when they are here. 

So, this week, it was incredibly rewarding to see that the ways we approach our curriculum, its content, and our approaches to learning and teaching was the focus of a major new article by these three scholars. A key quote from the article states that teachers should make ‘decisions about what activities are most likely to help their students learn effectively, no matter what challenges they face.

In our whole Secondary assembly on Monday afternoon, we looked at those who have overcome obstacles to their attainment, considered the codes they ultimately lived by in order to triumph, and reflected on the role our values of respect, integrity, learning, and community can play in supporting us all. I have told the students I will be interested to learn about what they are challenging themselves towards achieving this year. 

As such, and in tune with the article I mentioned, how students think, our knowledge about how memory and the brain works, and what we can do in our classrooms to maximise and unlock our students’ potential matters deeply to us here at Mougins.

If you were to have visited the classrooms this week you will have seen lively debate, scholarly research, and genuine collaboration between teachers and students as they aim ever higher in learning. 

Be it in the extended metaphor writing of the Year 9 English students, as they unpacked the year ahead in complex and poetic terms, or for Sixth Form students working, planning, crafting and drafting their way along their university journey, the week has been a real learning curve indeed. 

Over the coming weeks we look forward to sharing with you how the Secondary School is nurturing, challenging and inspiring the students to engage positively in taking on desirable difficulties in their pursuit of real success. I hope you will enjoy the journey with us.

by Paul Michael
Head of Secondary