Sir Ken Robinson

I still vividly remember the staff meeting when I first saw Ken Robinson’s famous Ted Talk on creativity in schools [or lack of]. I still remember going from a slouched, semi focused state to an upright, alert one. I well remember how almost magically clouds seemed to clear, birds seemed to sing and the purpose … More Sir Ken Robinson


  Before Rolleston College opened we realised that there was a need to have some anchors. that would provide our base core vision as we developed. Some core values and  concepts that we could return to would serve to secure us and refocus us. Some key concepts that defined who we were and who we … More Wolves.

Learner Power.

It is always nice to start off the year with a positive little story.  This blog is about what may seem like a small story but is one that I find quite symbolic and a good example of learner power and learner ownership. When we developed the vision of the school we developed a series … More Learner Power.

Finland 2018 #6

So having had a week now to reflect on my visit to Lapland and now that I am back in New Zealand preparing for the start of the school year what are my overall impressions and learnings? I guess there are five big ideas that sum up my Finnish Experience. Feed the mind. Free school … More Finland 2018 #6

Finland 2018 #5

The last school visited was a Vocational College for 16 to 19 year olds. This particular campus was one of 6 REDU schools in Lapland and had a current role of 1200. The geography of Lapland meant that e-learning platforms and links were an integral part of learning. In Finland upper secondary education splits and … More Finland 2018 #5

Finland 2018 #4

The next morning we visited Korkalovaara Comprehensive Secondary School. In New Zealand this would be a junior High School. 720 students and 60 teachers. Average class size was 20. There were 20 non teaching support staff and 3 senior leaders. Lessons were between 60 and 90 minutes long, there was between 18 to 25 hours … More Finland 2018 #4

Finland 2018 #3

The first school we visited was Vaaralampi Primary School situated 3km form the city centre. It was actually a shared site with another primary school and an adult education centre. Vaaralampi was actually being rebuilt. The school had 360 students. 18 classes of 7 to 12 year old. remembering that school starts at 7 years … More Finland 2018 #3

Finland 2018 #2

On to Finland then and, in particular, Rovaniemi the capital city of Lapland, above the Arctic circle and yes very cold. As these photos show, the city was certainly living up to its claim of being Santa’s home town. The temperatures fell as low as -17 which was certainly a shock to the system. I … More Finland 2018 #2