Brisbane Grammar School has a historical focus on providing its students with a broad liberal education borne out of the belief that education is as much about building character as it is about equipping students with a body of knowledge and specific skills. Central to achieving this goal is the articulation and explicit modelling of the School's values – learning, respect, endeavour, community and leadership. Our stated mission is for our students to become thoughtful and confident men of character who contribute to their communities. To this end, we strongly encourage students to actively and tangibly embrace these values throughout their daily school lives.
In the Middle School there are many ways in which we explicitly educate students about what the School values 'look like, sound like and feel like' in everyday Middle School life. For example, in Year 7 we operate the Learn2Lead Program in which our students are charged with the responsibility to educate others in the community about the School values. This semester each Year 7 class was assigned one of the School's values and encouraged to act as custodians of that value for the duration of a week. This involved designing activities to raise awareness of the meaning and enactment of the assigned value across the entire Middle School community. A challenging task!
What followed was a very wide range of creative activities designed by the students and here is a small snapshot. In promoting the value learning one class worked with other students across the community to create origami trees to represent their learning journey to this point, annotating them with some of the things they found challenging in academic, sporting, cultural or social contexts. Students took these away to place on their desks for the week.
Another class charged with the responsibility of promoting endeavour designed circus games which they conducted with Years 5 and 6 students. They themselves spent time in the lead up to the activity honing their own skills in the games they had created. The objective was to make the benefits of endeavour explicit throughout the experience. A third example involved the value respect with students constructing a 'respect tree' in our reception area and gradually adding leaves over the course of the week on which written examples of how Middle School students show respect were written. The 'leaves' were collected from students across all year levels in the Middle School and demonstrated students understand this value well.
As a result of the many activities the Year 7 cohort ran over the course of the semester it was clear that not only should the young men of the year level be commended for their creative and committed approach to values education in our Middle School, but more importantly that the custodianship of our School values is in very safe hands.
Head of Middle School