Student-Centred Learning has Been Tailored to Suit an Online Format

Student-Centred Learning

At the beginning of Term Two 2020, Alphington Grammar was faced with the challenge of shifting our entire curriculum to an online platform, a new learning experience that lasted much longer than any of us had anticipated.

The year 2021 has proven to be another endurance test that has seen our school pivot between the very different demands of remote and on-site learning. Armed with our knowledge of what worked and what didn’t in 2020, we have made informed decisions regarding assessment, homework, lesson structures and support. The high quality of curriculum delivery has been sustained, as has our commitment to challenge and rigour; we have simply become more skilled at tailoring learning to suit an online format.

While the global pandemic has tested our students, they have continued to learn, and engage with their school community in a way that makes their teachers proud. They have displayed resilience and maturity beyond their years. However, the secret to our success is as simple as it is important: relationships.

At Alphington, the student lies at the heart of our Teaching and Learning philosophy. Student-centred learning means that we know our students extremely well. We know their learning needs and their personalities; we know who will thrive with the challenge of extension tasks and who needs additional support. We also know when we need to occasionally ease the pressure off in order to maintain a student’s wellbeing and self-esteem.

Connections have deepened in many ways over the past 18 months — an unexpected bonus. Our move to online parent-teacher interviews has enabled us to converse with parents who could not previously join us on-site due to work commitments. Our transition to progressive online reporting has empowered parents to more meaningfully track their child’s progress. The support from our parent body as we have worked together to achieve the best academic and wellbeing outcomes for students has been extraordinary.

As a staff, we have benefitted from setting up a Remote Learning Online Forum, where we have shared ideas, resources, examples of best practice, and student and parent feedback with one another.

It is important during times like these to take stock and to try to find some perspective. We are extremely privileged and lucky to be a part of the Alphington community. Our students have been able to communicate live with their teachers and support staff on a daily basis; a lack of resources has not hindered their education; they have not had to rely solely on hard-copy materials. The experience serves to highlight the realities of children who aren’t as privileged or lucky. All experiences are learning opportunities and I am sure that we have all learnt a lot over the past 18 months.

Education, teaching and learning, is continually evolving. Together we have been adaptable, collaborative and thoughtful in building an effective strategy and vision. For that, the entire learning community — our parents, our staff and, most importantly, our students — should feel very proud.


Alphington Grammar School is located on five hectares of beautiful parklands and sports ovals by the banks of the Darebin […]

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