Day two in our growing kura was full of shines happen people who wear pumped from the previous day’s activities. They were open and ready to learn they have out their trust in the leadership team and by the end of the day most were leading their own learning.
The day started with ‘Check & Connect’ (C&C), this is an idea my team and I are developing as a way of ensuring we take time each day to have focused meaningful conversations where akonga discuss ‘What’s on top for you?’ as part of a reflection from the day before. There is also another stimulus to get robust conversation going. One I like to start with early on in the groups development is ‘the meaning of your name’. This could be as the country of origin of your surname, story telling about your whakapapa or who named you and why did they choose this name. Let’s take Sophie Mary Ralph for example. Mary is my mothers middle name so I guess as part of a family tradition I got this name ( I also like to tell my younger sister it’s because I am the favourite!). My surname, Ralph, is of French origin and I should really find out more about this as it should be pronounced in the French way ( like Ralph Fiennes the actor). My first name, Sophie, means wisdom….well that’s obvious. Through the story telling around the group connections are made and the time is taken to reflect on where we came from and what brought us all here to where we are. It’s nice to see people stop and think about their name. We must remember at much time was taken to come up with your name and I know from speaking to new parents everyone has an opinion on baby names and when you announce a new born name we all want to know why the name was chosen and we almost insist in our asking at there must be a deep profound reason.
Today I learnt a little more about my new colleagues and made more connections. The same exercise can be harder for younger learners and pre warning should be given as some feel shy or embarrassed when they don’t know anythin about their name.
Check & connect will play an important role in getting to know all learners and developing a group identity. I look forward to learning more about all akonga in our kura.
When was the last time you thought about the origins of your name and what don’t you know about it? I’ off to find out more about Ralph.