personal and social capability

Personal and Social Capability ACARA

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Safer Internet Day


Safer Internet Day is a European initiative which has gone world wide. Next Year it will be February 10th. This year it was February 11th. Internet safety fits in perfectly with the social capability. In a connected world , students need to know how to become leaders on the internet and how to manage internet relationships positively.

For Social Awareness students at all the levels have to be able to :

appreciate diverse perspectives

contribute to civil society

understand relationships.

For Social Management students have to look at being able to:

communicate effectively

work collaboratively

make decisions

negotiate and resolve conflict

develop leadership skills.

Safe internet day is a good way to look at those indicators and certainly everyday should be safe internet day. We ought to be able to create a learning environment which enables good digital citizenship skills. The welcome page for the safer internet day is here where they will be compiling the results of this year’s safer internet day. iinet features safer internet day and gives a run down of the sorts of social sites and dangers students may or may not be involving themselves in. As teachers we need to be aware of the sorts of sites students access so we can offer independent advice about internet safety.


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Principal turns school around

Jihad DibPrincipal turns school around

One of our TV current affairs programs, The Project featured a clip about Jihad Dib who had taken a western Sydney school and turned it right around. The clip takes about 3 minutes and in that time you can see how well Mr. Dib has put the Personal and Social Capabilities to work. You could have the assessment rubrics out and tick every box for him and you can look at this video and know this is what the Personal and Social Capability looks like in action. As Rita Pierson said in her TED talk – every kid needs a champion and the Personal and Social Capability offers us a way of championing students in a very comprehensive and life changing way.

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I want a unicorn and flowers on my green lawn

unicorn This article on the Huffington Post blog about Why Generation y Yuppies are Unhappy gives plenty of food for thought and plenty of ideas about how to manage the frustration of Gen Y people. Those younger have also been brought up as special and have an even stronger idea about how to project themselves through social media and in a visual world and it is the negative side of that we often hear about in the news. This article gives us some insight as how we can better manage it and the Australian Curriculum gives us the perfect tool with its Personal and Social Capability. That is all about getting students to keep their feet on the ground and to look at how they impact on others and how others impact on them. It also addresses effective communication for dealing with issues and problems. Tools to manage your life positively. I have seen it at work in the year 8s I have explained this to this year. I have been more than impressed with how the work we have done has translated in effective , sensible action on their part to resolve issues and problems because they have the thinking and practical tools. This unicorn on the green grass with flowers is a wonderful image. It shows simultaneously the stuff of creativity and inspiration and then the pitfalls of not being grounded. The social awareness and social management aspects of this PASC are an opportunity to help students make realistic decisions and take realistic action without dampening their need to dream and dream big .

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The awful truth?

Jiddu Krishnamurti Image: Pinterest

Quotes from Jiddu Krishnamurti are all over the internet since he is relatively popular with 20 somethings and has an influence on those studying philosophy, education, mental health and psychology. He was friends with Aldous Huxley so his role has been to give food for thought for what we call social awareness in the new Australian curriculum. Sometimes it is worth knowing the sorts of influences on our students so we can engage with them and then draw out their thinking and ideas.

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You matter

You matter manifestoIt doesn’t matter whether you look at it from the original, social awareness, perspective and appreciate the diversity of others and say You matter or whether you look at it from the self-awareness perspective and think I matter, the truth is … we matter. Personal and social awareness relate to our feelings of self worth and the worth of others in our lives. Self respect and mutual respect. From a teacher point of view it is about being a champion for those you teach.


Every kid needs a champion

Forty years in the classroom shows. Rita Pierson can speak with such clarity, such honesty, such confidence and such knowledge. She is a jewel. Her talk is all inspiration because 40 years in a classroom has made her capable of understanding and knowing that it all comes down to relationships and connections. It is the stuff of the personal and social capability. Students will enable themselves when they have a champion. They will do better, try better and achieve more when they have someone who knows how to get the best out of them. The personal and social capability is about this: communication, developing leadership skills, understanding relationships, becoming confident and resilient, recognising personal qualities and achievements. Rita Pierson’s words can ring out and resound because she has spent 40 years in a classroom and she knows what she is talking about. As she speaks she is connecting with her audience and teaching them too about personal and social capability. We are educators. We can do this.

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Building character

Amongst other things we revisited character building in our group yesterday because we were combined with the group which was looking at the Ethical Understanding capability of the Australian National curriculum. It is important to remind ourselves that building character is probably a good and worthwhile thing to be doing for children and adolescents. As adults we ought to be looking at the sorts of values we should like our next generation to have. There are plenty of resources for character building and development on the Net. Our school has open and published values we engender and maybe for character building we should look at those again to see how we can sustain them or whether we need to revise them. Maybe you do need to change the emphasis on character traits that you want to develop depending on the decade you are living in and your location? We were shown the Via Institute on Character as a spring board for the sorts of material to look at. You can also look at to find plenty of resources and information. Then there are the 9 character types from the Enneagram site. These are often a good starting point for discussions about character and what we mean and what we want. Somewhere in our society we need our building blocks for character building. It used to be the Bible and in some societies and groups it still is . Other nations use their religious beliefs and writings to be the things which guide character in life. We also had fairy tales and folkloric tales but these seem to have lost traction as well. As a nation we need to be looking at what we are using as foundation blocks for our character development. ACARA can feed into that easily but the source material could widely differ and we need to consider if that is what we want.