The creative, courageous and passionate boy

Creativity

Creativity is about fresh thinking. It is also a highly personal process. Skills are needed, of course, and small class sizes enable our staff to deliver focused tuition, providing not only opportunities for the most able boys to extend themselves, but also dedicated learning support for those who need it.

The real driver of the creative process is enabling the individual boy to whet his appetite for discovery and unlock his passion for the task at hand. Skilled teaching staff know how to hook boys in to a subject and then pass on the responsibility for exploring and creating to the individual.

Boys can be creative in all areas of school life but this shows through particularly strongly in the fields of music, drama, technology and the arts. The arts and technology programme gives boys the opportunity to explore areas such as visual arts, filmmaking, wood technology, drama, dance, photography, food technology, craft and model-making – all of which are rich   in possibilities for the creative mind.

Passion

At Waihi we aim not merely to get the best out of the boy, but to give each boy everything that he needs to thrive. We want to help him discover what he enjoys most and to help him excel at it, both in the classroom and in cultural, sporting and recreational areas. We encourage boys to try everything.

Waihi is well equipped indoors and out for boys to experience learning and follow their passions. Specialist classrooms such as the science lab, or art room, spaces for music and drama and extensive grounds all form the backdrop for boys to excel.

Without a doubt Waihi boys are passionate about their interests – whether it is playing in the pipe band, singing in the choir, programming in technology, practicing their instrument or sitting engrossed in a book in the library. Nowhere is this passion more visibly displayed than when they are playing sport.

Literally and metaphorically every boy takes pride in pulling on the jersey. In winter the boys play rugby, hockey, basketball and soccer, switching in summer to cricket, tennis, swimming and touch. Through fixtures with other schools, boys achieve local and national representation in many sports.

Sport and physical education are an essential part of character development at Waihi, and everyone plays in a team. The staff provides consistent, high-quality coaching. Sport also helps boys learn the lessons of team commitment and self-reliance as they participate in fixtures with other preparatory, primary and intermediate schools. Many individual sports are catered for, too, including athletics, swimming, road cycling and mountain biking.

Boys have the opportunity to feed the school chickens, raise lambs, or help in the veggie garden. For some, gaining selection for the mowing squad in Year 8 is a way of fulfilling a personal goal.

Courage

Albert Einstein once said that it is a miracle curiosity survives a formal education. In a world increasingly risk-averse, we know that it is through being adventurous and moving out of your comfort zone that the best learning takes place.

It can take courage to go out on a limb and break new ground, to express a different opinion to your peers or to try something new for the first time, but that is exactly what Waihi boys are encouraged to do, every day.

In the early years children, and boys in particular, want to learn about their world by exploring their surroundings in ever widening circles. And that is where learning should remain for a lifetime – in the learner’s hands. Through an inquiry-based learning approach we acknowledge that learning is not something that is done to us, or something we ‘get’ ... it is something we create for ourselves, over a lifetime.

Waihi boys explore, inquire and investigate, and are developing the skills to take responsible risks in learning about their world.  They have a purpose to their learning, and this is more than mere knowledge acquisition: it is about gaining a deeper understanding. Technology is an integral part of that process: each boy has his own personal device, and our classrooms and learning spaces are set up to take advantage of the latest eLearning resources.