The creative, courageous and passionate child

The Creative Child

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 students to extend themselves, but also dedicated learning support for those who need it.

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

Students 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 students 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.

The Passionate Child

At Waihi we aim not merely to get the best out of the individual, but to give each child everything that  they need to thrive. We want to help them discover what they enjoys most and to help them excel at it, both in the classroom and in cultural, sporting and recreational areas. We encourage students to try everything.

Waihi is well equipped indoors and out for students 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 the individual to excel.

Without a doubt Waihians 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 everyone takes pride in pulling on the jersey. In winter they  play rugby, hockey, netball, basketball and football, switching in summer to cricket, tennis, swimming and touch. Through fixtures with other schools, Waihians 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 provide consistent, high-quality coaching. Sport also helps each individual 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 , karate, skiing and mountain biking.

Waihians 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.

The Courageous Child

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 students are encouraged to do, every day.

In the early years children, 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 students 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 student has their own personal device, and our classrooms and learning spaces are set up to take advantage of the latest eLearning resources.