Kia pai te kotahi

After seven weeks in the sun, I was eager to get back to school and meet my new class. It was the first time that I got to stay in the same classroom (what a difference that makes!) and my second year at Pt England School. This time I felt confident to draw on my past experiences;  I am familiar with the Pt England way and the norms of the school, so I knew what to expect.

As I love getting my students to collaborate, debate and discuss their learning with others, I set a series of team building tasks to build a positive class culture. I linked each task with our theme for the term: Kia pai te kotahi, better together and we used the experiences as a springboard for our discussion about our class treaty.

This class were extremely receptive to team building and I was blown away by their confidence in speaking to each other and willingness to work with anyone. In each activity I got them to work in different groups and some even required them to hold hands (which can be quite the drama at year seven and eight). I could see from their discussion and independent work that they had truly considered the learning behind the activities; they understood why I had selected the activities.

Not only has my new found confidence positively effected my class culture, but my ability to work in a team as well. Coming from a small school and single cell classroom, I loved learning from my colleagues last year but didn't feel I had as much to offer them as they supported me. However, now that I have experienced this collaborative environment, I understand how I can contribute to the team and take more initiative. This experience has made me even more grateful to be part of team 5 and reinforced the power of the our theme for the term. We really are better together!


  1. It sounds like a really positive exercise Danni, what kind of activities did you have them do?

    1. Hi Kerry, we have done a series of exercises over the past few days. We started outside with a relay, getting the hoop around the circle (while holding hands), pass the squeeze and the floor is lava (they had to get their team across the court using small cardboard squares).

      Then we did some steam challenges - an arty diy jigsaw and a tower building contest. After our first cybersmart lesson I got them to do a Quizlet live. I find these really good as the game randomly assigns the kids into groups and it forces them to move around the room to get to their team members.


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