The Christ Church pedagogy

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Supporting motivation and learning at Christ Church Grammar School

We believe that in the Christ Church Grammar School context, the following factors consistently seem to matter in the pedagogy, learning and motivation of boys. Each of them has the capacity to make a tangible difference and is therefore important for enhancing and improving the engagement of boys.
Teachers: Who teachers are, how they perform in effecting and modelling learning and how they relate to boys are all very significant in framing the engagement of boys at school.
Parents: How parents support and interact with the rhythms of their son’s lives, especially as role models and reinforcers of the learning that takes place at school.
The ‘essence of boyishness’: The freedom a boy feels to be himself, the respect a boy feels for himself and the respect that people have for him that enable him to act on his developing masculinity in an appropriate fashion.
The ‘culture of the corridors’: The written and unwritten culture of the school, its vocabulary, symbols, customs and honourable traditions that define accepted practices for social interaction, behaviour and personal aspiration and help to connect boys to school so that they feel as though they belong and they want to feel a part of, and contribute to, a collective experience that is beyond their own immediate circumstances.
The architecture of learning: How learning is designed, its intention, narrative, implementation and evaluation all have a discernible impact on the engagement of students, especially when this structure is a natural and obvious part of the whole learning conversation. This can be expressed through three main pedagogical strands:

The Christ Church pedagogy

Learning through personalisation – a commitment to catering for individual differences

Learning through structure – a commitment to providing structure and feedback

Learning through supporting others – a commitment to enhancing personal bests

The phases of learning: How learning is translated into curriculum and pedagogy that is appropriate for the ages and developmental stages of our boys:

  • PP to Year 2 – Play with Purpose: Engaging the innate nature of the child in the learning process.
  • Years 3 and 4 – Fun with Fundamentals: Creating the foundation that is so significant for the life-long journey of individuals.
  • Years 5 and 6 – Enquiry with Initiative: Enabling the unique character of the child to become more clearly understood by him and those who teach him, to become excited by all things and to come to know himself as he explores the world.
  • Years 7 and 8 – Breadth and Depth: Managing transition and intellectually challenging the boy in subject disciplines and in his individual capacity to perform.
  • Years 9 and 10 – Choice and Challenge: Providing increased academic and co-curricular rigour as boys begin to make meaningful choices about the men they will become, informed by their own world views and future orientation.
  • Years 11 and 12 – Experience and Expertise: Bearing witness to the capacity of our young men to achieve remarkable ongoing results in every programme within the School.


CCGS students

  • Value learning
  • Take responsibility for their own learning
  • Prepare, study and revise independently
  • Read widely and conduct research voluntarily
  • Work hard and complete tasks
  • Apply knowledge from different areas to new situations
  • Value their School and make the most of the opportunities it offers
  • Are proactive and ask for help when they need it
  • Know and use the study strategies that work for them

CCGS students

  • Understand the need to develop good study habits
  • Genuinely listen to and act on advice from teachers regarding their learning
  • Record results, homework and study tasks appropriately in their diary
  • Get their diary signed at home and by their tutor each week
  • Regularly discuss their progress and results with their parents and tutor
  • Arrive ‘Ready to Learn’

CCGS students

  • Understand how their behaviour, efforts, care and compassion can influence the progress of others.
  • Are realistic about what they can achieve and how best to achieve it.
  • Use constructive feedback on their work to improve subsequent work.
  • Set themselves appropriately challenging targets and work to meet them.
  • Accept that they will make mistakes and realise the need to learn from them.
  • Use class time productively and effectively.
  • Don’t give up when work is challenging or when they are disappointed with their achievements.
  • Persevere, persist, seek help and change strategy to ensure future success.
  • Pursue personal best in all spheres.

The Christ Church classroom

The Christ Church Classroom is human, warm, comfortable and happy. It is physically and intellectually inspiring. Respect for teachers and students is paramount and there is an overwhelming sense of fairness and tolerance of individual difference. Our classrooms are places of discovery and fun. The atmosphere is safe, secure and supportive and there is constant interaction through questioning, teamwork and group discussion.

“Time vanishes, control is fluid between yourself and the boys, the destination is pre imagined but the journey also takes you to completely different places.”

The Christ Church student

Christ Church students are intrinsically motivated to do their very best and see the School and all its relationships as an avenue for them to achieve their own potential and contribute to the journey of others. Our students pursue excellence and celebrate success. Our students are resilient learners and understand they have a responsibility to turn disappointment into action. By their actions, they contribute towards the unique learning environment of their school and the Christ Church Classroom according to their ages and level/stage of development. The Christ Church student is respectful of the learning environment in which he finds himself and, by doing so, values the leadership of the teacher and the rights of his classmates to learn in a classroom which is physically and intellectually inspiring.

“Self-starting: makes contact during and outside formal learning, self-identifies weakness and seeks remedies, wants to do well, wants to understand, always appreciative, has a goal\ for life and is on track to achieve it, into everything, does more than asked, as well as a prodigious work ethic and rate, does it because he is interested.”