Never underestimate the power of peer support

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Peer support is invaluable

Image: freepik

It took a little bit of time on my part to match students but I gave all my year 10 students a blogging buddy from year 11 or 12. When I handed the blog addresses out   in class this morning , the year 10s were very attentive, very much on their game and making very sure they got it right. I got them to link to the buddy blog and then to visit the blog and like a post and then comment on one. You could have heard a pin drop and when I got up to investigate why it was taking so long and there was so much silence my year 10s were looking very carefully at the buddy blog they had been given. You could feel the energy lift and how important this was to the students. The next class was my year 11 and 12 class and I told them they all now had a Year 10 buddy to coach but one who would encourage them in their blogging. I had hardly got it out before the students had their laptops lids up and they were on their blogs looking for the year 10 magic. Again, there was an energy lift . The year 11s and 12s thought this was a fantastic idea and their pride was obvious. Peer support and respect mean a lot to students. It is an essential part of their learning and now I have my year 10s up and running and have connected the year levels, I shall be able to see for myself just how powerful a tool peer support and encouragement are. I use my year 11s to coach and mentor my year 12s as they go into their exams and major assessments. The level of commitment from the year 11s has always been inspiring and the positive impact it has on my year 12s is always openly acknowledged by them. Students can make each other strong and they can help each other enjoy and value learning in a way nothing else can. I’ll be able to build this cyber support now and see where it takes us.

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