“My job is to teach the ‘whole child’ and not just Physics!”

I Can & I AmJames' Blog, James' Blog

As I write this the half term holiday has come to an end and I’m sure many of us have experienced both highs and lows. One of the highs for me was meeting a teacher who quoted my title of this blog today. I feel that educating the whole child and not just an academic subject is a fundamental principle of teaching and that schools need to communicate this from the outset. In fact, we could take things back a step further and this should be part of what our teacher training colleges offer.

As I visit schools one meets so many exhausted teachers who, I believe, are often being asked to do too much. The reality is that we’re in a season where pastoral support is more important than it has ever been. This takes time, costs energy and often has an impact on other activities that teachers may be being asked to do. Understandably staff often want to prioritise their teaching and don’t’ have time to respond to their pupils’ pastoral needs – and this I don’t think is right. Another issue arises when teachers are consumed with their subject and are frankly not interested in the children as a whole. This attitude clearly cannot be employed today.