Curious & Active
Pupils at SSPP are growing to be curious about everything; and active in their engagement with the world, changing what they can for the better.
“It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out.” (Proverbs 25:2)
Saint Ignatius had the great insight that not only were all things made by God and held in existence by God, but that God was working through all of creation for my benefit. This is often expressed as ‘finding God in all things’ and shapes the Jesuit approach to learning. All things are worthy of our attention, curiosity and study because in each one of them there is the possibility of finding God; and not only God but God doing something for me. This is why Jesuit schools insist on the broadest possible curriculum (a magis or greater and deeper curriculum) and offer the widest variety of extra-curricular activities they can.
Curiosity is needed to sustain learning. It is what keeps us going through the difficult stuff; it is what opens up new horizons and allows the possibility of ‘finding God in all things.’ Curiosity is key to the Jesuit method of education.
In the Jesuit tradition, learning is something to be actively engaged in by probing, seeking, asking, challenging, and questioning until the truth is plain – it is to think for oneself and to become an independent and lifelong learner.
It is not often that schoolchildren get the opportunity to change the world but Jesuit schools challenge them to ‘think globally and act locally’, to get involved, changing what they can for the time being, using what they have learned to make small differences, so that they are ready for the day when they can make a big difference.
When, in 1540, he sent St Francis Xavier to bring the gospel to the ends of the earth, St Ignatius said, “Go, set the world ablaze!” This is what Jesuit schools hope for their pupils as they step out into adult life, active and curious.
As we enter the final half term of the academic year, we focus on concluding each child’s year, and sending them on to be curious and active in the future.
This time of year sees many events where the children are given opportunities to ‘set the world ablaze’. Sports Day, Summer productions and concerts, even our own Parish Feast Day. At these times, we rely on our children to actively participate and show the school and themselves in the best light they can.
Throughout the year, we offer extensive extra-curricular activities. These range from sports-based clubs such as netball, football and fitness, to those which look after the planet with our eco-DIY club leading the way. Each club gives children the opportunity to further explore hobbies and activities which interest them and which may become something they continue as they grow.
The mantra of ‘thinking globally and acting locally’, has seen us achieve Gold Rights Respecting status in the last few years, something which we remain immensely proud of. Our pupils know what it means to support others beyond the classroom, knowing that their small actions can make a big difference.
Questions for reflection:
How do we encourage the curiosity of our pupils? How do we avoid passive learning?
Do we make sure our pupils have opportunities to put their learning into action in ways that are inspiring and change their perspective?
Does SSPP have a varied range of extra-curricular activities with high rates of participation across all ages?