Playing our A game

Photo courtesy of ARU
Photo courtesy of ARU

For those who don’t know, I am a rugby union tragic and die hard Wallaby supporter. It’s been a disappointing few years for the team (and supporters) but recently we had reason to hope with a new coach.  All this came to a screaming halt on the weekend when we were outplayed by the New Zealand All Blacks.

As I tweeted during the match, this was a masterclass on how to play the game and no matter who you supported, it was a pleasure to watch these professionals in action.

It was impressive to see how well the All Blacks recovered from the previous week where they drew with the Wallabies.  They came back on the weekend with a relentless focus and new strategy to succeed.

The All Blacks coach was quoted after the draw saying that the team needed to improve ‘just about everything’ and that their ‘skills and game structure’ was virtually non-existent.  What I saw were individuals taking responsibility for their own improvement.  Sure they had input from the coach and others but they did the work themselves.  In a week they were able to reflect on their performance, take on the feedback and implement a new strategy. Isn’t this what good learning and teaching is about?

Listening to Hansen reminded me of Michael Fullan’s message about the right drivers -“The glue that binds the effective drivers together is the underlying attitude, philosophy and theory of action.”

Saturday’s match was a great example of a learning community in action.  We owe it to our students to be playing our A game.


One thought on “Playing our A game

  1. Greg, thanks for the post.Being a passionate tragic of the world game I see many similarities in the analysis. What strikes me is the alignment in the team between aspects of their play. Defence supports the attack and vice versa. Teams like this do the simple things well. Each is aligned with the other in particular aspects of the field. We can apply this to most sports.In our school communities what do have in alignment with our primary schools, high schools and office. The essential question I believe is are we are all together in providing a platform for students to learn and achieve. Connections are important as evident in that unfortunate experience last week however it is the reflection of the performance that causes a reaction as a unit. How often do we reflect on our personal performance and bring our A game to the table based on results…. HSC,NAPLAN, RELA , school based assessment tasks….I suppose on reflection I ask the question of my leadership and ask what do I provide to enable staff to bring their A game to the table.

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