Year 3 WoodLinks State School teacher Amy Rankin is a wellbeing champion at her school and works to ensure her pedagogical choices are making a difference to those in her care. Head of Mentoring at WoodLinks, Stuart Crichton, says Amy has attended professional development (PD) in this area and grown her capacity with it. “Brain breaks, building relationships, getting to know students in order to understand their perspective, mindfulness and gratitude practices are embedded in everything Amy does,” Stuart says. Amy’s goals to improve student and staff wellbeing were achieved, as measured by, for example, the School Opinion Survey.
Her classroom values inclusiveness and creativity, with every student feeling valued, nurtured and able to make a difference. She differentiates with intent and uses a “Move on up” wall so students can take ownership of their next standard to achieve. After eight years of teaching, Amy’s approach is holistic, and she seeks to understand her students and take them on a journey of enlightenment. She presents lessons in a sequential, engaging manner and gradually, after modelling, she releases ownership over to students so they can demonstrate their learning. She sets goals, communicates with home and builds students’ interpersonal skills. Amy leads the wellbeing team, using her knowledge to build team efficacy and improve the wellbeing of staff. She has collected data to drive wellbeing initiatives, a framework and documentation and the team this year achieved Silver in the Queensland Government Healthy Happier Workplaces. Amy is also a team member in the workplace health and safety committee and the curriculum committee. As Year-Level Coordinator she has carried out collegial conversations on data to build a collective ownership amongst staff in the informed use of it. Amy leads the cohort of reading groups across five classes to ensure students’ success in reading at their own level. This requires working with others to organise timetables and extension programs. She participated in the QELi Aspire to Lead course to develop her leadership skills. Her project, based on research, focused around the creation, implementation and roll out of the “Move on up” walls across the school. “She develops a sense of trust, hope, and compassion through her dealings with others,” Stuart says. Congratulations Amy on your nomination.