Ivanhoe Girls’ Grammar School is encouraging students not to focus on perfection. (Supplied: Ivanhoe Girls’ Grammar School)
An elite Melbourne school has encouraged its students not to focus on perfection but to embrace failure in an attempt to build resilience and teach them to learn from their mistakes.
Ivanhoe Girls’ Grammar School has developed “failure week”, which involves projecting the mistakes of teachers onto screens in every classroom.
The school’s head of counselling, Dr Bridget McPherson, said it was vital for students to recognise that failure was an important part of learning.
“It’s actually impossible to learn and learn well if you don’t make mistakes and you don’t reassess your strategy and you don’t experience things going wrong,” she said.
“Focussing everything on perfection and achievement doesn’t get you very far at all in terms of learning, so it’s crucial for that.”
An independent study released last week found only 62 per cent of girls in secondary schools had a strong sense of wellbeing and more than 55 per cent were assessed as anxious.
The study found there has been a huge growth Australian schools trying to address the issue, with nine in 10 independents schools now offering a wellness service to students, and public schools following suit.
Dr McPherson said fear of failure in the classroom could easily spread to other areas of life.
“We have young people who are reluctant to offer answers in class, because they’re fearful of what they might look like if…
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