As our students finished Term 3, we asked them to think back to the start of the year. One of our first lessons had them building a little turtle with their LifeLab© LEGO® kit by following the instructions that we had given to them.

7 months later, the students are totally versed in talking about feelings and concepts autonomously using their LifeLab© kit. This time, we asked them to build their turtles, adding some details which would help them explain what the turtles had learned since the start of the year and what adventures they may have had.

This was a creative way for us to listen to where the students are at with their learning and give us some insights to what the students have been experiencing during this time of remote learning. Due to a second round of confinement in Melbourne, to some it seemed like the never-ending Gobstopper* of online learning – where the flavours don’t really change all that much day to day. Whilst they were talking about the adventures of their turtles, the students were actually relating to their experiences and sharing part of themselves with us.

The turtle experiences included:

  • Growing colours to show all the learning and new ways of dealing with things like Super Stuckness (our metaphor in the program for problems, polarities and life experiences that make us feel stuck in them).
  • Added muscles for strength, because they became stronger in their body and their mind.
  • Having travelled around the world and grown wings so they could fly anywhere (We wished that could have happened to us).
  • Having met other new turtles and made new friends (again, wishing that could be us).
  • Having a baby turtle (Glad that wasn’t us).
  • Eating too many cookies and got a bit chubbier (wishing we didn’t know what ‘Covid-Kilos’ felt like).

It was a great moment of reflecting. We find these important so that everyone can see how far they have come as without this, when we look back at this year of learning, some of us may remember it as a blur, or as one day that went for 8 months, or as little video conferencing stamps of people’s heads.

We feel reassured that our (turtles’) experiences reveal continued learning and growth despite these challenging times, even if they may seem a little heavy.

We are looking forward to next term and have prepared more hard fun for the students to complete their first LifeLab© year-cycle of learning.

“As COVID-19 sweeps the world and life as we know it has been turned on its head, the LifeLab program has been of invaluable support for my daughter to work through a myriad of emotions and challenges that the pandemic has unleashed.”
Parent of year 4 student

*Aka Jawbreaker / Jaw Buster; a hard round candy that never seems to end.