'Learning hub' officially opened

East Taieri School pupil Luke Marsden (8, front) reads a book in the school's new learning hub, with fellow pupils (from left) Riley Harris, Jack Hayes, Paddy Smythe, Philippa King, Harry Summers, Kayley Wenlock and Ruby Day (all 8).  Photo by Linda Robertson.
East Taieri School pupil Luke Marsden (8, front) reads a book in the school's new learning hub, with fellow pupils (from left) Riley Harris, Jack Hayes, Paddy Smythe, Philippa King, Harry Summers, Kayley Wenlock and Ruby Day (all 8). Photo by Linda Robertson.

A new $280,000 ''learning hub'' at East Taieri School has given its pupils double the excitement this year.

When the pupils first started using the learning hub at the start of the year, there was an air of excitement among the children.

But the novelty had hardly had time to wear off when the school held its official opening of the facility last Wednesday, bringing even more hype - and some pomp and circumstance - to the school grounds.

Principal Jennifer Horgan said the 90sq m modern learning environment was being used as a ''break-out space'' for groups of children to go and work independently.

It is also used on rainy days by teachers to do outdoor activities with their classes.

''It's big enough to fit a whole class.

''It will take a lot of pressure off the school for spaces for children to go to work independently or in groups.

''It's encouraging children to take responsibility for their learning, because there perhaps won't always be a teacher in there.

''It will also provide an opportunity for children to work together across the classes - there will be buddy work going on there, where older children can take younger children in there to work as well.''

The hub was funded by the Ministry of Education, but Mrs Horgan said the board of trustees had been able to keep the cost down with help from members of the community who pitched in with ''discounted'' labour and materials.

The new facility was officially opened by board of trustees chairwoman Kathryn Brenssell, after an Anzac service and performances by the school's kapa haka group and choir.

The honour of cutting the ribbon went to the school's youngest pupil, Daniel Grieves (5), and student council member Devin Colston (10).

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