In September 2020, Dulwich Prep London began piloting a small, internal Action Research Group. With recent experience in action research, we were keen to share experiences and encourage others to identify their own classroom based ‘challenges’. We would address these by exploring pertinent literature, devising appropriate interventions, collecting data and considering our findings before sharing them with the school community. That was the plan. We did not predict a worldwide pandemic that would hugely impact on our intentions and challenge us to prove our resilience and adaptability while revealing how determined we were as a group to find ways around barriers. We found socially distant and remote methods to communicate our progress. Our valuable literature research had to be significantly adapted, yet we were able to meaningfully apply it to the changing circumstances. Our action plans were completely revised. The Action Research Group became a supportive platform for engaging with the unprecedented challenges that emerged with remote teaching, such as parental input, the tone of the feedback and establishing a method of blended learning. It became clear to us that the adaptability and resilience we were expecting of our students was vital in our own approach. We all had different drivers for pursuing our projects but felt a collective pride in our ability to adjust. We have realised that the collaborative support of an interdisciplinary team with these values at its core is what will sustain us over the forthcoming years.
Louise Davidson, Dulwich Prep London, United Kingdom
Melanie Mortimer, RMIT University, Australia