7 Questions with Claire Newton – Dean of Students Year 10

Why did you become a teacher?
I enjoyed my school years and loved studying at UWA. Teaching seemed a natural fit, because I really enjoy working with students both in the classroom sharing my passion for Humanities and Social Science subjects, and supporting an entire year group as a Dean.

What are some of the biggest changes you have seen in education over the years?
The obvious stand out is the speed at which technology has changed the face of teaching, particularly in the humanities. Nowhere in the world is a secret anymore. Google has enticed us into the big wide world and what a wonderful place it is. The virtual experience is there for all of us. Need to see it? Google it.

Who has or does inspire you as a teacher?
I’m a big fan of Sir Ken Robinson. He is an inspiring educator who believes that curiosity, creativity and passion need to be nurtured in students, if they are to be successful and contribute in a meaningful way to society.  I have been lucky enough to work with an outstanding number of young students who have inspired me with their passion and quest for knowledge.

What part of the school year is the most exciting for you?
 I like the beginning of the year because everyone is full of expectation for the year ahead.

What is something not many people know about you?
I have discovered that art is a wonderful way to get into flow mode with my thoughts, and I enjoy the challenge of the blank canvas and making the first marks with vibrant colours and just seeing where the experience takes me – clearly, I’m talking about abstract painting. I do plan my paintings, but they rarely turn out as expected. I probably need to have more lessons!

What is your favourite holiday destination?
Japan. We took the family to Tokyo, and then skiing in Hakuba. Japan is an amazingly, vibrant and beautiful country. Finding myself at the top of the mountain and gazing down at a deep blue lake, and just enjoying the stillness of the forest was wonderful, and all the more memorable for sharing the experience with my family.

Favourite quote
 “Our task is to educate their (our students) whole being so they can face the future. We may not see the future, but they will, and our job is to help them make something of it.” Sir Ken Robinson

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