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Linwood College – Collaborative teaching in physical education

In July 2016 Linwood College teachers Natasha Powell and Rosanna Katene attended the Physical Education New Zealand (PENZ) conference. At this event they heard an idea about collaborative teaching in Physical Education (PE). This sparked a change in the way they were teaching PE with their own classes.

Rosanna and Nastasha wrote a proposal for collaboration between PE classes – NCEA Level 2 and Year 10. Collaboration is not unusual in Physical Education in the secondary context. However, a Year 10 class working in collaboration with a NCEA Level 2 senior class is more unusual. This collaboration is the focus of their Grow Waitaha – Incubator inquiry, (supported by the Spiral of Inquiry approach):

“How might we create authentic tuakana–teina learning relationships using a flexible environment, that enables students to get the most from their learning.”

In 2017 Scott Walbran joined the PE department. He and Rosanna each teach a Year 10 class and an NCEA Level 2 senior class. The older NCEA students have become the teachers or tuakana (‘older siblings’) for the Year 10 PE students in one class a week. Together, teachers and NCEA students reflect on and co-construct a teaching programme for Year 10 students. The work the senior students do feeds directly into their NCEA Level 2 PE assessment programme. 


Linwood College is a coeducational secondary school for Years 7 to 13. It is located in an area of Christchurch undergoing huge change and starts a full rebuild in 2018. The bigger goal sitting behind the teacher inquiry (above) was to trial a programme to better prepare teachers for the rebuild and the change that will come with it. This inquiry also extends the school’s existing tuakana–teina approach across all levels within the school; to strengthen relationships and to impact positively on learning outcomes. Underpinning this innovation is the idea that learning does not only occur within isolated age group cohorts.

The benefits of this approach

The highlights

Next steps

Advice to others

Rosanna sums up her new way of teaching at Linwood College:

“It’s not more work, it’s just different work.”