April 22 resources for Primary and the Early Years
Earth Day is celebrated annually on April 22 and is the perfect occasion to get the school community together to raise environmental awareness. Jan Homden has compiled ideas & resources in a free PDF suitable for children from the Early Years through Upper Elementary / Primary
A guide to strategic planning
Paul Cabrelli recently explored the idea of “sustainability in schools” as a speaker at the COBIS conference for for Bursars, HR Managers and HR staff at St. Julian’s School, arguing that this is a 21st Century issue that must not be ignored.
An avoidable tragedy
After medical care, shelter, food and clothing, the children who have survived the dangerous journey from their own countries to Greece in the past two years need above all else, to resume their education.
This hasn’t been easy, as Rory Fox, from the British Educational charity, EdLumino, reports.
Colin Bell talks about the Council of British International Schools and its work in 2016
Walking into the open plan office area of the COBIS HQ in London’s Russell Square is rather like stepping through the doors of a good school. This, one feels, is the way that CEO Colin Bell and his staff like things.
Establishing a “branch school”overseas
Many UK independent – and a few state schools – have considered setting up overseas branches of their schools. Is there still a market for UK independent schools to expand overseas? Undoubtedly. Are there pitfalls and dangers along the way? Definitely. So what are the risks involved and how can they be mitigated? Paul Cabrelli suggests you should be guided by 10 fundamental principles.
Whilst recognising the dedication and commitment of the students participating in the Model United Nations (MUN) programme, Kyle Kopsick suggests it is in some aspects the way MUN works is flawed and a change of approach is needed.
The challenge of “Intelligent Disobedience” might ruffle feathers
Best-selling author and thinker, Ira Chaleff is looking forward to his forthcoming appearance at the Asia-Pacific International Schools Conference (AISC) in Hong Kong this December. What he’s got to say is important, even though it might ruffle a few feathers . . .
This is the ultimate teaching and learning resource. Students of French, history, literature, media studies, science, biology, the environment . . . . and leadership will be totally absorbed. The winner of the 1987 Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film, is based on the original book by Jean Giono, also reviewed in ITM.
Green Hope conference
In a build up to the International Day of Peace on September 21st , youth organisation Green Hope conducted an epoch conference cum workshop on “Peace and Sustainability”. Kehkashan Basu Youth Ambassador for the World Future Council reports.
Information management technology is inextricably interwoven into the fabric of most schools. At its best it allows schools to manage data efficiently and effectively for the benefit of students, staff, leaders and parents. At its worst it can be a source of frustration for all sections of the school community. Greg Martin shows how to ensure your system suits your needs.
Changing attitudes towards autism
Having devoted more than twenty years to promoting greater understanding of autism and providing support for families of children with autism, Dr Robert Naseef recognizes that international schools are becoming more inclusive but highlights the need for more teacher and support staff training.
The power of education
At school, writes Jack Clark, I had quite a narrow view of what jobs I could do after university and spent as little time as possible contemplating them. Then in sixth form our school offered us a chance to visit and teach in Africa.
In a competitive and often unpredictable world, effective school governance is crucial if a school is to remain true to its mission and achieve its vision. Consilium Education’s Paul Cabrelli reflects on five essentials that sustain excellence and help governors enjoy their time in office.
Making a choice
I am a mother of four; I have little time to think or reflect. However, in a moment of clarity and rare thoughtfulness a few years ago, we made a choice to step out of the British school system and place our children into an International school in Woking. In contrast to many English families, this was not a leap into the unknown for us.
British Schools Overseas (BSOs) are schools that have been inspected under the DfE-endorsed system which is quality assured by Ofsted. BSOs are growing in number and whilst the DfE/Ofsted inspections have been welcomed, there are areas of concern as Ed Goodwin explains.
Andrew Wigford, a former international school Head Teacher and founder of Teachers International Consultancy, is keenly aware of the changes taking place in international education. Reflecting on the past 10 years as a recruiter, he thinks that schools need to adjust their recruitment policies accordingly – urgently.
Phil Jones, Director of VPJ Solutions, a UK based consolidated educational supplier, thinks that schools should regularly review the services they receive from providers to make sure that they not only get the best service, but also the best value for money.
Biodiversity conservation conference
Youth sustainability organization, Green Hope UAE, conducted an epic two-day conference to commemorate World Environment Day, echoing the call to put biodiversity conservation at the forefront of the sustainable development agenda.
As with any reform on a national scale, making a difference to the way children learn in India will take time, money and commitment. Enlightened private enterprise is increasingly leading the way. One company already having a significant impact is XSEED. Andy Homden looks at the career of founder, Ashish Rajpal, and examines some of the reasons for XSEED’s success and growing influence in India.
The role of deputy principal is multi-faceted but is known to vary greatly between schools. Recognising the demands placed upon principals, Ciaran McMahon believes the deputy principal role requires development including greater responsibility and recognition that it is crucial to the success of a school.
COP21, the 21st Congress of the Parties for the United Nations’ Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris, concluded with cheers, hugs and a general sense of euphoria. It was agreed by 195 nations to attempt to cut greenhouse gas emissions to a level that will limit the global average temperature to a rise “well below” 2C (3.6F) compared to pre-industrial levels – a level of warming deemed to be the point when dangerous climate change could threaten life on Earth. Peter Milne explores a vital avenue towards sustaining the momentum of COP21.
Kinses 2016: Global trends, local realities: an education symposium
Organised by education investment specialists, Kaizen Private Equity and held in association with business school powerhouses Insead and NYU Stern School of Business, KINSES 2016 took place in Dubai on February 27 & 28. It wasn’t just the academic and financial big hitters at the podium that made this gathering exceptional: the work of dynamic SMEs on the ground in Asia and Africa especially in the field of Educational Technology, was at the heart of lively discussion, both on and off the stage.
From Isaac Robinson at The British School in Kathmandu
Almost a year on from the first earthquake of 25th April, staff at the British School Kathmandu have been working hard to ensure that students within our community projects can return to safe and secure buildings as soon as possible. To date, we have opened one new school building at Sungava, and the three buildings in the Dhading region are nearing completion.
The advances in technology witnessed in recent years have been likened to the discovery of fire and invention of the wheel, such has been their impact upon society. Education has largely embraced technological innovation. Its impact upon teaching and learning is undeniable and its momentum continues apace as evinced by the forthcoming GESS technological showcase in Dubai.
Join Voices around the World to Celebrate the Olympic Year!
Each year, the Voices Around the World project invites schools and choirs of young people around the globe – at no financial cost to themselves – to be involved in making an international music recording. Find out how you school can be involved and “get creative”!
On Sunday 7th February, TBS staff and students travelled to to attend the opening where Dr. John Moore (Principal of TBS) was invited to formally open the new school building. Dr. Moore was shown around the new building, including the TBS classroom that we were surprised to see has been named in our honour! The completion of this school building would not have been possible without the donations from our supporters around the world so we accept the honour on behalf of all of our contributors.
KINSES 2016: a global education symposium
Sandeep Aneja wants us all to talk to each other about radical changes taking place in global education. To this end, he’s getting a few people together at the The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina on February 27 & 28 to carry on a conversation that started in Singapore two years ago. It’s an impressive gathering.
Opening a new international school is never easy – even in a place like Dubai which probably sees more new schools open every year than any other city in the world. Opening a school in Dubai that stands out as different is quite an achievement.
Early years education for sustainable development
When we look at the world, we see a huge divide between those who have practically nothing and those who have so much. One aspect of this divide is the issue of waste; not only the amount of waste created, but the attitudes people have towards it. Pete Milne thinks it is important that children in the early years are given opportunities to develop their environmental thinking.
Despite the demands of teaching overseas, Robin Nagy wanted to do more. His concern for the plight of endangered species and threatened rainforests prompted him to launch a new venture. In an endearingly understated account, Robin sheds light on the successes and challenges of the Sumatran environmental projects.
In the April edition of ITM, Ginette Collin introduced us to PurpleLily, a non-profit organisation set up to “inspire and empower women and girls to thrive and shine” by providing life skills and financial literacy training. In this edition, Ginette reflects on her recent two month project in Ethiopia and Tanzania and explores the Contrast in Educational Opportunities on the African continent.
Join Voices Around The World this September
Download the score and audio tracks of Listen to Us for your first school assembly of the year!
You know that a new school year has really started when you hear the sound of children singing coming from the school hall or the music room as you walk past. If you are looking for something new and a little bit different for your first assembly this year, the Voices Around the World (VATW) project might just be what you are looking for.
During 2015, over 33,000 students from schools around the globe shared in a common musical learning experience – to master one of the vocal parts for a new song called Listen To Us, which united young people around the world as part of the Voices Around The World (VATW) project. This was the third year of the project and has involved over 1,400 national, independent and international schools. For details about downloading Listen to Us, how to make a donation and to learn more about how your school can get involved in the special 2016 Olympic project, click on the VATW logo.
Class mascots set off from Obersee Bilingual School
It is common practice in Early Years Units for a class mascot to visit the students’ homes through an academic year. There are also many schools who take part in wonderful initiatives such as travelling teddies and “Flat Stanley” which connect schools locally and internationally. Kirstin Botter explains how two class mascots from her school in Switzerland are going more than one step further by travelling the world in 2015 – 2016.
In an increasingly global society and economy, it is important that today’s students develop cultural awareness and a commitment to internationalism. Organisations such as The Global Education Benchmark Group offer opportunities for teachers to hear about initiatives around the globe and exchange practical ideas aimed at broadening students’ horizons. Cyrus Carter reports on their most recent conference.
Why I Wrote A Better Book Than Millionaire Teacher
What happens when one half of an internationally mobile couple gets a new job in a new country? Ginette Collin had a “well paid” corporate job in the UAE but a move to Sarawak with her husband who was taking up an advisory position in Malaysia led her down a different pathway. Trailing spouse? Not Ginette.
After two stints teaching Biology in Indonesia and Singapore, Jon Avon makes a strong case for the value of fieldwork. With interest in environmental studies dwindling in Grades 11 & 12 (Years 12 & 13) he thinks that it has never been more important to get students out of the classroom and into the field. In his view nothing motivates students to take an interest in ecology more than a well-conducted field trip. The preparation and responsibilities can be daunting, but the return on the hard work is well worth the effort. Here he offers advice for getting on the road in the right kind of way.
In life it is rare to discover a book that is truly “life-changing”. Silent Spring was just that for Dr Samia Al-Farra. Dr Samia explains how an inspired choice changed her view of the world and opened her eyes to the fragility of our planet and its resources.
An inspired choice
More than forty years ago, as part of my under-graduate course, in Science with a major in Biology, we were expected to read, discuss and write a critical account of ten evidence-based, scientific books covering topics such as drugs, pollution, and population control.
There are times when, according to Mark Wood, who works in Dubai, you should ask yourself a simple question: “Why do I love teaching?” This is how it works for Mark.
I have been teaching for almost 10 years. I love my job, but every now and then I have to stop and think “Why? Why do I love teaching?” I’d like to suggest that every now and then you ask yourself the same question. I guarantee that just thinking about the answer to this question will have an impact on your teaching and, more importantly, on your students’ learning.
The Department for Education in England released its most recent secondary school “league tables” based on exam data from June 2014 on January 29 2015. This year the independent schools joined the state sector in the customary chorus of disapproval, as the government’s new tables were condemned as “shambolic” with the status of IGCSE at the centre of one row. Andy Homden wonders whether the controversy surrounding this very English ritual now has global significance.