“The skills needed to prepare our children from school to college, to the workforce are ever changing and changing dramatically too. School programmes must be ready to support this change and cannot continue the same practice of the past.” – *Dr. Stephen Holmes. Ph.D. Education Marketing and Reputation.
Globalisation and digitisation are current trends that have made it necessary to nurture skill-sets that prepare our students to be ready to survive in this new economy. Our children must have the ability to:
- pose and solve problems;
- research to ensure that they can discover things and acquire new knowledge and thinking skills (evidence-based thinking);
- manage their own learning and collaborate with others;
- be creative and innovative to adapt to new situations;
- communicate effectively and persuasively with diverse people skills;
- have a global mindset;
- have an entrepreneurial passion;
- always have integrity, be reliable, responsible and show humility
Leveraging these skills will help our students develop a flexible and comfortable attitude and ethics to work with others who are culturally different and who may have perspectives and expectations that differ from us. They will also help us to have the ability to think critically in order to analyse and to work with big data and analytics to guide us with our decisions!
To develop these skills, schools must be ready to evolve their curriculum and pedagogies to adapt to these changes. This ensures that their students graduate with the correct abilities, attitudes and mindsets, and become happy and fulfilled adults who will continuously contribute positively to the community.
What factors make a school prepared for this?
A school that has an inquiry-based learning environment with a focus on interdisciplinary learning for students. A school that has the ability to make your child learn happily. A school that is innovative and forward thinking.
How does ISS international School fit these criteria?
- An inquiry-based learning environment with a focus on interdisciplinary learning
This is the basis of the learning environment at ISS. We teach our students to think creatively and be critical thinkers right from the start, as early as when they are 4 years old in Kindergarten. Our teachers act more like facilitators, encouraging our students to research, discover, and form conclusions as they progress and learn. We practice inquiry-based learning and we encourage our students to be innovative and discerning as part of the self-discovery process. These values prepare our students for the complexities of living in a globalised world. A classic example: our 4-year-olds are never just told that a square has 4 equal sides. They are given objects to experiment with in order to allow them to differentiate shapes. This allows them to discover, through the experience of self-discovery and internalisation, their conclusions about the properties of a square. The encouragement of this behaviour helps our students thrive as learners as they grow and develop.
ISS is committed to a multi-disciplinary learning environment and we prepare our children to be exposed to multiple dimensions that are characteristic of a global education, and this is not tied to a specific culture or way of learning. “The global world is unpredictable; the issues and problems that one faces are often not the same. Therefore the education that we deliver must prepare our students to thrive in such an environment. Our approach to education at ISS is multi-disciplinary so that our students can view issues from multiple angles and facets,” shares Mr. Jungo, ISS’ IB Diploma Programme Coordinator. “I personally challenge each student’s beliefs and encourage them not to take issues at face value, or come to conclusions based on their cultural or religious backgrounds. They must consider issues contextually and question all the time, read extensively to gain new knowledge and apply all that they know to a situation to develop new thinking to solve an issue.”
Our alumnus Johanna shares this of her years at ISS. “I have a law degree from Cambridge, and am currently pursuing my Master of Law at Ultrecht University. At ISS, I learned never to take issues at face value, but to understand and study the various perspectives offered for any one issue to develop a balanced viewpoint. This has laid the foundation for me to think critically, but to remain fair and balanced when making final conclusions and arguments to a case at law school.” This is just one of the many success stories our inquiry-based, multi-disciplinary learning environment at ISS.
- The ability to make your child learn happily
“The experience at ISS has been good for my children. They have developed personally and have learnt so much. There is something with ISS that makes children want to learn even more. I noticed that now, my children have a very positive view of learning and school life. No matter how tired they are in the morning, they will still wake up and look forward to their day at school.” Malin, ISS Parent
This aptly sums up the underlying culture of ISS. It stems from our inclusive philosophy and academic approach. Inclusive goes beyond just being multi-national. Inclusiveness means that we embrace the needs of all of our learners. We firmly believe that an inclusive learning environment benefits all learners from the most academically able to those whose learning needs mean that they require additional support. In implementing the key pedagogical practices, our exceptional staff ensure that every student benefits from the inclusive learning culture at ISS and we are prepared to be student-centered in our approach. Every student requires a different learning strategy, and we are happy to share that our learning environment caters to this. This is what makes every child happy, fulfilled and eager to learn because they are empowered and know that they can learn and reach their intended goals. The differentiated learning pathways that we adopt engage our students. “You can tell that the teachers are very passionate about their subjects and their teaching. They have the zeal to educate their students. I genuinely enjoy the majority of my classes, because of the incredible support I have received from my teachers in those subjects. I feel like this is probably ISS’s #1 advantage, that they have the capacity to allow such attention and importance to be placed on their students.” Ashmita, ISS Alumnus.
Quality international education should not be the sole preserve of academically high achieving English speaking children. Every child has the right to an education to give them a head-start in life. We believe that each and every student we admit has the potential of either going on to attend one of the world’s top universities or any myriad of other pathways to a happy and fulfilled life, ISS is committed to ensuring that each student can achieve personal success.
Quality international education should not be the sole preserve of academically high achieving English speaking children. Every child has the right to an education to give them a head-start in life. We believe that each and every student we admit has the potential of either going on to attend one of the world’s top universities or any myriad of other pathways to a happy and fulfilled life. ISS is committed to ensuring that each student can achieve personal success.
ISS is proud of its commitment to inclusive education.
- An innovative and forward-thinking school
Education goes beyond just academics. This is why Service as Action (in the Elementary and Middle Schools) and Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS at High School) and other purpose-driven activities, form an important component in the IB programme at ISS. These activities help our students identify their core strengths while supporting community causes. The underlying philosophy is that education should extend beyond the intellectual to include the development of socially responsible attitudes as well as thoughtful and appropriate actions. This develops adults who have integrity, are reliable, responsible and show humility.
“ The school is constantly reviewing what it is doing well and what can be improved. It ensures that their teachers are aware of best practice, which is continually evolving. So parents can rest assured that the pedagogy is at the highest level. ” Monica, ISS Parent
ISS International School, is one of Singapore’s longest established three programme IB schools. We firmly believe in our students potential and we are passionate and committed to helping each and every one of them reach their full potential. Our community is proud of its rich diversity, its students’ achievements and the unique learning environment in which individuals develop the right skills necessary to navigate in the ever-changing demands of life.
*Dr. Holmes share more in these videos on what makes a good school, how you should evaluate a good school and the importance of an inquiry-based education.
If you’d like to find out how ISS can support your child/ children, please contact our Admissions Team or call them at 6737 9171 (for K1 to G8, Paterson Campus) and 6475 4188 (for G9-G12, Preston Campus).