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Hear from the Principal 18.11.22

International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme update

I am delighted to share that, following a successful final report last week, the College can apply for authorisation by the International Baccalaureate (IB) as a provider of the Middle Years Programme (MYP). The next step of the journey is submitting the authorisation application ahead of the IB inspection, which will judge the College’s readiness to deliver the MYP. I was thrilled that our consultant recognised the hard work of the teachers at the College during the process.

While we are looking forward to the next stage of our candidacy, we will continue to rigorously plan the Year 9 units of work and ensure that the cross-over to the GCSE syllabi is smooth and advantageous for our students.

Approaches to learning

Approaches to learning (AtL) are skills designed to enable MYP students to “learn how to learn.” AtLs provide a common language for our teachers and students to use when reflecting and building on the process of learning; it is important that we continue to develop how we teach and build our students’ understanding of AtL skills. This month, our teachers will take part in a series of workshops designed to clarify each AtL skill and how the skills can be applied from Years 7 to 13.

COP27 and climate change

As you will know, COP27 took place this week. The annual global conference always inspires our students, and, this year, our Year 8 MYP students created a number of insightful and impactful posters that are designed to raise awareness of climate change in the community. You can view the posters on our social channels including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

A taste of Japan

Language learning is fundamental to the IB, and the benefits of learning a second (or third!) language are well documented. Our Sixth Form students all study a language of their choice during the two-year IB Diploma Programme (DP) in addition to being able to learn about other languages and cultures through the community projects from both the DP and Career-related programmes.

On 10 November, our Sixth Form students were privileged to enjoy a Japanese Taster Day at Birbeck University of London. Designed to highlight the opportunities that studying Japanese offers, students heard from keynote speakers, Professor Noma from Ritsumeikan University and Ryan Keeble, News Producer, at Fujisankei Communications International Ltd, before they took part in practical workshops to develop their skills in areas such as manga drawing, shogi chess, shodo calligraphy, origami paper folding, language and technology. Based on feedback from the students who took part, I know that the taster day has ignited a deeper interest in the Japanese language and culture.

Bonjour, Guten Tag, Hola!

On the subject of language learning, you will be pleased to know that this year your child(ren) will be able to take part in our long-standing international exchange programme, which includes visits to our partner schools in France, Germany and Spain. This year, we celebrated the 20th anniversary of the French exchange programme, which has benefitted so many students through the opportunity to practice speaking the language with native speakers, gain a deeper understanding of the culture and cultivate an international mindset. Please keep an eye out for more information about our upcoming international visits.

Launching the future of the games industry

Last week saw our Year 8 students taking part in the Year 8 Scholars Project Day led by Ninja Theory, a Cambridge-based video game developer. Our students took part in a number of hands-on and exciting educational activities to learn more about opportunities available to them in the gaming industry. With a number of globally recognised games studios based in Cambridge, I hope that the event has inspired your child(ren) and helped them to realise the opportunities that are available to them on their doorstep – no coding skills necessary.

November 18, 2022