The school is affiliated to ICSE, ISC (XI & XII). The ICSE Board allows individual schools autonomy in the area of primary curriculum development during these years of schooling. At every level the curriculum covers the board requirements. The curriculum is experiential, evolving, thematic, engaging, indepth and extends beyond the boundaries of coverage. The school also offers Cambridge Primary from Grade III to Grade V; Cambridge Secondary I ( Grades VI & VII); Cambridge Secondary II (IGSCE – Grades VIII, IX & X); “AS” &” A” level ( Grade XI & XII).
Scientific research has proved that the brain takes in more information only when in a comfortable temperature and environment. Our classrooms are bright, cheerful and centrally air-conditioned. To ensure each child benefits from the learning experiences at school we have an ideal teacher – child ratio.
We believe that the biggest single cause of school failure is a mismatch between a child’s learning style and the teaching style adopted by most schools. The teaching style in most schools continues to be primarily through books, which makes learning restrictive. Learning that is desk-bound and paper-based may not be in the best interests of all children.
At Vaels International School, students are introduced to a method of learning that takes place primarily through experience rather than rote learning. Wherever possible children have opportunities to actually experience and ‘apply’ information and knowledge. We believe that for children to learn effectively, the content of the curriculum, as well as its delivery, is of paramount importance.
Our curriculum emphasizes ‘hands-on’ learning experiences. This entails the creation and selection of educational material that the children can manipulate and interact wherever possible.
This is a different learning experience to the one where a child is given only verbal and visual instruction or information. The ‘hands-on’ experience, we believe, results in a natural and integrated undergo in experiencing an activity. All of our educational resource material including workbooks, worksheets, and teaching methodology manuals are created keeping this ‘process’ as the main focus. Our school has been able to successfully integrate the curriculum. An integrated curriculum means that children will learn most of the subjects (prescribed in a school curriculum) within a topic/theme. For instance, a topic may apparently seem to be typically belonging to Language and Creative Arts as well.
A curriculum matrix is available on request for viewing at the school. These reflect the interconnected nature of our curriculum. Another important aspect of our interconnected curriculum is that it is in tune with the real world of learning. Real learning in our world does not occur in mutually exclusive compartments. They are interconnected. Our curriculum reflects this. The integrated curriculum modules will continue through the middle school years.
Special emphasis will be laid on creating an environment for self-learning. The curriculum is investigative in nature and children will be encouraged to conduct surveys, research topics and conduct experiments to understand a concept. Our Education planners and curriculum designers have comprehensive training in pedagogical methods and learning theory. The shift they are working towards is an increased emphasis on ‘skill’ and less on ‘content’. The curriculum we devise, balances factual content with process skills that are characteristic of a ‘thinking-centred curriculum and allows us to create a ‘brain based’ classroom.
Our goal in terms of curriculum is to be forward thinking and outcome based. We will constantly aim for our teachers to be devoted to excellence in classroom instruction and to strive towards creating highly motivated and creative students. Our entire approach will include early intervention, aggressive remediation, one to one tutoring and teamwork by the entire school staff.
Today’s challenges differ from those of former years in many ways and it is our mission to ensure that students are prepared for this challenge. We have ‘reconceptualised’ the curriculum to account for the changing needs of students in the ‘knowledge era’.
A curriculum that extends beyond formal learning areas will help learners to develop the capability and the confidence in applying what they know to problems and issues in a self-managed manner.
A curriculum framework such as this will ensure that education will be relevant to life beyond the school. Vaels International School will provide educational experiences that will make learning come alive for students. We want all teaching and learning to be infused with passion and enjoyment.