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Leading Schools in Kenya

Leading Schools in Kenya

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The Knowledge Review shines a light on the leading schools in Kenya that have taken this fight head-on and are contesting the barriers held up against the Kenyan education systems.


The Knowledge Review shines a light on the leading schools in Kenya that have taken this fight head-on and are contesting the barriers held up against the Kenyan education systems.

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Leading Schools in Kenya

  1. 1. www.theknowledgereview.com Value Learning Benefits of Value Education for Growing Minds Practical uses of Technology in Elementary School Knowledge Factory Kenya Leading in September | Issue 06 | 2021 2021
  2. 2. EDITOR’S NOTE n July last year, as per the reports, over a million Istudents were reported to have completed primary school in Kenya. The year previous to it said the percentage of students who progressed from primary to secondary increased up to 95%. This number is in contrast to the 83% of students in 2018. While these numbers speak in favor of laudable progress in Kenyan education, some hurdles and obstacles still need to be overcome to achieve Kenya's vision 2030. Kenya Vision 2030 is a national long-term development program that seeks to make Kenya a globally competitive and prosperous nation with a high quality of life by 2030. It intends to develop Kenya into a newly industrializing, middle-income country that provides a good quality of life to its residents in a clean and safe environment. In practice, the 100 percent transition strategy was founded on Vision 2030's education goals.
  3. 3. The government has also played a significant role in this vision. It has set aside substantial money for education to pursue changes such as a complete transition from elementary to secondary school. Between the fiscal years 2016/17 and 2017/18, the government's allocation and spending on free day secondary education grew by around 50%. The increase in the government contribution suggests that tuition expenses for day secondary school might be waived entirely. At the moment, the most significant barriers to reaching the 100 percent aim are insufficient resources, an uncertain political climate, and the consequences of COVID-19. However, it is essential to highlight that education and training are critical to the societal transformation envisioned by Vision 2030. And there are a plethora of things that must be done to accomplish this goal of 100 percent transformation. Officials can carry out complete execution of education policy, increased accountability, more teacher training, improved infrastructure, technological investment, and improvement of government- private sector collaborations in education. More instructors are needed to keep up with the growing number of pupils in secondary schools. Increased budgetary allocations should be made available to schools to fund infrastructure that will alleviate overcrowding in classrooms and dorms. The Kenyan government must establish resilient education systems to achieve equitable and sustainable growth. This will allow the government to respond to current issues like the COVID-19 epidemic, which nearly devastated the school system, and better prepare for future disasters. While these challenges will take their own time to resolve, The Knowledge Review shines a light on the leading schools in Kenya that have taken this fight head-on and are contesting the barriers held up against the Kenyan education systems. T R Ashlesh Khadse Ashlesh K
  4. 4. C O N T E N T Knowledge Factory Practical Uses of Technology in Elementary School 22 Value Learning Benefits of Value Education for Growing Minds 32 A r t i c l e s New Heights Dynamics of the Education Sector in Kenya in 2021 14 C X O
  5. 5. 08 Crawford International School Committed to Developing Leaders through Education and Excellence 18 SABIS® International School - Runda The Pride of Kenya 26 St Andrew’s School, Turi Nurturing Difference Makers of the Future 36 Woodland Star International School The Educational Powerhouse Training Innovators and Disruptors
  6. 6. People behind this edition
  7. 7. URL Name of the Institution Brief Brookhouse School rusinga.ac.ke Brookhouse provides co-educational day and boarding on two campuses in Nairobi, offering the British national Curriculum to Kenyan and International pupils. Crawford International School dsnairobi.de German School Nairobi hillcrest.ac.ke Crawford International School is aligned with CrawfordSchools™ that has been a proud leader in progressive and high-end private education in South Africa since 1993. Hillcrest International School sabis.net Hillcrest is built on a philosophy of inclusion, cooperation, and mutual respect for each other as well as an awareness and condence in ourselves. Rusinga School At Rusinga, your child will nd a warm home to hone his or her skills, a lively sanctuary to discover their purpose and diverse opportunities to connect and build relationships. turimail.co.ke The Banda School woodlandstarkenya.com Woodland Star International School St Andrew's School St Andrew’s School aims to develop the hearts, minds, bodies, and souls of future leaders. The Banda School is among the best international schools in Kenya and one of the largest IAPS schools in the world outside the United Kingdom. Woodland Star’s vision is to develop lifelong learners who will live meaningful lives in a complex and changing world. Zuwena International School zuwenainternationalschool.com Zuwena International School (ZIS) is a Christian school that offers an integrated educational system that incorporates Montessori, 8-4-4 system and the British curriculum. SABIS International School bandaschool.com brookhouse.ac.ke German School Nairobi provides high-quality education for German as well as foreign- speaking children and for students from its host country Kenya. crawfordinternational school.com Kenya Leading in 2021 SABIS® Network Schools provide students with a top-quality education that prepares them to meet the challenges of a changing world.
  8. 8. motive to nurture every student equally and to build them to become better professionals and humans. Marching on similar lines, Crawford International School constantly reassesses curriculum and teaching approaches, adapting to the child’s needs and aligning with global goals and trends. Since its inception in 1993, it has established itself as one of the most renowned institutions in South Africa. It has made a name for itself on the academic front by producing some of the most successful students over the years. The school’s origin roots SchoolCommi ed to Developing Leaders through Education and Excellence To attain career and academic success, students not only have to memorize and learn the educational content, but they also have to pursue education from an institution of repute, which offers a plethora of options and empowers the students. Such institutions are driven by the www.theknowledgereview.com 8 | Sept 2021
  9. 9. back to ADvTECH Group, a renowned name in South Africa. This company works with the education and recruitment industries in South Africa and the rest of Africa. The school is known for its high academic performance and progressive outlook. It constantly keeps updating itself with the latest happenings around the world and accordingly adjusts its curricular and co-curricular offerings. Crawford International School was established in Kenya because ADvTECH Group intended to start a school that would charge a medium fee while providing excellent educational facilities to the students. Hence, the school’s fee is about 45% of what the other schools charge. The school is driven by the idea of providing education for an emerging middle class and providing progressive educational facilities to the students. This opinion was based on the research carried out by the authorities who felt the requirement of incorporating cutting- edge technologies in education. They also realised that this would provide a firm ground for the Crawford brand to offer exceptional facilities. Hence, this is one of the reasons for establishing the school in Kenya. Superior Curriculum for Students’ Development Crawford International School follows the Cambridge International Curriculum to ensure the academic development of the students. It trains the students at IGCSE, A-levels, or AS- levels. Apart from the mentioned academic offering, the school also runs a parallel curriculum that includes various subjects such as leadership components, cryptocurrency, philosophy, music, dance, drama, etc. The school tries to provide tremendous opportunities to the children to grow in this rapidly changing world. The curriculum also incorporates certain 21st-century skills that can help nurture the students while preparing them for the challenges of this modern competitive world. Major skills such as communication, critical thinking, collaboration, along with IT courses, are also a part of the curriculum. Emphasis on IT and Infrastructure Crawford is completely IT-focused. It aims at strengthening its IT infrastructure to deliver better academic outcomes. When COVID was adversely affecting countries, economies, and educational institutions at large, the school was able to successfully transition to online mode of education by using different digital platforms such as Microsoft Teams. Crawford is also a part of Microsoft Showcase School. Moreover, currently in East Africa, there are only two Microsoft Showcase Schools, out of which Crawford is one. The school constantly trains and upgrades its teachers. It endeavours to educate the children about the importance of the digital space and what it means to be a digital citizen. The school believes students should understand that technology should only be used as a tool; they should not let technology take over their entire life. It should be used as a means to enhance learning and education. The school’s authority always aims to provide cutting-edge technology to the students and provide them with every Leading schools in Kenya 2021 We ensure that each student is developed into a fully-rounded individual whilst being skilled to interact collaboratively www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 9
  10. 10. opportunity to explore their limits and learn more. Hence, the management always looks for new procedures and learning methods to engage the students and enhance the learning outcomes. Achieving Enhanced Learning Outcomes Crawford’s priority is to make sure that the children receive outstanding education so that they are able to graduate successfully and proceed towards opting for top universities to carry on with higher education. Accordingly, it focuses on getting the students into A-levels at least and ensuring that they can cope with new technologies and new teaching styles. The school wants to transform the students into 21st-century learners. It believes that each student needs to possess critical thinking and analytical abilities. They should be able to communicate effectively and collaborate efficiently to bring about impactful changes in society. The authority inculcates an international mindset among the students; this ensures that the students learn to prepare themselves not only to contribute dedicatedly in Kenya but also beyond national boundaries. Accordingly, the students will also prepare themselves to go abroad and study hard. The school believes it is essential that the students receive a good academic grounding for their overall development. The Leading Light Crawford International School has achieved tremendous success under the astute leadership of Ms. Jenny Coetzee, the Managing Director. With over 42 years of teaching experience, she has made a major impact in the education sector. She has been associated with ADvTECH Group for 23 years, throughout which she always has focused on uplifting education and providing better opportunities to every student. During her illustrious career, Ms. Jenny served across many educational institutions We o er an academic foundation of the highest order such as Crawford La Lucia (15 years). She has also played an important part in starting Crawford’s Greenfield site. Under the leadership of Ms. Jenny, the school has reached many noteworthy landmarks. She aims to take Crawford to newer heights while achieving more accolades along the way. Her leadership enabled the school to carry out various exchange programs, which further enhanced educational initiatives. Attaining Extra-Curricular Excellence Crawford is dedicated to not only the academic development of the students but also provides ample scope for the students to excel in various extra- curricular activities. It has various clubs and sports which provide students with the opportunity to learn and grow dynamically. Different clubs ranging from crafts like crocheting, knitting to aviation allow students to thrive. It also has an innovators club and a chess club. Crawford promotes different varieties of sport. The school emphasizes the sport of swimming. It has a dedicated heated pool of Olympic standards. The school has a dedicated coach for www.theknowledgereview.com 10 | Sept 2021
  11. 11. swimming. It is also training the students to be brilliant rugby players to create a strong rugby team that would be able to succeed in different championships and tournaments. Crawford also emphasizes training the students in hockey and soccer. It has hired the captain of the national hockey team to provide professional training to the students. Moreover, the school also provides excellent training in netball, basketball, and much more. It is also making arrangements to introduce cricket so that interested students can also get exposure to that sport. Crawford is planning to build four tennis courts and basketball courts next year, for which the arrangements will be made very soon. It also houses a multi-purpose hall where students can play different games such as badminton. Furthermore, the school focuses on other sports such as golf and table tennis. It constantly works with the students and remains open for suggestions so that it can carry out different developmental activities in the extra- curricular arena. The school works very closely with the students through the leadership program and responds dynamically to all their queries. Along with sports offerings, Crawford International School also offers in- depth dance, drama, music production, and much more sessions. Flexible Learning Opportunities Crawford International School offers an all-around, holistic education to the students. It follows an adaptable educational approach. The timetable is flexible and is prepared in such a way that the students can avail of the classroom sessions from any place and at any time. For example, if students are travelling elsewhere in order to participate in any national or international event, they can easily participate in online classes on the go. Alternatively, the school’s timetable works on a cycle. It does not follow a Monday to Friday schedule. It is a nine-day cycle, which means that if children have to be out playing sport for various terms, they will not miss all their lessons. This is because the school follows a cyclic timetable. The management believes in the whole motto, ‘Every child is a masterpiece,’ and it tries and makes it work for each child. The school does not tie students to rigid subject packages; rather, it gives them the opportunity to choose the subjects of their interest. Once the choice is made, the school authorities make a www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 11
  12. 12. certain timetable around the same. Crawford International School streamlines everything related to the course offered to the student to ensure that everything is financially and structurally viable. Ms. Jenny states, “We don't start with, ‘This is what we're offering.’ Instead, we go to the children and say, ‘Okay, let’s see what you are interested in, and this is what we will then offer’.” Preparing the Students for a Bright Future With the vision of providing students with the opportunity to sculpt bright careers for themselves, Crawford International takes many necessary steps. It has a complete careers department that works with the various universities. It also conducts a career week every year, where every student gets an equal opportunity to experience and gather in-depth information about careers in different industries. It also has a program, which enables the students to go out and gather hands-on physical workplace experience. The school also provides the students with access to various career fairs. Additionally, it has introduced life coaching sessions, which improve the students’ confidence and give them a new perspective about life and careers. The school overcame the challenges imposed by COVID-19 and allowed We prepare students in the best way possible for life students to pursue digital internships. It has developed strong connections with universities and is also registered with the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. Many guest speakers have visited the school and have shared their opinions with the students. It also maintains strong relations with the parents and shares information about various career opportunities for the children. Before Crawford International allows the students to choose any subject, it conducts an aptitude test via a full- time psychologist. The psychologist also conducts private interviews with every child and their parents. Hence, as far as careers are concerned, the careers department takes every necessary step to ensure that every student shines in the career path they opt for. www.theknowledgereview.com 12 | Sept 2021
  13. 13. The current dynamics of the education sector in Kenya can be described as exciting, intriguing, and challenging. While all the country’s educational institutions continue to grapple with how best to navigate the effects of lengthy school closures over the past 16 months due to COVID-19, there remains the challenge for national public schools to successfully implement the ‘new’ Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) with limited training and resources. Couple this with the demands of an incredibly diverse international community and a myriad of well-resourced international schools, and you are left with a staggering array of educational institutions that span a sector that is rich in opportunity, but complex in nature. There is no shortage of schools in Kenya that churn out excellent results year on year, both national and international. There is certainly also no shortage, however, of learners who are failed by the overarching education system in Kenya (and in the world), which largely focuses on following a ‘traditional’, ‘industrial’ type of education model. Sadly, this “cookie- cutter”, “one-size-fits-all” approach to learning leaves too many learners never receiving the guidance and support they require and deserve to succeed in life after school. It is thus with great enthusiasm and anticipation that we wait to see the CBC unfold further in Kenya, which seeks to redirect the primary purpose of education in Kenya towards the acquisition of key competencies and skills, along with academic knowledge. If implemented as outlined on paper, the CBC would be a significant step towards ensuring that all learners receive an education that will allow them to enter the eventual workplace with greater preparedness and the competencies required to contribute in a meaningful way. As things stand, there is seemingly still a significant lack of support available from educational institutions in Kenya for those learners in particular that may not quite ‘fit’ the neurotypical mould. Learners with specific learning needs, as well as those that may be deemed to have advanced cognitive abilities (‘gifted’) or talents, continue to receive insufficient differentiated support (or none at all) within the classroom. Many of today’s leaders, innovators and entrepreneurs are cut from this cloth, and in a country such as Kenya, known as an innovation leader on the continent, one laments the immense potential that remains untapped and un-nurtured in classrooms across the country. With its theoretical underpinnings in constructivist theories (e.g. Dewey’s Social Constructivism, Vygotsky’s Social-Cultural Development Theory, Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence Theory, Piaget’s Cognitive Development Theory, etc), the CBC in Kenya is well placed to move the dynamics within the education sector in the right direction. It is not this theoretical framework that is missing, but rather the authentic Dynamics of the Education Sector in Kenya in 2021 New Heights www.theknowledgereview.com 14 | Sept 2021
  14. 14. adoption and practical application thereof that is found rarely in the classroom context. Instead of educators being provided with the training, resources and freedom necessitated to bring these theories (and the CBC) to life, teachers continue to be bound by administrative burdens, large class sizes, and test-driven cultures that make it largely impossible to create, innovate and differentiate. Kenya is a nation that is filled with people of passion, ingenuity, hard work and determination, including many educators longing and willing to be a part of unravelling these complex dynamics into a beautiful future for all of its learners. These educators are the most precious and valuable assets in Kenya’s education sector, and, if given the voice, support and opportunity, have the potential to propel teaching and learning in Kenya to new heights through the CBC. It is an exciting time to be involved in the Kenyan education sector, which is rife with opportunities for educators, administrators, and decision-makers to have a lasting and transformational impact on the lives of young people. To all those involved in this amazing sector - “Tuko pamoja!”. We are together! Timo Lehmann Principal, Woodland Star International School Timo Lehmann is the School Principal at Woodland Star International School in Nairobi, Kenya. He is passionate about family, education, environmental conservation and sports. About the author www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 15
  15. 15. ® SABIS Runda is an English-medium day and boarding school that aims to help local and international students in Kenya achieve their full potential by preparing them for success in university, equipping them with the skills and passion for lifelong learning, and strengthening their social values. ® ® SABIS Runda is the first school to bring the SABIS Educational System to Kenya. As students progress through the curriculum, their foundation of knowledge expands in breadth and depth and becomes a springboard for future learning. Students cover a broad range of subjects including English, Kiswahili - a world language, mathematics, science, Kenyan social studies, music, fine arts, and P.E. An Inspiring Mission ® SABIS Runda strives to develop a safe and nurturing environment designed around three core pillars—academic excellence, life skills, and personal well-being. Its approach provides students with a holistic school experience, combining its proud tradition of academic excellence with outstanding programs to develop character, skill, and grit. Africa is the cradle of human civilization. A diverse continent, Africa has one the richest and most sublime mix of culture and customs. In the east of this old continent lies Kenya – a country famed for its scenic landscapes and vast wildlife preserves. Of late, the country of Kenya is gaining traction due to its swiftly rising standards of education, with a great number of public and private universities and mid-level colleges leading the charge. The country’s schooling systems are also catching up to match the most prominent schools on the continent. But very few schools are making rounds in the educational circles as reverently as a school located in Runda, situated off Kiambu Road after the Northern Bypass ® Underpass. We are speaking, of course, of the SABIS ® International School – Runda (SABIS Runda). ® SABIS Runda opened its doors in 2018 to students in Kindergarten to Grade 6. Today, the school offers Kindergarten to Grade 10, and will add a new grade level each year until reaching a full K-12 offering. R Runda The Pride of Kenya International School www.theknowledgereview.com 18 | Sept 2021
  16. 16. ® A SABIS Runda education is grounded in a set of shared values that encourage students to: Ÿ Do their best and persevere with enthusiasm and commitment Ÿ Learn to be independent and take ownership for their decisions and actions Ÿ Be inquisitive, forward-thinking, and agile learners Ÿ Cultivate an awareness of self and others that is rooted in respect, empathy, and inclusivity Ÿ Be socially responsible citizens and active members of their community ® What Matters to SABIS Runda Every student should develop into a well-rounded individual who is capable of mastering the skills that are essential to academic excellence and success in an ever- changing world. The school aims to prepare students for university, equip them with a desire for lifelong learning, critical thinking, and logical reasoning, as well as nurture them into well-rounded, responsible, community-minded individuals who can achieve sustained success. Drawing on these qualities, students are prepared to remain on the cutting-edge by continually re-engineering their skills, deepening their knowledge, and extending the scope of their success. The Quintessential Leader ® This year, SABIS Runda welcomes a new School Director, Adrian Mackie. Mr. Mackie has worked with the ® SABIS Network for the past 10 years in a variety of locations and capacities including teaching, department management, and as a school director. He holds an undergraduate degree in International Relations and Anthropology and a Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction. ® “I am honored to be part of the SABIS Runda family where parents, staff, and students care for each other and strive to build positive relationships that support academic, non-academic, and social growth, which prepares the youth of today to be the leaders of tomorrow. Together, we will work as a team to provide a top-quality education to your children,” shared Mr. Mackie. A Holistic Learning Experience ® SABIS Runda offers its students a wide range of extracurricular activities on state-of-the-art campus facilities that allows them to develop new hobbies and interests, discover new passions, and participate in numerous sports. This includes football, basketball, swimming, music, art, dance, debate, public speaking, STEM (e.g. robotics and 3D printing), and much more. These activities are available to students after school and ® through the SABIS Student Life Organization – a student- led mini-society at the school. ® As members of the SABIS Network, students can attend ® the SABIS Educational Summer Camp in England and ® inter-school tournaments like the SABIS Regional ® Tournament (Sports), and SABIS STARS (Talent). Leading Schools in Kenya 2021 ® SABIS Runda students are empowered to get involved in the school and take on leadership roles through a student- led mini-society called the SABIS® Student Life Organization (SLO) “ “
  17. 17. Aspiring to Make a Difference! SABIS Runda has carved a niche for itself in bolstering ® futures and launching all kinds of initiatives to help students prepare for their future contribution to the world. The school achieves this by: Providing a safe, welcoming community of inclusion ® “There’s a special sense of belonging at SABIS Runda – a feeling shared by our students, families, and faculty,” remarked Mr. Mackie, School Director. “Cultural diversity is an important part of who we are. Together, we represent many cultures, experiences, and viewpoints. We believe that diversity makes us richer,” he added. Fostering a love of lifelong learning Engaging teaching methods, along with frequent assessments, solidify student knowledge and provide a 360° view of individual progress. In every subject and at every grade level, the school’s academic approach provides a structure that promotes the mastery of essential concepts. This proven and highly effective approach engages students in a dynamic and collaborative learning environment that fosters a love of learning. Nurturing true global citizens ® SABIS Runda students become true global citizens through the study of English and world languages. Beginning with the youngest learners in Kindergarten, students are taught using English as the language of instruction, and Swahili and French are stressed throughout the curriculum. The rich cultural diversity of the school along with the opportunity to learn multiple world languages helps students understand and empathize with people from a wide range of backgrounds. Encouraging engagement and teaching adaptability ® SABIS Runda students are empowered to get involved in the school and take on leadership roles through a student- ® led mini-society called the SABIS Student Life Organization (SLO), which provides a context for student participation in academic and non-academic activities that include peer tutoring, event planning, community service initiatives, and much more. Through real-life experiences in SLO, students acquire valuable problem-solving skills and develop a sense of confidence by learning from both successes and setbacks ® in a nurturing community. Through the SLO at SABIS Runda, students learn responsibility, adaptability, and flexibility and are prepared to face any challenge. The Epitome of World-Class Pedagogy ® The SABIS team is proud of the fact that the school has been awarded the ‘Green Star Africa-Kenya PEV v1 Design’ rating in recognition of its consideration of the ® urban and climate context. SABIS Runda is the first school in East and Sub-Saharan Africa to receive this recognition and was awarded 4 stars. It is now a certified member of the Kenya Green Building Society. ® SABIS Runda is also officially recognized as a Cambridge Associate School and registered as a Cambridge International School, which allows it to offer the renowned IGCSEs and other Cambridge assessments. Responding to the Pandemic ® In response to the lockdown, SABIS Runda seamlessly shifted to a full-fledged E-learning solution to continue to provide a top-quality education to students. When the teaching and the learning suddenly had to move to a ‘remote’ environment, teachers did not have to prepare new content as digital lessons were already available, and students already had their E-books, which include interactive activities, audios, and animations. “We also instated health and safety measures that ensure student and staff health is not compromised while on campus. This included daily temperature checks, social distancing in classrooms, face masks, hand sanitizing stations, and an awareness campaign,” added Director Mackie. www.theknowledgereview.com 20 | Sept 2021
  18. 18. The Way to the Future Looking ahead, the school will expand to a full K-12 ® offering. It envisions its students, like their SABIS counterparts around the world, going on to take, and excel at internationally recognized, standardized exams such as the IGCSEs and A Levels, as well as the Advanced ® ® Placement (AP ) exams, SATs, and IELTS, among others. These results, coupled with a balance of academics, life preparation, and self-development, will set the students apart as they attend the universities of their choosing. The school aims to prepare students for university, equip them with a desire for lifelong learning, critical thinking, and logical reasoning, as well as nurture them into well-rounded, responsible, community- minded individuals who can achieve sustained success “ “ www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 21
  19. 19. www.theknowledgereview.com 22 | Sept 2021
  20. 20. Uses of in Elementary Technology came to be an intricate part of the solution to those problems, particularly in elementary education. Numerous educational applications and digital programs enhanced learning opportunities in a classroom environment. However, the critics weren’t impressed. Rather than dismissing the use of technology altogether, it is essential to consider how technology can be applied to make the most of learning experiences with students. Integrating technology into elementary school activities exposes children to innovation at an early age, helping t wasn’t secret that the first couple Iof months of schools in the pandemic were filled with bumps as many teachers and students left their digs of digital learning experiences behind and instead faced a successful school year ahead. Challenges were faced almost daily as students adjusted to their new environment. Teachers had to adjust instruction to include more analog activities. Remediation plans changed alongside behavioral issues in the classroom communities. While everyone has found some semblance of balance in the classroom, there are still many obstacles that teachers face on a daily basis. www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 23 Knowledge Factory
  21. 21. them develop the skills that will offer them a more technologically-savvy future by expanding their creativity, enhancing their problem-solving techniques, and fortifying their speech communication skills. This article will look into some of the effective use of technology in elementary school. As an Instructional Tool With students more and more frequently using online tools to learn, many teachers have started using audio and video as instructional tools. While it is still best to have a live instructor in the classroom, remote learning allows students to participate remotely with other students around the world -- and students benefit from the experience of working with students who are culturally different from them. While live classroom instruction is often best, if institutes can supplement instruction with a series of short video clips, teachers can allow students to review essential concepts until they can meet face to face again. On the other side, when students are reviewing their learning or instructions, they can quickly assess their comprehension by viewing a short video. It is equally helpful to send a video link to students and have them reply with their answers or comments. To Self-reflect on Their Learning and Progress Students can use technology to keep track of their learning and progress. They can reflect on classroom moments in pictures or videos that showcase a project, presentation, or activity. Students can organize their work in a time-lapse format to track their learning over time. Teachers can allow for more self- directed reflection as students become more comfortable with the process. Technology will enable students to create presentations in multiple formats that chronicle learning over time. To Spark Students’ Creativity Students today have an unlimited number of ways to create digital art. Most students have experience with different forms of visual expression and artistic creation during their school years: comics, poetry, book reports, science projects, etc. Nowadays, technology is part of the classroom teaching environment, and students have much more opportunities to express themselves creatively. Today, the many tools and media available to digital artists make creativity an active part of the art- making process in many classrooms. Creating art with technology can be a new, fun experience for students. The Internet has radically changed how these young artists can make and store information, gain access to knowledge, and do research. To Keep Track of Their Assignments Google’s share settings feature is a beautiful way to share a digital creation like an interactive Google Slideshow or Google Document. Teachers may create an assignment online, such as on a content management system based on the Google Drive platform. It can be used to develop a lesson for your class, and you can include video, images, and PDF files. The Microsoft Office 365 tools, Flipgrid and Padlet, can also create, curate, and share student work. To Grade Online Online grading systems have become an integral component of the overall school experience. When schools use an online grading system, communication is a critical element in education that helps teachers, administrators, parents, and students recognize their objectives. Communication also allows teachers to be aware of areas where their students excel or need assistance. To Incorporate Different Learning Styles Everyone knows that each child is different, and those differences make us all so unique. Whether it’s their reading level, writing skills, or attention span, every student has an other way of learning. Usually, teachers base the majority of their lessons upon the average child in the class. Unfortunately, this can mean that some students either find lessons too easy while others find them difficult. Thankfully, technology in education today allows teachers to adjust their learning plans to fit every student’s personality and learning style Lately, technology has been thrust into the spotlight for its usage across all content areas in education. From problems in the use of digital tools to enabling students to research a plethora of educational software and hardware, educators are finding themselves in a new world of teaching and learning. However, one thing is for sure; technology is here and from hereon will play a key role in defining the future of education. www.theknowledgereview.com 24 | Sept 2021
  22. 22. It all began with Jean and Peter Lavers, a couple who dedicated close to 50 years of their lives to establish a school whose foundation was the emphasis on Christian love and care. They began with limited resources, carrying out many of the tasks on their own – from teaching to construction, cooking, etc. for pupils who were far away from home. They were referred to as Ma and Pa Lavers by the pupils as they instilled a sense of family which continues to date at the school. This humble abode and place for knowledge dissemination located in Turi, Nakuru county was called St Andrew’s School, Turi. The rising phoenix of Turi is a symbol of resilience and commitment to doing even better, especially when faced with challenges. It represents the new school rising out of the ashes of the old, in memory of the fire that broke out at the school on 29th February 1944 and destroyed everything except the Chapel. “Ma and Pa Lavers went on to rebuild the school, and their courage and resilience, we believe, lives on as 90 years from inception, the school remains firmly in its place as a leader in the sector,” noted the eminent administration of St Andrew’s School. St Andrew’s School, Turi is one of the oldest international schools in the region. It was founded in 1931, beginning with only 15 pupils at Prep School. Today, there are over 600 students enrolled from different countries aged 6-18. The school comprises of three semi-independent parts: Ÿ Prep School- EYFS- Year 8 Ÿ Senior School- Year 9- 11 Ÿ College- Year 12 & 13 Nurturing Difference Makers of the Future St Andrew’s School, Turi The concept of servant leadership as described in Matthew 20:25-28 is emphasized right from the beginning. Students are expected as individuals and collectively to positively impact the community www.theknowledgereview.com 26 | Sept 2021
  23. 23. The small class sizes allow for individual attention to students. With a spread of over 450 acres, students can enjoy a myriad of outdoor activities in St Andrew’s School and enjoy outdoor learning. Being a full boarding school allows time for many more out-of-class activities that typical students in the city, who have a daily commute to and from school, do not have. The staff live on campus to ensure that there is 24- hour care. The set-up has a cosy, secure feel to it to ensure that all learners are comfortable and happy. St Andrew’s School, Turi, is not just known for its academic achievements but for being an all-around school that excels in sports, music, performance, and creative arts. Its alumni have gone on to do well in various careers – from farming to music, from research to technology. The Venerated Vision St Andrew’s School aims to develop The school’s educational philosophy focuses on creating independent learners. Students study a wide range of subjects, and they are encouraged to excel in every area of academia. The school’s faculty apply a healthy mix of modern and traditional forms of delivery in the classroom. Students adopt a global mindset and are aware that they are competing internationally for current and future opportunities. From an early age, students at Turi are encouraged to come up with their own ideas and defend their viewpoints coherently and courteously. They are taught to work with others as well as independently. Extra-curricular Sports: Sport makes up one to two hours of each student's day. These include rugby, football, hockey, swimming, rounders, kayaking, archery, cricket, athletics, golf, netball, basketball, badminton, tennis, and many more sporting options. Leading Schools in Kenya 2021 the hearts, minds, bodies, and souls of future leaders. This is in recognition of the importance of all aspects of an individual student’s life and not just the academic side of things. The school is known for its excellent pastoral care through which it builds up students mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally. “Christ is at the centre of all that we do at Turi and our Christian values define the essence of the school,” said the school administration. Creating Independent Learners All students wishing to get admission to St Andrew’s will take assessment tests as part of the admissions process. This is done with the end in mind, to ensure that with the right interventions, the students ultimately achieve according to their potential in IGCSE and A level exams. The teaching staff comprises of top-notch educators from Kenya (East Africa), the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, etc. www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 27
  24. 24. Performing arts: Music (Choir, orchestra), Drama (Lambda), Debate (Rhino Cup). Leadership Programmes: From Prep School to graduate level in Year 13, students have to participate in the Turi Leadership Award – an accredited 2- year diploma course whose purpose is to enhance the leadership skills of every young person before they leave Turi. Weekend activities: The weekend activities vary depending on the age and interest of students. The rural setting allows elite pastimes such as horse riding, private cross country running and even flying lessons at the school’s airstrip. Other activities include cooking, dance, and pottery. Club activities take place in the course of the week (after school and during the weekends). Additionally, there are various programmes set up at the school: St Andrew’s School is a leader in ‘Me School’ methodology meaning we incorporate teaching Stephen Covey’s ‘7 habits of Highly Effective people’ for everyday life in pupils from Early Years. St Andrew’s School is a ‘Roundsquare school’, meaning at the secondary level students adapt the ‘IDEALS’ of Internationalism, Democracy, Environmentalism, Adventure, Leadership, and Service. Turi also has its own compulsory accredited leadership programme/diploma at the College level where students not only learn but are expected to apply their knowledge in making the school, their community, and the world a better place. The St Andrew’s Experience The school is set up in a serene countryside which allows for both in and out of classroom learning far away from the hustle and bustle of city life. It also means the students experience unique activities within the school like kayaking, golf, mountain bike riding, horse riding, camping, etc. Its unique location truly sets the school apart from the rest. “Our Christian foundation informs all aspects of life in Turi and while we are accepting of all people we aim to live and lead in Christ,” commented the school administration. “The concept of servant leadership is emphasized right from the beginning and our students have as individuals and collectively impacted the community around the school,” they added. Charity and social activities for and with their peers outside of school are a prominent part of delivering the school’s mission which is to ‘develop self-disciplined, confident and compassionate individuals who live and lead with integrity’. Career Counselling The British curriculum is relatively www.theknowledgereview.com 28 | Sept 2021
  25. 25. career focused. Students are exposed to a wide variety of subjects and with the help of their teachers and career counselling department, are assisted in selecting suitable careers as well as the universities that are best suited for their career of choice. The majority of students go on to study abroad and venture into various fields including business, engineering, and medicine, the arts, etc. Applications are aided by strong links between the school’s Careers Department and top universities including those from The Russell Group. The Sixth Form college experience is curated to mimic college/university life. Students are more independent and required to take on a lot more responsibility over their school life that includes time management and activities of daily living. Aspiring to be the Best St Andrew’s mission is to be the leading school in Africa. To that end, the school aims at being at the forefront of educational development in the region by embracing technological, pedagogical, and policy- related advancements in its delivery. “With this in place, we see Turi as the home (and school) of Africa’s leaders for the coming years,” concluded the proud school administration. www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 29
  26. 26. www.theknowledgereview.com 32 | Sept 2021
  27. 27. of for Value Learning The effectiveness of a child depends on the grooming of the student during their early days. That is why 'Value Education' is often the common non- academical subject that children study worldwide. This subject of value education is often ignored during schooling, compared to mainstream subjects like science, ducation is the most powerful Etool through which you can change the world," following these words of the great Nelson Mandela, education in this modern generation plays a very significant role in the overall development of a child. Education helps the children not just grow but also be effective at what they do. www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 33
  28. 28. mathematics, etc. However, the importance of values starts to show when you grow up, and the kind of value education one receives during the upbringing is clearly reflected. Value education is essential for growing minds because it helps them build their character and develop their personality. Most importantly, it helps them make a conscious choice between right and wrong. Complete Holistic Development The whole purpose of adding value education in students' syllabus is to train them to face challenges. A growing mind is the birthplace of curiosity and introducing students to a subject that focuses on the complete development of the students is what every parent in the world aims for. Value education not only provides an ideal solution for this, but it holds more importance that subject signifies. For a child's complete holistic development, character development, spiritual development, personality development, emotional development, etc., are extremely necessary. The solution to that is value education, through which its orthodox learning methods and unorthodox examples sets the foundation of a child's complete holistic development. Value Education Defines Character and Personality Personality and character are two important traits of an individual's personality. Often these two characters become the identity of people. As a child grows into an adult, the values ingrained in the early days of schooling lay the foundation for a lifetime. Different life experiences, surroundings, environment, and various other factors are also responsible for the character and personality of the child that they put forward. However, the value of education allows the child to make a conscious choice. Adding values in early education days helps everyone define a person's character and personality. Listed below are some of the benefits of value education for moulding a child's personality into a winning personality: • Value Education shows the children to be a responsible person • Teaches them the importance of time • Maturely handling difficult situations • Develops a sound mind with a positive attitude • No hesitation while making firm decisions • It helps them to maintain good relations with others Helps in Attaining Life Goals Attitude defines thought, and these thoughts direct actions. Developing a winning attitude is exceptionally essential to achieve anything in life. Developing a good attitude in the growing stages of life is how a child can attain life goals easily. Value- imbibed education can bring significant changes in a person's perspective, which can help them in achieving life goals. Here is how value-based education can help a child in meeting his/her goals: • It allows children to make a conscious choice which helps them define their future • It will enable children to find their niche interests and purpose in life • Value education makes a growing mind more responsible and sensible towards others • Allows to have a unique perception of life different than others • It helps in developing and maintaining good relations with family and friends • Value education enables children to build a positive perception of life Importance of Value education Value education is not different from discipline, but it is in the form of academics that is inherited into the education system. While discipline is more result-oriented, helping children solve problems, value education is similar to that but allows the child to see their aim clearly and gives them the reason and motivation to achieve it. Value education holds particular importance for growing minds because it helps them develop things that will provide them with a base to make a conscious decision. Along with that, it feeds the growing curiosity of children, giving them a direction about the future endeavours they want to choose in life. www.theknowledgereview.com 34 | Sept 2021
  29. 29. Woodland Star The Educational Powerhouse Training Innovators and Disruptors International School Birthed from a forgotten tool shed in 2011, Woodland Star is nestled within a unique 100-acre eco-campus and provides a rare educational opportunity for learners aged 2- 16 (with high school soon to come). Located in the midst of an indigenous forest, Woodland Star is a small, progressive school that focuses on the unique strengths and challenges of each child and is home to learners from across the neurodiversity spectrum. Woodland Star embodies an inclusive and holistic educational approach to the development of children, ensuring that each learner is met where they are at in their own educational journey. Its small class sizes foster friendships that are genuine and deep, and the physical classroom spaces with fireplaces, climbing walls, swinging Kenya’s education system was ranked as the best on the African continent by the World Economic Forum in 2017. Kenya was named the best African country for educational performance by the World Bank in 2018. (1st out of 43 mainland countries). In 2019, a Kenyan was crowned the world’s best teacher and received a coveted $1 million prize. Undoubtedly, something very powerful is going on in Kenyan Schools. Nairobi has been developing its reputation of becoming the global hotspot for education innovation. At the heart of this educational powerhouse lies a school like no other, created to meet 'the need' within the greater Nairobi community for an alternate and more holistic approach to education. It is the one and only – Woodland Star International School! www.theknowledgereview.com 36 | Sept 2021
  30. 30. benches and outdoor learning spaces make Woodland Star feel more like a home than a school. The Guiding Light Woodland Star's values of Passion, Connectedness, Innovation, Respect and Environmental Conservation are what define the school culture and are the principles that guide the Woodland Star Team. The school's vision is not radically different from what most schools aspire to, namely, to develop lifelong learners who will live meaningful lives in a complex and changing world. However, the approach and intent towards attaining its vision do look somewhat different. Through the pathways of individualized instruction, social-emotional learning and thematic instruction, the school's long-term transformational learning goals – and thus its vision and mission - are tracked and realized, that is for each learner to: Be Self-Directed Belong in Community Become Globally Mindful Alongside its academic learning objectives, the school places a high value on measuring growth in our three aforementioned transformational learning goals. “Our formal learning outcomes therefore transcend mere academic objectives, and include the areas of self- awareness, self-management, growth mindset, social awareness, communication, collaboration, global awareness, systems thinking and environmental conservation,” commented the Founder of Woodland Star International School – Mrs. Amy McKelvey. The Indomitable Chief Woodland Star was founded by Mrs. Amy McKelvey, a remarkably and uniquely talented educator. Having taught for many years in different schools in the United States and in Nairobi, Kenya, Amy saw that there was a void in the education most children receive. She watched as the passions of some of her former students slowly disappeared through the years, wilting under the weight of conformity, a missing sense of belonging, and a lack of people who cared to listen to them. Amy knew that it was time for change, so she decided to start a school where learners would have a safe haven to see, to think, and to become. Many years later, Amy continues to take Woodland Star, its students and its teachers to new heights, using her background in 'Gifted Education' to bring learning to life through innovative and engaging teaching strategies, story-based learning, creative and performing arts and an endless passion to give each child the education they deserve. The Wholesome Experience Student life at Woodland Star is amazing and unlike any other school, and by its nature is extremely engaging! Before settling into class, learners enjoy a forest-walk each morning, providing an opportunity to connect with their peers and teachers. Home to a beautifully diverse and inclusive community, Woodland Star values everyone’s backgrounds and gifts, which are showcased and celebrated through various means such as whole school/community theatre productions, community 'Village Teas', a termly 'Celebration of Learning' and community environmental and social justice endeavours. There are a host of extra- curricular activities available at Woodland Star, from football to dancing, from taekwondo to science-club, from drama to rollerblading or playing the ukulele. “Woodland Star has not received any formal accolades or awards, nor are these of greatest importance to us,” remarked the unwavering Mrs. Amy McKelvey. “Our most notable achievements lie in the stories of our learners and their families, many of which have experienced genuine transformations at Woodland Star: the lonely have found friends, the unheard have been given a voice, the excluded are celebrated, and those written off are given a chance. The struggling are not left behind, those bored are pushed to their potential. Everyone is known and everyone belongs,” she added. Leading Schools in Kenya 2021 Mrs. Amy McKelvey Founder www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 37
  31. 31. The school is currently working towards formal accreditation. Bolstering Futures At Woodland Star International School, employing a theme-based approach in multi-age classes allows for meaningful integration across learning disciplines, authentic application to real-world problems and rich, curricular activities and field trips that are hands-on, project-based, interactive, and engaging. Learning is never static or ‘one- size-fits-all’, and the faculty seek to integrate learners’ strengths, passions, interests, and talents into the learning process. In this way, learners are able to identify and utilize their individual traits, skills, understanding, and experiences to aid both their own and others’ learning, thereby preparing them for their unique participation in and contribution to the world. Being an inclusive school, the classes include learners with significant learning needs and learners that are ‘gifted’ (and everything in between!). This neurodiversity provides an unparalleled culture of learning and being that elevates preparedness for a diverse, complex, and changing world. Enduring the Pandemic Tribulations Like all schools in Kenya, Woodland Star has complied with the Covid safety measures (and more) as required by government directives, including social distancing, face masks, health checks, hand-hygiene, etc. The school’s comparative advantages in this respect have been that it has small class sizes, a big, green, spacious campus, lots of formal, outside learning spaces and a wonderfully supportive and compliant school community, all of which have aided towards very minimal disruption to learning, despite COVID. When required to shift online, the school's team thought very critically and reflectively about what would work best 38 | Sept 2021
  32. 32. for their learners, and about how to retain their philosophy and approach to learning. As such, the school continued to provide a high level of differentiation and personalized learning, ensuring that learning continued to be collaborative, fun and engaging. The school stayed away from full, live school days online or whole-group live teaching, rather focussing its efforts on individual student needs and providing one-on-one or small group instruction. Scaling the Future When asked about what the future holds for Woodland Star, Mrs. Amy McKelvey said, “We are far from perfect and keep learning each day. We will never be a large school given our education philosophy but hope to continue to grow and improve in such a way that every learner that comes to Woodland Star is provided with an education that is ‘just right’ for them.” “As we grow in our own understanding and experience, we would love our campus to develop into a ‘learning hub’ from which we can share valuable practices and expertise with local (and international) schools, and to provide training in educational pedagogy, environmental education, inclusive education, etc.,” concluded the steadfast founder of Woodland Star. Woodland Star embodies an inclusive and holistic educational approach to the development of children, ensuring that each learner is met where they are at in their own educational journey www.theknowledgereview.com Sept 2021 | 39

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