ISB Student Spotlight: A Learning Environment where Students Thrive
At International School Bangkok (ISB) we pride ourselves on fostering an inclusive and caring community that students can thrive in. Everything we do and every decision we make as a school is student-centered and learning-focused. We have a dedicated curriculum design team, who adapt our curriculum, teaching and learning to ensure our students have the best opportunity for success, according to individual needs and strengths.
Our programs provide a huge variety of subjects, activities, sports, arts, and languages. We have top-of-range facilities and equipment around our beautiful campus, which is situated in Nonthaburi, Thailand. This sets us apart from most international schools, and provides a platform for every student to reach their full potential.
But it is not just the facilities, curriculum, teachers or the community that make ISB what it is - it is, of course, our students - and we aim to create the ideal environment for them to thrive in.
ISB Students in the Spotlight
We asked a selection of students two questions: What do you want to do when you leave ISB and what do you love most about ISB? It was great to hear how positive they were about their experiences at ISB and that they felt supported in their learning, both on a personal and academic level. Through a series of snapshots, talking to students across each division of Elementary School, Middle School and High School, we share more about what students are passionate about and what their future dreams are.
Some talk about their plans for college, some of their career dreams, others of their passions or their purpose. Their answers are varied, candid and interesting. A spotlight on our student community, which is diverse and inspiring.
Our conversations with students also showed how they are able to be their authentic selves at ISB, and how they are encouraged to follow their unique path and journey. They are able to see their potential, are supported and thrive within this environment.
Creating the Ideal Learning Environment
“Children in Elementary School need an extra-supportive emotional environment, as they are often learning to do several things for the first time. Some of these tasks are academic, but others are very much social; spending several hours each day away from their families, starting to make friends with new groups of kids; and very much ‘learning to learn’,” shared Michael Allen, the ISB Elementary School Principal.
At ISB, we are dedicated to creating this sense of “belonging” for students and all members of the community. We know that when people feel accepted and safe, that they will be free to be themselves, to try new things, to make mistakes and to grow as individuals.
Allen discussed this more, “All human beings are pulled towards a sense of belonging and significance. When we talk about a sense of belonging, we are discussing the idea of connection and how we fit into a group, whether it’s the family, the classroom, or the community. A sense of significance comes from knowing that what we do – and who we are – matters. People who believe that they contribute to society in meaningful, cooperative ways tend to be happier people; they know that what they do makes a difference. Our role as educators is to provide an environment where every child feels a strong sense of belonging and significance. At ISB, we do this by setting up our classroom communities in a way that provides plenty of opportunities for students to contribute, problem-solve, and cooperate!”
In the Middle School, this supportive environment is strengthened through guidance and additional programs.
Dennis Harter, the ISB Middle School Principal said, “As children grow, their studies become more difficult, and their social relationships become more complex, they need new forms of guidance to help them stay on a comfortable path forward. By taking a holistic approach to education, we are able to meet each student’s developmental needs”.
Cindy Plantecoste, Middle School Vice Principal, highlighted the school’s advisory program as playing a key role, “Our advisory program is at the heart of who we are as a middle school. It shapes the student experience. Through the advisory program, we build communities where students are known, feel valued, support others, and grow.”
This initiative is part of a wider commitment to student well-being at ISB. “It’s important to us to create a learning environment in which students can be themselves as they discover passions, develop creativity, and adapt to changes in themselves and the world around them,” added Mr Harter.
From artistic projects to extracurricular clubs and activities, ISB provides excellent opportunities for students to practice their passions and talents. Our faculty maintains the delicate balance between giving students the freedom to explore and experiment, while also remaining on hand to guide them toward the right decisions.
Justin Alexander, High School Principal at ISB, discussed what this looks like at the High School level. “High School students have a strong desire to belong to a group and to ‘fit in’ when at school. Yet at the same time, they truly want to be different and be able to stand apart from the crowd. At ISB, we work intentionally to provide opportunities for students to ‘belong’ and also to stand out and to be confident in celebrating their differences. Our advisory, athletic, and activities programs support and encourage students to belong to a team, alongside students with similar interests. At the same time, the wide diversity of opportunities presented to our students encourages them to shine as they discover and develop an interest, passion, or skill.”
As we share highlights of our students, we know their passion and drive are born from many places, with many influences and we are able to to create a setting where these passions can be nurtured and our students thrive. We are incredibly proud of our students at ISB and we are grateful for the ongoing partnership with their parents and families. Together we create a community of caring, support and excellence.