Describe, for you, ONE ‘professional’ highlight of the visit.
Meeting school leaders from a very different context
Building professional learning communities with schools – both in Edinburgh and in Hong Kong.
Discussing the differences in the governance of our schools.
Meeting staff from so many different schools both in HK and in Edinburgh to share ideas to promote a common goal.
High level exchange on professional and educational matters.
Opportunity to compare and contrast professional practices in quite different contexts.
Describe, for you, ONE ‘cultural’ highlight of the visit.
The opportunity for my pupils to meet people from Hong Kong and to hear firsthand what school is like there.
Learning so much about the commonalities and similarities between Hong Kong and Scotland.
Meeting the range of people who were linking with China in one way or another.
They all had something great to say, to share and to offer.
Presenting of interesting gifts
Deeper understanding (for a Scot) of the developing culture and society of the new Hong Kong within the new PRC.
Learning more about and sharing Performing Arts. Lancy’s ‘Be happy’ attitude to life is inspiring!
Is there any ONE aspect which you would consider importing to Scotland from Hong Kong?
Learning and Teaching approaches to Maths and numeracy;
Having a better school/life balance for the HK pupils. The HK system and culture is very demanding on pupils with long school days and a lack of ‘down time’.
Primary Maths being taught by specialist Maths teachers rather than general Primary teachers.
If HK youngsters can study 3 languages (at least) , so can young Scots.
Approaches to teaching mathematics in Primary schools.
Is there any ONE aspect which you would consider exporting to Hong Kong from Scotland?
I am happy to continue informal contact with our primary school as and when we can.
I’m happy to export anything that would be considered valuable by our colleagues in Hong Kong!
Our focus on and approach to pupil Health & Well-Being.
Willing to share and happy for our HK partners to select what they might find useful.
Not so much an export – more a two way process – greater quantity of high quality exchanges of teachers, other educational professionals and students (schools, H&FE).
I’m happy to hear from HK partners and will be guided by them on what they would like u to contribute to the partnership.
Sum up in a paragraph the ‘essence’ of the exchange visit to you – sums it up for you and the impact.
Essence -was how important leadership at all levels is in school improvement. The similarities and differences exercise was interesting and promoted reflection on how much our ‘values’ underpin our vision for our schools and pupils.
The essence of the visit was about building new relationships and partnerships to promote international exchanges and collaborative learning, and to improve outcomes for all of our learners with the sharing of ideas and best practice. There are many potential gains from the partnership and I am excited about building on the opportunities created. There is a great potential to improve our individual and collective leadership and foster international mindsets and aspirations in our pupils and staff.
It has allowed a sharing of ideas and a meeting of minds. The HK delegates met confident, well balanced young people here in Scotland. Our young people were so interested to hear from the HK teacher and Principal and hoe the schools in HK differ.
Ultimately all of this MUST impact on the young people of Scotland and HK.
Sharing ideas and bringing an International dimension to our thinking broadens the mind and opens up opportunities for future creative thinking to enhance education in its broadest sense. Some of our pupils and staff had already visited our link school (TTCA) in HK so the impact was heightened for us by being able to contextualise the experience and imagine taking things forward relatively easily. We have now had the further experience of our first joint etwinning project which we designed together on the last day of the HK visit at Abden House. EA pupils prepared a presentation on the Autumn Moon Festival in Chinese and TTCA pupils prepared a presentation on Burns’ Night celebrations in English. These were delivered classroom to classroom across Skype at 9am UK time (4pm HK time) on Friday 3rd June. Following the presentations each group asked questions in the opposing languages and then one of the EA students performed a Rap and the TTCA students performed a Chinese song to add extra fun to the general experience. All enjoyed it and we hope to have more etwinning projects in future in between exchange visits which are a hopeful next step.
The visit this Spring means embarking on professional, educational – and personal – relationships which will bear fruit in developing pupil/student learning and professional development in schools across Hong Kong and Scotland. Other schools should be involved through time. Above all, the next phase should involve thinking and agreeing on sustainability and continuity for this new and exciting work.
This exchange programme allows me to more effectively look outwards and further and to, more richly, critically evaluate how we are doing against an enhanced and extended set of performance indicators. Our partnership will facilitate us working collaboratively with like minded, professional and enthusiastic educators from different contexts. Working together will enable us to critically review our practices and make adjustments after appropriate adaptation.