Earlier this year, we welcomed new teachers to Halcyon’s vibrant learning community. Each new member of our team has brought an array of knowledge into their roles - often informed by a variety of experiences in international educational settings. One of our newest teachers, Ms Sandra Rautavuori, has experienced the International Baccalaureate as a student herself. We sat down with Sandra to hear some exclusive insights into the benefits of IB, from the perspective of both teaching and learning!
What did you like about the IB as a student?
What I loved about the IB is that it provided me with plenty of skills that helped me through life - self-management, time management, and organisation skills in particular. I also see this reflected at Halcyon, especially in how students use their digital devices to organise their work. Being able to cope with academic pressure really prepared me for university. I think that my university studies were much easier because I completed the IB Diploma Programme.
What do you value most about the IB as a teacher?
The Middle Years Programme is a great approach to learning - it offers us the opportunity to put a lot of variety into the curriculum, which means that students can try different things and gain confidence by challenging themselves while enjoying creative, project-based tasks with teachers’ support.
The dance unit in Physical and Health Education that I’m currently teaching is my favourite Halcyon experience so far. Of course, the students were hesitant to try out new dances such as Afrobeats and Bollywood that they were previously unfamiliar with, but it’s been wonderful to see them becoming really engaged as their confidence has grown and developed.
Why did you want to become a teacher?
I did a PGCE partly because the IB has really shaped who I am now: for me, it’s highlighted the impact that a good education can have on an individual, and I’d like to be a part of that. Before I finished my PGCE, I had placements at several schools in London. Now I’m at Halcyon, and I’m really enjoying my time here so far!
What do you like about Halcyon?
I love Halcyon - I’ve not been anywhere like this. There’s a very nice environment and I’d say that it’s a great community to be in. I feel really supported. It feels very much like ‘everyone knows everyone’, so it’s a very friendly place to be.