Bringing Technology to Life
Children live and grow up in an environment where technology is ever-present. Which is why we embed it in every aspect of their education.
By exploring and learning with technology, our students find out more about the world and how to express themselves in it, while also developing web literacy.
Equipped to learn
Throughout the school, we have created an environment where technology enriches and transforms the learning experience. GWA Switzerland is a BYOD school, and has been form some time. The school is in the process of streamlining its device usage, and will use Mac laptops instead of PCs for the teaching and learning programme. Beginning in August 2018, the school will provide 1:1 iPads for primary students to use while they are at school. These iPads will not travel between home and school, but will remain in the classrooms. Depending on the age of your child, he/she may be asked to do some home learning which may require access to the Internet. We ask that students are able to use a family device, should they be asked to do so.
As of August 2018, we also ask that students new to secondary, or those replacing an existing laptop, bring a Mac laptop which can run the latest operating system. Current students will be permitted to continue with existing PC laptops until they need replacing.
Each classroom is equipped with an interactive screen and video-conferencing facilities, and students have access to both 2D and 3D printing tools. Our state-of-the-art TV and recording studios are managed by a dedicated support team and allow students to create audio and visual records of their projects. As well as honing their technical skills, children simultaneously develop their confidence and presentation skills.
Similarly, in our food technology lab, budding chefs develop their culinary creativity while learning to research recipes, and source and cost ingredients. Their food creations are often packaged, marketed and sold to raise money for charity, bringing the product design cycle full-circle.
Technology as a learning tool
Each student from Pre-K to Grade 5 uses Seesaw, a digital portfolio tool, to document and share their learning across the curriculum with their parents. This reflection continues in the middle school, where blogging is an essential component of both Design and Art portfolio development. At the end of their schooling, students leave with their own digital portfolio.
These technology-rich experiences mean students are exposed to a variety of coding languages and environments, providing a meaningful context to engage with the Maker Movement, also known as STEM or STEAM education. More importantly, the experiences strengthen their problem-solving skills and critical thinking, allowing each student to develop a conceptual understanding of computing.
Our approach to technology is supported by a rich programme of extra-curricular activities, and by events such as Hour of Code. In Grade 6 to 8, students participate in Genius Hour, which involves pursuing a technology-related project of their choice, known as a Passion Project.
Ultimately, technology at GEMS World Academy Switzerland is about helping children to develop their creativity, inventiveness and personal skills. This means your child will leave GWAS with a high level of technological, media and web literacy, together with the enquiring, inquisitive and evidence-based skills needed to solve problems and make well-informed decisions.
Our World Language Learning Centre (WLLC) teaches over 11 languages to children and adults. It is open to the public as well as our families, with Wednesday English language classes being especially popular with francophone students in the community.