LWIS Istanbul International School: Crafting Transformation Through Quality Education
LWIS Istanbul International School

The inception of Learner’s World International School (LWIS) Istanbul finds its roots in the commitment of the LWIS Network founders. Driven by a passion to extend the proven standards of accredited education already successfully delivered in Dubai, Riyadh, and Beirut, the decision was made to expand to the vibrant city of Istanbul. The school’s current location lies in Beylikduzu, a burgeoning area experiencing rapid growth strategically positioned to accommodate the increasing influx of expatriates into Istanbul.

Under the efficient leadership of Nora Hamzeh, Head of School, the school has achieved unparalleled educational excellence. The school’s mission is to develop curious minds and compassionate learners from various cultural backgrounds who make a difference in their local and global environments. The school’s persistent commitment to diversity creates an atmosphere that unapologetically welcomes and supports each student as they pursue their academic goals. As its slogan says, “We measure success, one happy learner at a time.”

Unique Approaches to Education

LWIS Istanbul believes in imparting advanced learning and teaching methodologies. Its primary approach revolves around inquiry-based learning, empowering students to engage in the learning process actively. Encouraging learners to create personal projects and to cultivate innovation while seamlessly integrating science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM), and the arts (STEAM). This approach helps to sharpen problem-solving abilities and encourage multidisciplinary learning.

The initial years of programs at the school are influenced by the Reggio Emilia model, which promotes student engagement and linkages to the natural world and real-world situations. By purposefully utilizing outdoor areas that stimulate inquiry and curiosity while promoting global awareness, this school is dedicated to enhancing the learning experience beyond the classroom.

Its curriculum prioritizes robotics, the arts, and design, as well as subject-specific material like courses on design and marketing. Technology is incorporated into these subjects easily. The school pays special attention to each student’s needs through customized learning approaches, so it focuses on developing their growth areas and simultaneously pushing their strengths. LWIS Istanbul’s comprehensive approach seeks to establish a learning environment where students flourish and acquire a wide range of skills to navigate a constantly changing world successfully.

Hello to a Tech-Equipped World

LWIS Istanbul is leading the way in employing technology to improve education in various forms. Integrating interactive intelligent boards into classrooms has allowed teachers to incorporate multimedia elements like interactive games, videos, and simulations into their lessons. It also offers dynamic and engaging ways to present information. The displays around the school promote student engagement and communication, creating a more team-oriented learning environment.

Furthermore, these displays accommodate different types of learners, transferring complex learning, improving students’ problem-solving skills, and expanding their agency. The school uses AI Tools across all grade levels, like Epic for Language Arts and SplashLearn for Math, to enable interactive experiences. It also provides online resources to support a variety of subjects. Students use tablets for projects and research, which encourages innovation and productivity.

Robotics classes at the school start as early as Grade 1, promoting critical skills in technology and innovation to prepare students for the future. Furthermore, Microsoft Teams platforms and video conferencing tools are used to ensure continuous learning. This platform was also used through distance education during trying times like the COVID-19 pandemic and even during unanticipated events like earthquakes. Because of the school’s adaptability, it could maintain an intense learning atmosphere and minimize disruptions to the student’s education during these times.

An Inspiring Tale

The notable journey of one of LWIS’s students, Agata, is genuinely inspiring, demonstrating her growth from limited English proficiency to becoming a confident communicator and an advocate for sustainability. Initially arriving with minimal English skills and barely being able to present herself, she worked diligently to develop her communication abilities. Her dedication paid off when she confidently gave her artwork at a learning exhibition, emphasizing the significance of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and encouraging action for education.

The integration of technology at the school played a pivotal role in Agata’s progress. Leveraging online resources enabled her to engage with others, enhancing her communication and learning opportunities. Her growth didn’t stop there; she now serves as a courageous ambassador, warmly welcoming and supporting new primary students to the school community. Agata’s transformation exemplifies resilience, dedication, and the power of transcending barriers through utilizing technology as an educational tool.

Establishing Inclusivity and Diversity

The school is enriched by its students’ diverse backgrounds and rich cultural diversity. It makes meaningful learning experiences possible, enabling students to investigate their mother tongue, learn more about their cultural background, and develop a sincere respect for diversity.

Its extensive program, which includes service learning, UN sustainable goals, cultural events, and other initiatives, clearly demonstrates its dedication to international mindedness. This method fosters a sense of harmony and understanding among the students and improves their awareness of the world. Even LWIS’s admissions policy is inclusive in a responsible manner, enabling it to accept students with a range of needs into its programs.

Unique Ways to Enhance Skills

LWIS Istanbul offers varied extracurricular programs and clubs, with courses catering to student interests. The program provides a collage of options, ranging from exploring avenues in Gymnastics, Robotics, and Language systems to engaging in activities like Photography, Ceramics, Cooking, Culture Clubs, and Food Design. This diversity allows students to select extracurricular activities that align with their interests and passions, creating a vibrant and welcoming environment.

Handling the Challenges

The approach used at LWIS Istanbul goes beyond the constraints of traditional education to promote skills for the future. Monthly assemblies serve as lively platforms for students to share and celebrate their learning and skill growth through creative media. These gatherings foster teamwork in addition to helping students become better communicators as they actively participate in showcasing the projects they have been working so hard on.

The school effortlessly incorporates service learning and global awareness into its curricula. This allows students to engage with local and larger communities while taking apparent action in support of global causes. Personal projects with a solid ethical basis enhance one’s entrepreneurial abilities. This guarantees that students make wise decisions and are aware of the individual and societal repercussions of those decisions.

It recognizes the importance of building a love of learning in children. Its instructional strategies strongly emphasize providing students the independence they need to deal with the rapid pace of change. This includes knowing how to learn independently, adjusting to new knowledge, and continuing to learn new things throughout their lives.

The school’s curriculum is designed to develop lifelong learners. Giving students a thorough and engaging education aims to provide them with the flexibility and stamina required to succeed in a constantly changing world.

An Act of Kindness

In response to the earthquake in Turkey in February, LWIS Istanbul initiated a campaign to collaborate with NGOs, collecting essential food items and clothing for the survivors. The students took leadership, amplifying their voices and collaborating to network and send global messages, while others worked locally to transfer items to needed centre points—this compassionate effort aimed to provide immediate relief to those affected by the earthquake.

Additionally, the school hosts student-led drives every year to benefit neighbourhoods and local organizations. These programs actively support the improvement of the local community while also instilling in the students a sense of social responsibility.

A Step Towards Saving Mother Nature- International Mindedness

LWIS Istanbul believes that teaching sustainability isn’t a choice; it’s a responsibility to the planet and future generations. In the classroom, sustainability isn’t just a standalone subject; it’s infused across disciplines, from science and math to social studies and art. The school explores the interconnectedness of ecosystems, delves into the impact of human actions on the environment, and encourages innovative thinking to address real-world sustainability challenges.

The students are eco-champions in action! They don’t just learn about sustainability and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); they roll their sleeves up and dive into tangible projects that make a difference. From creating compost bins to reduce waste and rallying together to fundraise for tree planting initiatives, these young change-makers take concrete steps to protect the planet.

Moreover, their enthusiasm extends far beyond the school gates. The students are the driving force behind a wave of positive change, proving that small actions by passionate individuals can create significant ripples worldwide.

Collaborative Studies During the Pandemic

The educational landscape has been changing, and LWIS school has shown a proactive commitment to adapting, especially considering the recent global events. The COVID-19 pandemic is one of the most challenging times witnessed worldwide. The start of the pandemic led to an early realization that educational strategies needed to be adjusted. LWIS Istanbul’s hybrid learning plans were efficient and well-balanced to cater to the varied needs of the students by carefully incorporating technology into its teaching strategies. The importance of giving students’ and the community’s “wellness” top priority was highlighted by this evolution.

The school’s opening during the challenging COVID-19 pandemic years brought attention to the necessity of emergency preparedness in the learning process. When unanticipated local or global events arise, it can quickly transition to distance learning thanks to its well-established protocols.

Community engagement is the foundation of the school’s mission. The dynamic community of parents, educators, students, and professional staff collaborates on multiple projects. Parent committees and student councils are indispensable when organizing events that foster community and unity.

Professional growth marks who we are as a professional learning community that strives for growth. Teachers frequently participate in training programs to stay current on the newest approaches to teaching and learning. This practice ensures that the instruction will always be of the best quality and follow the most recent educational advancements.

The school has taken proactive steps to increase the resilience of its community members against global challenges. The school is steadfast in its commitment to ongoing adaptation, providing a top-notch education that meets the evolving needs of the community and the students.

Testing the Effectiveness

LWIS Istanbul gauges the success of its educational programs and initiatives by examining the profound impact the students exert on their immediate environment and observing their attitudes and skills manifesting beyond the academic realm.

The school’s professional community actively engages in an ongoing process of reflection, delving into the quality and efficacy of its learning practices. This includes an annual retreat for the leadership team, fostering a feedback loop that evaluates current practices and strategically plans for the future. Monitoring systems and surveys are meticulously designed to ensure inclusivity, capturing diverse voices in the planning process to guarantee the delivery of high-quality education.

Through cooperative walkthroughs, teacher and staff evaluation and feedback are carried out, leveraging teamwork to evaluate and improve instructional strategies. This collaborative approach strengthens its commitment to continuous improvement, fortifying its internal assessment mechanisms.

The impact of the school is carefully evaluated using various qualitative methods that go beyond conventional norm-referenced standardized practices. The comprehensive assessment enables educational institutions to grasp the true meaning of success, which goes beyond academic accomplishments and includes the students’ overall growth and the efficacy of the programs.

Future Aspirations

Currently, the primary school has successfully become an IB candidate school for the Primary Years Programme (PYP). The team is incredibly excited to participate in this enriching learning experience.

LWIS is an inspiration because it was founded to foster a culture of collaboration, learning, and support among professional community members by promoting solid bonds and trust. It puts the needs of students first and puts their development and education at the centre of all planning and decision-making.

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