In late August, a group of SCH Middle School students participated in a Zoom call with teachers and administrative leaders from Arcadia School in Dubai, which has recently adopted SCH’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL) curriculum.
CEL’s executive director Ed Glassman invited the students to reflect on their experiences in the three Middle School CEL courses—Influential Presentation, Robotics, and Coding—sharing what they liked best, how CEL is different from other classes, and what advice they’d give Arcadia’s CEL students and teachers.
The students said they especially appreciated the freedom and real-world problem solving opportunities offered in their CEL classes, how they were able to use their creativity and think out of the box, be exposed to different ideas and approaches, and interaction more with classmates and teachers. “You have to figure things out for yourself,” said one student; “You learn by doing,” offered another.
When asked what advice they’d give Arcadia students taking CEL classes, the students offered, “Don’t be afraid to fail and explore,” “Persevere through your frustrations,” and “Pay attention to the coding; that’s the hardest part.”
To the teachers, they recommended being open to students’ opinions that may be different from their own, having enough challenges to keep students engaged, and being tolerant of students’ more relaxed behavior because CEL classes are like a game and students are having fun.
At the end of the call, Giles Pruett, Arcadia’s executive principal, expressed hopes that students from the two schools might soon be able to collaborate on projects and that SCH students can be mentors to the students at his school. Then he posed a question to them: What has being part of CEL given you?
The students were unanimous on this point: “Life skills,” said one. “It’s taught me to be more resilient,” said another. “I’ll most likely use what I learned in CEL,” said a third. “It’s real-life learning.”
Following the call, Arcadia's Head of Middle School Paul Fisher thanked our students for their time, saying: "They were all really awesome at expressing themselves and it is so clear that they really enjoy the program. A fantastic group of young adults. Their answers were the answers you dream of as a teacher so that is a great reflection on you and your team."
Photo Caption: Middle School students participating in the Zoom call with Arcadia: (top row) Naomi Becker, Alex Kim, Zaire Reid; (middle row) Addie Hayne, Aaron Jia, Aurie Brown; (bottom row) Nicholas Donato, Magnolia Lurie.