The long-planned Shanghai DTD Academy has officially set sail, designing a new edition for the K-12 education business. What is the educational philosophy of Shanghai DTD Academy? What are the features of the curriculum? What are the advantages of the faculty and the international resources? On this issue, it’s our honor to invite the editor, Cheng Min, Executive Principal of Shanghai DTD Academy, to talk about her education ideal and introduce the relevant information of the school.
Principal Cheng has got master degree of English language and literature from Fudan University. She was once responsible for the International Curriculum (IB) center at the High School Affiliated to Shanghai Jiao Tong University. She has nearly 20 years of teaching management experience in international schools. "I've always believed thatgrowth is more important than success. One's life is long, learning and education should be a lifelong thing, and will not end in high school or college.I hope that children become determined lifelong learners and happy learners with interest and a spirit of exploration, so that they can keep growing," said President Cheng.
Educational philosophy and curriculum:
How to combine the advantages of education in China and western countries?
“For a family, children are their future. We hope every child can realize their dreams and achieve their values." "We often ask children what they want to be," says the President Cheng. "I remember when I was a child, I wanted to be a scientist, a policeman, and so on. Eventually, I became neither a scientist nor a policeman. Education is not a guarantee that you will pursue a certain career.Education aims to let students live the life they want in the future and become the person they want to be. As Ruediger said, ‘education makes people become people’, which is the origin of the education philosophy.
Guided by such educational philosophy and from the perspective of education management and teaching management, Shanghai DTD Academy pays great attention to the combination of advantages of education in China and the West. When talking about education in China and the West, many people tend to think of the differences between them. In the eyes of President Cheng, as Confucius said, "No friend is better than one's own." There are many places for Chinese and western education to communicate with each other.
Shanghai DTD Academy has adopted the active learning method from western education, and adjusted it according to the actual situation of Chinese students. "From the perspective of curriculum setting, we adhere to two principles: the first isthe principle of cultivating and respecting individuality. The compulsory courses in the curriculum can guarantee students to have comprehensive and basic accumulation in liberal arts and science, while the optional courses are selected by students according to their personal interests. The second isthe core curriculum principle, which aims to cultivate talents needed by society in the future. For example, our pathfinder course is designed to train students' spirit of exploration, which matches with the "E" (exploration) in our school philosophy,” Cheng said.
The pathfinder course is a research-based course in which students are required to complete their own academic research reports during the study period. This academic research report can be very academic in a certain field, or it can also be general in some popular topics. In any case, they need to investigate, analyze, search for materials, and finish this report by themselves. "It's a required course," Cheng stressed. "Students can find a starting point in a field they are interested in and then explore it. And so forth."
If the method of bringing the introduction of research courses into the classroom can be understood by most people, it is beyond many people's expectation to set the art in the traditional concept and the auxiliary subjects of the core curriculum, such as music class. However, Cheng has her own calculations: "The national education academy of sciences survey of more than 50,000 undergraduate students shows that people who graduated more than 15 years ago believe that art is the most important thing they learn. In our core curriculum, art and music are compulsory for all students, but it is not an exam type course, but a course to cultivate students' art appreciation and self-cultivation. Of course, if a student really wants to go in the direction of art or music, he or she can choose another exam or music subject. "Everything that gives a child the enjoyment of beauty, the joy of beauty, and the satisfaction of beauty: They all have a peculiar education power," Suhomlinsky said. Cheng hopes that our education will also enable our children to enjoy beauty happily.
Faculty: How does the senior academic team at home and abroad provide operational advice?
For teachers, Cheng has extraordinary high standards and strict requirements. "I checked the interview records, and the ratio was about 5:1. Teachers are a huge asset to a school, so we spend a lot of time and energy doing this."
There are several aspects for new teachers.Firstly, one should have the ability to meet our requirementsno matter his or her professional background or teaching level.Second, they should have a sense of responsibility. Education is a career requiring the sense of responsibility. No matter how good his or her background is, he is not qualified.Third, we should have a consistent idea.Only when the idea is consistent can we build the same path together. These teachers, who were offered in the interview round, will lead the students of Shanghai DTD Academy to explore the ideal life:
Besides the high-quality faculty, Shanghai DTD Academy is equipped with a school administrative management, which has 10 years’ experience in international teaching. The members are all leaders in their chosen fields in both academic and career planning.
In terms of school resources, based on the high-quality resources of Vanke, Shanghai DTD Academy has established good cooperative relations with many domestic and foreign universities and educational institutions. "We have foreign schooling resources, such as the summer camp at Caltech, and the students are very excited. Sharing business cases with the world's top Columbia business school professors, for example, helps students set their own goals and try many different things. In addition, we also have close communication with some international examination bureaus such as the CAIE Cambridge University Examination Board and the Oxford AQA Examination Board, which can provide students with relevant study information. These are very good resources." Cheng said.
We have a strong and expert education team and a curriculum system that gives consideration to the cultivation of and respect to the personality of the whole person. We aim to improve leadership through activities with focus of infusion technology in the learning and campus. Shanghai DTD Academy has opened the consultation channels. Details are as follows: