Though not as popular as British-based international schools in Malaysia American-style international school education has a number of qualities that make them stand out from the rest:
5) Emphasis on Holistic Development
Both American culture and education appreciate the concept of Renaissance Men, individuals who are talented in multiple areas. There is greater emphasis on extracurricular activities such as sports, theatre and music in addition to academics. Also, it encourages more active participation in the community and society in general through volunteer work or community service
Thus, American-style education seeks to develop student’s physical, emotional, social as well intellectual development.
4) Opportunity for Exploration
The one thing Americans love first and foremost is freedom! This is reflected in their education system which gives students the unique ability to choose certain subjects they want to study, Hence, students in American-style education learn the value of independently charting their education and the responsibility that comes with it.
Additionally, there are a wide variety of subjects in American-based curriculum from sciences, mathematics to world languages and social sciences in addition to extra-curricular activities. Students are given ample opportunity to explore and find passions and interest that may translate into a life-long career.
3) Stronger Teacher-Student Relationships
British and Asian culture usually have student-teacher relationships that are more rigid and formal. However in American-style education, teachers still garner respect while also maintaining a more casual and friendlier relationship with students.
This leads to a warmer classroom environment, where open discussions and sharing of opinions is encouraged. Hence, there is greater classroom engagement and active learning. Teachers also serve as mentors to guide the development of students.
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2) Continuous Evaluation
What students and even parents hate the most about school is exams, exams, exams. American education still utilizes tests to evaluate progress in the form of quizzes, mid-terms and final exams, the SAT is also required for US college admissions.
However, students do not have to experience the immense pressure of a comprehensive singular final exam such as SPM or UPSR in the Malaysian education system or O-levels in the British education system. Instead they are consistently evaluated through a mixture of assignments, presentations, and group projects in addition to tests. Thus, students will experience less stress. They are given a larger opportunity to pace themselves and progress more dynamically throughout the semester.
1) Cultivating Creativity
America is arguably the most innovative country in the world with a majority of technological advancements and even beloved entertainment originating from there.
Hence, American-style education promotes students who think outside the box and break new ground. As stated open discussion and participation in extra-curricular activities is encouraged rather than stifled. Students are trained to apply critical thinking, take measured risks and fully utilizing their resources.
If you are interested in giving your child an exceptional American education, why not choose an international school with over 160 years experience in American education, check out Shattuck-St.Mary’s Forest City International School.