• Sweden edition
 
SPONSORED ARTICLE
International school opens children’s eyes

International school opens children’s eyes

Published: 20 Jun 2012 15:07 GMT+02:00
Updated: 20 Jun 2012 15:07 GMT+02:00

Studying at Stockholm's oldest international school gives children not only a rigorous academic education, but also a unique understanding of other cultures.

"If adults could treat each other as the students do, we would have no more wars," says Rune Svaninger, Director of Stockholm International School.

As I arrived at the attractive school building in central Stockholm, the children were just coming in from their morning break. Laughing and playing as they ran up the stairs, kids of every ethnicity were milling about on their way back to their classrooms.

Stockholm International School educates 550 students from over 50 different countries. From the United States to Uzbekistan, from Sweden to Singapore.

"We usually say that this is like a miniature United Nations," says Rune Svaninger, now in his third year as the school's Director.

He describes one of the school's most cherished traditions. Every year on October 24, Stockholm International School celebrates UN Day (see video below). All the students, some in national costume, line up by nationality, and waving their respective flags set off on a colourful parade around the park just across the street.

"It's just a fantastic event," he says.

Stockholm International School receives children between the ages of three and 19. From its humble beginnings as a small kindergarten class, over half a century ago, to today's internationally accredited school.

This term sees the school celebrating its 60th anniversary, making it the oldest International school in Scandinavia.

The school, a non-profit foundation, is an authorised member of the most popular international programmes, from the lower grades' International Primary Curriculum (IPC) to the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme, all the way through the challenging IB Diploma Programme for high school students.

Becoming a member school of these programmes is tough to say the least, as the rigorous authorisation process demands its fair share of both work and resources. The reward is an unbeatable seal of quality.

"We send all our teachers on workshops at least every third year," explains Svaninger.

Following these programmes also means that Stockholm International School can offer students a high level of consistency in their learning.

"Students can finish here on a Friday, and start in New Delhi, Cape Town, Seattle or Buenos Aires on the Monday, in the same programme," explains Rune Svaninger.

He emphasizes that Stockholm International School is unique among Stockholm schools, as the only truly international school. Although there are some other schools that offer tuition in English, these either follow the Swedish curriculum or do not cater for students for the whole of their school careers.

"I think one of our biggest strengths is that we just follow the international programmes. We have nothing to do with the Swedish curriculum."

Although Stockholm International School's student numbers are at an all-time high, with just 550 students the school continues to be fairly small.

"Students can't hide, and students can't not be seen. They get the attention they need," explains the Secondary School Principal Kevin Munro. He believes a better learning environment is created through the small school size and, not least, the uniquely small class sizes.

At Stockholm International School, classes are never larger than 20 pupils, and often much smaller. This allows the qualified and international teaching staff to give their students that extra bit of attention that makes all the difference.

Going the extra mile can be done in any number of ways. At Stockholm International School, it means students are taken on school trips to discover and learn more about Sweden, from grade six and up. It also means offering students after-school activities that range from orchestra to swimming practice with English instruction, and having one of Stockholm's best learning support departments, with particular emphasis placed on teaching English as an additional language.

The majority of Stockholm International School's students come from diplomatic families, or have parents that have taken jobs in the Stockholm offices of major corporations. With such highly mobile students, often recently arrived in the country, much of the school's work goes beyond the academic, and looks to make sure entire families feel integrated in the community as quickly as possible.

“The staff at school work with students both academically and socially. Transitioning to a new school in a new country comes with some difficulties. We know about these issues and work together with parents to help students settle in” says Kevin Munro.

He believes that the uniquely global environment offered by Stockholm International School is an asset for both children's learning experience and for understanding different cultures.

"It definitely adds a wider perspective for kids to draw experiences from. I think it does give them a richness of understanding, not only of themselves and their culture, but of other cultures."

Article sponsored by Stockholm International School

Related links:

Don't miss...X
Left Right
Today's headlines
Florida 'mystery knight' dies in Sweden
Michael Boatwright (R) and Medieval knight re-enactors.

Florida 'mystery knight' dies in Sweden

The "motel mystery" American who baffled US authorities by only speaking Swedish when he woke up from a coma last year has passed away, Swedish media reported on Wednesday. READ () »

Swedes open coffin of 850-year-old king
Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

Swedes open coffin of 850-year-old king

UPDATED: Scientists pried open the 850-year-old casket of King Erik the Holy on Wednesday, hoping to find out more about the king, his crown, and his eating habits. READ () »

TeliaSonera announces first-quarter profit drop
TeliaSonera CEO Johan Dennelind. File photo: TT

TeliaSonera announces first-quarter profit drop

Stockholm-listed telecom operator TeliaSonera on Wednesday said profits had fallen in the first quarter, but hoped offering customers more data solutions in the future would turn things around. READ () »

'Imperfect EU better than revolting nationalism'
Fredrik Reinfeldt. File photo: TT

'Imperfect EU better than revolting nationalism'

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt on Wednesday urged young voters to head to the European parliamentary polls on May 25th "to cure the European disease of nationalism". READ () »

Ericsson quarterly profit defies sluggish sales
Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg at the first quarter press conference. Photo: TT

Ericsson quarterly profit defies sluggish sales

Swedish telecom giant Ericsson on Wednesday announced a drop in sales but posted a sharp rise in first-quarter profit, which nonetheless fell shy of analyst predictions. READ () »

Fatal Norrköping brawl
Four brothers held as cops fear brawl reprisals
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Four brothers held as cops fear brawl reprisals

Swedish police fear that several people involved in a brawl in eastern Sweden on Monday night may be seeking revenge after two brothers were shot dead. READ () »

Sponsored Article
Beautiful pearls of southeast Sweden
The town of Västervik.

Beautiful pearls of southeast Sweden

Ask a Swede, and they are likely to say that their favourite holiday spot is in the southeast of Sweden. Eastern Småland and Öland offer a smörgåsbord of all the things dearest to the Swedes - from the beloved children's book author Astrid Lindgren to deep forests, long sandy beaches, perfect spots for that all-important 'fika', and a surprising amount of space, peace and quiet. READ () »

Weekend weather to bring summer warmth
Swedes enjoy hot dogs and cherry blossoms in Stockholm's Kungsträdgården. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Weekend weather to bring summer warmth

The sun is set to stick around and temperatures could climb into the twenties over the weekend, Swedish meteorologists said on Wednesday READ () »

'Day-care rapist' admits molesting eight kids

'Day-care rapist' admits molesting eight kids

A 21-year-old man confessed on Wednesday to sex crimes against eight children at a day care where he was working as an intern. READ () »

Swedish cops nab man for having big muscles
An unrelated bodybuilder. File photo: Ann Törnkvist

Swedish cops nab man for having big muscles

Police in Sweden's south who hauled a muscular man in for steroid testing have had their knuckles rapped, after it was ruled that big biceps cannot be grounds for narcotics suspicions. READ () »

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
TT
Gallery
Inside the 850-year-old king's coffin
Features
Sponsored: South-eastern Sweden offers Öland beaches and more
Gallery
Swedish underwear shop puts staff in front of the camera
Gallery
IN PICTURES: The Local's Property of the Week - Täby
Sponsored: India+Sweden Week - India Unlimited
Features
Sponsored: India+Sweden Week - A film, food, and finance feast
National
University applications rocket to record high
finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 18-20
TT
Society
Kids in Victorian garb mark Swedish Easter
Shutterstock
National
Swedish MP ordered chemtrail probe
Society
Swedish supermarket Ica pulls contested Easter commercial off air
Kungahuset
Society
Swedish royals set baptism date for princess
finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 16
Advertisement:
Politics
Who's the prime minister's heir?
Alfie Atkins
Society
Are children's books the key to families integrating in Sweden?
National
'Sweden Dem protests cater to party's martyr image'
National
'Swedish research grants were fantastic, but now it's like Australia'
Society
Only in Sweden: The ten problems you'd never encounter elsewhere
National
Swedes stopped to take my picture, but didn't look me in the eyes
Business & Money
A swipe of the hand replaced cash and cards in Lund
YouTube
Features
Video: Oliver Gee finds out how to embrace The Swedish Hug
TT
National
Abba duo hints at reunion
Private
National
Flash mobs hug it out across Sweden
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 11-13
Stockholm School of Economics
Sponsored Article
Why a bachelor's degree is no longer enough
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Blog Update: The Diplomatic Dispatch

28 October 15:16

The Green Growth Group Summit »

"Today on the 28 October in Brussels, a large group of key EU Ministers and business people, including UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey, and Swedish Environment Minister Lena Ek, will meet to discuss green growth. They all have a stake in resolving a challenge which, although it is crucial..." READ »

718
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com