In this show we go absolutely educational investigating the International Baccalaureate or IB as it’s known for short and how blogging can foster intercultural understanding.
What sort of people take this course I wondered, how does it differ from what they would be doing if they had just followed the normal schooling in their country? Does the international classroom have any advantages or disadvantages either at the time or later when the IB graduates move on to the next stage in their career? I talked with two groups of students doing the IB at Grenaa Gymnasium.
One of our listeners, Trevor King, in France put me right on a few IB-related points. He wrote: “The IBO don’t only offer it in English; it’s possible to do the course based in French, Spanish and Chinese as well. You are entering the politics of education and the world of ‘international education’ is a hot one; there are no schools in Europe doing the IB in French. There are a few I know of in Quebec do that.”
Thank you Trevor and if you want to put us right or add to something we said then please add a comment to our blog at http://www.absolutely-intercultural.com/ or send us an audio comment to firstname.lastname@example.org
One thing I learned about the IB from Wikipedia was that about half the IB courses in the world are offered in the state system of schooling, as it is for example in Grenaa, which means that it is not necessarily a rich person’s education.
So what can you do if you don’t live near a school offering the IB or if your students can’t afford to go on long exchanges abroad? Teachers such as Brazilian, Carla Arena, use the communication possibilities of the internet to help her students get in touch with other cultures. But how much can you learn just by adding comments to a blog? See the blog to find out.
Absolutely Educational Part 2
To find out how much the IB courses have in common I spoke with Zoe Sessums who is doing her IB diploma at Eastside school in Gainsville, Florida in the United States. Here in an English speaking country the international aspect is not so much to the fore.
In the end I had the impression that the IB courses did not make the best use of the possibilities offered by having a worldwide network.
The next show will be coming to you from Remagen in Germany on November 2nd. So stay tuned!
The Host of this show is: Anne Fox