The Grammar School is a member of the Microsoft IT Imagine Academy which provides students and teachers with the future-ready technology skills they need to be successful. The progress of students and teachers is monitored and certificates are issued.
The Grammar School Nicosia uses innovative technologies and teaching methods to enable our students to unlock their potential and achieve personal, social, cultural and academic growth. The School provides 21st century, personalised learning for its students beyond the school walls and expands its pedagogical opportunities.
IT Imagine Academy
Microsoft Showcase School & Microsoft Innovative Educators
The Grammar School invests heavily in the professional development of its teachers. All Grammar School teachers have acquired technological skills through various workshops, webinars, and self-development training sessions, both for personal development and for career advancement in order to improve their instructional practices. Teachers have received training on the use of Microsoft technologies, iPad Apps, taken courses and received certifications from the Microsoft IT Academy.
In addition, teachers have access to interactive webinars online and training courses from the Microsoft Educator Community. All teachers completed fundamental teaching courses such as the Teaching with Technology 2016 learning path, an online self-paced learning path that helps educators integrate technology into their practice. This course is aligned with the UNESCO ICT Competency Framework for Teachers. It helps educators understand how technology can enhance the teaching and learning experience.
iPads in the classroom
iPads are a powerful tool for students in the classroom. Using iPads gives students a better opportunity to share, connect and seek out information. Such devices are an avenue for learning and discovering, enhancing the students’ ability to think critically and to question. Students gain access to a plethora of information. While today’s students have access to more information than any generation, their ability to filter is much more challenging. As in a conventional classroom, there will be times when students will work independently and times when they will work collaboratively. Observations made by teachers around the world including our own, show that collaboration, peer teaching and student engagement in co-operative tasks is enhanced by the use of iPads in the classroom.
Learning Management System
Our School’s Learning Management System is our school’s intranet, a virtual workplace that provides tools enabling students, teachers and staff to collaborate in one convenient, centralised location.
Students are provided with an email address, a personal and school calendar, their own private location to store their school files and folders online in the Cloud Office (One Drive), rather than locally on a PC, thus enhancing their day to day communication by keeping track of homework assignments, class notes and activities.
Our school intranet is accessible anywhere, anytime, from any device, including laptops, tablets or smart phones. It is a new method of incorporating innovative technologies and social interaction into education.
STEM: Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics
STEM education is a relatively new mode of thinking about how best to educate and prepare students to become creative problem solvers and effective communicators.
The Grammar School is the first school in Cyprus to incorporate STEM into its curriculum. Students who attend STEM programmes are given a significant advantage in their admission to universities worldwide. Students wishing to participate in this program are selected based on their academic performance.
STEM education removes the traditional barriers between the four disciplines (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), by integrating the four subjects into one cohesive stream of teaching and learning. The engineering component puts emphasis on the process and design of solutions instead of the solutions themselves. This approach allows students to develop critical thinking skills that can be applied to all facets of their work and academic lives. The technology component allows for a deeper understanding of the three other parts of STEM education. It allows students to apply what they have learned, utilizing computers with specialized and professional applications in order to explore STEM subjects in greater detail and in a practical manner.
Projects are focused on SDG’s (The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals), which expand and enrich learning as students participate in international projects. Students improve public speaking skills and become more fluent in using Microsoft technologies (Teams, OneNote, Sway, and so on). There are also numerous opportunities to participate in national and global competitions as well.
STEM lessons take place twice a week for 2 double periods during reinforcement lessons (Maths, Science, Greek, English) and STEM students are evaluated by having lesson specific assignments.
Class 1 students who are interested in maths, science and emerging technologies and have a passion for STEM related study can apply to enter the 3-year STEM Programme. Students must have a high average in Science and Mathematics and advanced performance on a Computational Thinking Test which is carried out in September.
Girls in STEM
Female STEM students joined the Tech Careers for GIRLS event with the aim of inspiring and empowering young girls to achieve more in Technology on the occasion of International Women’s Day. Also female STEM students attended the Inspirational & Entrepreneurship Workshop organized by the European Institute of Innovation & Technology.
Robotics involves multi-disciplinary learning which includes Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). Robotics helps students develop 21st century learning skills, such as critical thinking and problem solving. Furthermore, it stimulates motivation and self-esteem consequently preparing students for the future, providing students with the skills to become effective decision-makers and problem solvers.
The Grammar School Robotics Academy’s objective is to develop a curriculum that emphasises active problem-solving with intelligent technology, where students are able to create and design with the use of technology. Students learn the concept and knowledge of robotics and engineering by building and programming robots.
The Grammar School takes part in numerous projects each year, offering students opportunities to develop their skills, become aware of global and social issues and become involved in projects that will benefit them lives both academically and socially. The following are some of the projects the School is currently involved in.
The EUCiTec Project
The EUCiTec Project is a three-year Erasmus+ project based at the University of Hull and is supported by researchers and classroom-based partners from across the EU. The aim of the project is to create educational practices and resources to allow young people to explore, develop and practice citizenship in safe environments, representing real-world contexts and issues of direct relevance to them, their lives and their growth as European citizens. This is enabled through the use of new and emerging digital technologies, including virtual reality, which are popular with and attractive to young people and by creating associated resources and training for educators in schools, colleges and universities.
GIGS ‘Girls Into Global STEM’ Project
The GIGS, ‘Girls Into Global STEM’ Project aims to create materials and establish new methodologies that schools across Europe and the world can use in STEM subjects. The project is also focused on a number of global issues and ways in which STEM based skills can be used to help lift people out of poverty.
Soci@lls Whole School Social Labs
Soci@lls Whole School Social Labs focuses on innovative and participatory approaches for citizenship education and social inclusion ambition. It generates a paradigmatic change in the way schools and communities cooperate to foster social inclusion and promote participatory and empowering tools through school social labs. The project is supported by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union in order to support Social Inclusion through Education, Training and Youth.
GAME-IN Game to Embrace Intercultural Education
The Grammar School Nicosia is partnering in the GEM IN project. The purpose of the project “Game to EMbrace INtercultural Education” – GEM IN, supports intercultural education at school and in non-formal youth environments as a vehicle to fostering social inclusion, cross-cultural dialogue and active citizenship by promoting European values. At the same time, the project intends to provide input and policy recommendations for intervention strategies to promote intercultural education and active citizenship, through an innovative educational framework. GEM IN aims to disseminate and scale up a selection of good practices developed within a previous project titled GEM in schools, non-formal and youth educational environments, promoting intercultural education as a key lever to enhancing the acquisition of social and civic competences and to promote the ownership of shared values.
BEBRAS (Computational Thinking, Computer Science) Competition
BEBRAS is a Microsoft Student Ambassador Programme open to students of Classes 6-7. It is a great opportunity to be part of an initiative that celebrates student leadership and collaboration with other students around the world. The group works on student-led projects, receives access to exclusive Microsoft products, professionals and opportunities. Students work with MIExperts within the School along with Microsoft to lead innovation in education.