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Innovating by Necessity: Breathing Life into Virtual Learning

Malaysia’s MCO and subsequent CMCO have made long-term online access to lessons a necessity for school children to keep progressing in their learning as they should. But rather than placing burdens on teachers and learners alike, the ongoing challenges faced by schools have been embraced as opportunities for innovation.

Both government and international schools face the challenge of continuing to motivate children and deliver the curriculum through a virtual learning experience – something that many schools had never tried or tested before this MCO period in Malaysia. 

Many parents have felt anxious about the state of their children’s learning, especially parents of third-culture kids, who value the multicultural exposure and education a top-tier international school can provide. As these schools have closed their doors during the MCO, parents understandably wonder if their kids are getting the full breadth of diversity, education, and enrichment that their physical school provided. Fortunately, schools such as Nexus International School are not only well-placed for making this transition, given their tremendous investment in ICT and daily usage of technology in education, they’re truly innovating, finding new, exciting, and – in some ways – better ways of keeping their learners engaged and educated.

Nexus Year 4 learners make Social Distancing Hats during lessons

Innovating Learning for More than 10 Years 

Accredited as one of the first Apple Distinguished Schools in Malaysia, Nexus International School has pioneered innovative online learning approaches throughout its establishment of more than 10 years in Malaysia, so in a way, they were ready for this change.

The move towards delivering a fully online curriculum was undoubtedly challenging even for an international school of its stature, but the Nexus community has worked together and with regular communication between learners, teachers, parents and leaders has enabled Nexus to continue to improve its online delivery each day. 

Online Lessons that Come to Life

Driven by the Nexus Way, teachers continuously explore innovative teaching methodologies to keep learners engaged online. 

For example, the Nexus Year 4 learners recently went on a virtual school trip to the Great Barrier Reef as part of their International Primary Curriculum (IPC) topic, Explorers and Adventurers. 

The video below depicts how the teachers created a buzz around the virtual trip through a teaser video which eventually led to a wonderful, exciting learning experience for all. 

Nexus Year 4 virtual school trip to the Great Barrier Reef

During their ‘visit’ to the Great Barrier Reef, learners discovered how tourism could generate money for a community and weighed this with the potential impact that tourism can have on the environment.

Technologically savvy, Nexus teachers used Google Earth so that learners could take a look at their environment and YouTube 360 videos so that they could swim with dolphins, sharks, and turtles!

Online-based learning is in some ways a compromise, but in many other ways, it offers an entirely new spectrum of teaching and learning techniques that would not otherwise be practical or even possible in most international schools.

Fostering Collaborative Learning Online

The social aspect of online learning is an important one to consider in a child’s daily schedule. 

Nexus fosters small group sessions on Google Meet, which are facilitated by teachers and promote social interaction and collaboration among the Primary learners. Collaborative research activities and regular, pastoral meetings with tutors are organised for Secondary learners. Teachers also often use shared “live” whiteboards that require learners to collaborate on an idea together. 

Opportunity to Offer Value Added Programmes to Learners

The recent launch of Bridging Programmes for Nexus learners in Year 11 and Year 13 who are preparing to enter the IB Diploma Programme (IBDP) or higher education have been a timely preparation for learners during these important transitions. 

Year 11 learners have been taking part in an introduction to the IBDP subjects that they are considering whilst, for Year 13, the students have been undergoing a wide variety of courses to prepare them for university life. These include modules such as presenting to an audience, digital skills, an introduction to latin and mathematics for university level. 

“Whilst Covid 19 has presented significant challenges for us as a school, it has provided us with a unique opportunity to be able to offer a unique Bridging Programme to our learners. We hope that all learners gain a wide range of skills and experiences to help them transition to their new courses,” said Nexus Deputy Head of Secondary Curriculum, Jared Wilson.

Nexus IBDP 2019 top scorers

Nexus has produced outstanding IBDP results with graduates who have entered top universities around the world. Learn more about the school’s Primary, Secondary, and Boarding schools during its upcoming Open Days this May.

Virtual Open Day, 29th & 30th May

Register to attend Nexus’s Virtual Open Day on Friday, 29th May from 4-5 pm or Saturday, 30th May from 10-11 am. The school will be offering talks by its Leadership Team, a virtual tour and a chance to hear from its IBDP alumni, Khoo Xi Quan who scored a perfect 45 points in 2019 and is recognised as one of the top 1% of IBDP students in the world. Special fee waivers and online trial classes are available too. Register here.




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