Teaching Approach in BHEEP

Culture

BHEEP Second Year aims to create a culture where people:

  • Value the contributions of each other and are respectful of different opinions

  • Feel comfortable correcting (giving feedback) each other and receiving corrections (constructive criticism)

  • Demonstrate care in their actions

  • Listen, contribute to, and participate in the community

  • Demonstrate cultural sensitivity at the micro and macro levels

  • Reflect on their decisions before and after making them

  • Celebrate victories with students, staff and self

  • Acknowledge mistakes honestly and appropriately with students, staff and self

  • Recognize that mistakes fuel learning and reflect on them for future improvement

  • Believe in students and provide guidance for them

  • Demonstrate flexibility, creativity and energy

  • Take personal responsibility for their learning and teaching practice


Immersion Environment

  • Immersed in English: BHEEP teachers and staff should promote an English Immersion Environment for students at all times. This includes the school, hostels and office. Only English is expected to be spoken in the classroom and students are expected to try to speak English at all hours in the hostel. BHEEP staff and teachers are expected to speak only English to students and to accept only English from the students. High expectations for English immersion result in students’ English skills improving very rapidly.

The English Immersion Policy should be developed and agreed upon by all students, teachers and staff during orientation week.

  • Immersed in critical thinking: At BHEEP Second Year, students are constantly asked to analyze what goes on around them. In class students are encouraged to make connections between what they learn in the classroom and their own lives and communities.

  • Immersed in self-reflection and personal responsibility: Students are asked to reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of their own performances in class as well as their ambitions for the future. In regular one-on-one conferences, students and teachers identify specific actions that can be taken to improve a skill or achieve a goal. Self-reflection is particularly important in the teacher training process, where students are encouraged to view mistakes as lessons to learn from and the building blocks to future success.

  • Immersed in democracy: Regardless of gender or background, students are given equal opportunity to voice opinions and propose issues to be discussed and voted upon during weekly school meetings. Students also campaign and elect student monitors and president who relay student issues to BHEEP teachers and staff.

Students live and study together over a 10-month period to create an environment where English, democracy, tolerance, critical thinking, self-reflection and personal responsibility are not only studied, but put into daily practice. During the year, while immersed in the BHEEP Second Year environment, students come to adopt these principles as their own, enabling them to become more effective participants in the development of Mon civil society.



Teaching Methodology

All course content is explored and learned through the philosophy of Experiential Learning. Through this pedagogical approach students are encouraged to experience, reflect upon, and apply skills learned in the supportive classroom environment to authentic experiences outside the classroom. By way of practicing real-life application, graduates of the program are able to better share their skills and knowledge with their communities in hopes of improving capacity within schools, offices and civil society. Opportunities for reflection and application of new skills are identified throughout each unit and in assessment.

Other key components of the teaching methodology are:

  • Student centered learning: Student centered learning is a style in which the students take active control of what they learn and how they learn it. The student, rather than the educator or the curriculum, is at the heart of the learning process. Examples of student-centered learning:

      • In writing class, students plan out and design their own newsletter, creating their own committees, and choosing their own topics for submission.

      • In reading class students participate in literature circles where small groups read a common novel of choice. Students identify new vocabulary to practice and create discussion questions based on the novel, creating a learning environment where students guide their analysis and interpretation of the novel.

  • Application of Understanding by Design (UbD): Understanding by Design, also known as backward design, is a curricular framework that encourages teachers to plan lessons and assessment emphasizing various ways we understand and interpret new knowledge. The curriculum is adapted from this framework. For more information visit:

http://www.ascd.org/ASCD/pdf/siteASCD/publications/UbD_WhitePaper0312.pdf