Students learn valuable academic skills in school like mathematics, English and science that are undoubtedly equally crucial to student development. Although skills like critical thinking, socializing and empathy help children to learn and grow as individuals, the pandemic has been a boon in disguise for both students and parents, as students got to explore more than just classroom learning, and parents witnessed something unique and new. Even though all schools across the country were successful in training students despite the crisis situation, one school which gave parents complete liberty to be watchers/accomplices of their children’s growth, through and through – Mount Litera International School, comes out as a future-ready school for today’s child. Hosting an IB Continuum curriculum, which is authorized by the International Baccalaureate Organization to offer its Primary Years Programme (PYP), Middle Years Programme (MYP) and the Diploma Programme (DP), being located centrally in Bandra Kurla Complex in Mumbai, Mount Litera International School is one of the very few IB Continuum schools in Mumbai.
Tech Driven Education System
With excellent infrastructure, an internationally acclaimed head of school, an IB trained academic team and innovative and holistic teaching methodologies, Mount Litera International School stands as a school that delivers best in class learning to its students. Mount Litera International School helps the children to not only identify but to acquire critical ‘life skills’ to help them become excellent communicators, creative thinkers, confident risk takers and highly knowledgeable, well balanced citizens. The school functions with an aim to provide holistic learning experiences and intercultural awareness. Inquiry based learning opportunities are created which enable students to take action. Teachers create opportunities for students to do service for the community. Students are empowered to take action to serve society. Mount Litera International School believes in experiential learning and students get exposure to moving outside the classroom to explore the world around them. Students are taken for field trips, experts are invited in school to gain the experience and technology is used immensely to conduct classes.
At Mount Litera International School all classes have a Homeroom teacher who takes care of student’s wellbeing. Homeroom teachers meet them daily and for all kinds of issues they approach their HRTs. All subjects teachers are very approachable to the students and they go to their teachers whenever they need support. Mount Litera International School conducts regular Socio emotional learning classes(SEL) which are conducted by a School Counselor. School counselors work very closely with the subject teachers and provide guidance as and when required. Moreover, the school focuses on developing Approaches to Learning Skills (ATL’s) which are very similar to 21st century skills. The skills include developing thinking skills, social skills, communication skills, self management skills, research skills. The development of skills such as thinking skills and communication skills is frequently identified as a crucial element in preparing students effectively for life beyond school. By developing these ATL skills, students can become “self-regulated learners”.
The Next Gen Changemakers
The IB teachers are highly competent and trained professionals. They approach teaching the ATL skills to students by adopting five Approaches to Teaching Skills (ATT’s). These ATT skills are at the heart of all great master teaching, and are aligned to the six key pedagogical principles that influence underpins the school’s IB programmes which based on inquiry, focused on conceptual understanding, developed in local and global contexts, focused on effective teamwork and collaboration, differentiated to meet the needs of all learners, informed by assessment (formative and summative). “Our facilities have state-of-the-art fully equipped laboratories for Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Design Technology where teachers plan and conduct hands-on experiments regularly as part of their curriculum” Shares Ms. Priya Anand, Head of the school. The students also go on field trips which in turn enhances their critical thinking skills and gives students a chance to think about a topic or theme from a different perspective. In addition to the above statement, Ms. Anand shares, “Our students engage in a plethora of activities ranging from debates, treasure hunts, school carnival, community service, interact club initiatives, inter school creative writing competitions, MUN, interacting with guest speakers who are subject experts from various fields and more”.
Students are also engaged in sports related activities on campus like fitness challenges, table tennis, badminton, chess, kho kho, interschool sports events, teaching football and basketball to underprivileged children etc. Students collaborate and share their learning outcomes with students from international schools in Mexico and Pakistan. The school has also organized a global fitness challenge event where students from various international schools abroad competed and participated during the pandemic. Sex ed workshops have been held to raise awareness on basic concepts of health and the body. The school has a dedicated career counseling department that engages students in profile building activities and mentors them on making career choices. They advise students on university applications, summer internship programmes and preparatory exams like the SAT and ACT. The school houses state-of-the-art IT facilities that comprises an Apple Lounge with 106 iPads, 107 macbooks, 34 iMacs 5 Apple TVs controlled through Apple School Manager.
During COVID times, the teachers adapted overnight and started using GSuite tools like google meet. Teachers were encouraged to map classes, assignments, notes on google classroom – where subjects were organized under their subtopics and activities. Eventually, the school moved on to using Zoom for the online classes where the whiteboard and breakout room features were used extensively. Mount Litera International School has a BYOD (Bring your own device) policy, students carry their own laptops and school provides Macbooks to all teachers which ensures that all students and teachers have the required resources to manage challenges during the pandemic. “It was a very smooth transition for the entire school to move to an online platform. The school didn’t waste a day for this transition. Teachers conducted classes on Google hangout and Zoom platform. To conduct examinations, specially for Grade 9 to 12 students, we had subscribed to exam.net, an online examination platform and we even provided dongles to provide internet connection to all teachers” shares Ms. Anand,head of the school. Along with all the facilities the school offers two scholarships for the Diploma Programme, scholarships for Grade 10 students coming into DP are one 100% waiver of the school’s tuition fees and one 50% waiver of the school’s tuition fees.
Ms. Priya Anand – Head of the School
Ms. Priya Anand is a versatile Head of School with 25 years of experience in teaching, administration, and management of school activities. She has a vast experience working in Indian and International Schools with various curricula such as IB (International Baccalaureate – DP/MYP/PYP), Ontario curriculum (Canadian Board), Cambridge (CAIE, UK Board) and the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education / Indian School Certificate (CISCE, Indian Board). She is an International Baccalaureate Educator for 15 years with in-depth knowledge of implementation, coordination and development of the International Baccalaureate Programme. Excellent communication, interpersonal, and leadership skills. Knowledge of 21st-century teaching and learning skills for teachers and students. She is trained in effective use of technology integration and was certified by Microsoft as ‘Change maker’ in 2020 for Digital Transformation of Education.