SAW returns to Shanghai
SAW returns to Shanghai!
SAW was delighted to return to Shanghai for a jam-packed trip of workshops, visits and a conference this November. We touched down to a warm and friendly welcome from Dasheng, our wonderful translator and our new business colleague John, general manager at Jingge Technologies.
Our trip started with a tour around the impressive premises of Jingge Technologies, a vocational education training software provider. It was here that we delivered SAW training workshops to Jingge employees and school teachers from across Shanghai.
The curriculum team at Jingge technologies took part in a DNA workshop and demonstrated an unbounded amount of energy and enthusiasm. With the ever helpful Dasheng assisting Jenni with translation, participants enjoyed the various activities of science, art and writing on offer throughout the day, including extracting DNA from Kiwi’s and building their own cell, which very quickly became a competition within the room – well done team 2 for winning with your beautifully created green cell.
Our second workshop topic was The magic of Water. Using the tried and tested SAW format, Heads of schools, teachers and education specialists alike began the day with hands on science activities, followed by writing and then art activities. Participants got stuck in straight away and explored buoyancy and water displacement, created their own boats, looked at different states of water, such as its salinity and temperature, including a magic ‘floating potato’ activity! Participants also got to make rapid ice-cream and create their own wax-resist Brusho artwork.
The aim of both workshops was to aid the participants in understanding how they, and others, can deliver SAW lesson plans and activities within their own classes/organisations and help spread the SAW approach. Along with running the workshops, we met with the wonderful and inspirational Mrs Gong (Maggie), head teacher of Wunan International Kindergarten, and her SAW team.
It was great to catch up and discuss the successful implementation of SAW at Wunan and have the chance to see the many awe-inspiring classrooms SAW activities are conducted in. Especially the Saw inspired science room, a feast for any science enthusiasts or early years practitioners’ eyes.
For the last leg of our trip we were invited to present at the Learning Competency; Project-based Learning Conference, were we rubbed shoulders with the elite of the education sectors from across the globe. Attendees included Raymond L. Pecheone from Stanford Graduate School of Education, Sirpa Eskela-Haapenen from the University of Jyväskylä and Lingyuan Gu, former deputy director of Shanghai Academy of Educational Sciences.
Many thanks to Crystal Rodriquez (teacher from West Earlham Infant School) and Catrin Parry-Jones (Head teacher from West Earlham Junior School), two experienced SAW practitioners who presented alongside Jenni, enabling us to give a well-rounded view of what SAW can achieve from project conception through to implementation within schools.
After a manic 10 days, we touched back down in SAW HQ and are now able to reflect on a very busy and successful trip, that has strengthened our relationship with our friends in China but also opened new doors for SAW collaborations.