Obs Stedeke, Diepenheim, the Netherlands

Primary school OBS Stedeke (Image Jasper Kok)

Primary school OBS Stedeke is situated in the centre of Diepenheim. It’s a midsize, public school with on average 180 pupils, divided into 8 groups. The school has separate rooms for arts and crafts, for building and construction, for physical education for the youngest and a school library, with a sizeable English section.

We teach English to all age groups, at least 45 minutes a week. In “The Beep” children and teachers can find books, games and other resources to learn English. Obs Stedeke is a member of the Anglia Network. All teachers are certified for teaching English after intensive training, ending with an exam to assess their own level.

Our vision on education
We strive for an atmosphere in school in which children can learn without being disturbed. We take pride in decorating the interior in such a way that a child feels at home and is comfortable.
We want to create an excellent learning environment and let children know their learning environment is broader than Diepenheim.
In the hall and broad corridors children can find places where they can learn, with or without help of a computer or Ipad. We follow the principles of adaptive education, which means that our teachers continuously adapt the things they teach to the needs of each individual child, this requires an excellent care system.

Caring for the needs of the children
We take pride in teaching every child at its own level. We organise extra instruction time within the lessons. On the other hand, children who don’t need (or very little) instruction time can start at once. We challenge those children with more difficult exercises or with applying their skills in other contexts or subjects. We try to keep every child aboard.

Independent learning
This is an important part of our education. We want to make the children responsible for their learning. We discuss results with them and set goals together. Each week they have an extra program besides the lessons, a week task. The children are responsible for the completion of this week task.
We have lots of materials and sources that are available to children as subjects of this task. In this weektask they also work on a subject the child has chosen. This can be any subject, only criterium is that he/she is really interested in the subject of choice.

Involvement of parents
Parents are really involved in the school organisation. We have a group of parents that organises all the festivities. We also have a group of parents that represent the other parents and discuss school policy with the director and teachers. On some subject the school requires their approval, before taking further steps.
We also have groups of parents that help decorating the school, organising the Beep, helping children with mathematics and many more.
It is easy for a parent to talk with a teacher or the director. You just walk in and asks if he or she has time for a talk. If not immediately, we make an appointment for a later hour.
Five times a year the parents can subscribe to an appointment for a meeting with the teacher, specific about the results and well-being of their child.

We look forward to start a number of project with schools in Europe. We will start by doing an art project with a school from Sabadell, Catalunya and from Bursa, Turkey.
In total 6 teachers will join the upcoming in-service courses. As a result we hope to start some beautiful projects in other groups.



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