Think about the person you were three years ago. The life you had versus now…much different, right? For the IB community, it’s been a metamorphosis of change— turning every hurdle into a learning opportunity and every challenge into a stimulus for growth.
Strelitz International Academy is an IB elementary school in Virginia Beach that has blossomed into a wealth of knowledge with its individualistic programs. An atmosphere enriched in wisdom strengthened by its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, global conflicts, and local hardships. IB has proven to be a trustworthy curriculum with diverse educators, offering 7,530 worldwide programs to 5,548 schools across 160 countries.
How Do We Become Resilient?
Hardships build strength and character. But for children, we as parents and IB teachers need to foster their development through crises. They may have feelings of anxiety and uncertainty about their future. They may fear losing their normality and control of their lives. That’s where resilience comes in.
Resilience helps people cope with stress and learn how to use their experience to overcome adversity. While some minds are more naturally resilient than others, it is not always inherited but taught. By nurturing our children to develop resilience over time, we can positively address their fears and move forward mentally more robustly than ever.
Being openly communicative and understanding with your child is the first step towards mental fortitude. It’s vital to allow your child to ask questions and for you to answer all honestly but simply. Validate your child’s concerns and feelings on essential issues to establish a positive emphasis on mental health. When you acknowledge their outlook on the world, you build a healthy foundation of trust.
Spinning hard times into a chance for positive personal development is a great way to elicit optimistic hope in young people. Encourage creative expression as an emotional outlet (like art, music, writing, or other hobbies) to stimulate mental growth. Give children the space to process their thoughts, and offer support when viable. Most importantly, you must care about your well-being before helping someone else with theirs.
At Strelitz, we are re-imagining education as a whole by pinpointing different processes that go beyond the traditional, cognitive-first approach. We think outside the box to morph “what” and “how” we teach through inventive designs and assessments. This involves our comprehensive IB programs for 16-19-year-olds, which target creativity, leadership, and mental and social enhancement.
With a collaborative environment, the IB community constantly and consistently evolves toward a bigger and brighter future. During these times of change, we are using this progressive mindset to offer an authentic, transformative experience for our students and teachers with digital and cultural advancements. This tie between education and world relevance will provide students with what they need to become resilient and collectively better our thinking in the next 50+ years.
As an IB elementary school in Virginia Beach, Strelitz International Academy stands by its IB framework to empower future student generations to lead the world by example. But how do we expand our horizons and inspire other schools to cut the conservative cord of strict, neurotypical education? The past three years of hardships can answer this question, where more and more people are opening their minds to alternative forms of education. Still, the obstacle remains of harnessing technology to diversify and allow students of all backgrounds to study with us.
That’s why we, with the help of the International Baccalaureate, have engineered the Primary Years Program. This innovative curriculum gives all elementary students from kindergarten to fifth grade a mentally-rich education emphasizing their eclectic mix of ideas, religions, ethnicities, and cultures. Our portfolio ranges from English Language, Math, Science, Social Studies, Art, Robotics, Jewish Studies, and much more to provide students with articulate insight on core subjects at an accelerated pace. Only by breaking down the barriers that prevent some children from attending typical schools can we then enact inclusive change.
Teachers are integral to students’ success. Because without teachers, we lack the guidance we need to reach intellectual enlightenment. And being a teacher is more than just a profession; it’s a purpose. It’s a lifelong commitment to mold young minds. Through shared values, IB educators help to build resilience worldwide, in and out of the classroom.
To elevate students’ education, Strelitz has access to the IB Exchange, which is used as a tool to connect with other IB educators in an interactive, global network. Just one of the many improvements we’ve enacted over the years, our teachers can lean on each other for support in teaching their subject by receiving essential feedback and tapping into thousands of resources. We work to utilize this professional development platform as a core factor in getting stronger together.
Be the Change
Our children are the future. Our responsibility as adults is to give students the push they need to be the change they want to see in the world. Because our current world was built from our thinking— by changing our thinking, we can change the world.
From preschool to primary, Strelitz International Academy stands out as a recognized institution of higher learning. We aim to plant the seed of research, thinking, social, communication, and self-management skills in every child, working in tandem with current and future world events—allowing them to adapt and thrive.