Mr Simmons' Visit to Shanghai 1
Sunday 10th November
Mr Simmons has arrived in Shanghai after an 11 hour flight. Today he is visiting Shanghai Normal University for a welcome ceremony. Professor Gu, who is an expert in primary school mathematics, will be delivering a lecture and there will be speeches from representatives of the UK and Chinese governments. This afternoon he will meet the exchange teachers who will visit South Green Junior School in February next year. He tried dragon fruit for breakfast this morning!
Monday 11th November
Today, Mr Simmons attended a welcome ceremony at Shanghai Normal University, one of China's leading education, research and teacher training centres. Representatives from the Ministry of Education, Shanghai local government and the university delivered speeches as did representatives from England, including from the Department for Education. Afterwards, Professor Gu, a highly respected expert in mathematics education, gave a keynote lecture focussing on the improvements in mathematics teaching that Shanghai has so successfully pioneered. In the afternoon, Mr Simmons met with the two teachers who will be visiting South Green next year - Mr Liu and Mrs Lu (pictured here along with Mrs Ratibb, who is also part of the exchange programme). Mr Liu and Mrs Lu both speak very good English and specialise in teaching maths.
Tuesday 12th November
On Tuesday, Mr Simmons visited Huangpu District First Central Primary School. It is quite a small school for Shanghai, with 'only' 783 pupils, 73 teachers and 25 classes! Housed in a very modern building in the centre of the city, First Central is a very well equipped school with its own photography studio, calligraphy room, cookery room, dance studio and interactive electronic displays on the walls. Mr Simmons met the Headteacher, Vice Principal, Head of Maths and several of the 10 specialist Maths teachers for a welcome ceremony. Afterwards, he observed two fantastic Maths lessons - Grade 3 (8-9 year olds) and Grade 1 (6-7 year olds). He then discussed how we could apply the approaches in England.
Wednesday 13th November
Mr Simmons visited two different schools in Shanghai today - First Central Primary in Huangpu and Shanghai United International School, Shangyin Campus. The latter is a private school with over 1650 pupils. The teachers at this school, who come from America, Australia, Canada, the UK and China, are also keen to learn more about Maths mastery from our host schools. As well as observing three Maths lessons (two about fractions and one about decimals in real life) we discussed and analysed a lesson delivered by Mr Liu, who will visit South Green next year. Everyone was very impressed by his subject knowledge and ability to support and challenge the children.
See the photo gallery for more pictures!