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Global schools - landscape and location

How does a school’s landscape, surroundings and location affect its extra curricular activities? From colleges in the highlands of Scotland, to inner-city schools in Beijing, each will have their own opportunities and obstacles when it comes to participating in out of the classroom activities.

Firefly has the privilege of working with schools around the world, which has shown us some interesting ways that location influences school life.

Here’s the third and final piece in our three-part series looking at schools in different countries.

Mountains, oceans or the city?

A school’s surrounding landscape has a lot to do with the extra-curricular activities they can offer. Duke of Edinburgh expeditions all over the world make the most of the natural beauty in the school’s local area.

But some expeditions might be more difficult than others. Students from Sao Paulo, for example, often head to Brazil’s Mantiqueira Mountain Range, where peaks are twice the height of the UK’s tallest mountains. Schools in the Swiss Alps also have no shortage of mountains nearby. Students there can enjoy skiing not only as an extra curricular activity, but as a part of their curriculum.

You might think that schools in the Middle East would have a far more limited range of activities on offer because of their desert surroundings. However, man-made ingenuity has made up for what the natural landscape lacks. In Dubai, there is a ski slope in a central shopping mall, which allows keen students to ski even when outside temperatures are above 40 degrees. Students can also get involved in the increasingly popular sport of paddle boarding on a local man-made lake: an oasis in the sands.

Firefly is used in many, varied ways to bring the extra curricular activities of students into the classroom for sharing with their peers. Students and teachers can update in real-time their blogs with photos, videos and information while they’re away, which can also be shared with their parents.

As we work with more and more schools in different countries, we love finding out about how school life differs and is changing across the world. Let us know what’s unique in your country or where in the world you would love to teach.

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