The focus of education and the role of schools are changing. Twentyfirst century learning is about providing children with opportunities to experiment with their surroundings as a form of problem solving. Knowledge alone doesn’t motivate children anymore — and it won’t get them practical skills, internships, or jobs. Today, mastery is about creativity and collaboration, motivation and self-direction.
It is about improvisation and discovery, and interacting with meaningful tools that expand one’s mental capacities. This is why we have chosen to work with international partners, like The LEGO Foundation, and educational consultants, like Olimpia Mesa, to implement a playful learning framework in our school.
Next week the school celebrates its 12th school year, and a part of the celebration will be the news of the expansion from Kindergarten to Primary level with more learners over the next number of years. Additionally, we are launching the school with a new name and visual identity, plus, two development centres: Atplay® Teacher Center and Atplay® Parenting Center.
For many schools, core values are nothing more than window dressing. When we embarked on developing our own values, we reflected on our daily behaviors and the way we were making decisions and creating learning.
Our mission statement is a great way to summarise what our school is about and is serving as our guiding star when considering
long term school priorities and new initiatives.
By facilitating meaningful playful experiences and learning opportunities, we promote holistic development, school and international study readiness, and we stimulate every child’s natural desire to learn.
Academics Atplay® is thoroughly described in our Learning Framework, which is available to staff, the Atplay community, and to teachers who participate in the Atplay® Teacher Centre professional development programmes. Our framework includes a full description of the two curricula we are following: National Romanian Curriculum (pre-school to high school levels) and the Cambridge International Curriculum for IGCSE and Cambridge A Level.
For early years, primary, and secondary education, we follow the Romanian National Curriculum. For early years, our school was accredited in 2012 with registration number:5934/02.10.2012. For primary school, we’re accredited by the Romanian Ministry of Education in 2018 under registration number: 4944/31.08.2018.
We are currently undergoing the accreditation process as a Cambridge School. International curriculum with Cambridge Upper Secondary for learners aged 14 to 16 years offers students two routes: Cambridge IGCSE and Cambridge A Level. Over 10,000 schools in more than 160 countries follow the Cambridge international curriculum. The curriculum is international in philosophy and approach, but it can be tailored to local contexts. Cambridge students study for Cambridge international qualifications, which are accepted and recognised around the world. Schools can also combine the Cambridge International curriculum with national curricula. Cambridge students moving between Cambridge schools can also seamlessly continue their studies, following the same curriculum.
While teaching the curriculum subjects and conducting assessments through traditional learning may continue to dominate in our country, research into effective learning techniques and a growing understanding of the needs of 21st century learners show that individuals benefit more by applying knowledge as a means to expand their understanding than they do by simply acquiring knowledge in order to pass examinations. We believe that exciting lessons make the grade, and this is why we have developed the Atplay® Learning Framework.
The effectiveness of hands-on learning through construction has been well documented for many years. Today, neuroscience can document even more precisely how physical and active involvement in experiences stimulates the brain and improves the quality of learning. LEGO® Education has been creating solutions for kindergartens and classrooms for 30 years. The skills and techniques that the LEGO System for Learning embodies meet many of the needs of 21st century learners. Embedded in our curriculum through rigorous pedagogy and planning, the system helps our learners develop both academic skills, executive functioning skills, and life skills.
What children do on a daily basis is who they are. This is why we have chosen a holistic approach to learning. A solid understanding of abstract concepts and facts, and knowing how to read, write, and do mathematics are still important. But, at the same time, it’s vital to take a holistic approach to children’s learning and development, building a broader set of skills that will underpin their learning for life.
All employers today are looking at the social, emotional and creative skills of the people they hire, and they will continue to do so, because new research into human development highlights how they are interconnected and influence performance and mastery building. High quality playful experiences help children develop cognitive, physical, social, emotional, and creative skills, which are essential for shaping their future.
We view gardening as a study of life. The simple act of caring for living soil and plants gives children a foundation for understanding the principles of birth, growth, maturity, death, competition, cooperation, and many other lessons that transfer to human lives. A garden also provides the perfect place for children to learn about boundaries and responsibility by practicing new activities in a safe space. Our garden makes our children smarter!
It is now more clear than ever before that a healthy amount of sleep yields more productive, intelligent and thriving children and teenagers. Conversely, a lack of sleep can lead to bad moods and takes a toll on their cognitive development and emotional intelligence. Experts have recently been able to demonstrate that sleep allows brain cells to “take out the trash” each time we snooze, flushing out disease-causing toxins. At our school, we take the time to explain and help children and teenagers understand some of this science. In this way, sleep and rest takes on more meaning and doesn’t just feel like a frustrating end to playtime. Plus, sleep and rest routines can also be playful!
With its location in the heart of the northern area of Bucharest, near the mall, the forest and the Băneasa zoo, but also with easy access to the campus, the Atplay® International School has become an integral part of the local community, bringing together international and local families. The schools’s well-maintained buildings are purpose-built and redesigned following the most recent research findings around learning environments conducted by the University of Helsinki. We have a wellequipped outdoor area where children are encouraged by design to explore and contribute. In addition, we have access to the school’s facilities, such as the sports hall, outdoor sports area, library, canteen, and our famous vegetables garden.
Adress: Șoseaua Gheorghe Ionescu Sisești 40,
Bucharest 013822, Romania
Telephone: +40 748 288 899