International Schools Review
Teachers Keeping Each Other Informed

Telling the kids

Re: Telling the kids

Postby eion_padraig » Mon Mar 13, 2017 1:35 am

Hopefully your new school will find a current student who can serve as a "local" contact. As a counselor, I try to set up new students (especially if it's their first time living abroad) with a student who has successfully transitioned in the past few years. It's nice when the students end up being friends too, but even the pre-arrival conversations can help.

At another school I worked at some years ago, several students I worked with seemed pretty angry. When I asked them about how long they had lived in country and how it all happened, there were several that said they were told they were coming to visit family for the summer. Once they arrived in country the students were told, "Actually, we're going to live here now permanently." I wasn't a counselor at the time, but it seemed about the worst thing they could do.

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Postby PsyGuy » Mon Mar 13, 2017 2:24 am

Not the worst thing parents can do, but pretty bad, actually pretty horrible. Can only imagine what kind of ITs they made.
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Re: Telling the kids

Postby Thames Pirate » Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:15 am

mamava wrote:

> All the social media is great, but some students experience another sense
> of loss as they watch their former lives unfolding and moving on without
> them. For lots of students, they manage that--for others, it can be very
> painful. It's important to keep communication open and respect their
> feelings and encourage them to be involved in their new school. It's
> trickier to move as a middle or high schooler than an elementary schooler
> and for our kids it took more time to find their niche socially. Joining
> groups and teams really helped.

Excellent point! That is why I suggested a blog--share the positive and cool things with folks back home (who may or may not care, but at least the kids can feel like people do simply by putting it out there), but without the "missing out" element of FB, for example. Everyone's kids are different regarding whether they should even be on social media. But a blog is more like a journal, just one that can be shared. Teaching them about blogging can also be a good activity to do as a family (what do you want to include on the blog?) and a way to teach internet safety.
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Postby PsyGuy » Mon Mar 13, 2017 9:25 pm

@Thames Pirate

FB would accomplish the same thing, and has better privacy and security features for children compared to a public blog.
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Re: Telling the kids

Postby Thames Pirate » Mon Mar 13, 2017 9:49 pm

Actually, you can make blogs private, and FB does not accomplish the same thing because it allows for the kids to see what they are missing (seeing what their friends post), while a blog is one-sided. Thus my suggestion. But of course FB is great for keeping in touch, too--just in a different way. Both suggestions have merit depending on the kids, and they are not mutually exclusive.
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Postby PsyGuy » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:23 pm

@Thames Pirate

Thats not true, you can restrict posts on the time line to everyone but the owner. FB can be one sided as much as a blog.
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Re: Telling the kids

Postby mmassey67 » Sat Mar 18, 2017 5:30 am

Hi, my husband and I are both primary teachers and are gearing up for our 3rd move with our 2 boys (now aged 12 and 10). We've always been very honest with them and talked about WHY we are going. We spend a lot of time sharing country information with them (there are some great websites out there that give you the heads up) and answer their questions as honestly as we can.
We make sure that there are ways in place to help them keep in touch with their UK friends. When they were younger, we sent photos back to their friends of their adventures; now they're older, they'll be using email and Whatsapp to keep connected.
Moving overseas offers children a different perspective on the world and gives them skills that remaining in one place can't do - they learn to empathise, make connections with people quickly, realise that nothing is for ever and also moving around the world shows them that kids are kids, wherever you are.
If it doesn't work out, what have you lost? If it does work out, think what you'll gain. Although there may be a few sticky moments at the start, if you ensure they're settled (join clubs, have friends round), you'll find that they adapt to their new environment much quicker than you will.
Best of luck!
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Re: Telling the kids

Postby peachestotulips » Sat Mar 18, 2017 8:48 pm

Definitely read the following books; not only for your family but for insight into the dynamic of you future students as well if you're working at a school with a diverse student body.

-Emotional Resilience and the Expat Child

-Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Amongst Worlds

I'm sure others can give you suggestions as well.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sat Mar 18, 2017 8:53 pm

@mmassey67

Well one of the things you may lose going OS is scholarship opportunities and opportunities to do things like start for a a Div 5A footsball team, or other athletic activity/sport. You may miss out on something like drama or music programs that could actually get children into a competitive Uni with scholarship. You may also miss out on guaranteed acceptance or scholarship/tuition coin by graduating in the top X% of your DS/District or other such ranking. These opportunities generally dont exist in ISs.
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Re: Telling the kids

Postby Thames Pirate » Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:03 pm

What are you talking about? Sure, you might miss out on American football, but drama and music? Other sports? You can get those at an IS. You can get scholarships, too. Not only that, but unis love students who know themselves and have something more than the standard "good grades and some clubs" resume typical of high school students. Living abroad does provide that in spades, giving international students an edge on admissions in many cases.

It is true you might lose out on in-state tuition and guaranteed acceptance policies.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:23 pm

@Thames Pirate

Yes, Drama and Music. If you go OS, your not going to be first chair in an orchestra that competes, your not going to be in a dramatic production that anyone in the US Uni Arts circuit will see or scout you for. You wont be competing at sectionals, regionals, or nationals that anyone will see.

Yes other sports, football/soccer no ones going to scout you. The Unis that recruit OS are looking at national champion teams which are almost always host nationals, they dont go to ISs. Those Unis are also big conference Unis you wont be getting any recruiters from lower Div. I and Div. II Unis/Colleges, they dont have the budget for those types of trips. Same is true of Basketball, Volleyball, Baseball, Softball, etc..

Not really not anymore, Unis get flooded with applications from foreign students who have "multi-cultural experience", and plenty of students who did a gap year and traveled, etc. The whole IE student graduate just doesnt have the impact it used to. The whole overseas, good grades and some clubs but IE graduate isnt any more impressive than one without the IE.

The scholarships your limiting yourself too are all going to be merit/academic scholarships and the pools for those are huge. Youre also missing out on guaranteed admission and tuition programs that only stateside students are eligible for.
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Re: Telling the kids

Postby Thames Pirate » Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:43 pm

Auditions, not scouts, typically determine music and drama scholarships. And yes, you can get athletic scholarships from ISs. A student from JFK in Berlin played basketball for UNC before his NBA career, for example. Top recruits in scholarship sports often have agents that help them narrow their search or find potential matches in programs.

The expat experience growing up is not the same as the gap year experience, and unis know it. So do you--we talk about it all the time on threads like this about kids. This advantage applies to admissions as much as to anything else. Remember, admissions are often all about the essays!

That said, I know you want to argue with me, particularly on this rather philosophical point. I will stick to factual corrections and otherwise let you have the last word on the other stuff.
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Re: Telling the kids

Postby Thames Pirate » Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:58 pm

Just a quick note on admissions--the typical areas examined are:

-Academics (rigor, performance, course choices)
-Letters of rec
-Extracurriculars (particularly if they tell a bit about who you are)
-Standardised tests, though schools are moving away from this
-Essay (who are you, what can you offer the school, and what can the school offer you/fit)--this is often one of the most important ones as the above are generally somewhat generic
-If available, interviews with alumni recruiters are considered

They use these to paint a picture of who you are in terms of academic ability, academic potential, interests, passions, motivation, character, etc. And if I may editorialise one more time, I would add that the picture is improved by being abroad.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sat Mar 18, 2017 10:20 pm

@Thames Pirate

Who do you think gets invited to audition? Besides its nonsense, the audition process is akin to tryouts for athletic teams. Sure you can be a walk on, but no, drama and music programs actively recruit students.

No you cant, not practically. Whos going to see you play, who are you going to compete against, whats the level of competition your competing at? Answers: No one, intra-schools (or no one), and nothing. Intra school competitions, are called "friendlies" or exhibition games, and no one cares about them.

Once again you have one, single example, a dog has also flown in space, and your singular example isnt even artifact compared to the number of secondary school students who are recruited for Uni/College athletic teams.

No they dont, well a few top Unis do, but outside a few exceptions no, recruiting is done by coaches who visit players and they figure out who to visit by watching them play and looking at competition statistics.

Its not the same but its equivalent, at least in the eyes of admissions officers. It depends what one does with the GAP year and what one does with the IE experience. if all they do is go to IS, eat lunch, then do some ASP and then go home and play video games or post photos on FB then no IE is pretty much the same. Living OS doesnt mean very much if you dont make very much out of it. If you did a GAP year and just drank your wy through the EU, yeah not much of an experience, if you saved sea turtles or something noteworthy and esoteric then the GAP year has more benefit, than anything youd do as a student in IE.

Admissions are not about the essays, not anymore, they were 5 years ago maybe longer. Everyone has them professionally done now. The big factor now is the interview.

Your list of admissions have incorrect priorities:
1) Academics: I suppose this one we agree on.
2) Tests: Unis (US ones) are not moving away from standardized tests. They just say they do. They also play a critical role in UK admissions, such to the point that your A* results are essentially everything.
3) Letters of Rec: No one cares that the counselor wrote someone a letter. A prominent individual or alumni rec is more valuable.
4) ASPs: They only care if you did something competitive. Everyone does ASPs, and admissions officers know that students biggest ASP is managing social media.
5) Essays: Again, not a big factor, most students have them professionally done, and so many of them are filled with embellishments.
6) Interviews: Alumni interviews are still done with some big Unis but mostly its interviews with admissions officers either F2F or virtual. This is the most significant factor.

We disagree. The picture isnt improved by being abroad unless you did something with that experience, no more than a GAP year.

You never have factual corrections. You just state your Thames Pirate and you say your right.
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Re: Telling the kids

Postby wrldtrvlr123 » Sat Mar 18, 2017 10:48 pm

PsyGuy wrote:
> No you cant, not practically. Whos going to see you play, who are you going to compete
> against, whats the level of competition your competing at? Answers: No one, intra-schools
> (or no one), and nothing. Intra school competitions, are called "friendlies" or
> exhibition games, and no one cares about them.
================
You apparently haven't coached with int'l schools/DoDDS or pay much attention to the sports teams in your area/district. Int'l schools frequently compete in the same leagues with DoDDS if there are any. Barring that, many int'l schools frequently have leagues and tournaments that are structured and competitive (including travel teams that go to high level competitions in other countries). There are many schools that offer opportunities for athletes to play at a competitive level.

Are they mostly at the same level as a 5A high school in the states? Probably not although are close. But that would not affect more than a fraction of students at an int'l school.

As for the Arts there are also competitions available within the int'l school community and many students (not just overseas) use audition tapes to apply to schools as opposed to schools sending scouts to events.

I won't bother arguing with you further about this but the subject is far from as one sided as you make it out to be. There are sacrifices to be made when children go to school at int'l schools but there are still many meaningful opportunities available to many/most of them.
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