A University Education: Engineering in UK Universities

A University Education: Engineering in UK Universities

Lord David was minister for universities and science in the coalition government from 2010 to 2014, when the cap on tuition fees was raised to £9,000 per year in England and Wales. Today he gave a talk at the UCL department of engineering to an audience of higher education professionals including from the UK and abroad on what a modern university education could be, in particular, university education for future engineers. BIEA was invited as a guest among professors from Bath University, Kings College, UCL, etc.

Reflecting on his experience in British politics, Lord Willetts explained the policies and decision-making processes within British government on education.

He also talked about accessibility to university: are there too many graduates in the world? Should everyone go to university? Will there be more 4 year degrees in the future or more students will choose a 2-year degree? There is no clear right or wrong answer in them, the audience was happy to participate in the discussion.

Lord Willette is aptly nicknamed ‘two brains’ for being an intellectual, he strongly believes in evidence-based research and raised questions about recent The longitudinal education outcomes (LEO) Data. This is a UK government publication on employment and earnings outcomes of higher education graduates broken down by subject studied and graduate characteristics. In his opinion, during a recession, a university degree helps with graduate employment, although earnings could be lower. The hardest hit group would be the young people without a degree, as employers in difficult times would choose to pay less for a better-educated workforce.

During the session, international comparisons were made between UK and Germany engineering graduates. Also how collaborative work between universities from the UK and other countries could encourage creative partnerships and benefit the students.

One of the key issues discussed was how British students had to specialize early in their education compared to other countries. At 16 or 17, students in England would need to decide which disciplines they would follow at university, they would then choose three or four subjects at A-levels. Lord Willetts believes that this early specialization gives less breadth of knowledge to students and ultimately limit their choices in future careers.

Also the gender balances in STEM education was raised by several guests, although more girls are now taking Maths at A-levels than ever before, the number pursuing a science degree is still low.

Reflecting on BIEA’s International STEM Competition, we have had a record number of female students joining in the competition and this demonstrates the appeal of the theme to both girls and boys.

We are glad to share updates on the international reach of our competition and we hope Lord Willetts will share his wisdom and wit at the international final on 4th July.


Amazing entries from the first round of the BIEA 2019 STEM Competition

Students from the Coleraine Grammar School in Northern Ireland and their teammates flew their drone with their instructor starting their journey on the BIEA 2019 STEM competition.

 

 BIEA was impressed with the entries submitted for the first round of the competition. It was obvious that many teams had worked hard to thoroughly research, design and write up their ideas for saving animal species from extinction.

The range of animals was impressive, and we were particularly impressed with entries that included animals relevant to the teams’ local area. This included the entry by Coleraine Grammar School on Basking Sharks that had been seen in Irish waters. They followed up their ideas with a visit from a local university lecturer to discuss drones.  We were also impressed by Srednja skola Jablanica, a school in Bosnia, who focused on Bosnian wildlife, including the lynx, wolf and mouflon. Their report reflected some excellent planning and well-described division for team roles. Visakha Valley School chose the Red Panda for their project focus, and submitted an outstanding report including details about each of the team members and their supporting staff. One of the teams from Sheffield Park Academy also included details about team member roles in their project on the Tasmanian Devil.

Some teams incorporated innovative ways of experimentation for the report. One of the teams from St. Margaret's School conducted a field test to find out how many pupils (‘animals’) could be counted by their drone at different heights in their project on Darwin Foxes. Team Endeavour, in their report on Sea Turtles, tested the strengths of different materials and measured the thrust of a motor to help determine their final drone specifications.

We also had a lot of teams using CAD and 3D printing to help with drone designs. Topkids Center included an outstanding design specification for their project on the Bactrian Camel. A team from Kent College 3D printed their design from their specifications, as did I Liceum Ogólnokształcące im. St. Dubois, who also developed a flight simulated path for their drone project on Zebra.

Some outstanding hand drawn specifications were also included – we were particularly impressed with the diagram for the Snow Leopard tracking drone by Alpha Preparatory School, along with the detailed exploded diagram of drone by the Westcliff High School for Boys and their project on the Amur Leopard, and the original drone design by the American International School of Cape Town who designed a drone with caterpillar tracks for tracking Savannah wildlife. The team from the Shanghai Foreign Language School Affiliated to SISU included in depth calculations for the drone range using 5G wireless signals around a Tibetan antelope animal reserve.


From nature - back to nature

Last week we visited a very unique after class club called ‘strong roots’. There are many of this kind of after school club in Britain. What is behind the name ‘strong roots’ after school club? We interviewed Suzanne who leads the club and she gave us a surprising yet delightful answer.

The original inspiration for ‘strong roots’ came from Suzanne’s own experiences of seeing children’s paintings and how these were a vehicle for self-expression. She decided on the name after seeing how the children thrived when involved with nature.


Does your nursery have a display wall (like the one shown above) to describe your "vision and ideas"?

Involving the children in nature the teacher acts only as a guide and the children are given space to freely express their imagination and creativity and to enjoy the aesthetics and magic of nature. In this way it reflects the philosophy of the learning centre’s director - let nature act as the best teacher for the children.

Part of understanding the world


During our visit the staff placed two snails in warm, humid containers and allowed children to become familiar with them and observe their growth. Once the snails had been fed the children are only too eager to tell me what they know about the snails, what they are doing and why snails inhabit the environment that they do.

When a snail enters the model castle (pictured below) Suzanne poses guided questions: "What is this?"she asks. A little boy replies: "This is a snail leaving behind traces…".

Children are encouraged to understand and learn about these fascinating animals through close observation. This is one of the principles of good EYFS practice known as ‘Planning in the moment’. This refers to the process (where no advanced planning is required) whereby a teacher builds on what the child is already doing at that moment and only intervenes to help move their learning forward. These ‘teachable moments’ simultaneously engage children’s curiosity, encourage them to think further and allow them to give short but crucial timely responses to their interests.


Physical development articles

1. Movement Skills

Using the educational framework of the seven areas of physical development laid out in EYFS, the nursery has a purpose-built and stable climbing frame with a see-saw to develop children's sports and coordination. Climbing up and down the equipment lets children gain crucial balancing and dexterity skills. It is important to use a variety of artificial equipment together with natural resources to enable children to exercise confidently in various ways. In this way children learn to use space safely. Teachers may want to allow older children to climb trees to certain heights to enjoy sensory exploration of trees through touching and feeling in the fresh air and sunshine.


2. Physical health and self-care ability

We learnt that children gradually become aware of the importance of safe usage of devices and tools between the ages of 30 and 50 months in their development. Teachers also start to work on strengthening children's physical movement and ability during this period so that they can learn to grasp tools and different objects safely and thus steadily improve these skills. They then use these tools when undertaking creative activities.


Art and Design

Exploration and use of media & Materials

Children can make the most of nature - even fallen leaves can become their musical instruments. For them the sound created by blowing grass leaves sounds on occasion, like pigs or like birds, is great fun.* Teachers resourcefully use the shell cuttings of hazelnuts, on the same sound principle as a flute, to teach children how to use airflow to produce a crisp and pleasant sounds.

Featured independent outdoor game

1. Mud kitchen

Let children have full play using their imagination.
Experience the real fun of cooking.
Develop a sense of cooperation and build partnerships.
Exercise small muscles to promote hand-foot co-ordination.

Teachers use natural resources such as soil to stimulate children's imagination. This practice also promotes the principle of environmental protectionism. Some children tell me "I'm making magic potions." Others tell me "I'm making a magic salad." What a lovely and imaginative group!

2. Expedition

Fosters the children's spirit of adventure, discovery and promotes their exploring capabilities.


At one point a young boy tells me excitedly, "Look, this is my base!". So, when they are given a certain degree of freedom children become very good at discovering the secrets of nature. They learn to observe and feel by exploring and the nursery provides ample space to stimulate children's curiosity and go exploring by themselves.

What kind of environment?

Provide an interactive environment.
Design an exhibition area of children’s work for display.
Create an open but secure environment.
Use widely available natural materials.
Allow children free access to all materials.

Real natural materials, safety conscious activities, being mindful of environmental protection.
Low cost, easy to collect multiple-use resources.
Stimulate children's creativity and imagination.
Keep material fresh and stimulate children’s desire to explore.

Here most of the materials used have come from the natural environment and the children use their creative imaginations to inhabit fairy tale kingdoms with their teachers working as their guides. The club teachers are committed to being watchful guardians by simple observation and patience responding to the children’s needs where necessary. They respect the uniqueness of each child, explore ways to establish positive relationships between children and strive to create an interactive and open environment for them. They implement numerous independent outdoor games to achieve core EYFS concepts. We encourage you to create your own natural paradise of play and learning, growth and progress in your nurserie


How to improve children’s mathematical cognitive ability of shape, space and measurement

Early learning goal – shape, space and measurement

Children use everyday language to talk about size, weight, capacity, position, distance, time and money in order to compare quantities, objects and solve problems. They recognise, create and describe patterns. They explore characteristics of everyday objects and shapes and use a mathematical language to describe them.

Through analysing the description of shapes, space and measures as described in the “EYFS Early Years Learning and Development Goals” it is clear that at nursery level children need to learn simple shapes such as triangles, quadrilaterals and circles. In addition to this they need to learn the relationships between these different shapes and how they fit into their surrounding environment. Most artificial objects are built on these simple shapes and complex shapes in nature can also be reflections of these. As well as this the compositions and constructions of shapes are widely used in the creative industries. Therefore at EYFS level it is particularly important to gradually improve children’s mathematical cognitive ability through different methods and activities.

In view of the age associated characteristics of children at EYFS level the following eight activities are recommended to promote a child’s recognition of shape and measurement.


Looking for shapes in the environment

Children are investigators by nature who enjoy “treasure hunts”. Teachers should support and help develop their interest in shape recognition by placing some pre-prepared two-dimensional shapes in various environments. The teacher then can lead the children to look for squares, circles, triangles, arcs and other shapes in their environment. This can enable the children to better understand shapes and their relationship to the child’s environment.

Potato shape printing

Potatoes are halved and cut into different shape stamps (such as squares and triangles). They are then applied with paint to be printed. Printing these potato shapes on paper will engage children as they can observe first hand and participate directly with enjoyment. This creative task is also a good way for children to discuss the shapes they have created with each other.

Car competition

This is a small scientific activity to develop a child’s ability to measure. The first step is to place a long cardboard tube at an angle making a slope and measure a long strip of paper of a fixed length to be secured at the bottom. The next step is to encourage children to take turns placing small cars at the top of the slope and observe how far they roll down the pipe and on to the paper below. Teachers can add numbers to the paper so that children can more easily measure the rolling distance of their cars.

Measuring the body

Measuring the body is an interesting and simple way to learn how to measure. This activity can be carried out indoors with large sheets of paper and pens or on the ground using chalk. Children can take turns lying on the ground and drawing shapes around each other. Following this, they can use rulers or tape to measure different body parts such as their arms, legs, feet, etc. Children can compare their measurements with their friends to improve their ability to interact and cooperate with each other.

Sorting size

This activity uses a variety of resources such as shells, buttons or dolls. A set of items of different sizes and three different jars or bowls are given to the children. They are then asked to classify these objects into small, medium and large sizes and put them in the corresponding bowl or jar. In this process, children learn to compare items to each other, before sorting them into the right bowl or jar.

Making shapes out of paper tape

Paper tape can be used to mark out large shapes on the floor. Children use building blocks such as Lego or toy bricks to cover the taped outline and thus create various shapes on the floor. This helps to better develop children's shape recognition and measurement capabilities.

Continual sand supply in sandy area

Games involving sand and water are another great way to help children develop early measurement concepts. Nursery teachers and parents can both provide a variety of sand material and children must independently add to this when necessary. The process of checking that their sand supply is sustainable will help improve children's mathematical ability. The game allows children to learn to compare different quantities all whilst enjoying the simple process of filling and emptying containers. They use everyday language to describe positions and when expressing size, so they gradually improve their perception of shape, space and measurement.

Collage game

Through creative collage games children's perception of shape can be further enhanced. For this activity adults will need to cut lots of different shapes from various materials. Children then use these cut-outs to create shape combinations which may result in the creation of aliens, space rockets and many more images. Through these creative works (like the one pictured below) they learn to combine different shapes to create new and unique illustrations.

Additionally there are many more activities and methods to enhance children's understanding of shape and ability to measure. The combination of learning about flat two-dimensional shapes and three-dimensional spaces serves to better cultivate children's overall perception of space, plane shape and measurement. Furthermore it is extremely important that early childhood teachers observe, record and reflect on each child’s development of shape, space and measurement.

 


The Future of the UK Education Sector - Challenges and potential on a world stage

Education Stakeholder Event 2019

BIEA CEO Nikki Collins joined other senior managers from the education sector to discuss education strategy for the UK.

Hosted by the Department of International Trade at The Institute of Engineers the discussion focused on where UK education should be pending Brexit. The goal is to keep the UK at the forefront of international education.

Dr Liam Fox MP, Secretary of State for International Trade said that Early Years, distance learning and vocational training are key to international collaboration.

BIEA is constantly developing new products and services tailored to the needs of emerging educational markets such as that in China. BIEA launched the Early Years League to assist educators and teachers in implementing the Early Years Foundation Stage to their environments.

The E-League programme ties in with UK government policy of supporting the Chinese in finding a solution to their shortage of skilled Early Years teachers.

Damien Hindes, the Education Minister, spoke of the value of international education to British society, “International students bring far more than just financial benefits to the UK, they also bring cultural diversity.” He also added, “It’s never been more important to be globally minded, outward looking and ambitious than it is today. The competition has never been more fierce and the opportunities never greater.”

The audience were very impressed by the progress of the BIEA International STEM competition. 45 teams from 18 different countries are now translating their designs into working models for the finals. The competition is an exciting focus of many ideas and designs and will also provide an excellent opportunity for international dialogue and friendship.


Nursery member of the BIEA E-League “Beyond R.” has finished their preliminary EYFS examination and IS expecting more children to benefit from professional EYFS education

The British International Education Association (BIEA) Early Years League (E-League) was launched in November 2018. The aim is to provide the best British early years education (Early Years Foundation Stage) training and resources for international education practitioners so that children and their parents could benefit from a British educational experience. The following month the child care institution Beyond R. submitted their applications for gaining EYFS accreditation and nursery membership to the BIEA E-League Committee. Since January 2019 Beyond R. has become a member of the E-League nursery member via the qualification examination of BIEA E-League UK Committee. In March Sharron Fogarty, Head of E-League, visited the nursery to complete the preliminary examination on behalf of the BIEA.

Located in Hangzhou, known as the paradise on earth, Beyond R. is a high-end childcare institution advocating British international education. Since its opening two years ago, the school has always adhered to the educational tenet of "the best choice for parents and the best start for children" outlined in the British EYFS. Under the guidance of EYFS, the school has also offered courses such as picture books, art and outdoor practice classes. The experience as a two years EYFS childcare institution, Beyond R. is eager to work towards the goal on how to improve the quality of the institution's EYFS teaching , and hope to get more professional guidance from BIEA E-League, striving to provide better education based on the current schooling philosophy and incorporate with the seven learning objectives and teaching circles outlined in EYFS.

After making the examination of the EYFS nursery Ms Fogarty concluded that Beyond R. not only has a high recognition of the British concept of early years education but also has a clear understanding of the aims of British EYFS. Although the organisation has encountered some difficulties in initiating the EYFS teaching cycle and promoting the realisation of EYFS goals in several areas, the E-League Committee believes that with the support of the E-League's comprehensive British educational resources, Beyond R. will become an excellent nursery with all the characteristics EYFS schools have in the UK.

The British EYFS has always been a highly praised early years education system throughout the world and the emerging international education market represented by China is in favour of such an EYFS system. However, how to introduce a purely British EYFS into nurseries is a difficult problem for many private early years education institutions in China. BIEA is a British local educational institution supported by the UK Department of International Trade (DIT) and other British institutions. E-League brings together the UK's high-quality educational resources and UK EYFS experts. It has the ability and the advantages to provide the most comprehensive and professional EYFS teaching guidance for the members of the alliance.

The BIEA E-League Committee will assist the organisation to make more professional and comprehensive EYFS teaching while maintaining its original characteristics through teacher training, British research, providing guidance, teaching courses related support.

BIEA believes that combining the school-running philosophy of Beyond R. "Looking at the World with the Eye of Discovery" with the comprehensive British educational resources of E-League, a broader EYFS teaching world is found, delivering better international learning courses for children in the League and bring parents a better experience of international homeland co-education!


45 Teams from 18 countries and regions advance to BIEA 2019 International STEM Competition

Students from Coleraine Grammar School in Northern Ireland, UK learn how to fly a drone with Alan Hook, Associate Head of School (Media) at Ulster University, Coleraine.

 

Early today, British International Education Association (BIEA) in association with Born Free Foundation announced the shortlist for 2019 BIEA International STEM Youth Innovation Competition.

Since the launch in January 2019, there has been huge interest from schools and teachers from around the world. With the competition reaching 30,000 schools globally, drawing applications from 34 countries and regions through the support of its partnership. After an intensive and rigorous marking process, 45 teams are through to the next round based on their qualification scores, representing 18 countries and regions including UK, China, USA, Australia, Canada, India, Kenya and many others.

Each year a theme connecting world issues and technology is chosen for the competition, which will be announced in January and the finals will be held in July. This year’s theme is “Fighting Extinction via Drone Technology”. Teams are asked to come up with a drone design to aid in the conservation of endangered species, and projects submitted in the first round focused on an enormous variety of endangered animals, including snow leopards, black rhinos, pangolins, turtles, elephants and many more.

In the next round, qualifying teams will modify/build a drone to reflect their report design ideas as laid down in the first round within a fixed budget. They are required to submit two videos by 4th June, one to demonstrate their drone in action and able to complete a set of tasks, a second video to visually present an outline of their project to date. In the meantime, BIEA STEM Ambassadors will visit shortlisted teams and support their innovation projects.

Upon successful submission of the videos, teams are invited to come to the international final at the London Royal Air Force Museum on 4th July, with a public showcase of their projects and presenting to a panel of expert judges. A grand prize of £5,000 is waiting for the top team, a variety of other prizes across the age categories will be awarded to participating teams.

 

Teacher and students from No. 2 High School Attached to East China Normal University in Shanghai, explore components of drone as part of their investigative report.

About the competition

The annual BIEA International STEM Youth Innovation Competition is BIEA’s flagship programme designed to encourage students to pursue study and careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). It presents a unique opportunity to motivate the next generation of leaders who will change the way we explore and connect in the world. One theme is chosen each year to reflect the pressing issues and challenges in today’s world and how technology could be used to in solving these challenges. The competition spans three age ranges: 9-11, 12-14 and 15-17. Entry teams are made up of 3-5 students supported by a teacher, where teamwork is an important component of the competition. There are five main components to the competition: report writing, innovation, presentation, Dragon’s Den style pitching and fixed tasks.

BIEA promotes friendly competition among teams from diverse socio-economic backgrounds, ethnicities, and geographies – from emerging towns in Nigeria to historical capital city of China. Numerous teams are engaging in fundraising campaigns in their communities to make their participation this year possible.

Quotes

“The overall quality of the reports was astounding, more so when we consider that many young people were submitting reports in a second language. In some cases, the standards of secondary research and innovative experimental investigations to gather primary data for drone specifications were worthy of undergraduates rather than secondary school students.”

Dr Alex Holmes, Lead Competition Judge

 

BIEA aims to bring together educators and young people of all ages from around the world who share a passion for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). We hope our chosen topic will not only illustrate to the audience the importance of technological innovation when it comes to environmental protection, but also inspire the next generation of STEM graduates to put their minds to solving these pressing world issues”.

David Hanson, STEM Chairman, BIEA

 

“Wildlife is coming under increasing threat from human actions so Born Free is thrilled to be partnering with BIEA on this competition. It’s a chance to help the next generation understand the real-world application of STEM skills. How we can effectively use technology to protect and monitor wildlife populations could be the difference between extinction and survival for some of the world’s most threatened species.”

Laura Gosset, Head of Education, Born Free.

 

Follow and support your local team on the road to the International Finals using the official hashtag: #BIEACompetition

For more information about the BIEA International STEM Innovation Competition and to view the complete list of shortlist teams, visit our site: www.bieacompetition.org.uk/announcement, or follow BIEA @BIEAeducation on Twitter.


BIEA Grants Membership Certificate of E-League to Shanghai Duimohn Bilingual Children's Education School

Ms. Sharron Fogarty Head of Early Years at the British International Education Association (BIEA) attended the opening ceremony of the Duimohn Bilingual Children's Education School in Shanghai on March the 23rd. There she was pleased to issue a certificate of membership of the BIEA E-League to the Duimohn school.

Ms Fogarty was invited to the opening ceremony by the Duimohn School leader Maggie. Ms Fogarty, as a representative of the BIEA E-League, along with other guests and parents witnessed the beginning of a new chapter of British EYFS education in China with the opening of the school in Shanghai.

As the main support content of BIEA and BIEA Early Years League (E-League), the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is the provider of the British early years basic education practice. It supplies the members of the alliance with expert guidance, comprehensive EYFS teacher training, access to British research along with EYFS certification and other forms of early years educational support. As a member of the BIEA E-League, Duimohn Bilingual School will enjoy all the rights and interests of other BIEA British educational institutions whilst gaining the support of E-League British early YEARS educational resources.

As a representative of the BIEA E-League committee, Ms Fogarty gave a speech outlining the educational philosophy and aims of the BIEA E-League to the assembled guests and parents.

Director Fogarty said that EYFS, as one of the best early years education systems in the world, is following the four principles of "respecting a child’s personality, promoting positive relationships and providing and enabling the educational environment to promote the learning and development of children". Since its implementation in nurseries, schools and nurseries in the UK EYFS has been enthusiastically praised by parents and highly recommended by the international early education community. Ms Fogarty also gave a detailed introduction to the methods of the EYFS in bringing up children in a favourable learning environment and the positive conclusions resulting.

A clearer understanding of the goals of the EYFS and an explanation of its wider aims was greatly appreciated by the audience who gave enthusiastic applause to Ms Fogarty’s speech.

As living standards rise along with higher incomes in China, the demand for good and comprehensive early years education has created a booming market in that area. The unprecedented opportunities for development has provoked interest from many leading international educational groups. As one of the world's most authoritative standards for early years education, the British EYFS has attracted more and more attention from Chinese parents and early years professionals.

With the opening of a Chinese Bilingual school for children and its preliminary favourable evaluation by the BIEA E-League committee, the British EYFS bilingual system has been successfully introduced. A successful and comprehensive early years bilingual education, to provide a wider international and cultural interest in the young, has now been made available for the children in Shanghai.

Duimohn Bilingual Children's School will uphold the characteristics of EYFS as practiced in the UK and will provide music and art lessons, sport activities, picture book reading and basic understanding courses according to the EYFS programme. The target group is children up to the age of six. Classes will be held with the parent up to the age of three and from then on independently all carried out in a comprehensive and where possible, bilingual manner.
There is no doubt that the concept of international education has been enthusiastically welcomed and sought by more and more parents.

BIEA believes that under its guidance the Duimohn bilingual children’s school, and with the supervision of the introduction of the EYFS by the committee of the BIEA E-League, that the school will become a shining example of an international nursery amongst the many operating in Shanghai and contribute to the enthusiasm and growth to the internationalisation of China’s early years education programmes.


The second phase of EYFS training has been successfully completed

The second phase of BIEA E-league EYFS training was concluded and understood sooner than the lecturers had expected. The four-day EYFS teaching course integrating theoretical knowledge with teaching cases, classroom practice and other methods of learning not only lays down a solid foundation for the teachers participating but also broadens their framework for practice. The core of the course not only made the teaching atmosphere pleasant but was praised by all afterwards. Now let us explain the content of the four-day EYFS teaching course.

 

I. Essentials of EYFS Cycle

EYFS observation

Understanding the different types of observation records (including methods of key observation, closed and open data observation, shorthand, the "wow" moment, checklist, time sampling as well as event sampling etc.).

When making observation records, the most suitable method will be selected according to the situation at the time.

When EYFS observation is connected with EYFS learning development goals, we can record children's early years learning and development goals in the EYFS programme document.

EYFS evaluation

Understand the different types of EYFS evaluation (first evaluation, progress review, two-year-old progress check and EYFS portfolio) and the differences in content performance of each type of evaluation.

Learn to judge what developmental state a child is in (starting or more secure).

EYFS plan

Grasp when the entry point of the next step in the plan occurs and understand the key points of the different types of plan formulation through observation, recording and evaluation (e.g. long-term plan emphasises extensive overview, medium-term plan emphasises more details, short-term plan emphasises more specific details, etc.).

Master the idea of formulating the theme plan and learn how to apply the idea of the EYFS theme plan to other, differing theme plans.

2. Misunderstandings in teaching that should be avoided

Participants asked how to distinguish the roles of key people such as teachers and assistants in the observation records?

The lecturer, Sharron, explained that the key person is mainly responsible for collecting observational records whilst the assistant is responsible for assisting in collating those observational records. In most nurseries a teacher is the key person.

Students asked how would children behave when being videoed or photographed for observation purposes? Would they be distracted or behave differently? How can they deal with such a situation?

Sharron explained that nurseries in Britain face a similar problem and teachers will ask for the children's consent before they take a video or photograph. The children are not too curious about that behavior from the teacher. Video and photography are an excellent and convenient means of sharing children’s development with their parents as well as understanding the child’s needs.

3. Understanding British nurseries teaching aids

In addition to the training of teaching content, local teaching aids suppliers from the BIEA member marketplace also attended the training classes to demonstrate the teaching aid products popular in nurseries in the UK; some of which astonished those present.

4.Obtaining British CPD Certificate

At the end of the three-day course, the BIEA E-League issued the British Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Certificate for the teachers who participated in the training. The certificate was approved by the British CPD Certification Authority which is valid that the teachers have received systematic EYFS teaching training.

The vocational training system in British education is very mature. The professionals and teachers involved in Britain’s educational system have to accumulate a certain amount of hours of vocational training yearly to ensure that they remain at their professional level.

5. Teacher's Evaluation

The teachers who attended the EYFS course delivered by Sharron are confident and eager to put into practice what they have understood and learnt. The third phase of EYFS training will take place on 27 April 2019 in China.


Sino-British STEM Youth Exchange Project is expected to be allocated in Shanghai

Nikki Collins Managing Director and Mikky Ho China Chairman of the British International Education Association (BIEA) were invited to attend the Sino-British Youth STEM Exchange Symposium and its signing ceremony in Shanghai on March the 22nd. Wunan Xiao the Executive Vice-Chairman of Asia-Pacific Exchange and Cooperation Foundation (APECF) along with Xiaozong Zhang, Director of the Liaison Department of China International Cultural Exchange Centre (CICEC) and Guohua Yuan the President and Zhong Jin the Secretary of the Shanghai Lingang Economic Development (Group) Co.

Under the Aegis of the China International Youth STEM Centre, the Sino-British STEM Youth Exchange Project consists of the BIEA International STEM Youth Innovation Competition, a STEM International Youth Base, the International Youth Leadership Club and the International STEM Youth Research Centre. The aim of the project is to discover and cultivate young talent in science and technology of a high quality at an international level. It also aims to increase the level of teenager’s STEM education by incubating STEM projects so as to pool co-operation and discovery via the International Youth Exchange platform.

President Guohua of the Lingang Group gave a welcoming address. It is the Spring Equinox, and the education of teenagers is similarly a story of spring. He spoke of China’s desire to build an innovative society and country. He stated that it is the mission of every enterprise to cultivate talented young people. The key to the development of the country and its enterprises is the development of its talents. Britain is very experienced in training future talent. With the participation of BIEA many innovative ideas and elements will be injected into the Sino-British STEM Youth Exchange Project. All the institutions present were mainstays in the field of cultural and educational exchanges between China and the UK. He hoped all would speak freely and make suggestions for the promotion of Sino-UK exchanges in the field of science and the education of young people and contribute to the enhancement of friendship between China and the UK.

Secretary Zhong of Lingang Group stated that Shanghai is one of the leading international metropolitan areas in China and is one of the main windows enabling the rest of world to understand China and partake in its economy. As the only large-scale state-owned enterprise under Shanghai Guozi Wei, Lingang Group has built many high-quality industrial parks and sites, whether high-tech or otherwise, over the last ten years. As a builder concerned with urban renewal, Lingang group is upgrading its projects under the wave of reform in the new era of China and is actively introducing new industrial enterprises involving culture, science and technology.

Nikki Managing Director of BIEA watches the Sand Table of the Lingang Industrial Zone in the Lingang Exhibition Hall

Chairman Wunan of the APECF pointed out that it was precisely the attention and enthusiasm of all the distinguished guests, representing science and technological innovation in education, present that had led to the proposal of Sino-British STEM Youth Exchange Project. This project focuses on STEM and will be of great benefit to the future. Technological education is both a simple and complex subject. BIEA will provide with professional British-style STEM resources and the Lingang Group will provide us with the supporting space to house STEM projects. Fostering the technological and scientific education of adolescents is a complex and long project.

Nikki thanked all the participants for their recognition and support. As a non-profit educational organisation promoting British-style international education to countries outside the UK this was greatly appreciated. The BIEA came into being in the wake of Britain's proposed change in its relationship with Europe in 2016. Since its establishment it has been working to build a level of direct dialogue and exchange within the global educational system. Taiwan aims to broaden its international horizons in the educational field and upgrade its current practices. BIEA's abundant British educational resources and overseas development model are supported by official bodies such as the UK Department of International Trade and British Council. BIEA’s main business involves early years education, STEM education and focusing on the International STEM Youth Innovation Competition. The BIEA STEM League (S-League), a key project in STEM education, has attracted much attention from institutions and enterprises within education in China. It is the aim of BIEA's STEM education that young students and educators in China benefit from Britain's advanced and mature STEM education system.

Nikki also mentioned that BIEA held its first STEM Conference in London at the beginning of this year and that it had attracted worldwide attention. At the same time more than 32 countries and regions had registered for the International STEM Youth Innovation Competition, including several Chinese school teams, in just two months. The competition is the best interpretation and illustration of STEM's educational concept in Britain. It is not only intended to cultivate student’s technological innovation skills, but also to connect young people from all over the world in using technology to provide humane and positive solutions to worldwide problems.

The participants agreed that the Sino-British STEM Youth Exchange Project is an international and large-scale science and technology effort that gathers high-quality resources from the cultural, educational and scientific communities of China and Britain. Its creation will attract global attention and become an important part of China, Britain’s and the world's youth talent development plans.

CICEC, APECF, the Lingang Group and BIEA signed a memorandum of cooperation on the joint construction of the Sino-British STEM Youth Exchange Project at the conclusion of the symposium.

The BIEA delegates took photos with Chairman Wunan and Secretary Zhong in Sany Group

Under the invitation of Secretary Zhong of the Lingang Group, the participants of the symposium visited China's science and technology project at the Lingang Youth Science and Technology Exhibition Base, Sany Group and the Shanghai Yidasheng Science and Trade Co., Ltd.