“Language is a city to the building of which every human being brought a stone.”
R. W. Emerson (American poet)
For thousands of years, societies with cultural and commercial relationships have traded not only goods but also their languages and beliefs. Thanks to this, humanity now has a large and extremely valuable treasury of knowledge. Today we live in a time where we understand each other more easily and we are more equipped to make use of this valuable resource. It is perhaps a natural result of this that English is becoming what could be considered the main language of the world.
At Üsküdar SEV Middle School, English is not treated as a foreign language but as a shared language. Our aim is for our students to be able to use English as effectively as their mother tongue in their education and throughout their lives.
Üsküdar SEV Middle School English Department aims, over the nine years of kindergarten and elementary education, and within the scope of the policies of the Ministry of National Education, to equip and enable its students to use English easily and fluently for a range of academic and social purposes.
We believe that the process of mastering a foreign language for such purposes involves a systematic approach to the formal study of the language and its literature as well as participation in a wide range of activities in a language-rich environment, which will provide both practice time and a sufficient opportunity for acquisition to take place.
Lessons are conducted interactively, with students being actively encouraged to recognize and make the most of their learning opportunities, and to develop positive learning attitudes. Students are encouraged to be imaginative and creative in approaching their tasks from different angles, and to work co-operatively with each other. They will be familiar in the use of basic MS Office applications and be aware of ongoing trends related to information technology.
IMPORTANT SCHOOL-WIDE EVENTS
Every October ghosts, goblins, and witches descend on the Üsküdar SEV Campus for the school’s annual Halloween Dance. In class, teachers share scary stories, in Art lessons spooky decorations are created, and the entire student body is surveyed for their favorite pop songs through an online link. Finally, at the appointed hour, the student body changes into their scary costumes and coalesces in the school gym. Our resident DJ fires up the latest tunes as everyone dances to the popular pop standards chosen. During breaks, students eat pizza, play a variety of games, get their faces painted, and perhaps, if they are brave, have their fortune read. By the closing dance, everyone is exhausted and looking forward to next year’s Halloween Dance.
Annual Winter Festival
Every year Üsküdar SEV hosts the Winter Festival. This gala is a celebration of the snow and ice that are hallmarks of the winter months. Each year all 5th, and 6th grade students write poems that capture the winter season. The poetry forms include haiku, cinquain, diamante, and lyric. All the poetry is decorated and displayed and the best poems are nominated by the English teachers and judged by the department as a whole. The finest poems are awarded prizes at the Winter Festival Assembly where our young poets read aloud their winning entry.
The Winter Festival assembly is also the place where the 5th and 6th grade classes have their spelling bee finals. Each October all classes are given lengthy word lists and encourage to study diligently. Then each class has its own spelling bee. The winners of these class level bees then square off in the spelling bee finals in the Winter Festival assembly. Support for the representatives is strong amongst the student body.
The culminating activity of the Winter Festival is a drama production prepared by our resident drama instructor.
The International Schools Theatre Association (ISTA) is a theatre association formed by international schools from many countries around the world. Every year ISTA holds international festivals in different countries, at different times and for different age groups. These festivals are held at international schools for primary, elementary or high school students, and ensure that both students and teachers receive the best possible experience of international theatre education. The organization also provides various resources and support on its website: www.ista.co.uk
The main goals of JMUN are to improve the writing and speaking skills of the delegates in English, equip students with useful skills to discuss the wide range of issues that the United Nations tries to address, and prepare students to be future delegates in MUN conferences. Students work together to discuss, debate and find solutions to the issues of our world.
Students are selected through a common exam which tests their knowledge of current events, geography, United Nations background and research and writing abilities. The students participate in two domestic conferences in İzmir and Tarsus plus an international conference in Paris. The conferences prepare the students for the MUN programs that they will continue with in high school.