GEMS (Singapore) champions innovation and creativity by supporting student initiatives like Innovation Week
While many international schools in Singapore prioritise the importance of creativity and entrepreneurship skills in students, how many of them really walk the talk by providing children with unique opportunities to express these skills? GEMS World Academy (Singapore) does just that, helping students unlock their potential by fostering a creative environment that leads to amazing innovations from good ideas.
One of those good ideas? Innovation Week at GEMS (Singapore) – conceptualised, founded and executed by Grade 9 student Sam Poder. Sam came up with the idea to launch the first Innovation Week at GEMS (Singapore), where students attend workshops and meet influential figures in the industry. Sam then pitched his idea together with his friend Diego and got full support from the Education Leadership team and Student Council. This resulted in a partnership with industry giants Halogen Foundation, Free Software Foundation and Githhub.
They worked together to provide GEMS students with all sorts of useful workshops over the course of 8 days, including learning how to navigate Google Sheets, experiencing what it’s like to command a 60-tonne jet airliner, learning Python for programming and 3D Printing. There was also the chance for students to apply their creativity in a Minecraft Build Battle!
Sam shares his experience:
“I wanted to create a bite-sized entrepreneurial journey for students that closely replicated the journey I took with my friends to win an entrepreneurship competition and start a company that would raise thousands of dollars. At the Innovation Challenge, students brainstormed ideas and had a chance to build prototypes of these ideas. They then learned how to pitch from Halogen Foundation’s COO, Timothy Low, in an interactive pitching workshop. They then pitched their truly wonderful projects to our judges with many teams winning prizes! It was amazing to see the enthusiasm of these students to participate, their ability to apply classroom knowledge in a real-world situation and their strong technical ability.”
The ideas that came out of the Innovation Challenge were astounding – a true testament to how successful GEMS (Singapore) is in raising forward-thinking children! The grand champions pitched an idea for a mini bioreactor capable of producing pharmaceutical drugs quickly and inexpensively (forecasted to help an estimated 2 billion people worldwide). In second place, three students proposed technology to aid farming in inaccessible landscapes, while the third-place winners (who also snagged the Best Prototype prize!) came up with a platform offering universal education resources made in multiple languages so parents and teachers can access them from anywhere in the world.
The support for Sam’s student-led initiative demonstrates GEMS (Singapore)’s dedication to providing outstanding education in an international school. This is all underpinned by the four International Baccalaureate® (IB) programmes united by the IB’s philosophy and approaches to teaching and learning. The IB encourages not only academic achievement, but personal achievement, too, by challenging students to excel in all aspects of their lives.
The curriculum aims to develop a range of competencies and dispositions that include skills for thinking, working with others, communicating, self-management and research. Teachers create innovative learning environments for students to take risks, develop creative thinking and apply their imagination while they generate ideas and experiment. This combination provides students with multiple opportunities to practice skills in real-word settings and empowers them to take initiative, tackle difficult challenges with confidence, solve complex problems and find desirable solutions – just like how Sam and Diego set the school’s first Innovation Week in motion!
Could your kiddo pioneer the next student-led initiative at GEMS (Singapore)? Book a personalised tour to check out the school’s amazing facilities. Call the admissions team today or book a tour online!