Chilean students experience the London life in Cognita Schools exchange
Students from Cognita schools in Chile have been enjoying an educational visit to Cognita schools in the UK over the past six weeks. 20 students from three different schools have travelled from Chile to the UK to experience life at London day schools, attending North Bridge House Canonbury and North Bridge House Hampstead, while staying with local families.
A reciprocal trip for UK students to attend Cognita schools in Chile is currently being planned for 2017 and ongoing projects between the schools will enable the participants to strengthen the new connections they have made in the months and years to come.
The Chilean students’ experience has been one of complete immersion in the UK curriculum, with all of their lessons being taught in English – apart from their Spanish classes, of course, in which they are excelling – with the support of their own EAL (English as an Additional Language) teacher.
They have also joined their UK classmates for extension activities after school, from sports and drama to history tours of the local area. Additional pursuits have included visits to Oxford, the Harry Potter film studio and London’s Winter Wonderland.
Carolina Bergamasco Valle, Headteacher at Colegio Pumahue Peñalolén in Santiago, Chile, commented: “They (the students) have said it has been a very enriching experience. They have all learned a lot, not only in terms of improving their English but having new friends, opening up to the world and new experiences, visiting exciting places and getting used to a different system.”
For the UK students, the opportunity to practice their Spanish with native speakers, meet peers from across the world and learn more about Latin America has been invaluable. Joshua, a Year 10 student at North Bridge House, said: “I thought it was really interesting, I think the schooling is different in many ways but it is also very similar. They gave us a different take on so many of our subjects and we also got to experience a different culture.”