So-called ‘Third Culture’ students in international schools across the world are an example of those who need to learn how to thrive in this context on a daily basis. The first culture of the three refers to that of the country from which students’ parents originate. The second culture refers to that of the country in which the family currently resides and the third is generally seen as being a combination of the two. Becoming multilingual, having empathy and not judging others using a home culture as a benchmark are generally considered advantages of this type of upbringing.
At Regents, one could argue that the values that we hold as a community add a fourth culture to the mix. Our focus on the Round Square Discoveries of which compassion, responsibility and diversity play their part ensure that our students have more tools than most to help make sense of their position as global citizens. In addition we at Regents also understand that our outward looking education be balanced with a sense of belonging to one home culture and language - both elements that are crucial to students’ self-esteem and identity. Our expanding first language provision is a reflection of our belief that a strong foundation of competence in home language and culture is both cognitively and emotionally necessary for our students.
How thrilling it is to be a teacher at Regents and play a part in preparing students to be the world changers of the future; – well-grounded adults with strong identities who do not shy away from ‘difference’ but gravitate towards it and embrace it as creative, exciting, inspiring and enriching. With our Regents ‘fourth culture’ students finding their voice in the next generation of global citizens, the world has a better chance of becoming a place in which mutual understanding and tolerance can thrive.