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A Pirate’s Life for BISS Puxi Students

11 mei 2017

Last week four BISS Puxi students and I travelled to Massachusetts to attend the Nord Anglia STEAMfest at MIT. This event saw over 100 students from 26 schools travel from their respective continents to meet in Boston.


The aim was to give students the opportunity to further develop skills in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM). STEAM courses are designed to encourage the design thinking process, encourage collaboration and nurture creativity in learners. As part of the Nord Anglia collaboration, the students had access to the world class facilities at MIT whilst also working with students and professors. Liam, Alison, Emma and Iwan attended David Wallace’s 2.009 Product Engineering Processes class, the most oversubscribed course at MIT where they had the chance to build carnival games. In addition the students had the chance to work in a fully functioning laboratory and undertake experiments to understand how GM foods are created.  They even had an audience with Marie Curie and raced fish fin propelled ships.

A highlight for all of the Nord Anglia students was the chance to work with MIT’s own Blackbeard to become fully qualified pirates. The students learnt how to fence, having the opportunity to take on students from other schools in one-on-one combat. They made and shot vacuum cannons and, after designing and making their own bows and arrows, the students took part in archery as well.

As MIT Pirates it was important for the Nord Anglia students to do some plundering of local establishments, so they were taken on a tour of Harvard. This was very enjoyable and certainly opened our eyes to what can be achieved with a growth mind-set and hard work.

It is impossible to quantify exactly how much the students from BISS Puxi gained from this once-in-a-lifetime experience. They had the chance to work with similarly minded, academically curious students from around the world. One thing I can say with absolute certainty is they would all love the opportunity to go back to MIT one day to either study or just to reflect on this trip and the friendships built during it.

Back at BISS Puxi we are now moving into our planning of STEAM activities that our pupils will have the chance to engage with in our new state-of-the-art facilities. With our new robotics lab, Maker-Space, TV studio and design labs opening in Secondary, coupled with new Primary facilities including a Genius Bar, Maker-Space and LEGO Lab, BISS Puxi will certainly be a hub of innovation and experimentation in the coming academic year. You can find out more by clicking this link or visiting us at BISS Puxi.

Paul Kelly, Deputy Head of Secondary