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    The British School Warsaw has been running the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme since 2001. It is the best course to follow for entry to the best universities, worldwide.

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Susan John

Susan John

Head of Chemistry, Assistant University Advisor & Year 13 Tutor

After I graduated, I trained as a neuropharmacologist using neurochemical techniques, and during this time I developed an interest in teaching and training. I subsequently embarked on a teaching career. Most of my professional career has been spent teaching a range of sixth form chemistry courses in addition to IGCSE chemistry. In previous teaching appointments, I have successfully developed and established a diverse STEM enrichment programme with a local charity and knowledge-based companies in Cambridge.

Chemistry is a truly international subject by virtue of the periodic table. The symbol formula for common table salt is NaCl which is the same in every language e.g. whether it be Hebrew, Nigerian, Malaysian or Icelandic. The development of chemistry over the centuries has involved the talents of individuals from countries throughout the world from Humphrey Davy to Marie Curie.  Chemistry is the central science which involves complex conceptual learning in the classroom, but the fundamental principles of chemistry are related to everything we do daily life from having a shower to using the mobile phone. Chemistry is a dynamic subject which has aid human endeavour and enhanced the wellbeing of humanity from the discovery and development of antibiotics to the use of catalytic converters.

I enjoy a wide range of interests including travelling, singing, salsa, learning new languages, independent cinema, reading, good conversation, shopping, cooking, theatre, cycling, politics and broadcasting. My favourite compound is the hexahydroxo Chromium (III) ion because it is the most beautiful shade of green.

A successful and balanced chemistry programme is one where students can understand the theory but can also perform practical investigations independently. The highest quality learning is consistent, engaging and accessible to all students of all social, economic, cultural, racial and religious backgrounds. Chemistry is a visual subject with the capacity to engage any student through practical investigations and demonstrations. I hope the students of the British School of Warsaw will appreciate that chemistry enables us to understand what is going on in the world around us.