Students welcome HH the Dalai Lama in Rotterdam

Dalai Lama visiting The Netherlands Representatives from the International School Breda traveled to Rotterdam on Monday, May 12 to participate in the Education of the Heart Symposium at Erasmus University.

The theme of the symposium was the education of the heart, or more specifically, the whole child. Traditional education has placed an emphasis on cognitive knowledge, facts, and rote memorization in preparation for tests and exams. However, new research is showing that previously intangible traits such as empathy and “gut feelings” are important enough to teach and develop in students who will become the world’s future citizens. Representatives from schools and educational programs were asked to share their best practices that stimulate the emotional and social intelligences of children – those programs that “educate the heart” of students.

The International School Breda was one of those schools asked to present its best practices. The primary school shared its personal goal setting initiative and the secondary school shared the MYP Year 5 personal project.

Maximus, Loranne and Young from Year 6 represented the primary students along with Mrs. Hagenaars. Young was featured in a short video about personal goals and Maximus and Loranne were welcomed to the stage and presented live to an audience of 600 people. They shared their personal goals of both resilience and thoughtfulness – traits that often aren’t the focus of traditional lessons. The crowd laughed and applauded their presentations.

The children joined other young people in attendance to welcome HH the Dalai Lama to the stage before enjoying a talk by His Holiness about the importance of love and affection in education. Loranne personally greeted HH the Dalai Lama upon his arrival to the university.

The most special moment was when he arrived,” she said. “He felt like kindness. He was there totally for me for a few seconds.

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