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Some UAE schools set to enjoy week-long, mid-term break this month

Head teachers aver it gives student time to recharge and prepare for their final exam preparation.



File photo
File photo
by

Nandini Sircar

Published: Tue 15 Feb 2022, 5:28 PM

Last updated: Wed 16 Feb 2022, 10:54 AM

Many schools in the UAE have already started their week-long, mid-term break while others are set to do it in the middle of the week.

Some schools conducted their internal exams in January, ahead of the half-term break in February.

Many British schools started their break on February 14, while some IB schools are heading for a break from February 17.

A few American schools had three days off from February 12 to 14 including the previous weekend, with classes resuming from Tuesday, February 15.

Uptown International School, Principal, Rob Commons says, “We completed our internal exams at the end of January, and this allowed us to provide individual feedback to students as quickly as possible. This in turn allows them to make an informed choice during the break… either to revise concepts they’ve found difficult, or to take some time to rest, relax and recuperate. The next 12 weeks are going to be naturally challenging for them. Therefore, it is important they take some time to recharge, ready for their final exam preparation. The most successful students are not those who study the most, it is those that arrive at the exam period confident, refreshed and ready to perform.”

Head teachers aver keeping classes running whether onsite or online has allowed students to cover course materials as planned at the start of the year.

“This then supports them in making informed decisions about their study at home over the holidays. Some students will study for several hours each day by choice, whereas others will study in shorter bursts. The key is to guide, support and allow students to find the ways that work for them, as this is exactly what they will have to discover at university during the next steps in their educational journey.”

In most international schools that began their academic year in September 25 March will mark the end of Term 2, leading up to the spring break.

Shedding light on how to leverage the ‘term break’ to compliment an enriching learning experience, Head of School/CEO, GEMS International School – Al Khail, Simon Herbert says,

“It is often best to avoid ‘knowledge overload’ just to meet curricular aims. It is far better to personalize the learning, seek out each child’s areas for development, and allow children time to follow their passions, lines of inquiry and self-management skills. If children can pursue their own reading, for example, well supported by school in reflective and evaluative tasks, this autonomy can be far more valuable in reaching the higher cognitive spheres than simply fact finding and memorization.”

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Meanwhile, Indian-curriculum schools that begin their academic year in April will not enjoy a midterm break in February but would instead get over two weeks off during March end.

Principal, Amity School Dubai, Sangita Chima says, “Learning has continued successfully at our school since September 2020, with new techniques and approaches regularly added to our learning model to support student growth and understanding. We have incorporated accelerated learning within an exceptionally well-designed circular strategy. Social emotional learning is a top priority, and it has been an important deviation from our regular curriculum. Our modification of the day’s learning rhythm to incorporate digital tools and intervention along with student-self driven learning plays a key role in ensuring no learning loss.”


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