School Blog

Students visit Auschwitz

Students visit Auschwitz

At the beginning of term, a group of 18 students and three staff members left on a three-day-trip they had been planning for a year, to Krakow in Poland, and to the former German Nazi concentration and extermination camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau. This trip was open to students starting Year 9 this autumn, as they will be working on a big project about World War II in their lessons.

Impressions from students after they came home include that they learned a lot, and gained much better insight, perspective, and understanding about the Holocaust. On the first day, the students had an informative guided tour in Krakow, that gave background historical information. On the second day, the group had a guided tour in Auschwitz in the morning, and what they saw and learned they say was inhumane, deeply sad, and simply incomprehensible. They were glad that the afternoon’s visit to Birkenau held less information and more time to think and reflect. Even though it was a very intense day that included many kilometers of walking, the students were so moved they didn’t even notice, they say. On the last day, students could choose activities, and some went to the old salt mine, and some walked around town. This day also gave students more time to think, and also to see more of Krakow of today.

All in all, the students were very satisfied with the trip and what they had experienced, even if much of it was also difficult. The impressions and knowledge will stay with them, and they recommend making this trip to anyone who has the opportunity to do so.

From the Principal

Back to business!

Back to business!

Finally! The students are back in school! Do you have any idea how boring a school without students is? After only having staff in the school for some weeks it is so nice to hear children’s voices in the hallways again. 

We are starting the school year with several days of team building activities to give everyone the chance to get to know their new classmates and mentor teachers, while having some fun at the same time. Next week we will all be ready for new knowledge and new skills as regular lessons commence. Bring it on - we are ready!


From the Principal

Reflections and celebrations

Reflections and celebrations

The end of a school year! It is a day of many emotions and thoughts, for students and parents, as well as for us staff members. We have watched some of these students grow and develop over 7 years in our school, and others for a shorter time, but they all make an impression on us, and it is a privilege to see all these young people learn and develop. Academically, they keep amazing us with their insights, their fresh angles, the way they make connections and inferences, the way sometimes things that have been murky and cumbersome just suddenly fall into place and become clear and understandable - what joy and what a victory! Socially we also see great development during these crucial years as students interact with classmates and staff and gain independence and self-sufficiency. These are things that we reflect upon as we send our students off on summer holidays, and especially as we send our graduating Year 9 students off onto new chapters in their lives.

Thank you, students, for all that you teach us and share with us, and thank you, parents and guardians, for entrusting us with your children. We wish everyone a restful and enjoyable summer, and we looked forward to welcoming returning and new students again in August!

Teknikåttan Finals Beckon For Two IES Schools

Pictured above (L-R) Josef Kulberg, Beatrice Abelsson, Kasper Walan and Elin Edebali, finalists from IES Karlstad

Students from two Internationella Engelska Skolan schools have earned themselves a place in the final of a prestigious science, mathematics and technology contest.

When the national finals of Teknikåttan are held, later this month, both IES Gävle and IES Karlstad will be among the 13 schools hoping to win first place, having triumphed at their regional finals.

Eighth grade classes throughout Sweden had the chance to enter Teknikåtten during the qualification round.  Those who reached the regional finals at universities throughout Sweden then competed in construction, coding with chess pieces and cards, and a quiz, all for the chance of winning a place in the national final at the University of Lund on Thursday, 23 May.

Beatrice Abelsson from class 8C at IES Karlstad was one of the students who lifted the regional prize following the competition at the University of Karlstad.  She said: “The challenge I took part in was placing chess pieces on a board and conveying where they would stand by using playing cards. We wanted as many points as we could get, so we only used one suit, hearts. It was hard finding combinations and solutions of how we would place every piece.

“When we first started it was pretty hard but were kept going and trying, at the end when we were going to do it the final time we were confident that we could get the bonus points by doing it with just one suit.

“I think we are all pretty nervous about the national final, but we are working hard and we think we can do it. I know there is a team from IES Gävle in the final too, so I hope that either we win, or they win.”

Her classmate Oscar Petersson (pictured, right, with Hannah Stagen-Enwall and Marcus Bülund) was involved in construction challenges.

He said:  “We had to make the tallest possible tower with paper in a short amount of time.  Then, for the second challenge, we had to build a timer. We were supposed to flip a can of soda over after five minutes, we used water as the motor of the machine to measure how much time passed.

“During the test run we hit five minutes exactly, but in the end we were 40 seconds out, but we are still not sure why.

“I don’t know the other classes that are participating in the national final, but I hope we will place in the top three.”

Meanwhile class 8A from IES Gävle won their regional final at Högskolan Dalarna, also earning themselves a place in the national final.

Yanina Rydbäck and Ladouce Bigina were part of the winning team and are now preparing to make their way down to Lund for the final.

Yanina (pictured, left, with Cormac Brown, centre and Natan Stenlund, right) said: “I am very excited, kind of nervous, but it is a happy kind of nervous. I am interested in subjects around technology and science, I wanted to try hard and see how we would do, and it went well so far.”

Yanina took part in the quiz section of the competition.  She said: “There were a lot of questions about space or diseases and the questions that are hot in science right now.  I found the timeline for homosapiens hardest, we had to put historical things in the right order.  We got five out of six.”

Ladouce added: “I wanted to take part in the contest because it sounded like a fun thing to do, and it was a once in a lifetime thing.

“I was really shocked when we won, because I didn’t think that we would come so far.  Now I think we have a good chance of winning the national final because if we managed to win the first competition, nothing can stop us now.”