Vega Schools, India's first school to become an Alliance member, is a premium Nursery through Class XII private school located in Gurgaon, India. In 2012, Dr. Steven Edwards and Sandy Hooda met and decided to co-found a school in India. Dr. Edwards mobilized leading experts in education: Andrew Raynor; David Price, OBE; and Carl Jarvis to mentor and share inspiration with Vega's founding team. Vega's raison d’être is to discover the star within each child - finding, triggering, and nurturing the passion in its students to encourage them to learn.
Vega believes that the traditional schools with their students in rows and a teacher at a chalkboard teaching to the bell is history and the way forward is with immersive learning experiences within a 21st century curriculum and flexible learning spaces. Creating an immersive learning experience engages the learner and improves concentration and the ability to perservere. Aligning learning activities to the child's passions and interests creates student driven learning, developing the notion of intrinsic discipline from an early age.
Likewise, memorization and studying to the test is a thing of the past. The environment children will enter upon leaving school will demand a different type of 21st century skills and Vega strives to teach them how to suceed in the real world and their future work environment. From primary school onwards, leadership, team work, communication, problem solving, analytical, technical, computer, inititiave, and strong work ethic skills are embedded into the curriculum through its immersive learning practices and techniques.
Vega understands that children differ in the manner and pace at which they learn. This necessitates a personalized learning plan for each child to meet the learning objectives in a timely and well thought out manner. Personal plans not only apply to academics, but also track all aspects of a child's development including higher order thinking skills and social and emotional intelligence.
Vega's standard is based on immersive learning, which includes five important aspects:
Immersive environments are created to enrich a child's experience by promoting the stimulation of senses. Consequently, through connecting children to a real world experience, deeper learning takes place. Vega has a variety of flexible learning spaces empowering children to decide how and where they would like to learn, engaging them further.
Child-centered learning starts with the needs of the child - the curriculum is the destination rather than the origin. Teaching and learning in Vega is simply the journey between these two points, touching what is relevant, engaging and has "real world" outcomes. Creatively bridging the learning interests of the child to the outcomes of the curriculum reverses the traditional planning process, making it child-centric.
Immersive challenge learning is an interdisciplinary approach that calls for co-teaching and peer learning, developing questioning skills to broaden and deepen subject matter knowledge, taking action, and developing presentation skills to explain the problem and demonstrate the solution. Immersive challenges encourage learners to leverage commonplace resources to solve "real world" problems. Children are empowered to make their own choices to solve the challenge presented to them, enabling them to acquire and develop real world problem solving skills.
Authentic projects are an exciting and motivational opportunity for young learners to demonstrate the knowledge and skills acquired while solving an immersive challenge. The results are presented to the community at large, an authentic audience that is effected by the solution, inspiring and passing on valuable critiques to the learners.
Critique is embedded within the Vega culture. Three main rules of critiquing others - be kind, be helpful, and be specific - encourage children to complete multiple drafts of work to ensure the highest quality possible and experience pride of genuine accomplishment.
Research shows that the design of learning spaces is a significant contributing factor to learning outcomes and progressive schools are already factoring in different learning styles, but are constrained by traditional classroom layouts. Vega's new primary campus and building have a unique design that supports personalized education and immersive learning. The facility has flexible learning layouts to accommodate individual quiet zones for study and play, one-on-one discussion areas, small group spaces for team learning, and large group activity zones. The design seamlessly fuses the work and play areas and lets the indoors flow fluidly into outdoor nature learning areas. Interest zones and activity clusters are spaced throughout in a manner that allows constant monitoring. Younger children can be enthralled in a story-telling zone, develop their motor skills in a manipulative zone, sharpen their intellect in a cognitive zone, perform an activity in a drama zone, or just play in a toy zone. The learning spaces for older children include learning studios, technology zones, collaboration areas, and activity centers.
The primary school opened for academic session for Nursery through Class 4 in April 2016.
Head of School
A great believer in experiential and example-based learning, Vasavdatta takes pride in seeing things from the child’s perspective and understanding their underlying concerns. With her warm and approachable demeanor, she has always been a mentor as well as a friend to her learners. She also believes that while a certain amount of firmness must be maintained, it is equally important to have a constant dialogue with learners and keep an open communication channel with them as well as their parents, especially as they enter their teenage years. For her, the starting point of any interaction is empathy as, with a proper understanding of the motivation of individuals, anything is possible.
Her experience across curricula enables her to bring the best into her overall approach to planning and implementation for the school as well as the learners.
Vasavdatta is a passionate educator with Bachelors and Masters degrees in History and Education from the University of Calcutta where she was also invited by the principal of her alma mater, Loreto College, to start teaching the degree course.
Since relocating to Delhi NCR in the early nineties she taught at The Shri Ram School for over 18 years and held various leadership positions that have helped her deploy her beliefs and values to impact her learners. Vasavdatta wore many hats during her tenure, including CAS Coordinator and an educator in the IBDP Programme.
She possesses a strong passion for reading, travel- especially going on wildlife safaris, visiting museums and places of historical interest.
About Vega Schools
PBL @ Vega
India Chapter Of Global School Alliance
A dreamer and a big-time believer of problem-based learning. She is a seasoned professional with years of experience in business and counselling. She has done her MBA in Marketing and HR. An empathetic listener who engages to understand core issues across different age groups and enables them to derive solutions. She has been recognized with various accolades in her past experience for counselling and business development. Shivani is an ambivert who loves to travel and explore new places and cultures