Our school is called Dalton IKC Seven Seas; a name that refers to the seas and oceans of the world. Someone who has ‘sailed the seven seas’ has been everywhere or has a lot of (life) experience. The ocean sailors who explored these seas were true explorers who fearlessly embarked on an adventure. They were curious travelers with open minds who dared to look at the world differently, taking in the new stuff They discovered, learned, experienced and passed on their knowledge.
This is what we also want to teach our pupils: a sense of adventure, curiosity, the will to discover and learn, responsibility, cooperation, perseverance and reflection.
Our school is called Dalton IKC Seven Seas; a name that refers to all the seas and oceans of the world. Someone who has ‘sailed the seven seas’ has been everywhere or has a lot of (life) experience. The ocean sailors who explored these seas were true explorers who fearlessly embarked on an adventure. They were curious travelers with open minds who dared to look at the world differently, taking in the new things with childlike enthusiasm. They discovered, learned, experienced and passed on their knowledge.
This is what we also want to teach our students: a sense of adventure, curiosity, the will to discover and learn, responsibility, cooperation, perseverance and reflection.
At Dalton IKC Zeven Zeeën diversity and uniqueness are central. We are an Integral Child Center where care and education work together so that pupils are offered optimal development opportunities from an early age. Opportunities to develop into world citizens who will shape the future. At our school everyone is different, but together we are one. Together we travel with an open mind and learn about the world. Our students sail on a colorful fleet where every child is allowed to be unique and curious. Can be independent and self-sufficient. Feels welcome and safe. Where every child acquires knowledge and discovers himself.
We are housed in a beautiful new building in the district Banne Zuid in the western part of Amsterdam-North, just five minutes cycling from station Gare du Nord (end stop North-South line). Since 2018, the Banne Zuid district has started to improve the quality of the living environment, and work is being done on the sustainable livability of the district. The aim is to create an inclusive neighborhood, where there is room for all the different residents of Amsterdam. A healthy and safe environment for the youth to grow up in is an important spearhead.
Our school plays an important role in connecting the school environment to the neighborhood. For example, our students participate in the district’s children’s council in which they actively discuss their neighborhood. In this way they learn what citizenship means, and become part of the community.
Since August 2018, there is a pilot multi-school directorship. This means that there is one multi-school director at both locations (two days at elementary school De Poolster and two days at Dalton IKC Zeven Zeeën). A location leader also works at both schools four days a week.
Vision: Everyone wants to discover
We believe that an explorer mentality is important for everyone. For children and for adults. Wanting to discover and experience makes us more aware of ourselves and the world around us.
Mission (this is what we try to achieve)
Go on discovery
We inspire students, colleagues and parents to be curious about the unknown. To adventure and learn both alone and together. Our pupils receive a solid foundation in which the dalton principles* are leading. By making independent choices, working together, reflecting, taking responsibility and working efficiently, our children develop into future-proof world citizens.
Message: Come on a voyage of discovery
We are a distinctive school. We employ sincere people with a love for children and a passion for education. People who also want to learn and discover new things themselves. And this is reflected in our shared core values:
We are explorers. We are courageous and fearless, not afraid of the unknown, we embrace change. By discovering we come closer to our strengths, to our talents. Through discovery we learn the most about ourselves and others.
The purpose of the journey is set; teachers coach students in their journey to achieve their personal goals.
We believe that a high degree of empathy is needed for children and ourselves to grow. We must be able to listen and empathize with others without losing ourselves. Only when we have the interest and ability to really understand and relate to the people around us can we learn a lot from each other.
Development? We love it. Making children grow – figuratively – is in our DNA. It is our job and our pleasure. It’s natural for us to provide students with the right tools so they can thrive and develop their skills.
We are makers. We love to improve existing things and build new things. Together we build our fleet, better education. We teach the children how to build their own future
We assume that an explorer mentality is present in every pupil. It is up to us to give the pupils the right tools to use this explorer mentality in his or her personal development. By doing so we stimulate the motivation to learn. By means of dalton education we support this. In the safe and familiar environment of the school the children feel free to independently, collaboratively, inquisitively and actively take on challenges.
At our school we give children ownership over their own learning. We teach the children to be responsible not only for the work they turn in, but also for how they make that work. We make them responsible for their own actions. We also make them responsible for the materials and their environment. Of course, a child does not have to be able to do this all at once. The teachers work together with the pupils towards this step by step.
Our starting point is that every child is an explorer by nature and we believe that they may take the initiative themselves. Independence is part of this. At our school children learn to think and act independently within frameworks. In steps they learn to carry out tasks independently or together, to solve problems themselves and to look for different solutions. The teachers guide the children in this. Teachers offer sufficient freedom and responsibility to let the independence grow successfully.
In society, we learn from and with each other. Within our school, it is no different. By working together, students learn to get along with others. We guide them in developing norms and values and we teach them to deal with their opinions. In addition, we teach the children that by working together they can give each other explanations for individual difficulties, but also that they can work on a joint assignment.
Learning from your experiences. We do that in school by reflecting. We teach the children, on the one hand, to look back on how they worked on their assignment and, on the other hand, we discuss the end result. The information we get from the reflection, the students take with them as a learning point to the next assignment. By constantly offering moments of reflection to the students, a mechanism arises whereby students at a certain point naturally start looking ahead at how they can best tackle their assignments. In this way the students grow in their development and gradually become more owner of their own learning process.
Effectiveness and efficiency
Time flies. Before you know it, another day has passed. In order to use the time the children spend in school as efficiently as possible, we organize our education in such a way that pupils are enabled to achieve their own learning goals. Children learn to manage class time well. They organize a large part of the day themselves. The teachers have an important role in this. They help the students plan, but they also provide realistic learning goals for each child.
We are ocean sailors. Explorers.
Floating in all kinds of different boats, our children sail towards the future. Those boats together form a beautifully colored fleet, where everyone is captain of his own ship, but at the same time is always a shipmate on another’s ship.
Sometimes the sea is rough and we are overwhelmed by setbacks, by high waves. But we are not afraid. We simply turn around or change course, we are fast, flexible and agile. Other times the sun shines, and we sail with the wind at our back, with full force, confidence and courage, towards the horizon.
That’s part of traveling. That variety keeps it exciting and offers a challenge. But we always learn, whatever the circumstances, together, with each other and from each other.
Our helmsmen and women also sail along and accompany us on our adventure. The goal is set and the course is determined. They help maneuver the fleet and make us seaworthy. They teach us how a compass works, how to read the stars and how to tie ship knots. Only then… we can set sail.
Our flagship? lies in Amsterdam Noord. A beautiful red boat with large round windows. This is where the adventure starts. This is where the journey begins. Again and again. Here parents, children and mates sail together, with each other. And from each journey we learn. We learn to talk to everyone, even if we can’t understand the other person. We get ideas on how to travel even better, faster, more fun next time. And we are never afraid to adjust our course – if necessary.