Author Archives: Nicholas Alchin

About Nicholas Alchin

Nicholas Alchin (@nicholas_alchin) is High School Principal at the United World College of SE Asia, East Campus. A sino-celtic Brit who has lived and taught in UK, Switzerland, Kenya and Singapore, he has also held a number of roles with the IB and writes and speaks widely on educational matters. He enjoys travelling with wife Ellie, and kids Tom (10), Millie (13) and Ruth (16).

How do we think about our children?

 The Carpenter and the Gardener: Metaphor matters All parents know that having kids changes us in many ways; not just in the obvious things, but also in the profound assumptions we have of the world, and indeed of ourselves.  About … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

Confused? I hope so.

I’ve been spending a fair bit of time in lessons this week – just dropping in and out of classes for a few minutes.  It’s good to see what’s happening in the various areas, to talk to students about how … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

The Professional Art of Conversation

With all the many great events that go on in schools – obviously lessons; also sports fixtures, music performances, drama productions, service trip, adventurous expeditions etc – it’s easy to get caught up in the tasks we all have to … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

On information overload

Should you care what I am wearing as I write this? Read on, gentle reader… Making sure that the education we offer is meeting student needs is an ongoing priority for us; and part of that has to be equipping … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

An essential quality of a great teacher.

I came across a story about three stonemasons giving accounts of their work.  The first said I am cutting stone; the second I am building a cathedral; the third I am serving God.  It is not hard to imagine which … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

Best Practice in Teaching

Educators are, in my experience, always looking to improve themselves, and often seeking to live up to, or implement ‘best practice.’ But that’s a surprisingly complex idea, and it may even be that there is actually no such single thing. … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

Kindly Perfectionism

I have heard it said that the happiest person on the Olympic podium is usually the bronze medallist, and the saddest is usually the silver medallist.  The former is delighted with the medal he got, the latter distraught over the … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

Jobs, Careers and Callings

Love and work are the cornerstones of our humanness. Sigmund Freud For most adults, work constitutes more than one-third of waking life, and the psychological study of work is a large academic field. We know that there is huge variation … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

It’s possible to be too open minded

I have just finished reading some work done by a student in one of my Theory of Knowledge classes.  He had been asked to compare several possible solutions to a problem, evaluate them and explain which one was the best one, … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment

The Tuition Issue

By Nicholas Alchin | Follow me on Twitter @nicholas_alchin I am often told that many of our students in High School are tutored in one or more subjects, and asked for a reaction. I rather have the impression that some parents … Continue reading

Posted in Nicholas Alchin | Leave a comment