Graduated in 2022
Through the CAS programme and other extracurricular offerings at Linden Hall School, I developed the priceless abilities to think for myself and attempt new endeavours wholeheartedly without being afraid of failure. In addition, I gained the confidence and adaptability to handle dynamic situations.
My two years in the IB programme happened during the corona pandemic. At first glance, this seemed to place many restrictions on what I could do, but I decided to change my mindset and think creatively about what unique opportunities might have been born of the pandemic. Fortunately, I came across online study abroad opportunities at universities in the United States. I completed all of the paperwork myself, and enrolled in three different American universities’ online summer programmes throughout my 2 years in the IB. Such experiences cultivated in me a sense of initiative and a can-do attitude no matter the circumstances. During the six months between my graduation from high school and enrolment in an undergraduate degree programme in the United States, I contacted various organisations dealing with political and societal issues in Japan and was excited to obtain a paid summer internship. I also flew to New York to look for an internship during my university studies, and I enjoyed the opportunities to interact with active musicians and theatre professionals.
CAS: A part of the IB programme conducted outside of class hours that encompasses the three elements, Creativity, Activity and Service.
IB students must read and analyse a great amount of literature and research publications to arrive at sound, logical opinions and write many essays. To thrive in the IB programme, I had to develop strong time management and organisation skills.
Today, I am a performing arts student in university. As I am attending a comprehensive university, I am enrolled in general education, history of the performing arts, and performing arts analysis classes in addition to my acting and music classes. On top of this, I participate in multiple extracurricular activities that my department offers after classes on weekdays and on Saturdays. This means that I get home at about 10pm on most nights. The time management and organisation skills I acquired through the IB programme have proven extremely useful in university, and I believe other Linden Hall School IB programme graduates have had a similar experience. Thanks to the skills I gained in high school, I was able to obtain superior grades during my first semester and even had the honour of receiving the President’s Award from my university.
Graduated in 2022
I truly appreciated Linden Hall School’s personalized learning environment and opportunities to communicate closely with teachers. Because of the small class sizes, I received rapid responses to any questions I had related to my studies or other activities. Furthermore, the teachers provided handouts and materials to meet each student’s personal learning goals so that we could master even our weakest academic topics. As not only our homeroom teacher but also our subject teachers were aware of each of our various educational and career pathways, we felt safe and well cared for.
Students at Linden Hall School enjoy close friendships with their classmates as well as students in other grades. My seniors were more than happy to support me when I had queries about study skills or school life, and I remember supporting my juniors with the same.
I gained strong presentation skills during my time at Linden Hall School. Starting even in middle school, I enjoyed countless opportunities to develop presentations using PowerPoint and address audiences in English. My teachers provided invaluable and specific guidance on what points to highlight in my presentation, in what order to highlight them, and how to create effective visual materials to support my explanations. Through this, I became comfortable with expressing my thoughts and opinions to others. Today, the presentation skills I gained in middle and high school are definitely enhancing my performance at university.
Graduated in 2016
I think it was very beneficial for me to have taken the IBDP course and learned the fundamentals of research. Understanding how to “develop a hypothesis, gather the necessary information, and analyse that information” and “organise one's thoughts and write persuasively” has been a great asset. Even at the University of Washington, where I studied during my second and third years of university, I was able dive into the topics I wanted to study because I had a strong foundation of research skills.
I studied cognitive linguistics in university, and I am focusing on foreign language education and second language acquisition in graduate school. In the future, I would like to become a researcher in the field of education. Through my work, I hope to inspire people to become even more interested in learning English and other languages. Many people focus on the practical advantages of studying a foreign language, such as going on to higher education or obtaining a job, but I think the real appeal of studying a foreign language is learning to view things from a different perspective. Languages reflect people’s thinking patterns. For example, in English, the conclusion comes first, and the reasons for the conclusion follow. I want people to comprehend the depth of understanding that this field offers through developing a structural knowledge of language. In the future, I hope to pass on the importance of learning foreign languages to children in Japan through education.
Graduated in 2016
People who want to go to medical school in Japan often choose the TI course, but I chose the IB course. I made this decision because I wanted to make full use of the English I had learned so far, and the programme was a hallmark of Linden Hall School’s educational offerings. As I was also studying for the National Center Test for University Admissions in Japan, my schedule was quite challenging. However, I think the final result was well worth the effort. I greatly enjoyed learning independently and have retained this positive attitude. In university, we are required to study independently, so learning to work this way from early on has been very useful. If you are aiming to enter medical school in Japan, I think the TI course is appropriate because it provides information and skills useful in preparing for the domestic university entrance examinations. However, if you place more importance on independent learning, I think the IBDP course is also a great choice.
In the IB programme, we had many opportunities to think about and discuss problems that do not have a single correct answer. The teacher also does not provide the so-called correct answer. Through this learning programme, I came to understand the importance of considering various opinions and then forming my own approach. I hope that as a future doctor, I will be able to take into consideration the viewpoints of professionals of other occupations and the feelings of patients and their families.
Graduated in 2018
In the IB course, I have acquired the ability to think flexibly, especially when trying to understand others’ thinking patterns. The active learning* approach in the IBDP classes required me to derive and logically explain my own ideas, all while learning to listen to others' opinions. For example, I found that when I was commenting on a difficult poem, listening to others’ opinions helped me find clues to understanding the most challenging passages as well as develop further my own ideas. One of the highlights of the IB experience was learning to integrate new perspectives rather than clinging to my own way of thinking. Under the guidance of an international teaching team, I learned about diversity in values and developed a more open mind.
*Active learning - A collective term for active teaching and learning methods such as group discussion, debate, and group work.
In university, I'm studying political theories and ideas. At Columbia University, where I studied philosophy and political thought, I read a lot of literature. While I enjoyed analysing the works of thinkers from France, England, Germany, and so on, I began to wonder why Japanese thinkers weren’t included. It was through studying Western philosophy at a university overseas that I became more interested in Japanese philosophy. Today, I am planning to further explore philosophy and thought in graduate school.