Who is Chris?

This is a good question and one with an answer that, to paraphrase Fermat, “this page is to small to contain“. There is another version of this that describes a Chris from the angle of a Maths teacher. That version is on my other site http://www.mathsthoughts.com

Here are some salient facts.

I am English educated, getting a Maths degree at Cambridge University and my teaching qualification in London. For the last 33 years I have worked in Singapore, Geneva, Hong Kong and Lima. All of these are IB Diploma schools, so I have been teaching IB programmes for all that time. I was also chair of the IBs Diploma Programme Committee for a few years. For the last 20 years i have been School Principal first at The international School of Geneva and then at Island School, Hong Kong and now I am Head of Markham College in Lima, Peru.

During my time in various schools, I have been involved in various changes in these schools. In various positions of responsibility I have led the teams that have implemented these changes. Some of these have been controversial, some have been more successful than others. Throughout I have learned more and more about why schools need to change to avoid stagnation, how to avoid the pitfalls associated with change and how to get people onside and enthusiastic about the changes.

As a young teachers I was fortunate to learn my trade in a era when teachers were trusted to create new ways of teaching and learning. Our enthusiasm for what we were doing translated into the energy we put into it. I am convinced this was soaked up by the students who could see our passion and felt there must be worth in what we were teaching. That is not to say the teaching in an Inner London Comprehensive was not challenging. There were times when it hard, depressing and soul-destroying. The high points, though, were magical.

I left England in 1984, and I think that much of that freedom has been drowned in mist and regulation. The National Curriculum and the emphasis of content over skills killed the creativity of students and teachers. In the wider world, however, things seem to be livening up and I hope this site can be a contribution to that process. I spent 8 years in Hong Kong implementing exciting and fundamental changes to the structure in which we were teaching. I was fortunate, to have the most creative leadership team and the most enthusiastic and talented group of teachers I had ever worked with. In the wake of our radical curriculum changes, we designed a completely new school  building to teach them in. Now, in Lima we are trying to do new and different changes. They will be different from in Hong Kong because one size does not fit all. They will be the product id the exciting and excited teachers who are working here to design them and implement them. I am having the time of my life.

You can email me here if you like: christopher.binge@gmail.com

My other site is www.mathsthoughts.com It’s all about teaching Maths! Lots of ideas, examples and musings, plays, music, art and investigations. Have a look.