Pinewood was recently featured in the Greek magazine “Αλληλεγγύη Υγείαs” and is translated here in English.
A New Education for Greek and International Youth
Formerly hidden behind the trees in Panorama, it now stands prominently on the Thessalonikis-Moudanion Road in Thermi. Providing quality education steadfastly but quietly for over 60 years, its new leadership is opening doors and forging relationships with the community in Thessaloniki and beyond.
A mainstay of the city since 1950, Pinewood American International School is attracting attention with its new facilities, new Director and innovative vision for educating young people.
Pinewood moved to its new, fully equipped campus almost three years ago. There, one finds vibrantly colorful classrooms with large windows and plenty of natural light for students in Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten, Elementary, Middle School and High School. Although little-known among Greeks, the school has been accepting Greek students for more than 10 years and prepares all students, thanks to its successful International Baccalaureate Diploma Program, for higher studies in the USA, UK and English-speaking universities in other parts of the world, including Greece.
The school’s Technology laboratory, which provides wireless Internet access throughout the campus, is outfitted with 20 computers, a projection screen and a constant stream of student activity. On the second floor, the Science laboratory is among the most comprehensively stocked for student learning. Its four lab stations allow students to conduct experiments on everything from the effects of secondhand smoke to the growth rate of crystals.
Among Pinewood’s other learning areas are a mid-sized gymnasium and soccer pitch, tennis court, fine arts studio and student writing center, all of which are used during the academic program and for the rich after school activities program that runs every day from 15:00-16:15. Moreover, one of its most impressive features is the beautiful school library that houses close to 10,000 books in English to support the curriculum, which is taught all in English.
The new Director, Dr. Roxanne Giampapa, a contemporary educator from the United States, believes firmly that we must visualize school as a place without walls and student learning as an experience without limits. When talking about education, she uses terms such as “multiple intelligences” and “learning styles” and speaks passionately about Pinewood teachers who help students capitalize on their individual strengths as learners. “Such educational approach,” she says, “is the only way to be sure we are meeting the needs of every child.”
Parallel to the active learning that takes place for almost 200 students from 30 different countries at Pinewood is a new vision for the school—a vision for educating Greek and international students to be adaptable, global citizens and a focus on developing relationships with other internationally-minded organizations such as AHEPA and Propeller Club through scholarships for members’ children, service projects for Pinewood students and offering its facilities for community events.
“Pinewood,” as Dr. Giampapa puts it, “is a unique opportunity for Greek and international children to learn English fluently, develop critical thinking skills and create a world of opportunities for themselves.”