Julian Weekes

Julian Weekes

Julian Weekes

Elementary School teacher

Nationality: British

How long have you been at YIS, and where were you working prior to YIS?

I've been a teacher at YIS for 20 years. I had been working in Bogota, Colombia at the Colegio Anglo Colombiano for 4 years. What a fantastic place that was to be!

What do you love about the subject you teach?

I love teaching elementary age children... particularly Grade 3 to Grade 5. They are curious, natural inquirers, mostly eager to learn and fun to be with. They see the world in creative, novel and interesting ways.

What sports/non-academic activities are you involved with at school?

I have been involved with football at the High School level as a coach, baseball at the Middle School level, and have worked with all ages of elementary children through an after-school football activity. I have participated in the Cross Country Club too... many moons ago and have been involved with many after-school elementary activities.

How would you describe the IB Program, and its value, to parents?

It's a choice to consider. It's an approach to learning based around inquiry and curiosity and conceptual learning. Learning the big ideas, not necessarily a focus on small facts.... though knowledge plays its part. .

What is one positive surprise about your students that came about from the shift to Continuous Learning last spring?

Many students have become less dependent on the adults in their lives and consequently a bit more independent.

What are your passions and interests, and do you have opportunities to incorporate them in your role at YIS? 

Travel, learning, global finance, food, animal welfare, fitness ... and yes - everything that is interesting in life will fit into the role of the generalist Elementary teacher - somewhere, somehow.

What do you find attractive about YIS, and Japan?

YIS has been a great place to spend a significant portion of my working life. It has offered me the freedom to teach in my style and support in growing as a professional in many different ways. Japan is unique. It's Asia, in the most efficient and organised way possible. Everything works, as it's supposed to... until it doesn't. Follow the rules and you can't go wrong!

What profession would you like to try aside from teaching? 

That would be telling!!! But if I had to..... something in the field of investment education.

Who in history would you like to meet with and why? 

Margaret Thatcher. The Iron Lady. A formidable person, pivotal in British history. Loved and hated. I'd be interested to talk to her about the conflicts she dealt with and her opinions on how successful she thought she was.