The International School Nido de Aguilas



Last year was a complicated one. Online schooling was new to everybody and it took a lot of adaptability. It also made it harder for teachers to connect with their students. That is why finding ways to better engage with them is one of the priorities of Nido teachers in 2021.

“Our focus this year was to hone in on engagement for students. In the last year with distance learning it has been down,” says Beth Yates, MS Language Arts Teacher. 

That is how Passion Projects came to be. The initiative lets 7th graders work on something they are excited about and learn several skills —such as researching and the art of narrative— along the way. “Normally, they are compliant, but now they are excited. Super excited,” says Ms.Yates.

The idea was inspired by Google’s Genius Hour, a program that allows employees to devote 20% of their time to a topic that is not part of their regular tasks. Something cool that usually they don’t have time for.

So how does it work? First, students need to identify their passion, which needs to be approved by their teacher. Then comes the planning and research of the project, which later they put into practice and adjust it if necessary. The whole process and progress of their journey is recorded to create the final product that will be shared along its learnings with their class in whatever medium they choose: a video, podcast or a presentation, among others.

“We thought about what skills can we implement so that students learn what we need to teach”, explains Ms.Yates. “We took this thing that kids want to do and learn how to do it well, instead of telling them what to do.” 

And students value the liberty to explore topics they are passionate about. “I like the freedom of choosing what you can do. You can choose what you want to practice or who to contact. Not everything is planned out for you,” says Emma, who is learning animation. 

There is a wide variety of projects among the 150 students that are participating. Each one can select one of three paths: a project with a specific goal, for example learning to play “Fur Elise” on the piano or how to bake a cake. Others are digging on a topic of study, researching the theories of the origin of the world or why people like certain foods and what effects they have on them. And another group is exploring unknown outcomes, such as what happens if you practice 15 minutes of yoga every day.

And despite being something they want to do, it’s not all fun and games. “Even though it is something that you like and you choose, you are still working,” says Matilda, who is practicing yoga to see how it affects her mentally and physically. “The most challenging part is committing to do it everyday but I have to if I want the project to work.” 

  • Schoolwide
  • middle school




Nido Helps Schools Impacted by Fires

Nido students, parents, the NPA, and staff are sponsoring 38 students from the Recaredo Vigueras Araneda School in Santa Juana and the República de Panamá School in Tomé, which were affected by the fires over the summer.

Successful Week Without Walls Program

After a whirlwind of a Week Without Walls program last week, the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive from students, teachers, and the parent community about the impactful, engaging, and fun learning opportunities the students experienced last week.

Nido Hosts Online and In-Person Workshop for 160 Public School Teachers

This summer, Nido hosted English Summer Town, a program that offers free professional development for public school teachers in Chile who teach English. Now in its seventh year, this initiative is done in partnership with the Ministerio de Educación's Centro de Perfeccionamiento, Experimentación e Investigaciones Pedagógicas(CPEIP) and Inglés Abre Puertas (PIAP). 

Project Blue: 5th Grade Service Learning Project

During November, 5th graders learned about ancient civilizations in their Social Study classes, one of which was the Mayan Civilization. Through Nido’s Elementary School Counselor, Ms. Ana Maria, students got in touch with a Mayan community in Cobá, located in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo. Our students needed to understand that the people, traditions, and languages they are learning about are still alive today!

Student Voices: Trail Running Race

On Saturday, November 12 Nido's Trail Running Team participated in the 10km “Burn Out Carbón” circuit, part of the “La Triple Corona” event in Vitacura. The “Burn Out Carbón” is an extremely challenging trail boasting 867 meters of elevation and an average inclination of 17%, reaching up to 45% at its steepest stretch. High School senior and team captain, Ian MacCormick did a write-up of his race experience. Read the blog post here. 


Nido was recently featured on the website of Inspire Citizens. This organization collaborates with administrators, educators, and students to reimagine education and schools through compassion, understanding, action, and connection for transformative, engaged global citizenship. The article is titled “Foundational Work: Redesigning a School’s Global Citizenship Journey” and talks about how educators at Nido have been doing some deep spadework in redefining their purpose and vision for the future.