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What is AimHi?
"The evidence that 95% of students stay engaged with AimHi lessons from beginning to end is a very impressive statistic and says more about the success of AimHi, both now and to come, than anything I could add." - Sir Tim Smit, Eden Project
"AimHi's online school brings interactive live learning to life around the big questions of our modern world." - Dr. Jane Goodall
“Right now, most students can't access their usual level of learning, driving increasing inequality. It’s more important than ever to be providing free, inspiring, expansive lessons. AimHi is a fantastic resource for all ages, and the live, interactive nature is particularly brilliant for keeping students engaged, interested and learning a lot.” - Chris Packham
“AimHi is a fantastic platform for hosting interactive and educational live events. We are looking forward to our school and other partner schools attending more exciting lives in the future.” - Dave Morgan, Harrow School
Our vision is a school powered by curiosity; where creativity is valued over conformity; where students learn to be better stewards of our planet; where barriers come down between areas of study, people and nations; where international unity and global one-ness are paramount to learning; where equality of opportunity unlocks the full potential of our societies; where diverse thoughts and ideas flourish from all walks of life; where the messages of our greatest role models span borders and cultures.
Our mission is to teach, inspire and empower students worldwide to be more curious, to be better critical thinkers, to think as global citizens, to act on the basis of evidence, and to be wiser stewards of our communities and our biosphere. We strive to instil a lifelong love of learning in our students, to prepare them for roles that don’t exist yet, and to enable an international multitude of voices to help solve the world’s biggest problems. We do this through live, interactive, educational experiences with exceptional teachers and charismatic role models, all for free.
We began AimHi in March 2020 because, with schools closing around the world, millions were set to miss out on many months of learning.
We haven't been building AimHi for the short term though; we've been building for the future because we believe that the role of teachers is changing...
More information than ever before is available online, and yet with unprecedented challenges unfolding around us, far too many are demotivated, disempowered and disengaged.
Furthermore, with celebrity culture shifting away from scientists, explorers, poets and authors, and an increasingly pervasive social media, our young people desperately need better role models.
At AimHi, we decided to focus on inspiring curiosity, building bridges between disciplines, nurturing critical thinking skills, demystifying complex concepts, and providing strong, positive role models. We also strive to open up the world of work, exposing our students to the many available paths they can take through life.
We don’t think “success” should be defined by short-term information recall or the number of top grades: instead we work to enthuse and empower our students, measuring progress by how much our students want to keep learning, and how much they want to act to improve our world.
We are assembling exceptional teachers and charismatic role models, with outstanding knowledge, strong characters and an ability to interconnect highly varied ideas, so that we can inspire and captivate our growing community of students around the world.
By teaching via an online platform, we not only overcome challenges of distance and separation, bringing accessible education to almost anyone; we also free teachers from the need to control disruptive students, so we can focus on being charismatic tour guides of educational adventures.
By welcoming and motivating live interaction, we give everyone the opportunity to ask questions, think critically and steer the journey. Thousands of students are able to take part at once, all with a chance to engage and interact with in real-time via live chat, polls, puzzles and more.
Our lessons are targeted at ages 8 - adult.
Our Learning Adventures span syllabuses and centre around big questions like...
Are humans really the smartest animals?
Should trees be paid more than footballers?
What does freedom taste like?
Do we live in a simulation?
Our Inspiring Guests have so far included Dr Jane Goodall and George Monbiot, and this summer we have guests like the NASA Hubble Fellow of NYU and UNSW's Emerging Through Leader.
Our AimHiDuo sessions bring together teachers across disciplines, so that students can not only appreciate the links between traditionally separated areas of study, but also witness adults asking one another questions and enjoying learning from one another in an interdisciplinary manner.
Our International Hive Projects aim to foster global community and empower students, by creating cross boarder collaborations leading to real world outcomes: co-authored books, campaigns and so on.
Our teaching is linked to key curriculum points, so that it complements and aids progress in the traditional school system, though our priority is always to inspire, enthuse and broaden the minds of our students.
Furthermore, through making knowledge more accessible to all, we are working to further the UN Sustainable Development Goals, especially SDG 4.
AimHi's teachers are led by science communicator Matthew Shribman (TEDxLondon, BBC, Patagonia Change Maker, 25M online views).
Our Journey So Far
By April, we'd reached over 3000 students in over 50 countries, been featured in BBC News, established a partnership with the Eden Project, and built a core of exceptional teachers.
By May, we'd gained the support of EcoSchools UK, Friends of The Earth and Great Ormond Street Hospital, and our live lessons had reached over 5,000 students in over 90 countries. UNHCR had also agreed to help us to distribute our resources to refugee camps around the world.
By June, we'd reached 10,000 students in over 115 countries and gained the support of Education Scotland. We'd vastly improved the quality of our offering, and ran live, interactive lessons with both George Monbiot and Dr Jane Goodall. In addition, through HundrED, we had partnered with Kiwix to make our lessons available offline to further distribute our resources.
Over the summer, we are building more collaborations and reflecting and developing plans to scale AimHi even more rapidly, in accordance with our values, to enable more effective connections between the world's best teachers and students around the globe. In particular, we are looking to expand part of our innovation into the tutorial style market.
Curiosity: Every one of us is born full of curiosity, thirsty for discovery, and as we grow, we all take pleasure in mastering the complex. We believe that everyone has the potential to be brilliant, and that the key is dedication and nurturing our natural curiosity.
Positive Global Impact: If we’re not trying to change the world for the better, we’re living in the wrong time. We celebrate people and organisations working to better humankind and safeguard nature. We encourage our students to follow in these footsteps as global stewards.
Authenticity, Honesty & Humility: The universe is vast and beautiful, and we don’t know most of what there is to know. Our school celebrates questions over correctness, and our teachers, whilst experts in their fields, are open about how much we all still have left to learn about everything.
Creativity, Courage & Perseverance: No positive change ever happened in the world by doing things the way they’ve always been done. It takes creativity to invent, courage to stand by what is right, and perseverance to bring about progress. Our school supports the seemingly possible when it needs to be done.
Generosity: We are all stronger when we share. Trees flourish by exchanging nutrients via fungal networks, and whilst our human networks are different, generosity with our time, skills, resources and ideas is crucial for building positive relationships and fostering progress.
Community: In nature, if one creature dominates, all others suffer. Healthy ecosystems are communities built on strong relationships. We are building a school that rejects zero-sum thinking and promotes international kinship and collaboration.
Diversity: Ancient forests teem with life, whilst monoculture fields degrade the soil and slowly turn to wasteland. We are stronger when we seek out and respect variety, and become the diversity that we want to see in the world: we see this as a vital part of a school fit for the future.
Patience & Kindness: No tree grows overnight, nor the same, nor at the same speed, yet a forest is nothing without them all. Learning takes time, and people learn at different speeds with different needs. Our teachers and team are patient, compassionate and kind with every student.
Nature First: Our world is in crisis - soaring global temperatures, seas full of plastic, rapidly vanishing wildlife - and we have everything to lose. Nature is a key stakeholder in all of our school’s decision making and teaching, because our lives might all depend on it.