Classrooms Around the World: What Do You See?

This post is composed of photographs of classrooms taken in 17 countries to mark UNESCO-sponsored World Teachers’ Day (October 5, 2015). Instead of my offering commentary on these diverse photos, I would like viewers to offer their impressions in seeing these classrooms around the world.  I look forward to reading your comments. Thank you.

enhanced-buzz-wide-30661-1444017181-7                                                               Class 11 girl students attend a class at Zarghona high school in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Omar Sobhani / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-26855-1444017702-8Art teacher Hanna Snitko poses for a picture with final year students of the Ukrainian Humanities Lyceum in their classroom in Kiev, Ukraine. (Gleb Garanich / Reuters)enhanced-buzz-wide-2998-1444017966-7Master Mohammad Ayoub poses with his fifth-grade students at a local park in Islamabad, Pakistan. ( Caren Firouz / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-21478-1444018071-7Tahfiz or Koranic students in Madrasah Nurul Iman boarding school outside Malaysia’s capital city, Kuala Lumpur. (Olivia Harris / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-29919-1444018208-7Teacher Marcos Paulo Geronimo with first-grade high school students from the Dante Alighieri school in São Paulo, Brazil. (Paulo Whitaker / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-25251-1444018350-7Students of the Don Bosco Technical Collegue in Quito, Ecuador. (Guillermo Granja / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-15540-1444018411-7Teacher Moulay Ismael Lamrani with his class in the Oudaya primary school in Rabat, Morocco. (Youssef Boudlal / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-20158-1444018562-11Year 9 Biology boys class with teacher Suzanne Veitch at Forest School in London, England. (Russell Boyce / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-17503-1444018650-7First-grade students with their teacher Teruko Takakusaki during their homeroom period at Takinogawa Elementary School in Tokyo, Japan. (Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-692-1444018731-7Teacher Hanan Anzi with Syrian refugee students at Al Zaatari refugee camp in the Jordanian city of Mafraq, near the border with Syria. (Muhammad Hamed / Reuters)


Teachers Carla Smith and Laura Johnson pose for a picture with their third grade class at Jesse Sherwood Elementary School in Chicago, Illinois, United States. (Jim Young / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-27620-1444018880-8Teacher Ana Dorrego with students of the rural school Agustin Ferreira on the outskirts of Minas city, Uruguay. (Andres Stapff / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-2998-1444018815-15A teacher leads a class session at the ecole primaire Ave Marie in Burundi’s capital Bujumbura. (Thomas Mukoya / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-1941-1444019527-7Teacher Kahon Rochel with students at the the EPV Sinai primary school in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. (Luc Gnago / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-19365-1444019475-8Nguyen Thi Phuong teaches a third-grade class in the primary school of Van Chai in Dong Van district north of Hanoi, Vietnam. (Nguyen Huy Kham / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-920-1444019195-7Mohammed Zurob marks an exercise for his first-grade students during an English lesson inside a classroom at Taha Huseen elementary school in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip. (Ibraheem Abu Mustafa / Reuters)

enhanced-buzz-wide-10544-1444019039-8Students of the 10th form of the Gymnasium 1567 with their teacher of history, Tamara Eidelman, in Moscow, Russia. (Maxim Shemetov / Reuters)




Filed under how teachers teach

20 responses to “Classrooms Around the World: What Do You See?

  1. David

    Interesting the number of schools with shared desks–I wonder what this says about those cultures versus the standard individualized desks in the US.

  2. Not a lot of technology on display in any of those classrooms/

  3. JoeN

    Fascinating glimpse into the real world of education. Apart from the predominance of forward facing desks, which suggests that teachers retain their role in so many schools around the world as purveyors of knowledge, what strikes me is the prevalence, or absence, of classroom decoration.

    I suspect it is largely down to whether or not those rooms are “owned” by the teachers in them.

  4. I visited several schools when I was in Iraq in ’05 with the Army. Same dual desk, lack of wall decorations. Dual desks are cheaper than individual per student and wall decorations are usually not free either. Little things like thumb tacks did not exist. A simple thing like a notebook was a treasure. Elementary classrooms had segregated seating, boys on the right, girls on the left. High schools were predominately male. The 2 year Ag college had modern computers in a lab but that was it. No staff or teacher computers. Quality of education was as good as I see in the US. Integral calculus in 4th year of high school.

  5. Jennifer Lebsack

    I see uniforms, uniform desks ( in a row) , but what I also see is pride and happiness.

  6. Heather Lattimer

    Beautiful images that demonstrate a universal desire for education and hope for the future. Thank you for sharing!

  7. olofee

    I’m thinking: how much practical knowledge can you really learn sitting behind a desk?

  8. Well, according to the powers that be at my school, where “pod” tables are arranged haphazardly in open classrooms devoid of text books, and students learn how to learn while collaborating on group projects, all these teachers and schools have got education wrong and have only arranged the classrooms the way they have because “that is the way they were taught”.

  9. I wonder about the assumptions being made about exactly what happens in the classroom (i.e. nature of student-teacher interactions, styles of instruction, focus on the idea of instruction rather than learning, what it means to see so many workbooks on all those desks facing the same way…) when we, steeped in our own version of educational culture, look at these images.

  10. In my adventures while in the military I have had a chance to see classrooms in Thailand, Japan, Korea, Iraq (Arab and Kurds) and Germany. There seems to be a major cultural difference between these countries and the US. Except for Germany the kids realized what a privilege education was and they were willing to sacrifice a lot to get it. Germany had the same feel but not as strong. Of course in some of those countries only a select group get to go to school so this is not a true comparison between these examples and the US but still…

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