Costa Rica 2019: Adnan Mackovic's Journey to TGS
If you had to pick one song, movie, or book that represents you, what would it be? Why?
Can’t say the song, Midnight's children is the book. Because it is a perfect combination of magic and realism which is one of his favorite reading genres
How would you like your name to appear in The Chameleon
What is the title of your job
How long have you worked a TGS?
For 4 years.
What subjects do you specialize in for student personal projects?
Anything with language
Dance in particular
What projects that you have mentored stand out to you? Why?
Students passion for what they are doing
Because it started as a joke about Adnan and his Starbucks addiction
The impact of the project has the potential to be amazing
How to help them achieve that makes it stand out.
Max’s Drama Project
Because it’s the first time he has seen max work passionately and dedicatedly
Max quote “I think I understood what needed to be done and the responsibilities I needed to take. I just understood the school more and thought that I should do what I would want to do, so I figured out what I wanted to do. It’s kind of what real life is like”
Because he was interested in the project
It was easier to tap into productivity
Sat max down to say he’s not moving until things are done.
Where have you worked before TGS?
Worked as head of English in Qatar
English teacher in Turkey in Istanbul
English teacher/professional development coordinator for a couple of schools in the UAE
What did you major in?
Why did you enjoy about where you were before TGS?
Enjoyed the challenges of helping students to understand the value of education
Worked with students who weren’t motivated to learn, to read, to do anything.
Was super important for them to learn all of that and was a daily challenge.
What were the challenges with your previous job/activities?
Biggest challenges were staying motivated to persist in conveying the message mentioned above
Constantly finding ways to motivate the kids
Path to TGS
How did you find TGS?
Jamie was the head of school in his last school. When Jamie got the job, didn’t believe Jamie and told him it didn’t exist. When he started at TGS, a year later, they had a position for student life and IB coordinator. School reached out, and he got the job
Why did you decide to work at TGS?
Usually, he leaves a place when he isn’t being challenged anymore. The reason he took TGS was that it was combining a very student-focused approach to education, travel, boarding, a challenge he didn’t know where it could take him.
Why do you enjoy teaching at TGS?
Because he truly believes in the school's philosophy/mission and core values. He sees the students striving to live up to those expectations every day. Seeing what can happen when students are given autonomy, voice, and choice and held accountable for that is inspiring.
Why is TGS good for the students from your perspective?
He hopes it teaches them to be a good human being, more than anything else. What he can see, as we go through our time at TGS, the growth in our personalities is unbelievable. If students leave knowing who they are as a person and embodying core values, that’s what it’s all about. That’s what he thinks education should strive for.
How would you describe the student staff connection?
He would compare it to a family where students have expectations of each other, where we hold each other accountable, where the students can rely on the teachers to support their growth and help them through their mistakes. The relationship where teachers have expectations and the students can strive to meet those, the teachers can help them to reach the expectations while also having a conversation about anything. Students can rely on the staff to have their best interests in mind. A relationship where we challenge each other to be the better versions of ourselves for both staff and students. A relationship that creates a community of people who are true to themselves and their values. A relationship where we make fun of each other. How he sees it is that it is an open relationship where there is a continuous focus on recognition as well as on improvements.
Why is the connection important?
A connection is everything in education. Students will feel more motivated to learn or do a project if you have a connection with the person you’re doing a project with. Having a better experience where you go if you make friends there. Having a bond between students and educators lets make the most out of every situation and really build a stronger character and stronger personality.