Kindergarten is the start of a child’s learning journey so it is important that we provide a rich and enticing learning environment that sparks their curiosity into life so that the students of Beijing Enlighten School can develop and grow into life- long learners.
In Kindergarten it is important to make sure the children have the foundations they need to move forward in their learning journey. We use the IB framework to incorporate the Chinese national curriculum objectives into our learning. We strive to provide a concept driven curriculum instead of content driven. This will ensure that the children have the foundational skills on how to learn and will use our approaches to learning to guide them through any future inquiry-based studies. Our learning is driven by the transdisciplinary themes and central ideas we learn throughout the year. Subject areas are taught through the central ideas of each unit of inquiry. Children will learn new vocabulary related to the units of inquiry in both English and Chinese and build their language skills in a relaxed and natural way through our learning environment.
At Beijing Enlighten School, our kindergarteners are encouraged to show characteristics of our learner profiles. This is an area of focus as it is important for us that the children grow up to be a good positive well-rounded individual.
Students will be involved with assessments throughout the year. Each unit of inquiry will contain three formative assessments and one summative assessment. The formative assessments will inform us of students’ prior knowledge and where they will need support moving forward in the unit of inquiry and the summative shows us what skills and knowledge the students have picked up during their inquiry cycle.
By the end of each school year, we aim for our kindergarteners to have acquired the base skill set needed for them to successfully transition into Grade 1 and beyond.
Grade 1 is the beginning of a learning journey which takes a child all the way to adulthood. It is vital that this journey starts out on the right foot and that a child is provided with the best possible beginning to this educational journey. At Beijing Enlighten School we strive to give Grade 1 children their best start in both foundational English, and the thinking skills required of IB students and lifelong learners.
As grade 1 students, there is a possibility that some children may not have been exposed to English in a classroom setting previously. It can be intimidating for children and indeed parents to immerse the children into a classroom setting which will be split evenly between their mother tongue and second language. The focus on foundational English during the first year in school is vital. At BES, the learning objectives, and pedagogically supported scope and sequence ensures that young learners can develop their English language skills to build a strong foundation or progression through in-classroom differentiation. The IB framework fosters international mindedness, and developing language and skills based on their interests through student agency supported learning inquiries. In these, children learn English based on their own interests through the transdisciplinary theme of the current unit. Beijing Enlighten School scope and sequence allow a pedagogical approach to ensure that the level is suitable for grade 1 students and particular focus on the areas of; reading, writing and speaking, allowing students to develop their language skills through a logical and well-structured approach.
English language objectives are just one part of a much larger picture for a student Beijing Enlighten School. Our student-centered approach means that students understand they are the center of a classroom and understand the responsibility which is placed on them through the idea of student agency. Student agency means that students are responsible and in charge of their learning objectives and lines of inquiry, in this sense teachers become facilitators of learning rather than instructors and disseminators of knowledge. It encourages autonomy in children and an understanding of responsibility from a young age. Within the IB framework Learner Profiles are used to encourage children to understand how they learn and what behaviors are associated with learning. This approach helps students to identify themselves and practice mindfulness in the classroom and in their lives.
Throughout the year, assessments provide students, teachers, and parents with continuous feedback about students’ development. Formative assessments will provide evidence for students’ understanding of each line of Inquiry and will focus on the following strands: oral language – listening and speaking, written language – reading and writing and visual language – viewing and presenting.
At the end of the Unit, a summative assessment will allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills, providing an overall picture of their development. The summative assessment will take the form of a presentation, a project, or a written piece of work. For example, students will have the opportunity to write a letter and perform a cultural dance at the end of the Unit “How We Express Ourselves”.
Grade 1 will prepare learners for the next step of their education, building a strong foundational language base, shaping their character as international-minded learners, and allowing them to follow their interests through the process of Inquiry. Students will be prepared to face the challenges of the next grade. During assessments teachers and educators will select criteria which includes those standards from grade 2 learning outcomes. These are marked as exceeding expectations for the grade level, and gives students and teachers an idea, and an introduction into what is required for the next phase of their educational journey.
Grade 2 is where students continue their foundational learning in Primary School. At Beijing Enlighten School, we seek to give Grade 2 students their best start in foundational English and continue to structure their Chinese language and Mathematics skills.
As grade 2 students, there is a possibility that some children may not have the skills necessary to learn collaboratively and work independently. It can be daunting for children and parents to engage them in a classroom setting split evenly between their home/family language and a second language.
The focus on foundational English during the first years in school is critical. At Beijing Enlighten School, the learning objectives and pedagogically supported scope and sequence ensure that young learners can develop their language skills to build a strong foundation or progression through in-classroom differentiation.
The IB framework fosters international-mindedness and develops language and skills based on their interests through student agency supported learning inquiries. In these, children learn languages based on their interests through the transdisciplinary theme of the current unit. Beijing Enlighten School scope and sequence allow a pedagogical approach to ensure that the level is suitable for grade 2 students and focuses on developing their language skills in a well-structured manner.
Languages, mathematics as part of the six subject areas in the PYP are just one part of a much larger picture for a student Beijing Enlighten School. Our student-centered approach means that students understand they are the center of a classroom and understand the responsibility placed on them through student agency. Student agency implies that students are responsible and in charge of their learning objectives and lines of inquiry.
In this sense, teachers become facilitators of learning rather than instructors and disseminators of knowledge. It encourages autonomy in children and an understanding of responsibility from a young age. Within the IB framework, Learner Profiles are used to encourage children to understand how they learn and what behaviors are associated with learning. This approach helps students identify themselves and practice mindfulness in the classroom and their lives.
Throughout the year, assessments provide students, teachers, and parents with continuous feedback about students’ development. Formative assessments will provide evidence for students’ understanding of each line of inquiry. They will focus on the following strands: oral language – listening and speaking, written language – reading and writing, and visual language – viewing and presenting.
A summative assessment allows students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills at the end of the unit, providing an overall picture of their development. The summative assessment will take the form of a presentation, a project, or a written piece of work.
Grade 2 will prepare learners for the next step of their education, building a robust foundational language base, shaping their character as international-minded learners, and allowing them to follow their interests through the process of inquiry. Students will be prepared to face the challenges of the next grade. Teachers and educators will select criteria that include those standards from grade 2 learning outcomes during assessments. These are marked as exceeding expectations for the grade level and give students and teachers an idea and an introduction into what is required for the next phase of their educational journey.
Students transitioning into grade 3 from grade 2 will experience changes in the way they think, communicate and interact with others.
In both English and Chinese classes, students will be challenged to think more critically. They will learn to inquire through a transdisciplinary approach that will require more comprehensive research and communication.
Throughout the year, grade 3 students will develop their social and communications skills. Through sharing ideas, peer assessing, and reflecting, they will learn to work independently and collaborate in groups.
As a learning community, students will have a chance to work with other students and teachers. They will take part in school events and join a variety of after school activities (ASA) that will allow them to express themselves to others in different environments. In order for our students to build confidence and manage their emotions, the Social Emotional Learning (SEL) curriculum is integrated into their daily school life.
At the end of the academic year, our goal is for all students in grade 3 to develop their inquiry, social and emotional skills that will prepare them for the next academic year.
As the Fourth-Grade team we are proud to work at Beijing Enlighten School within the bilingual school model with exceptional standards and world-class curriculum. Between us, we have worked and taught internationally, and it is our privilege to work in this school which welcomes and connects the world’s youth. Our commitment is to ensure that every student, wherever they are from and whatever their academic level, enjoys a life-changing and positive learning experience in Grade 4.
We encourage and challenge students to develop their speaking, reading, and writing well beyond the requirements of the syllabus, both in the classroom and in our wide range of extra-curricular activities. We want our students not just to gain new knowledge, but to learn how to think in new ways, they never thought was possible.
Bilingual education develops students’ language proficiency, helping them to master Chinese and English in writing, to speak fluently and properly, to appreciate the beauty of language and to develop an interest in language learning; to develop students’ higher order thinking skills and improve the quality of their learning. Through the study of English and Chinese language, culture and philosophy, our students develop skills such as communication, collaboration, creativity, problem solving, critical thinking and reflection, all which prepares them to face any future challenges in an increasingly competitive world.
Grade 4 students learn the skills of listening, reading, speaking, and writing in the process of being inspired by their own level of inquiry. In the same way learning is a life-long endeavor that can occur in a classroom, playing field, field trips or theatre, equally these learning principles are interconnected and multifaceted in their broader application. We implement a wide variety of teaching strategies are used that encourage students to be actively engaged in their learning. These include:Inquiry-based approach to enhance students’ understanding of languages, mathematics and sciences,Differentiated instruction ,Experiential learning,Cooperative learning and group work,Book studies,Project work and Performance tasks
Teachers assess student learning in a range of ways and the students themselves are expected to be reflective and to think about their own learning. Evidence of student learning is collected, and feedback is given to students regularly and to parents through interim communication, end of semester reports, and Parent Teacher Conferences. Parents and students share the learning journey through Student Portfolios and online platform called Toddle.
We apply a variety of assessment to ensure that the students attain skills and abilities which are essential in the digital age. Students are provided with abundant opportunities to stretch their faculties and build on their strengths. We seek to promote clarity and precision of expression in students’ skills and abilities and are committed to providing a learning environment that cultivates critical thinking and critical literacy. Our students learn about Chinese culture and philosophy which provides context for further appreciation and study of the Chinese language and culture.
In order to prepare the students for the 21st century it is essential to develop their abilities and skills to be independent, adaptable, and principled. With education in mind, innovative approaches and deeper level of student understanding will enable them to transfer their thinking from one domain to another. This concept-based approach underpins our Grade 4 curriculum but more importantly our entire approach to learning, teaching and student wellbeing.
As the grade five team here at Beijing Enlighten School, we are proud to connect the Eastern and Western philosophies of education to achieve exemplary academic values, as well as excellent morals both within school, and out in the real world. We are committed in ensuring that all students who pass through the fifth-grade are provided all the support to best facilitate their needs in education alongside their personal growth.
Students are encouraged to be risk-takers within our class and try to broaden their growing inquisitive minds as they work towards their graduation from elementary to middle school. They are stimulated to use all the learner profile attributes that they have cultivated over the years for their units of inquiry together with their various projects. The zenith of all their learning is showcased in the end-of-year PYP exhibition. This is a unit that is effectively student-led with facilitation from us and other teachers as they reach the culmination of the PYP program, creating their own lines of inquiry based on a central idea that captures their interest. This showcase exemplifies all the skills and knowledge the grade five students have accumulated. We want our students to present their ideas and skills in ways that they never believed was achievable before.
By using the various learner profiles that have been ingrained in the students since they arrived at Beijing Enlighten School, grade five students are challenged to truly grow their reading, writing, math, speaking, and critical thinking skills, not just in the classroom, but during extra-curricular activities, field trips, and when at home. With bilingual education and teamwork between Chinese and foreign staff, the grade five students develop a strong sense of collaboration with each other as they learn to reflect upon everything they achieve in our class.
We also encourage our students in grade five to embrace the modernization of education. They are given multiple opportunities to use apps and other programs to enhance their learning and broaden their skills for future opportunities, such as digital design and woodshop work. We encourage our students to take the lead when we are in class, cultivating their ideas on how they can best present projects and work to showcase their ability as inquirers.
Students in the fifth-grade are inspired to become independent learners as they gradually take their first steps towards middle school. They are motivated to provide their own research methods and take any assignments from teachers to then further broaden their own understandings in ways that are most beneficial to them. We provide them with multiple ways to be engaged within the classroom as well as when provided material for further study at home, but we also stimulate them to go further than they ever thought possible with autonomous learning. We are also fully committed to assisting our students’ various backgrounds and levels with their learning, and provide multiple differentiated learning opportunities to ensure no child is ever left behind.
Overall, we implement a wide variety of teaching strategies and skills to guarantee that all students are engaged and enjoying their learning whilst they attend grade five. These techniques vary from:Visible learning and teaching techniques, Multiple platforms for reading and inquiring,Project work, both physical and digital,Rubric assessments to check our students’ understanding throughout every unit,Self-teaching opportunities for students to educate their classmates and teachers ,Regular reflection
The PYP Exhibition celebrates the Primary Years Program for students in Grade 5. Students carry out a comprehensive, collaborative inquiry with the guidance of their teachers and mentors. Each student is assigned to a mentor that supports the development of the inquiry process of the exhibition for six weeks with weekly meetings twice per week. It is an opportunity for all students to apply the critical thinking and inquiry skills they have acquired throughout their PYP learning journey from their first years at Beijing Enlighten School to Grade 5. Moreover, it is a celebration of their skills developed in combination with their CNC studies which are fully integrated within the exhibition process.
Students choose a real-life issue or opportunity in which they are passionate or curious. They work together with their teachers to focus their inquiry, apply their knowledge and skills, investigate perspectives, and connect themselves, the community, and the world. They are encouraged to take ownership of their learning and consider how they can make a difference in the world.
The central idea for the PYP Exhibition states a broad conceptual understanding that enables students to explore the concepts embedded in the transdisciplinary theme. Students have planned their Exhibition under the PYP transdisciplinary theme, "How we express ourselves."
This is an inquiry into how we discover and express ideas, feelings, nature, culture, beliefs, and values; how we reflect on, extend and enjoy our creativity; our appreciation of the aesthetic.
The Exhibition inquiry process culminates in a presentation to the school and broader community, in which students demonstrate attributes of the IB Learner Profile and international mindedness. There are many elements to the Exhibition, one of those being an Expression Element.
Our 2021 exhibition saw our Grade 5 students organizing presentations to the broader community of parents who came to participate in activities prepared by the students and being part of the action towards supporting the Sustainable Development Goals that the students wanted to investigate.
Campus design integrates the Chinese quadrangle and European courtyard, with natural materials, open space, and is built in compliance with international environmental protection standards. Each area is unique, open, and contemporary, providing students with a safe, healthy learning and leisure environment.