Sponsored by Yew Chung International School of Beijing (YCIS Beijing) –YCIS Beijing is has a long history of academic achievement with five educational accreditations and a award from Cambridge International Examinations. YCIS Beijing is registered as a school for children of foreign nationals offering international education for students in kindergarten through to Year 13 and graduation to university. For more information, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Many agree that the early years of a child’s education are the most important. This is a stage in which children will begin to learn many of the necessary skills that will shape their later lives and way of thinking. Indeed the knowledge learned in the kindergarten years set a precedent for many learning skills required for further education in terms of developing physically, socially, intellectually and emotionally. However, this is also the most prominent time for children to almost subconsciously acquire linguistic skills.
At Yew Chung International School of Beijing (YCIS Beijing), a unique and progressive environment exists. The school has a bilingual environment with a co-teaching model unmatched by other educational institutions in Beijing. By combining one Western teacher and one Chinese teacher in each kindergarten classroom with shared authority and responsibility, a fully immersive bilingual environment has been achieved, allowing expatriate children in Beijing to take advantage of the opportunity they have living in China. YCIS Beijing Early Childhood Education (ECE) Coordinator Becky Penhall explains the importance of language at this tender age.“At YCIS Beijing, we know that learning only occurs when children feel safe and secure in their surroundings. Kind teachers show a genuine interest in the children and this is of paramount importance to learning and language acquisition. Children become naturally curious in new languages and find that they are drawn into learning. We provide informal, play based experiences which provide the perfect opportunity for children to explore language, helping to build up both understanding and vocabulary. Children at this age are more susceptible to picking up tones and accents naturally as their vocal chords have not yet fully developed. Our bilingual learning environment is key for encouraging children to learn additional languages. Hearing both languages simultaneously enables children to quickly decode and understand spoken language, as well as being encouraged to speak. Children are genuinely enthusiastic about learning new vocabulary and language!”
Aside from language,children in the kindergarten years undergo many profound changes, especially within an international setting. Kindergarten teachers need to be flexible when teaching children so young. Such challenges are natural and include adapting to children’s ability to remain attentive, setting routines that children are comfortable with and helping children to integrate with an international environment.Becky Penhall explains some of the effective teaching strategies that are present at YCIS Beijing.
“Observation is the key to understanding all the individual child; their personality, their likes and dislikes, their needs, their skills and the next stages in their development. Through observation, teachers are able to provide activities that engage children, foster their interests and help promote further development. Teachers spend time observing and interacting with the children, building their learning and promoting good social skills. In addition to this we provide group activities time, during which children are encouraged to participate in a fun and engaging activity delivered bilingually. At the end of every day, co-teachers discuss their observations of the children and consider the next steps in the children’s development and how best to support them. The Chinese and Western teachers work together for the next day’s plan after taking these observations into account. Setting clear rules, routines and boundaries is necessary and helps children to feel safe within the school setting; within predictable routines and appropriate boundaries. We work closely with our families, knowing that regular, effective communication promotes quality learning in the Early Years.”
Kindergarten is a pivotal time in a child’s development, excellent teachers are crucial to setting the tone for your child’s opinions about school in general and learning in particular. An effective kindergarten teacher will make your child feel comfortable in their daily environment and help them learn with methods that best suit their individual needs. These attributes shine through within the heart of all the teachers at YCIS Beijing
On Wednesday, May 13, YCIS Beijing will hold a Kindergarten Information Session from 10 a.m. – 12 noon. During the morning, Early Childhood Education Coordinator Rebecca Penhall will present an overview of the Kindergarten Curriculum at YCIS Beijing followed by a Q&A session. Parents and their children will then be given a tour of the Kindergarten classrooms and playground during which time they can actively take part in some of the Kindergarten classes to experience the school’s bilingual learning environment. If you’d like to register for this information session, please click here.