Sponsored by Beijing City International School (BCIS). Located in Beijing’s CBD, BCIS lives by its motto: “Empowering and Inspiring Through Challenge and Compassion.” This not-for-profit, co-educational day school provides a personalized, inclusive international curriculum under the International Baccalaureate (IB) World School system, offering the PYP, MYP and DP to both expatriate and Chinese national students from Toddler to Grade 12. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Parent Workshops are a common feature of many international schools. Sometimes they might also be called something like “information session” or “parent sharing session” depending on their exact content. Beijing City International School is no exception. Apart from running its many informative sessions on the IB Curriculum, student assessment, use of the Library, college application and many more, BCIS is very proud to run its monthly Parents as Learners (PAL) Workshops, typically held on either the final Tuesday or Thursday of each month.
What makes the PAL Workshops unique when compared to other workshops and information sessions? The most noticeable difference is that PAL Workshops are open to the public, so even non-BCIS parents can attend if they wish. The next important difference is that the content of PAL Workshops is deliberately geared to not be “BCIS-centric”, which is essential when trying to build a parent session that is going to be valuable to those in attendance, whether they are already part of the school community or not. Finally, PAL Workshops will not only tap into the rich and varied experience of the school’s faculty, but sometimes will invite outside experts to lead the 90-minute sessions.
Topics for past PAL Workshops have covered a wide variety of topics, including university applications, early childhood development, healthcare, use of technology, support in academic subjects such as Math and Language Acquisition and many more. To take two of this school year’s PAL Workshops as examples, there was first August’s workshop entitled “Transitions: Supporting Your Child Through Change”, which was extremely well attended with around 120 parents (BCIS and non-BCIS mixed) taking part. Second, there was “Early Childhood: Laying the Foundations of a Smarter and Happier Child”, which also received great acclaim from all the parents there. The titles demonstrate the most important quality of a PAL, which is also mentioned above, that the workshop must be both informative and valuable to both BCIS and non-BCIS parents.
PAL Workshops are an important of BCIS’ community building efforts. A school is not just a place where enrolled young people go to learn facts, participate in exams and gain certifications to go off to college. It is a community center, bringing together students, parents and teachers as a kind of “union”, working as a team to improve the local community and share their knowledge and experience to the benefit of all. BCIS holds its PAL Workshops monthly, with the next one being held on Tuesday, November 24, which is “Social Networking and Responsible Use of Technology”. Anyone interested in taking part in this workshop can email email@example.com