25 May, 2021
10 : 00
Reading is of vital importance to a child’s development. Literacy is as essential to daily life as it is to school. Emerging from a week of books, talks and exposure to various languages, there was much to talk about at YCIS Beijing.
Importance of Bilingualism at YCIS Beijing
Yew Chung International School of Beijing (YCIS Beijing) stresses mastery over both Chinese and English. This is the backbone of the school’s bilingual programme that incorporates a unique Co-Teaching Model blending the cultures and languages of the East and West.
To celebrate the joy of reading, the school held a Literacy Week from 19 to 23 April 2021. This activity-packed week came with a wide variety of exciting events. Activities at the Primary School were organised during the English Language and Literacy lessons as well as in Chinese as a Foreign Language (CFL) and Chinese as an Additional Language (CAL) classes.
Imagination Soars with Books, Tales and Swaps
The week commenced with presentations from various guest storytellers and speakers. Some were able to attend in person, while others delivered their talks online. Monday, for example, featured a live broadcast via Zoom, while on Tuesday, Ms Cindy Jenkins, a writer-editor parent of two YCIS Beijing students, visited the school in person. With her tales, she brought intrigue and excitement to spellbound students during the morning assembly in the auditorium.
Following assembly, students enjoyed the delights of ‘Mother Tongue Day’ on Tuesday. Several parents were invited to the classroom to read out a story, poem or passage of their choice in their native language. Students enjoyed a myriad of works in languages from around the globe. There was the story of Easter in Cantonese with the aid of a beautifully illustrated picture book, Chinese poetry, and much more. Kids learned words and phrases in different languages from native speakers. It was enjoyable and informative.
‘Book Swap Day’ was another popular highlight. Students brought books from home and exchanged these with their classmates on Wednesday. The children discovered different genres and topics and spent class immersed in a new world of storybooks.
The week progressed with drama and Chinese songs. Then came ‘Dress-up Day’ on Thursday when the children arrived dressed like a book character of their choice. Classrooms sparkled with colour as elaborately costumed Disney princesses, fairies and others mingled. Some teachers got into the spirit too and arrived dressed for the occasion.
The week concluded with a range of different activities, including Spelling Bee competitions. These gave the children the opportunity to hone their spelling skills while enjoying friendly competitive cheer. All students received a certificate at the end.
All in all, the activities brought light and life into what might have otherwise been an unnoticed quiet week in April. It was clear that learning is both valuable and enjoyable. YCIS Beijing encourages all its students to develop literacy skills. They can pore over books provided at school and also browse reading materials of their choice in spare time. It is a habit that will serve them through life.
For further information on how to help your child enhance his or her reading skills, please refer to the advice from Ms Jane Martuneac Kang, Primary Coordinator at YCIS Beijing. Find her Five Tips to Improve Your Child’s Reading This Summerhere, or delve into Reading Milestones by Ms Sharyn Yakas, YCIS Beijing Learning Support Teacher, here.