01 Sep, 2017
10 : 00
On August 31, Yew Chung International School of Beijing partnered with JingKids to present a screening of the film Most Likely to Succeed – a critically acclaimed documentary on the state of formal education in the 21 century. Through interviews with some of the world’s top minds in education, including Sir Kenneth Robinson and Sal Khan, the film casts a critical eye on the antiquated 20-century industrial model of education that consists of boxed classrooms and rigid curriculums versus open spacesand student-led enquiry.
Most Likely to Succeed also takes a compelling look at an innovative new high school in California, High Tech High, and follows students over the course of the school year as they take on ambitious projects that challenge their creativity and critical thinking skills more than simply their capacity for rote memorization.
A film that serves as a springboard for discussion, the screening was followed by a Q&A with YCIS Beijing Western Co-Principal Noel Thomasand Dr Philip Bossert, senior consultant with OrienTech LLC, an education consulting and training company focused on 21st-century teaching and learning environments. Students, teachers, and parents in attendance were invited to share their questions and opinions regarding the film and its message, as well learn about how YCIS Beijing is already implementing the revolutionary ideas and methods explored in the film.
Before the film, Mr Thomas also greeted the audience and explained the film’s relevance to the activities and innovations already taking place at YCIS Beijing.
Imagine that you’re in a car. And now please imagine yourself looking into the rear-view mirror and seeing a long, straight road behind you. In such a situation, you would assume that the best way to steer your car in the future is to drive straight.
But now think about the actual future and the direction in which our world is heading. And please ask yourself, how does the road in front look? Is it a long, straight line, or is it a confusing array of choices branching out in all directions? It’s certainly the latter.
So, the question becomes, how do you design an education system for the 21-century? Do you design it by looking in the rear-view mirror? Or do you design it for what lies ahead? And I think today is about watching a film that says, both the road behind wasn’t as straight as you think, and the road ahead is far from straight.
Three things about YCIS Beijing that I hope will be evident to anyone gathered here today are, one, our commitment to Character Education; people’s moral fibre is critical to navigating that uncertain future. Two, we stress the importance of being bilingual and globally-minded. And three, also an aspect that is particularly relevant today, is our commitment to Learning Communities.
The Learning Community model is a different style of teaching and learning. It’s not entirely different, but it’s substantially different. It recognizes the academic pursuits which all students need to attain, while also emphasizing the soft skills which must go along with those academic pursuits – and which will, in fact, enhance the learning outcomes. So, you’re in a school today that is thoroughly committed to doing things differently.
And if you have a look now at the Primary section Learning Communitieson our campus, you’ll see vastly different kinds of facilities and classrooms to the traditional structure. If you look at our Secondary Learning Communities, you’ll see collaborative teaching environmentsand increasingly collaborative learning environments for students. All of these structures are mirroring the road that lies ahead of our students.
So, it’s really exciting for us to have you gathered here today, and it couldn’t be a more appropriate film to show in our school, given what we’re doing already. Thank you for being here, and I hope you enjoy the show.
Instead of serving as a forum to show our school community what we should be doing, instead, Most Likely Succeed reinforces the reasons behind YCIS Beijing’s existing educational approach – our Learning Community model is already decades ahead of its time.
To learn more about how YCIS Beijing is already implementing a 21-century educational model, please contact our admissions team today.