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    YCIS 'Bookworms' Strike Again | How We Encourage Reading at YCIS


    07 Feb, 2024

    16 : 38

    •           “We are all readers at YCIS Beijing.” -Ms Heather Wright, Whole-School Teacher Librarian


      At YCIS Beijing, we foster a community of learners who recognise the importance of critical thinking, language proficiency, cultural awareness, and forward-thinking perspectives. Reading is an excellent way to develop these qualities through cognitive, emotional, and personal growth. We would like to showcase how we cultivate a love for reading among our students through participation in inter-school reading competitions such as Battle of the Books (BOB), school-wide reading challenges, welcoming library spaces, and the extended YCYW reading programmes. Please keep reading and learn more!


      BOB – First Place Victory for Team 1

      We are thrilled to announce that both YCIS teams of avid readers from Years 8 to 10 have recently successfully completed the second round in the Battle of the Books (BOB). In a fierce and timed battle testing their knowledge of book trivia against ten teams from six other international schools in Beijing, our two teams performed exceptionally well.



      Team 1 

      Jaydon Chieng 

      Daisy Lin 

      Zara Zdunek

      Zoe Zdunek

      Rachel He Manki 

      Sean Chieng 




      Team 2 

      Maya Ondere

      Olivia Swift

      Evelyn Wang

      Malia Meng Yuexin

      Charles Lin 

      Lynn Chen Sushou



      We want to extend a big congratulations to Team 1 for their impressive accomplishment of defending their first place in two consecutive competitions, which marks a historic win for YCIS Beijing. We also want to congratulate Team 2, consisting mainly of BOB newcomers, for outperforming five other teams, displaying their passion for reading, dedication to competing, and unwavering team spirit.


      We are excited for the upcoming third round of BOB in March, crossing our fingers for more victories of our two dedicated teams of literary enthusiasts!



      Beyond BOB – The YCIS Reading Programme

      Participation in the BOB is just a small part of our dynamic programmes to inspire and sustain a love of reading in our students. We had the privilege of speaking with Ms. Heather Wright, our esteemed Whole-School Teacher Librarian, to discover how our reading programs inspire our students to cultivate a passion for reading.


      How do you describe our library spaces?

                “Our libraries are welcoming spaces for all students, whether they think of themselves as avid readers or not. If students visit the library for studying, relaxing, playing games like chess, or drawing, they might also find a book that appeals to them and give it a try.”


      How do we foster a love for reading in Primary?

                "We continuously offer reading challenges to our Primary students to encourage them to read for at least 15 minutes per day. These challenges are designed to be fun and engaging and offer a variety of activities related to reading. For example, last summer, we had a sailing and explorer-themed challenge, which included reading books from different genres like fantasy, adventure, or nonfiction. During the winter holidays, we provided a colouring-in sheet where students could colour winter-themed images after reading for 15 minutes in fun ways, like wearing their winter scarf or hat or building a reading fort with pillows and blankets. Our spring-related reading challenge is coming up soon! Students can participate in these challenges by reading in English, Chinese, or their home languages.


      How do we enhance a reading culture in Secondary?

                “We have steadily expanded and enlarged the Secondary Library with many new English and Chinese books. We build our reading culture by displaying these new books and encouraging students to try new stories and genres. We are also improving our nonfiction collection for students who enjoy reading about facts and information, especially science, history, sports and well-being. We also continuously seek student and teacher book recommendations to display in the library. We also offer various CCAs in Secondary that encourage and involve reading, such as BOB and the TedxTalks.”


      YCYW Creative Response to Reading Competition

      In addition to our campus’ diverse reading programmes and challenges, the YCYW network also offers exciting opportunities for our students to share their literary and creative expressions. The “YCYW Creative Response to Reading” competition just kicked off. This artistic challenge is a cross-curricular activity to promote literacy and arts among our student body. Primary students in Years 1 to 6 are encouraged to create artistic responses to a text from the “YCYW Suggested Book Lists” or respond to a text of their own choosing. We are excited to witness the boundless creativity of our students as they pour their hearts into their written, visual, or dramatic reflections. We are eager to showcase their exceptional work and inspire our community to gain unique perspectives from our young artists and literary enthusiasts – and to continue reading!



    • Ms Heather Wright, Whole-School Teacher Librarian