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    How Language Skills Catapulted Alice to an Award-winning Term

    Student Blog

    16 Nov, 2020

    10 : 00

    • Outstanding IGCSE students will be recognised for their stellar performance over the past two years and presented awards during the annual ceremony on November 26. Honours will be awarded in different fields like Humanities, CAS, History and Maths among others.

      The ceremony will also wish the new group of juniors well as they embark on a new journey as IBDP students. We had a chance to speak to awardee Alice Zhou who shared some highlights of her path to academic recognition.

      Getting over the Language Hurdle

      When Alice first joined YCIS Beijing seven years ago she had limited English skills. This meant she had to enter the EAL (English as an Additional Language) class to catch up.

      Now an English Language Literature student, Alice appreciates the support teachers provided (even during the online learning period) that helped her make significant strides.

      “The teachers are really helpful,” she says, underlining their readiness to assist students despite hindrances like quarantines or geographical distance.

      Language skills got her past several academic milestones and brought improved grades in other subjects such as Humanities and Maths. With dedication, practice and growing confidence, she has thrived academically.

      When I got my IGCSE certificate, I think I got three Bs and everything else was As and A pluses” she proudly declares.

      Rated Higher than Romeo and Juliet

      A literature aficionado, Alice has been captivated by Oedipus Rex, which she rates more highly than classics like Romeo and Juliet.

      “I think it’s fascinating how people can express their feelings through words,” she says.

      Her interests are not only focused on literature, however. She is an active member of our school’s sporting community – participating in both the volleyball and basketball teams – and enjoys the camaraderie fostered by sport. A former orchestra member, she also enjoys promoting special initiatives along with her fellow student leadership members. These activities include “Kindness Day” where secondary students send unsigned notes to schoolmates to demonstrate care and support, and the “Roots and Shoots” initiative for animal care.

      These initiatives are part of the CAS programme and also help strengthen the YCIS ethos.

      Friends, Fun, and the Future

      Alice is currently making the most of her IBDP experience and is looking forward to enjoying the remaining time with her friends on campus. She realises that the next two formative years within a tightly knit YCIS Beijing community are special but also looks forward to gaining admission in a reputable college and meeting more students from different backgrounds. For now, she treasures the laughter-filled lunchtimes with her campus circle.

      For her IGCSE successors, she advises a serious approach to the academic journey along with the fun. “Meet those deadlines,” she stresses, as this is pivotal in managing large volumes of work in senior years.