In so many schools, it is not uncommon to see teaching and learning replaced by time-filling activities in the final weeks. As I walked around our school before Christmas, I was proud to see that this was not the case. In fact, I was able to see many examples of high-quality learning with students and staff demonstrating our core values. As would be expected, much of the learning had a festive theme, with Early Years and Key Stage 1 preparing for nativity performances, and Primary classes enjoying ‘Christmas Crafts’ activities. I was pleased to note that a ‘love of learning’ was evident in all activities.
As Principal, I had the pleasure of attending one of the three Early Years performances. The level of commitment demonstrated in learning the words to their songs was impressive, and the students gave another memorable show.
Performances by Miss Kathy’s team are always well attended and this was no exception with parents turning out in force to demonstrate their support to our school. I am sure by now the photographs and videos have been shared with grandparents and friends around the world, and will be cherished for years to come.
My next engagement was at the Hillside Building, where I had the privilege of seeing our Year 2 students perform their musical nativity. Their performance was truly delightful, and once again I was pleased to note so many smiles on students’ faces as they delivered their lines and performed their songs. It was clear to me that they thoroughly enjoyed their moment in the limelight, and the levels of confidence they displayed is a credit to the Key Stage 1 team, in particular, Miss Laura, who was responsible for directing. I imagine Mr. Andrew was very glad to get to the end of his first term as Head of Hillside Campus. I am sure the parents would agree that he has done an amazing job. His attention to detail and the level of care he demonstrates to each and every one of his KS1 students is admirable.
Not to be outdone, the Year 6 team organised a film awards event to celebrate students’ achievements in creating short films based around Greek mythology. The use of technology to enhance the learning process is something that we are keen to promote at the British School, and this event gave students a chance to demonstrate their iPad skills. While I was impressed by the use of technology, I was even more impressed by the levels of responsibility shown by the students in collaborating to create the finished films. With no time to spare, I dashed downstairs to join the Year 5 parents, who were sharing presentations from a topic on ‘ancient civilizations’, which looked at the lives of the Aztecs.
The British School has a reputation for providing a broad and busy curriculum. The Secondary team took that to the extreme this term. On the final day, Secondary students were involved in the NAE Global Classrooms project, ‘Make it Right’, which looks at every students right to an education. This project certainly caught their imagination and up until buses were leaving, students were sharing presentations around this project. I was delighted to note how inspired our Secondary students were by this project, and am indebted to Mr. Ruck and his Secondary team for their efforts to integrate our core values into the curriculum. It was without doubt a successful term for The British School of Guangzhou, and we look forward to the challenges of the coming term.