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Transitions – Helping Our Students to Get Ready For Their Next Steps

18 June 2015

These last few weeks have been full of transitions where we have been helping children positively round off this school year and prepare for the next steps in their schooling. Whether they are Reception children literally taking some big steps as they move up into Year 1, or our Year 6 students coming to the end of their Primary School days, we have been giving them relevant experiences to show them the wonderful new adventures that are in store for them after the summer break.

  • Year 7 students at the British International School Shanghai, Puxi telling year 6 about life in secondary school
  • Year 7 students at the British International School Shanghai, Puxi telling year 6 about life in secondary school
  • Year 7 students at the British International School Shanghai, Puxi telling year 6 about life in secondary school

Last Friday our Year 6 students concluded their transition programme to get them ready for their move into Secondary, with a full ‘day in the life of a Year 7 student’. They became Year 7 students for the day and had all their lessons in Secondary, delivered by Secondary teachers, in Secondary classrooms (and stayed far away from the primary classrooms or teachers). This was a really stimulating experience which helped them become aware of secondary expectations and what an average school day will involve. Their transition programme has also seen Year 7 students acting as mentors and sharing their personal experiences of this big transition. This student-student approach has allowed children to have their questions answered, their anxieties addressed and their enthusiasm for new challenges fired up by young people who just a year ago were in their shoes. We look forward to the final element of their transition - the Year 6 Graduation and BISSCARs Ceremony taking place today, where we will celebrate the individual and collective achievements of this wonderful group of bright young people as they end the Primary phase of their schooling. Watch out for photos and a full round up of the BISSCARs next week.

At the other end of the school, our Reception children have been showing how grown up they are by lining up outside in the mornings. They have also spent some time upstairs in the Year 1 learning environment and have tried out the Primary Dining Hall. They are definitely ready for their big move upstairs and we are confident that they are going to come back after the summer ready to embrace the new challenges of Year 1.

With all our students, we are working with them to consider all the exciting possibilities that lie ahead as they move into a new class and new year groups, with a new teacher and with new students, and perhaps even a new school in a new country.  We are preparing them to think positively about these changes and to have the courage, determination and intelligence to overcome any anxieties or fears, and the flexibility to adapt to new situations. We have been helping to excite and reassure each child about the importance of moving forward as, while this can be a sad and anxious time, we also have to remember that endings lead to new beginnings and plenty of exciting new experiences lie ahead!

One week to go, with lots of rounding off still to be done in learning, friendships and transitions. We thank parents for your continued support right until the end of the school year and for all your help in making these last few weeks so positive and exciting for the children. I am sure we are all looking forward to a long summer break away from the routines of school, but please do find the energy for these last important days before we officially end the term on Thursday 25 June.

- Niki Meehan, Head of Primary