Spring has finally sprung in the capital city, making it the perfect time to celebrate nature and similarly themed learning at HD Beijing School.
Spring activities have thus far included the fun-tastic Egg-stravaganza at the end of March, and during this past week, the celebration of the End of Chinese Theme, where we celebrated the successes and accomplishments of our students. Through a variety of presentations, activities and sharing of learning, children demonstrated a strong understanding of, and a keen interest in, the key concepts taught in the Integrated Chinese Curriculum.
Just as the love of learning needs to be nurtured, so does the love of reading. On Friday, we celebrated World Book Day through shared reading opportunities, dressing as our favourite book characters, writing about books and placing leaves on our Reading Tree, and by the charitable donation of a specially chosen book which will benefit children less fortunate than our HD Beijing students. We even had a webinar with the Charity’s school so that our students could speak directly to the students who would be receiving their books.
With only 10 weeks of school remaining, we have a full calendar ahead, including this week’s Spelling Bee event. Prep and Grade 1 will focus on revisiting this year’s key phonemes and word lists, whilst Grade 2 and 3 will have mini in-class spelling activities and competitions involving key vocabulary covered this academic year. It has been designed to be a fun and positive experience for all students.
There are a variety of upcoming whole school events, so please check your HDBJ calendar and save the dates. Your continual support of HD Beijing School events is gratefully appreciated.
Jodi L Ingersoll
Prep students happily played the song “The Snail and the Oriole Bird”, and performed their own interpretations accompanied by music. They are now able to play the xylophone skillfully, can recognise the timbre of the xylophone, and can play the single sound part of six to eight bars.
Grade 1 students learnt to sing “The Butterfly”, and danced to the “The Goose”.
Grade 2 students appreciated the orchestrated version of “Departure”, sensing and imagining the music in their minds. They performed their own interpretations with music. Singing, and playing “A thread in a mother's loving hand, makes up the clothes for her travelling son”.
During the poem “A Song of the Traveling son”, Grade 3 students were overwhelmed by intense Chinese traditional culture.
Design Thinking classes are busier than ever!
Prep and Grade 1 classes have successfully built tracks in teams to guide their tennis balls to the target box. We learnt a lot about objects in motion—especially rolling motion!—and how to use slope, friction and barriers to direct them to a target. We’re using that knowledge to help us build individual marble runs, which will later be connected with our classmates’ to create one enormous marble run!
Grade 2 has started a deep delve into the world of simple machines. We’ve explored the parts and purpose of a lever and had a speed-building round in which each learner had eight minutes to create a functioning lever. This week, we added the wheel and axle to our schema and made a visual list of items in the real world that use a wheel and axle and categorised them into items for work, play or both. Next week, we’ll do a speed-build of a wheel and axle to prepare for a large joint project with Grade 3 soon.
Grade 3 has completed their cars! Check out some of our action from our team plan discussions to tinkering with electronic components to consulting with Ms. Kalani and constructing the frames of our cars. It was a long road, and our Grade 3 teams were bursting with pride at completion. Next week, Grade 3 will jump into simple machines and forces/motion to prepare knowledge and skills for a joint project with Grade 2 learners.
Prep students created symmetrical sandbags using symmetrical elements. This was the first time they attempted weaving. During the second week, we learnt about three-dimensional design. We brainstormed the similarities, and differences between paper drawings, and three-dimensional shapes. Using this information, we made simple three-dimensional shapes with paper.
Grade 1 students produced a patterned bookmark. Using their understanding of texture and pattern, we combined lines and shapes to create unique patterns. By understanding the shapes’ natural state, and linking this with objects outside of the classroom, we mastered the art of three-dimensional design.
Grade 2 studied the works of Tom Otterness, and produced interesting figures made of clay.
Grade 3 created a large poster focusing on Spring, and how it is viewed through the children’s’ eyes.
During the last few weeks in physical education classes, we have been working on exercises that focus on motor co-ordination. This is deﬁned as the ability to use the muscles of the body whilst obeying the commands that the brain sends. The component of motor skills linked to fitness are: balance, speed, agility, reaction rate, jump, strength and endurance. The more complex the activity, the greater the degree of co-ordination required for movement efﬁciency.
Physical Education classes allow our students to develop playful activities of motor co-ordination, with diverse materials and movements. Thus, giving them a better understanding and development of the proposed skills, such as, throwing a ball, running, jumping over obstacles, and moving around cones. Through these activities, they have fun, and develop complex movements for the next few years of life - both for sports activities, and for their daily lives. Their muscles develop, they grow healthily, and are full of energy.
We also focused on working in teams to motivate each other to do the best in every exercise.
Student’s enjoy every moment of Physical Education.
We have focused on level-based games, and practicing golf swing.
During the first week, Prep students applied the skill of putting the putter, whilst Grade’s 1 to 3 students used chipping shots, putting the putter, and attacking pin to build power with their golf clubs. We focused on strengthening judgement, and team work.
The following week, we played many games to improve physical fitness. We focused on warm-up’s and doing exercises that improve flexibility, pliability and co-ordination, recapping on full swing, body rotation while striking, and stability with a full finish.
This semester, students have started to practice more match play. During the last two-weeks, training has coached them on how to compete, and how to play in back-hand. By demonstrating simple match play, and how to throw and catch the ball, we emphasised the importance of practicing backhand. With match and co-operation training, they were able to gain an understanding of tennis match play, and they felt more prepared for future competitions.
Over the past weeks, we have started to learn how to search basic information, and learnt about the classification of Chinese and English books. Not only did we gain an understanding of the concept, and functions of the index numbers, but we also carried out a trial on the computer by ourselves. We practiced using the online library catalogue system, Destiny, to search for a number of books.
Linking into the students math’s classification lessons, we were able to have a lively competition whilst returning books. After learning how to classify the books, Grade 1 students helped to put the books into their corresponding baskets, whilst reviewing what they just learnt. The students helped each other to complete the classification of the books.
In the computer room, under the instruction of teachers, we have practiced searching by using keywords or the title’s of books. We will gradually enhance learning, and practicing searches based on given information, to cultivate the awareness of information. It’s never too early to develop the habit of learning and obtaining information independently.
HDBJ Bi-Weekly Newsletter 180423
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