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ISSUE 27 16 APRIL 2010


Dinosaurs at BSB!

Year 5 The Iron Man Year 4 Light & Shadow Year 1 Space

16 APRIL 2010 ISSUE 27

Key Dates


18 19


ASA Begin


KS2 (Y5 + 6) Swimming gala


KS2 (Y3 - 6) Sports day Secondary Sports day

26- Year 4 Pingyao Trip 30 29

Shunyi Parent Society Meeting 9.30am


Primary BSB Idol


Secondary BSB Idol


Foundation Sports Day

May 20



Visit from University of York




Year 2 Sleepover (SLT + SY)

KS1 (Y1+ 2) Sports day



KS1 Swimming Gala KS2 Swimming Gala Summer Fayre

The Iron Man

Light & Shadow

Dinosaurs & Insects

Year 5 have been reading the classic story, ‘The Iron Man’ this week and have been amazed by the vivid descriptions of the giant.

Year 3 are exploring light and shadow and how you can tell the time with sunlight.

Foundation Stage learn all about dinosaurs and insects.

From the Executive Principal


ear Parents

This week The British School of Beijing has played host to an inspection team. Dr David Singleton (OBE) led the team from the UK, David is a former director of the UK government schools inspection authority. The team were at Sanlitun and Shunyi and spent a considerable amount of time working with the schools leadership team and teachers. They spoke to parents, teachers and of course children. Any good inspection should be both thorough, insightful and slightly scary for those being inspected! Partly the inspection team are here to hold me to account for the quality of the school, and this is as it should be. They are also here to guide the school as we move forward with even greater levels of service to our families. I’m pleased to announce that the preliminary inspection report was highly complementary. I have not yet received the full written report from the team but when I receive it I will make it available to the Parent Advisory Board in full and will also make a summary of all points available to parents. Of course not everything is perfect but I believe openness and communication is by far the better optiion! I think The British School of Beijing can be justly proud of the school we have created in partnership with our families. I will share just one area from the preliminary report with you now, an area which was also highlighted by Prince Andrew during his visit. The behaviour, manners and enthusiasm for learning, the intangible “feel” of the school, was held up by the inspectors as among the best they had seen anywhere, ever. This is a remarkable achievement. Academic standards were proven to be high, this is expected of course. But I have to admit, personally, I was most proud of this one comment, that BSB has created a genuinely special environment for children and families in Beijing. A community of which we can all be proud to have done our part. This weekend I’m travelling to Shanghai to give the Keynote address at the Shanghai teachers conference. I’m not sure how yet, but somehow I suspect that the point from inspection team regarding how special our school is might just find its way into my presentation to the several hundred teachers at the conference! Very best regards from a very proud Executive Principal Mike Embley

16 APRIL 2010

er mind e r a Just SB Club that B l classes al Footb rom this f start y and Frida nd. e week




IMPORTANT INFORMA TION regarding British Cit izens living in Beijing The process for app lying for a British passport in China is changing: From 3 Ma y passports will no longer be pro cessed by the British Embassy in Be ijing.  From this date you will nee d to send your application to a Passport Processing Centre in Hong Kong.  For further det ails please visit http://ukinchina.

Friday 30th April - Foundation Stage Cross Campus Sports Day to be held in Shunyi On Wednesday 21st April The British School of Beijing will be hosting a KS 1 and 2 Cross Campus Striking and Fielding House competition. KS1 from both campuses will compete at our Sanlitun Campus, while KS2 from both campuses will compete at our Shunyi Campus from 1:00pm. A bus for parents from either campus will be arranged, therefore if you would like to reserve a place, please contact either Cher@britishschool. (KS 2 Sanlitun parents) or (KS1 Shunyi Parents). Both buses will be leaving at 12:00pm and will return at 2:30pm. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact either Mrs. Robinson (katie.robinson@ or myself ( We look forward to seeing you there!

16 APRIL 2010 ISSUE 27

Foundation Stage, Sanlitun

Rainbow Dinos!

All the children have come back this week full of energy after a restful break and ready to carry on with their summer term. We have a new member in our Pre-Nursery class Rocky Jing. We were thrilled to have him join us and could not wait to show him all the creepy crawlies in our classroom. It was bugs galore in Pre-nursery as we learnt about all sorts of insects. We insisted on having only the cute ones in our class of course! We made a giant spider out of newspaper and stockings, made spider hand prints, painted rocks to look like ladybugs and made a ladybug snack out of crackers and jam. We also sang lots of action songs about ants, bees and spiders. It sure was a beeee-zy week! The first week of the summer term has been very colourful in Nursery! We have discussed colour and made our own class favourite colour pictogram. ‘I can sing a rainbow’ has been sung with beautiful voices and we have had fun taking part in some action colour songs. Our letter of the week has been ‘i’. We thought of lots of different things beginning with the letter such as igloo, iguana and invitiation. Creating our very own abstract ‘i’nk pictures with pipettes and straws was lots of fun. Reception have loved our topic on Dinosaurs so much that we have continued it from before the holidays to this week. We even have a special egg waiting to hatch in our classroom – we don’t know but maybe it is a dinosaur!!!! We have been palaeontologists and went for a dinosaur dig in the sand pit. In music we used Xylophones to make our very own dinosaur song. Sandi Rae Keating, Sanlitun Foundation Stage

16 APRIL 2010


Key Stage One, Sanlitun This week in Year One we have started our exciting new topic on Space. The children have learnt about stars, planets, moons and solar systems. They looked at our solar system and have started looking at the order of the planets. The children drew their own aliens in Literacy and then thought about how to describe them using lots of exciting wow words. Some of the aliens had: “disgusting yellow tounges,” “grotesque purple noses,” and “terrible red eyes.” In Year two this week the children have started writing their own stories. Each child is making up the entire story by themselves the only thing they have to include in the story being that the main character goes on a journey somewhere. Thinking ahead the children have decided on their marble rewards this week. For 500 marbles they have decided on a sleep over at school! I bet the teachers can’t wait either!

Key Stage Two, Sanlitun

Illuminating Work! Due to the lack of sun and blue skies before the Easter holidays Year 3 Sanlitun were unable to complete their science topic ‘Light and Shadow’. But on the few sunny days this week we were able to pick up where we left off last term and continue the unit. This comprised of a collection of experiments and games designed to shed some light on our knowledge of light and shadow and how these are affected by the earth’s movement. For one of our experiments we tracked the ‘movement’ of the sun throughout the day. We used straws and a south facing window to show the position of the sun every hour. This taught us that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west and that, even though the sun appears to move, it is actually us moving not the sun. (Continued overleaf)

16 APRIL 2010 ISSUE 27

Next week will hopefully bring more sunny days so we can study and measure the length of our shadows throughout the day and play some fun shadow games where we will have to try and run away from our shadows, catch someone else’s and use our bodies to create shadows to spell out words and names. This topic is certainly an illuminating experience for all! Jo Young, Year 3

Key Stage Two, Sanlitun

Year 6 – Film Narrative

This week in Literacy, Year 6 have been watching and analysing the short film ‘The Piano’ by Aidan Gibbons. They began by only listening to the piece of music that accompanies it and were asked to comment on the piece and explain how it made them feel. They were then asked to write their own narrative that could have accompanied the music. After much anticipation, the children watched the film for the first time and were moved by its content. They discussed the features and themes and expressed their opinions. The children then went on to explore approaches made by the film maker to create moods, pace and viewpoint. They developed their film metalanguage by identifying how colour, light, sound and camera angles are used to tell the narrative. Next week they will use drama strategies to explore characterisation in depth. They will devise questions to ask the main characters and will work in role to explore more complex emotional issues. They will show their understanding of character by writing a short conversation at a key point in the film using the conventions of speech punctuation. For the final product of the unit, the Children will write their own version of The Piano narrative to accompany the film. Laura Beverley, Year 6

16 APRIL 2010


“It’s been a busy first week of term at BSB. The EAL students have been working hard as usual. All EAL students are focusing on the key skills of writing and speaking English. Year one students have been working on Space vocabulary. Year 2 students have been doing extra work on their Xinjiang class project and writing very good articles on the same subject. Year 4 students are practising their reading and information-finding skills through doing some work on Pingyao in preparation for their school trip in May. Year 5 and 6 students are polishing their grammar when speaking and writing. The year 6 students staged a debate about the advantages and disadvantages of television. They quickly realised there are advantages and disadvantages to everything which need to be recognised before reaching a considered opinion. A tip for this week: activities which are done in class (especially speaking activities) can often be done without a teacher outside of class. If you enjoyed a particular speaking game, why not try it at home or with your friends in the playground? Last term I saw two EAL students teaching two non-EAL students how to play a game which I taught them in class. It was wonderful to see them carrying on with the acitivity away from class!” Kaz Michalak, EAL


Reading Tip #5- Get Silly!

Practical, focused effort at improving your child’s reading has its right place and time, but as the saying goes, “all work and no play make Jack a dull boy.” So, if you find yourself worrying too much about your child’s progress or if reading has become a small battle between you and your offspring, then lighten things up and relax. Sometimes, your child may need to just be reminded that reading is for pleasure. Grab a book that makes you laugh or uses humor to explain the difficult things in life. In our home, we often refer to Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein. My husband and I both were raised on Silverstein’s humorous rhymes and often quote bits from his work when life’s situations bring them to mind. So, in the midst of intentional instruction, take a break and smile with your child. After all, “laughter is the best medicine.” Book Recommendation: The Llama Who Had No Pajama: 100 Favorite Poems by Mary Ann Hoberman. Although it is targeted for a younger audience, good poetry is for all ages!

Instrumental Music Programme Enrollment

If you would like your child to learn a musical instrument in addition to their PIPS instrument please ensure that the enrollment form and payment are sent in to Lisa or Emma at reception by next Monday at the latest. Instruments on offer include; piano, Flute, Clarinet, Trumpet, Saxophone, Violin, Cello, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Bass Guitar, Drums, Voice, Chinese Guzheng

16 APRIL 2010 ISSUE 27

A Message from the Head of Primary, Shunyi

Good Manners at BSB

The week began gently with a Primary Singing Assembly with Mrs Grierson. The children learned a new song about recycling which they can now sing with gusto, and did so at Friday’s assembly too! The rest of the week moved a quite a pace with school inspectors from the UK in to see the school and advise us further on improvements. Their final conclusion was that we have had significant achievements in a short time and that the school is developing quickly. The children’s beautiful manners, superb staff/pupils relationships and the friendly atmosphere on the playgrounds were all commented on heavily, as were the standards of writing and maths seen, the high level of pupil engagement in lessons and the children’s work ethic. We now have a great deal of data to help us move the school forward further and the staff are raring to go! It will be an exciting period at BSB. The Parent Society Fair on Friday was a great success and all the parents’ efforts produced a lovely morning – great shopping opportunities and tasty snacks too. Thanks to them all. Over 20 members of staff head off to our sister school in Shanghai for a weekend of staff training today. Several BSB staff members are leading training workshops for other teachers from the region, such is the expertise on our staff (and it’s great to share). Have a lovely sunny weekend. Jane Smith, Head of Primary

Music News, Shunyi

All Instrumental in Key Stage One & Reception!

The first week of term has been a very exciting one for Year 2 children. They have had their first string PIPS lessons! After Ms Maggie, Ms Elina, Ms Amy and Mrs. Mitford carefully selected children for the violin and the cello groups taking into account the children’s height and the strength of their hands, we spent time familiarizing ourselves with the different parts of the instruments and learning how to name the 4 strings. We were then given a violin or a cello and found it astonishing how many different sounds we could make just by tapping and plucking the strings! In a few weeks’ time we will be able to play some of our favourite tunes, we can’t wait to find out about how to do it! In Year 1 we have been learning a lot about instruments as well. We named each percussion instrument that we found in our music classroom and tried out the many different sounds they can make by hitting, tapping, banging, shaking and scraping them. In Reception we practised the 3 notes that we can play on our recorder and worked very hard trying to cover the holes with our tiny fingers. The caterpillar song that we can play on B, A and G sounded lovely as we were playing along with the piano accompaniment. We are ready to learn a new note now! Vera Mitford, Primary Music Teacher

16 APRIL 2010


Foundation Stage, Shunyi

Dynamic Dinosaurs!

It has been a fabulous start to the new term in Foundation Stage. Reception have been completing their ‘Dinosaurs’ topic and have been having so much fun! This week the children have made dinosaur counting books, a collage dinosaur habitat and been learning amazing dinosaur facts. The children looked at pictures of Paleontologists and dinosaur skeletons and fossils. They then went digging for dinosaurs in the sandpit, pretending they were scientists looking for dinosaur remains. In Nursery the children have been learning about ‘Colour and Shape’. They have been sorting and mixing colours, talking about their favourite colours and using the outdoor area to go on a colour treasure hunt. The creative work that the Nursery children have produced this week has been amazing. They have been using plasticene, paint, water and paper to experiment with colour mixing and everyone has enjoyed seeing new colours emerge. Pre -Nursery have been finding out about ‘bugs’ this week. Their classroom is full of beautiful butterflies, ladybirds and caterpillars. The children have been singing songs about butterflies and reading stories that have minibeasts in them. The highlight of the week was dressing up as minibeasts and going outside to move and dance like their favourite bugs! Jackie Bishop, Shunyi

16 APRIL 2010 ISSUE 27

Key Stage One , Shunyi

Space Exploration in Key Stage One!

Key Stage One has had a very exciting first week! In Year 1 we began painting planets and sculpting aliens using inspiration from the book Here Come the Aliens! Year 1 have been bringing in their favourite toys to share with the class to begin investigating the differences between new and old toys. The children have also been using money to make change and solve fairground word problems! Year 2 have been enjoying finding out about Xinjiang and comparing this locality to where we live. They have been thinking about all the features that make life in Xinjiang different to life here, but also the children have realised that there are some similarities too! The children also had the chance to put their measuring skills to practise, by having fun measuring different items in and around school. Erin Severy, Shunyi

Key Stage Two , Shunyi

Quests, Angles and Pingyao

Year 3 have been out and about this week. They have been around the school identifying right angles. They took pictures of them and marked the angles on in class. They have also measured themselves to create top trumps of themselves. They were amazed to see how much they had grown in two terms! They have finished their quest myths this week and these will be proudly displayed in the Year 3 area. In Science the children have enjoyed creating shadows and testing which materials are opaques, transparent or transluscent. Year 4 have been busy researching facts about the Pingyao Wall. They have worked with a partner to highlight important information about the wall and organise them using different subheadings. Next Week they will use the information gathered to write a nonchronological report about the Pingyao Wall. During numeracy the children have revised rounding. They have also been calculating the difference between two given temperatures as well as ordering both positive and negative numbers using the lesser and greater than symbols. In science we started thinking about out new topic habitats and writing a list of things we would like to find out. Nicola Thompson, Shunyi

16 APRIL 2010


Key Stage Two , Shunyi

The Iron Man, Space & Blodin

Year 5 this week and have been reading the classic story The Iron Man by Ted Hughes. The children have really enjoyed finding the dramatic and poetic language in the story. They have identified the ingredients in the opening of the story that make it so powerful and so memorable. Who can ever forget the first time they heard/read the story as a child? Why does it stick in the memory so well? The answer lies in the richness and subtlety of the language used. We have also begun our new science topic of Earth, Sun and Moon. The children generated many questions to which they would like to find the answers and we started the unit by investigating the changing perceptions of space throughout history. They then collected and discussed evidence to prove that the Earth was spherical. Year 6 have been writing fantasy stories about a dwarven character named Blodin. They have planned and written their stories using the appropriate structure, incorporated action, dialogue and description. They had to maintain character throughout and edit and improve their work. Their stories will be collected into a class anthology which will be available to read in the library very soon. Jason Oak, Shunyi

Music Notice

Instrumental Music Programme Enrollment

If you would like your child to learn a musical instrument in addition to their PIPS instrument please ensure that the enrollment form and payment are sent in to Lisa or Emma at reception by next Monday at the latest. Instruments on offer include; piano, Flute, Clarinet, Trumpet, Saxophone, Violin, Cello, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Bass Guitar, Drums, Voice, Chinese Guzheng

16 MAY 2010



Sanlitun House Points



Secondary Merit Awards

Shunyi House Points


















Key Stage 3 Mina Shin


Sejin Kim


Leonie Buschmann


Minori Yariwake


Key Stage 4

Congratulations to the Normans on earning the highest House Points for the week ending 16th May. Well done, Normans.

Congratulations to the Vikings on earning the highest House Points for the week ending 16th May. Well done, Vikings.

Oceane Duprat


Doris Sun


Prateek Pandey


Andrea DeMatteis


Parents Page BSB is pleased to widen the scope of our newsletter by including a parents’ page, items for this page should be in keeping with the ethos of the School and should be submitted to our Publications and Liaison Officer on newsletter@ before 4pm Wednesday on the week in which they are to appear. Please note we cannot advertise businesses, the aim is to promote charitable events and personal ads.

Nothing this week, please check again next week!

Newsletter #27  
Newsletter #27  

Newsletter #27