Transitions: Our Children are Ready for Primary School!

With the end of the academic year almost upon us, students across all year levels are readying themselves to move up to the next year level. Our K4 students at YCIS Beijing’s Early Childhood Education Centre are about to make the leap to Primary school to join their older classmates. To help lessen the potential shock that students might experience in their move from ECE to Primary, K4 and Year 1 teachers have set up a Transition Programme for our young learners which has proven to be invaluable.

Taking the First Steps


The transition programme is an opportunity for the K4 students, over the course of a few months, to slowly adjust to Year 1 curriculum and routines. The K4 students join outside play, assemblies, Violin, Chinese, Mathematics and Literacy classes, giving them a taste of what is to come. Each area allows the K4 students to see what types of activities Year 1 participates in as well as what kind of behaviour is expected by joining in with the existing Year 1 students. As Maryanne Harper (YCIS Beijing’s ECE Co-ordinator) explains, “the Transition Programme is not really about preparation as preparation implies something that must be practiced many times; rather, it’s about giving students the experience of attending Year 1 activities.. The programme’s goal is to give our students realistic expectations of what their next year will entail, comfortably introducing them to their new teachers, classrooms, as well as where they will eat and play.”

Adjusting to a New Environment


As the ECE curriculum is based on the highly successful Play-Based Learning structure while Primary School follows the more formal UK National Curriculum for England, Year 1 students are expected to be on a more structured timetable, which can take some getting used to for some of our younger students. Easing this transition is key to ensuring that our K4 students start their Primary Schooling on the right foot. Through the Transition Programme, K4 students have a great opportunity to gradually become more comfortable in and familiar with their new environment. Year 1A Teacher Bridget Washko notes that, “the reactions to the programme are really positive and help to get the children very excited to join Year 1 for the upcoming academic school year”.

Helping at Home


While teachers work hard to help prepare students for the next academic year, parents at home are also encouraged to do their part to help smooth the transition for their children. Giving your child more daily tasks, such as dressing themselves, packing their own school bag, and tying their own shoelaces help develop confidence as well as allow children to become more independent. The benefits of these tasks also directly translate to the classroom, giving students the ability to more maturely address the responsibilities given to them in Year 1.

Ensuring that our young learners experience a smooth transition into the next stage of their studies is crucial to their social and academic success. YCIS Beijing makes it our mission to give every student the best possible opportunity to experience their schooling in a safe, comfortable and natural environment. To all our graduating K4 students and parents, congratulations on taking the next step of you YCIS journey!

To find out more about YCIS Beijing’s Primary School Programme, pleaseclick here. To get the latest news happening on and around the YCIS Beijing campus, follow this link.

school logo