Japanese International School: Bringing Real World into the Classroom

The school respects the diversity of its community and provides quality education by empowering students to think, create, discover, solve problems, become responsible citizens, and achieve their personal best

Good schooling is essential for children’s development during the early childhood. School always has a great influence on students and allows creativity and potential to develop. To support the community of Hong Kong by providing high quality education, Japanese International School (JIS) was established in 1997. The school is located in the New Territories area of Hong Kong, Tai Po Kau and is accessible to a wide range of rural residential areas. It is situated on the edge of a large forested area of country park and few minutes from local universities and amenities. The school has two sections -an International (170 students, English medium) primary section and a Japanese primary section (around 440 students, Japanese medium).

The school offers inquiry-based international education in a small, closely knit, caring environment, built on three key values of ‘respect’ ‘commitment’ and ‘kindness’.

  • Respect for each other, relationships, surroundings, the environment, and learning
  • Commitment to make a difference, to stay resilient and strong through adversity, to persevere in learning, to develop, to improve, to move forwards
  • Kindness to all, to the world, to help, to support, to offer encouragement, to be open minded, to be fair

Providing a Conducive Environment for Learning

The International section of the school is a small community that is housed in a large, shared campus and allowing the staff, students, and community to think creatively and dynamically about learning. The school offers a wide range of remarkable amenities for learning, allowing this small sized international school to dream and think ‘big’ and be creative in its vision for the students. It has spacious classrooms, a beautiful swimming pool, large gymnasium, rich library with a 15,000 book collection, student kitchen, science labs, music/drama rooms, and excellent I.T. resources. This school believes in personalized learning and has low student-staff ratio i.e. a teacher and an assistant per 25 students which helps to provide individual attention to each student. The campus promotes ample opportunity and achievement in learning, including sports and all areas of the arts.

International Curriculum Encompasses Diverse Learning Experiences

JIS believes that hands-on approach in the classroom is important because it allows students to engage in kinesthetic learning alongside other learning styles. The school’s curriculum includes vast opportunities for learning outside of the classroom including the co-curricular activities program, the camps and trips program, sports and arts. The international section of the school follows the framework of the International Baccalaureate (IB) and offering IB Primary Years Program (PYP) to a diverse clientele of students. All students study an additional language and can choose between Japanese or Mandarin. The Japanese section of the school is operating a Japanese public school curriculum and is supported by the Japanese Ministry of Education for its staff and resources.

A Passionate Teaching Professional and Leader

Mr. Simon Walton is the Principal of the international section of the school. He has worked in international schools in Asia for more than thirty years. He is a self-directed, creative and enthusiastic professional with a genuine interest in nurturing students’ intellectual and social growth. Through his guidance, the school has developed a special niche in the international schools market in Hong Kong.

He asserts, “Our school was evaluated again by I.B. staff in May 2015 to very high acclaim and was commended on achieving above I.B. expectations in many areas of the school. Many of our students come from a range of nationalities and cultures and so our curriculum is designed to reflect this. We set ourselves high standards in all that we do, both through academic study and the provision of a broad curriculum that encompasses a wide range of creative activities, environmental awareness and study.”

Extra-Curricular Activities

A JIS parent recently commented, ‘JIS is a powerful institution for nurturing confidence and rendering children not only learning ready but also life ready’.

JIS offers perfect learning opportunities to the students for holistic growth. Extracurricular activities are an important part of student life in JIS and all students are strongly encouraged to participate in extracurricular activities such as sports, martial arts, dance, music, computing, and drama. The school has an onsite swimming pool and excellent sports facilities. Students are inspired to be active and to maintain a positive life balance through the arts and sports as well as aiming high in their studies. Students have the opportunity to attend a school camp on three separate occasions, the first two based in Hong Kong and the final one being a five day trip to Xi’an in China. These camps are linked to the students’ academic life as well as the social and emotional curriculum.

Wide Exposure and Preparation for Future Life

Right exposure to the real world is significant for the students which help them to understand concepts better. JIS is an international primary school is well connected to the Hong Kong community and the world. The students are regular visitors to their environment, museums, galleries, theatres and more. The school also regularly arranges expert sessions to share knowledge, passions, and experiences; be they authors, entrepreneurs, explorers, environmentalists or artists. The school has a regular artist in residence program to support the arts and creative curriculum, giving the students authentic experiences with passionate experts.

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