Visit to The Edinburgh Academy Junior School

By Mr Chan Ka Wa Eric, Ms. Chan Yan Yan Melody and Ms Mimi Sin
Tsung Tsin Primary School and Kindergarten

26/4/2016 Tuesday

 Common Background of Edinburgh Academy and Tsung Tsin Primary School and Kindergarten

Edinburgh Academy is an independent school in Edinburgh with high reputation. It consists of 3 sections, namely, Nursery, Junior School and Senior School. Its structure is very similar to ours – a private school composed of Kindergarten, Primary School and a ‘Through-train’ Secondary School.

Visit to The Edinburgh Academy Junior Section

The way of learning and teaching in The Edinburgh Academy (EA) is different from our school, Tsung Tsin Primary School and Kindergarten (TTPSKG). Each class has a home-room teacher, who teaches most of the subjects for the class. The settings of classrooms are more children centered, students of the class discussed the classroom rules together and the whole class would follow. As we observed, students are more likely to work in groups, take the initiatives to do research on selected topics, and then present their findings to the class.

To boost the learning of different languages in the school, signposts with different languages are posted around the campus. Visual impacts are given to students which remind them to use different languages more often.

In both junior school and senior school, iPads can be used during lessons for research and notes-taking. Primary 5 and Primary 6 students have their own iPads, whereas Primary 3 and Primary 4 students use the school’s iPads, which can be taken home for use. As we observed, Primary 6 students know quite a lot of iPad skills. Using the readily available Apps, students are able to make movie clips with special effects such as inserting pictures into different parts of the video. The quality of the videos is beyond our expectation.

The size of the library is not too big, but it stores many different types of books. Students’ book reports which are of high quality are posted on the walls in the library and classroom. There is a QR code for each book report, which teachers, parents or students can read using mobile phones, tablets, computers and other online devices.

Insight from this visit

We met students of different grades in this visit. Our impression was that most students are courteous, confident, have good communication skills and love to share their own thoughts. Whenever we asked them questions, not only did they answer with confidence, they also elaborated with interesting facts and opinions. In general, Hong Kong students are more reserved and passive. We need to cultivate our students to be more confident and proactive, to be brave to speak in public expressing their points of view.

Further actions between EA, TTCA and TTPSKG

We have planned two major activities for students.

  1. E-twinning

Starting from October 2016, TTPSKG students will have video conferencing with EA students. Both English and Putonghua can be used in the conference. The themes for the primary section will be confirmed later. For nursery students, they will sing songs to each other. Our KG students will teach EA students a Putonghua song and EA students will teach our KG students an English song. This activity will be held on a regular basis.

  1. Exchange tour

In April 2017, around the Easter holiday time, a tour from Hong Kong with 10 TTPS students and 10 TTCA students will visit EA. It will be a good chance for students from two countries to exchange their culture, experience, ideas as well as languages. Students may experience taking lessons in EA and staying with a host/Scottish family.

Hopefully in the coming future, teaching staff from both schools will have more opportunities to exchange their ideas in teaching, to enhance the effectiveness of teaching and learning.

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