Play, learn and grow together
Early childhood education is not a race to see how quickly a child can learn to read or write. It is a time to inspire wonder, creativity and curiosity while embracing play as a child’s primary expression of social-emotional, linguistic and physical development.
A place of wonder and learning starts
In a corner of the room, three children, two girls and a boy, peek through a large magnifying class. It appears they are looking at different colored stones. Laughter erupts as one of the children replaces a stone with a small rubber dinosaur. Quickly the other two children follow suit and within seconds there are a dozen colored dinosaurs under the magnifying glass. Soon the children are matching the dinosaurs by color and counting to see how many they have. Here’s an example of what you will see, hear and feel in our early childhood education learning spaces.
As experienced ECE practitioners coming from different parts of the world, we strongly believe that childhood is not a race to see how quickly a child can read or write but rather a time for them to develop important life skills to build a foundation for learning about how the world works. We are committed to supporting each child’s journey in the best way we can through our program which is steered by our philosophy.
Our ECE philosophy accentuates on our beliefs that early childhood and development is the foundation of all learning. We aspire to create learning environments that generate wonder, creativity, curiosity and engagement for all children, while embracing play as a child’s primary expression of social-emotional, linguistic, cognitive and physical development. Additionally, we respect the unique learning styles, cultural backgrounds, interests and identities of our youngest learners and aim to create a warm and inclusive family atmosphere where all members feel inspired to work together.
At Shanghai Community International School Pudong, we are truly international and represent more than 60 nationalities. We value our young children’s rights to inquire, grow and develop into capable and confident learners as future citizens of the world.
We invite you to experience our magical world of wonder on November 30 during our SCIS Open-House.
Tips for cultivating positive communication between parents and teachers
• Regularly communicate with teachers
• Be prompt in responding to communication from teachers
• Support your child with learning school routines
• Be transparent about your child’s behavior and challenges
• Participate in school events
• Share family experiences and participate in share and tell at school
• Volunteer in the classroom
• Apply learning strategies at home
(The article is contributed by Adika Cremet, Pre-school/Pre-kindergarten teacher, Elizabeth Gale, Lower School principal, Stacey Poncia, ECE coordinator and Virginia Hunt,nursery teacher of SCIS Pudong.)
Parent-teacher role key to children support
Communication between teachers and parents should be in place to support children in every area of their development.
By establishing a strong partnership, both parents and teachers can share information about children and develop an understanding of what learning is taking place, what goals have been identified and how this learning can be extended. Teachers can help parents understand how to support, guide and encourage their children through their educational journey. The relationship between teachers and parents is reciprocal, and whilst teachers can help identify how parents can assist their children, parents have a vital role to play too. The experiences that children have outside of the classroom all help to shape them as a learner. Information about events in the family, especially those which could be upsetting or difficult, can help teachers understand their students better and therefore provide the most appropriate social and emotional support. To develop ongoing and open communication with your child’s teachers, think about the following things:
How will you communicate with your child’s class teachers? Will this be via email, a chat group, or an online platform or portal?
Are you worried about how you will communicate? If you have language concerns, digital communication gives the option to translate what is written into the language of both teacher and parent. Translation tools make communicating easier for everyone.
Do you have any questions or concerns? Contact your child’s class teacher to address these. There is probably a simple explanation and the teacher will be able to address concerns.
What learning is taking place? Does your child’s teacher share the learning experiences via an online platform or communication tool? This is the best way to learn more about what your child is doing each day and will also help you talk to your child about their learning after a busy day.
(The article is contributed by Fiona Morris, Early Years principal at the Western International School of Shanghai.）
Dos and don’ts of communicating with child’s tutor
I would like to share five dos and don’ts that parents should remember when communicating with their child’s teacher(s).
1. Attempt to connect with your child’s teacher on a personal level.
2. When requesting an appointment with one of your child’s teachers, please indicate the purpose of the meeting beforehand.
3. If you notice a change in your child’s interests or habits at home, feel free to send their teachers a message informing them of the observed change, and ask if they may be aware of any contributing factors, or whether they have observed the same.
4. Inform teachers of any new updated contacts (phone, WeChat, email) which will allow them to contact you should any social, emotional or academic needs arise.
5. Send a message informing the teacher of any positive changes you have observed in your child, on account of learning that has taken place in their classroom.
1. Show up to their office or classroom to discuss a concern which may take more than five minutes to receive an answer.
2. Assume the teacher does not value your child because they teach other children aside from yours.
3. Talk to other parents about issues you have with a teacher before discussing the matter with the teacher directly.
4. Share any negative information you may have heard about a teacher to the teacher — even if you have heard it from another staff member.
5. Ask questions concerning your child during a teacher’s downtime.
Five dos and don’ts that teachers should remember when communicating with a student’s parent(s)
1. Use the words “we” and “our” when discussing with a parent about their child.
2. Affirm a parent for the challenging roles, responsibilities they have, before offering any academic recommendations for their child.
3. Periodically send a message to parents informing them of positive observed behaviors from their child.
4. When you discover them, send out helpful, practical articles regarding partnerships between parents and schools.
5. Send out cultural greetings and celebrations to the families of diverse backgrounds.
1. Assume every meeting a parent requests is to criticise your teaching ability.
2. Give definitive advice to a guardian regarding how they should manage their household.
3. Take offense if the parent of a student shares a desire to seek additional support for their child outside of school.
4. Label a parent as being disengaged or irresponsible if they don’t seem to expeditiously implement learning strategies you have provided to be used at home. There are other factors (schedules, personalities, priorities) that may restrict adoption of even the most evidence-based strategies.
5. Believe that your educational qualification entitles you to speak definitively toward the development of other quotients (emotional quotient, cultural quotient, adversity quotient etc) within a student’s self-composite.
(The article is contributed by Alan West, Senior School counsellor of Shanghai Singapore International School.）