Our vision at the primary school is to be a leader in outdoor learning and Forest School education. Our beautiful green campus at Hong Lok Yuen provides us with the perfect location to develop this pioneering approach in Hong Kong. Research shows that if children have regular access to a rich outdoor environment, they will be have greater self-esteem, be more confident and develop better concentration, resilience and independence. Innovative work is under way to establish our very own Forest School and outdoor classroom in our grounds.
Deep Learning is a pioneering study programme, designed to encourage independence, motivation, enjoyment and depth in student learning. Part of regular school experience for students in Years 7, 8 and 9, it involves ‘collapsing’ the timetable for four-day programmes of study, typically spread out over a number of weeks.
One of the enduring mysteries – and complaints – about the switch from primary to secondary school is why and how the curious minded, sparky, fearless and imaginative learners of Year 6 are so often transformed into passive, anxious students by Years 9 or 10. At ICHK we have created a through-train of creativity that addresses this transition and that serves to ensure that our students do not lose touch with their imaginations and powers of innovation.
We aim to develop confident young people with creative and inquiring minds, and the attainment of a Growth Mindset is the most fundamentally important element of our ethos and approach. All students learn that effort, commitment, perseverance and resilience, rather than latent “intelligence” or talent, lead to high achievement and success in life.
At ICHK we believe that children’s happiness and achievement are two sides of the same coin. At the primary and secondary school, positive psychology and mindfulness are built into the curriculum to support student wellbeing. Mindfulness has been scientifically proven to help children (and adults) to focus attention, deal with difficulties, build resilience to stress and develop a positive mindset in both school and life.
HT offers a novel perspective on human beliefs, practices and activity. The programme suggests that what makes us smart is not our brains in themselves, but the fact that our brains – and the thinking they generate – are able to benefit from the accumulated wisdom of our peers and forebears. In this view, language is a technology, mathematics is a technology, the scientific method is a technology.
The sport of Free Running invites participants to use creativity, skill and strength to find new ways to navigate a landscape. It is fun, engaging and highly motivating for those who participate. It takes a space (urban or otherwise) and turns it on its head, drawing new functions from an existing, very fixed, form.
In much the same way, Free Learning aims to provide students with an intellectual landscape through which they can playfully discover their own path. It promotes creativity, individuality, team work, freedom and taking responsibility. It is a gamified set of training wheels for developing inquiry skills for independent learning.