The implementation of the Chinese National Curriculum supports the organisation of the Primary Section into three divisions, Grade 1and2, 3 and 4, 5 and 6. Within the Chinese National Curriculum, between 16% and 20% of school time is set aside for a locally based curriculum and ‘Comprehensive Practical Activities’. Depending on local requirements, there is considerable flexibility to enrich the curriculum in a distinctive manner.
The core subjects are Chinese, Maths, PE, Art, Science, ICT and Ethics and Society. English is not required by the National Curriculum for Grade1 and 2 but will be included nonetheless and will be a significant feature both as a subject in its own right and as the language of instruction in PE, Art, and Comprehensive activities.
The school covered the curriculum from Chinese compulsory education, supplemented by SPECTRA SMARTS curriculum and INDEPENTDENT LEARNING PROJECTS. The subjects of History and Geography are added at this point. Science divides into Biology, Physics and Chemistry.
Anticipating Zhongkao(Chinese Senior high school entrance examination ) and to meet regulatory requirements over the teaching of some material in Chinese, the language split in Middle School now favours Chinese by 6:4. Ethics and Society, History, Science, Chinese, and Maths are all to be taught in Chinese. English, Geography, PE, Arts, and Integrated Activities remain in English.
There remains a need to support English language Science education despite the assumption of pupils preparing for the zhongkao in Chinese. Therefore, an additional course of Science topics to be taught in English. There is scope for creativity here but a ‘Citizen Scientist’ course that studied the Science behind contemporary global issues, with an emphasis on research, would be valuable support for academic skills in English looking ahead to higher levels of study in that language. It would also be useful at this stage to complement the National Curriculum standards with a course of Science education that placed more emphasis on process and inquiry than on content.
‘INDEPENDENT LEARNING PROJECTS’ keeps one half-day a week at this point but with a totally free choice for the student of the topic to be studied. This would be a good stage to emphasise the responsibility for independent, solo, study in this strand of the curriculum.