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An Exciting Year Ahead
Posted 08/27/2019 11:53AM

Over the past few weeks, SWIS staff have been preparing diligently for the exciting start of the new school year.

Our Administrative staff made their return on August 5th to prepare for the arrival and settling of our new expatriate teachers. This year, SWIS welcomes another group of well-qualified, experienced IB educators to our team. Using a week of purposefully designed orientation agendas, our skillful Administration Team helped our new teachers become quickly acquainted with teaching at SWIS and life in Shenzhen, and helped alleviate any of their new environment anxiety.

From August 9th to August 11th, our new Chinese Co-teachers participated in a 3-day workshop on teaching at SWIS. SWIS Board Director Mr. Guoxiang Gong greeted our teachers and shared with them the SWIS Culture of School, Family, and Paradise, and encouraged all of our teachers to think of SWIS as their second home. Mr. Gong also expressed his high expectations, which is for the teachers to use their professional knowledge, skills, and responsibility, to support SWIS on its journey to becoming a world-class international school.

The workshop is hosted by our very own Chinese curriculum Coordinator Ms. Tiffany Xia, our IB Workshop Leader Ms. May Yang, and invited expert Ms. Wang Fang. Ms. Wang works for NIST International School, one of the most reputable international schools in the world, and has years of experience in Chinese language instruction and curriculum. During the training, Ms. Wang broadened our teachers' understanding by encouraging inspiring discussions, case studies, and onsite research and practice. Ms. Wang introduced the growth mindset, and encouraged our teachers to use it to create their professional development plans and seek challenges. Our invited expert also gave out helpful advice on designing and arranging classroom settings and how the teachers can serve as role models in a sustainable learning community. Our new Chinese Co-Teachers were very impressed by Ms. Wang's expertise and they have gained a much deeper understanding of IB Teaching. Our newly certified IB Workshop Leaders Ms. Vera Wu and Ms. Julie Liu also took part in facilitating this workshop, offering their expertise and knowledge to this fruitful learning experience.

All SWIS staff returned on August 19th. This week, we have all dived into finishing the final preparations before the start of the school year. Grade level teachers, specialists, and pedagogical leaders held various meetings and established their goals and expectations. Teachers participated in collaborative planning, Classroom set-ups, and resource preparations. This Thursday and Friday we had our orientation days for both new and returning students. With excitement, SWIS students met their new teachers, classmates, and classrooms.

Our new Secondary students and parents received a special treat—our very own student-led orientation break-out sessions. A group of our returning students used parts of their summer holidays to plan and collaborate on producing a well-informed presentation. The breakout sessions included a brief introduction to our curriculum, tips, and guidance on school-parent communication, as well as frequently asked questions and answers. It was a delight to have these capable helpers on deck.

We look forward to an exciting year ahead!

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