For the Media

2011: China Experience: A Hong Kong Elementary School Education

By Sarah Davis, Pearson Foundation

Today we visited the Hong Kong Institute of Education Jockey Club Primary School. The school principal, Mary Chou, gave us some background on the school prior to a student ambassador–led tour. The school is well funded and its architecture was designed to encourage harmony. The school’s core values include child-centered learning, joy, care and love. The staff pride themselves on strong parental involvement, teacher collaboration, student performances to build confidence, emphasis on multiple intelligences, trilingual instruction, incorporation of creativity, and a tailored program for each individual student. During the tour, we observed several new computers in a classroom, tables meant to encourage collaboration, a gymnasium showcasing students’ artwork, and a brand new library.

Some of the ATE teachers’ comments on the experience are below. Videos are coming soon!

“One of their objectives is to have a healthy lifestyle…[which consists of] art, music, P.E., sciences — not just an emphasis on the heavy sciences… They assess three times a year, and they form reading groups based on reading ability…if [students] are struggling, they help with their individual needs.”

Karen Gorringe, elementary teacher, Utah

“One fact [that I found interesting was] every child performs on a stage to build their confidence. As an elementary school music teacher who also believes in that philosophy, that was very inspiring for me to hear.”

Luke Merchlewitz, second grade teacher, Minnesota

“The integration of the arts and teaching to multiple intelligences…was right up my alley because, as a special educator, I definitely see the need for that.”

Rae Ann Rumery, special education teacher, Arizona

“This was [of the three schools we have visited so far] the only one that concentrated on computer usage, not only for typing classroom assignments, but also for art…In the U.S., technology is the push; without being tech-savvy, you might as well not go to college. In most of the schools we have seen [in China], that is not the case.”

Carolyn Campbell, high school business and computer science teacher, Nebraska

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