Summer Activity Week Assembly
EtonHouse International School Suzhou’s ‘Summer Activity Week’ came to a wonderful close recently with a final assembly. This was a chance to showcase much of the fun learning that had taken place across the five days, in Early Years, PYP and MYP activity groups.
After a wonderful series of solo piano pieces from Clarence (Year 9) to open the assembly, Years 5 & 6 kicked off the main show – and a show it genuinely was, as they performed two small plays that they had spent the week rehearsing. With strong acting, great dialogue and comic timing, they really showed their talents, and had the audience (especially Early Years in the front row) in hysterics.
From performing art, we then moved on to visual art, with Year 3 coming to the stage one by one to exhibit their elaborate superhero face masks that they had spent the week creating. We heard what superpower each one possessed, and learned that being a hero means different things to different people.
The MYP group had the chance to get involved in some hands-on problem-solving by designing a device to protect eggs in a three-floor drop. The students took the lead, using their knowledge of physics to repeatedly design and test different structures for protecting the fragile eggs from the long fall.
At the first attempt, all the eggs broke; by the final morning, all stayed intact! We saw the winning, very imaginative contraptions displayed on stage, and watched a video made by the group of their successes and failures through the week. As ever, some of the best learning came through reflecting on failure!
We then had a medal ceremony for our sports activity. Mr. David took the opportunity to introduce the students to hockey, one of the oldest sports in the world. Whilst in China, the number of people who play hockey is much less than basketball and football, the students loved learning about it and playing in a tournament throughout the week. They picked up the skills very quickly, and many of the students showed real potential as future hockey stars!
Mr. David said “hockey is a great team game for exercising the children’s flexibility, coordination, willpower and guts, and having them play together in mixed age groups has demanded a sense of adventure from them, and given them new teamwork challenges. They all did brilliantly!”
Students just love the chance to express themselves through music and dance, and Ms. Lise designed a series of different activities to allow the various age groups to do just that. The youngest students learned dances such as ‘Gummie Bears’, ‘Incy Wincy Spider’ and ‘Zumba Kids’, and discovered how hard it can be to follow and imitate the movements of someone on the big screen!
The slightly older students had an introduction to the culturally iconic musical ‘The Sound of Music’, and explored how the famous songs (think ‘Do, Re, Me’, ‘Edelweiss’, and so on) fit in with the plot of the movie. The oldest students formed a band, with a pianist, solo singer, guitarists and electric guitarist, rehearsing hard on their interpretation of an Eminem song all week. They decided that they still need to work more together before a public performance, and they will do this early next semester!
The Summer Activity Week Assembly was truly the week in miniature, with the laughter, enjoyment and clear evidence of learning all combining to capture the real spirit of EtonHouse. Every student will have had their own unique learning moments, and gained in ways that they may not even immediately realize.
As well as the teachers, who worked hard to make all this happen, we should also give huge thanks to a small group of Year 10, 11 and 12 students who volunteered to help out with the running of many of the week’s activities as part of their Service commitments for MYP, DP and the Duke of Edinburgh programme. Their efforts really made a difference!