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Insights | Try something new, find something great

25 Oct 2018

We are delighted to share the news that all the pupils of Huili School Shanghai are hugely enjoying our CCA (co-curricular activities) programme. If you have heard about the Wellington approach to holistic education, you will already know that the CCA programme is a central part of our ethos of educating the whole child. CCAs allow every child to experience rich additional learning opportunities as they take on new challenges and settings, often with peers and teachers they do not normally have the chance to interact with. The value of exploring something new The CCAs on offer are divided into three strands; art & cultural, academic and sports. Activities run on Tuesday to Thursdays after period seven finishes. Over the course of the year, we expect pupils to undertake different CCAs covering all three strands. This means a very sporty child will have the opportunity to extend their artistic talents, an academic will experience team sports, and so on. The Wellington holistic education ethos very firmly supports the view that the child who takes advantage of everything on offer, who experiences all three strands, is a child who is better equipped to attain academic success. This is a philosophy supported by the outstanding examination results achieved by pupils across the various Wellington campuses in China – a trend we aim to replicate here at Huili.

We believe that essential skills, abilities and moral characteristics can be developed through each of the three strands. For example, sporting activities help foster teamwork and resilience, while music supports the development of focus and concentration. This is why we believe that all pupils should engage with all three CCA strands: to give them the best chance of learning new things, discovering new passions and exploring different aspects of their unique personality.

How do CCAs work? Our CCAs are mostly run by our own staff, who choose an activity that they themselves are genuinely passionate about. While we have music and PE teachers understandably delivering orchestral and sporting CCAs respectively, we also have English teachers leading a cooking CCA and Chinese teachers leading art sessions. No matter what interest or passion they choose to share, each CCA is a wonderful opportunity for staff and pupils to get to know each other in a more informal learning environment, particularly if they do not usually meet during the regular school day. Important shared experiences like this are already helping to build our fledgling Huili community.

It is during CCA time that our orchestra, choir and other musical ensembles will meet. Similarly, our sporting teams will utilise CCA sessions for training and to take part in competitions, no doubt achieving great success in due course.

So what is on offer?   We are thrilled and proud to be able to offer 69 different CCA activities this term. It would be exhausting to list them all, but pupils can pick from cooking, chess, Chinese style painting, choir, debating, football, storytelling and so much more.

We generated the programme of available CCAs based largely on feedback from pupils and parents, who were asked to list their daily preferences. The current CCA term runs until the end of November, when pupils will be able to apply online for their new set of preferred activities. We have three CCA terms in total during this school year, so there is plenty of time for pupils to experience up to nine new activities! Try something new, find something great Here at Huili School Shanghai, we believe that the co-curricular activities on offer enhance our pupils’ learning experience, helping them develop physically, mentally and emotionally. They represent an invaluable opportunity for every child to spread their wings, explore new and exciting interests and hopefully discover a whole new side of themselves. Our educational ethos, backed by solid research and examination results, tells us that this is the way to inspire character development as well as academic success.