Detailed Explanation of Multiple Supporting Systems of Students’ Development
The core value of Yungu is to develop a student-oriented education system. Students are the origin and endpoint of all the work in the school. It is our mission to focus on the students quality of life and to follow students growth patterns and to guide their mental and physical development. To this end, the Yungu School designs a wide variety of student-oriented growth support modes. Aside from traditional classes, the school implements a Mentor System, House System and Elective System.
New Class System differs from traditional schools, as a new form of class management from the 1st to 5th Grade of Yungu Elementary School (6th Graders will enter a House System to connect with Junior High School). Based on student-based development, a certain number of students are grouped with characteristics such as gender, personality, traits and so on, with a mentor-student ratio of 1:5. Each group corresponds to a professional mentor. The mentor is responsible for the growth of students, creating a personal relationship with the students, respecting the individual differences in the personality. He/she will try to enable every student to become a self-sufficient learner, and eventually to be their best self. Thus, personalized teaching, learning, and nurturing fall into place. At the same time, the mentors collaborate with each other to follow and support a group of students. As the result of the New Class System, each child becomes a better self.
The Yungu School has a teacher-student ratio of 1:5. This ratio enables Yungu to implement the Mentor System, which is an internationally practiced system in universities. The Mentor System is a "One to One" form of education. Each group of students has an exclusive mentor, and the mentor provides students with support and guidance arranging the academic and social emotional learning of students including manners, attitudes, interests, etc.
The mentors are affectionally known as “Big Buddy”. He or she is not only the teacher of the student, but also a good friend. Compared with subject teachers, mentors focus more on understanding students' character, psychology and interests, and help to build trust and close connections with students. He or she will pay attention to the emotional development and physical and mental health of every student. For lower grade students, the mentor will guide the student to develop good habits, to learn basic life skills and communication skills. For the senior students, mentors are more like their peers, encouraging them to face the challenges in study, to go through growing pains, to clarify life confusion, and to maximize their potential and talent. Our mentor team will work together to manage classes and Houses in a collaborative way. We hope to provide students with more support so that they will better understand and realize themselves in junior high school. The mentors will also play a key role in linking the family and the school. The Mentor System will be introduced at both the elementary and junior high school levels.
The House System first appeared at the University of Oxford about 900 years ago. The purpose of the system was to provide a mixed age, free and interdisciplinary environment for students. It provides the students an environment which allows them to relax and to break through the thinking obstacles of communication to a more open space. In Yungu, the House is the students’ autonomous community and is the basic organization of students’ self management, self education, cooperation, and democratic practice. The House has exclusive space for activities. Each House has its own name, logo, color, rules and culture. They are more like small communities which are jointly constructed and managed by mentors and students. Here, different grades and students of diverse interests will carry out activities together. Students of different backgrounds can find a sense of belonging and show mutual appreciation. A variety of competitions will be carried out among Houses to enhance the cohesion and sense of honor, and cultivate students' team spirit and leadership. We hope that by giving students critical thinking skills and guidance, we can provide students with opportunities to build good relationships. The end result is that students can get along with people in a complex environment, and achieve all-round education. The House System is practiced in Grade 6, 7, 8 and 9. In 2017, Grade 7 students will have three Houses.
Elective Class System
The Yungu School focuses on differentiation in students’ development. In the middle and high stage of elementary school, the school will gradually implement the “Dynamic Elective Class System.” The “Dynamic Elective Class System” is a modification to the traditional class teaching system. It retains the “class" form, but it is not fixed, reflecting the dynamic, autonomous and scientific learning. It enables the transition from whole class teaching to individual learning starting from the students’ innate abilities. The students will be immersed in different learning groups at different stages and in different disciplines. It looks for a more suitable method for the development of personality.