The end of any school year is always a time that is full of mixed emotions.
The only way to get better at it is to read more, and there is no such thing as a bad book.
Summer is a time for relaxation and fun. As international families, we often use the time to travel, explore new places, or to reconnect with our home country and family.
On a beautiful sunny day on Saturday the 57 members of the YIS Class of 2017 celebrated their high school graduation along with families and friends.
Our seniors arrived back from Tsunan, Niigata, relaxed and happy after spending 4 days on the "Live Learn Lead Beyond YIS Retreat."
Mark Redlich discusses the value of teaching financial literacy to children
Please join us on Thursday, May 25 from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon for an ICJC special lecture and workshop on "The Art of Japanese Traditional Urushi."
At YIS we are working to develop a service learning program that is authentic
Class of 2018
I most enjoy the feeling of using the traditional ink and brush to make beautiful and graceful strokes. I also appreciate the relaxing atmosphere while writing.
Grade 12 student
Since we're all so privileged, service is important to give something back to a community, not necessarily abroad and not necessarily something material. Simply giving your time and effort, like I did in Japan this summer, is rewarding.
Grade 5 student
When I first came here, a lot of people helped me, my teacher, my new friends, everyone around me. I want to be that same kind of helpful person.
Middle School Student
The most interesting project I've taken part of has been working with the Student Service Committee which gives an opportunity for students from elementary to high school to come together and work with various types of service groups. The biggest accomplishment we had last year was creating the first service exhibition where groups in YIS got to promote their causes to the whole community.
Middle School Student
When I came to YIS, my teacher and the other students were nice to me and made me feel welcome. The teachers and our principal listen to what the students have to say and that makes us feel that we are part of making decisions. YIS is the best school I have ever gone to.
The community at YIS is really good, sometimes we work with other grades, like elementary gets to interact with middle school or high school... its not just the same people you work with everyday and you can get to know other people really well.
I love learning at YIS because its fun and everyday we have a different way of doing it. We have different activities giving us different styles to learn, making us confident in whatever we do.
There's diversity in what the children decide to explore, and inquiry can be very different from one year to another. I really like this aspect; you never know what's around the corner, because the children are leading the learning.
In student learning, it's the action, it's the jumping off cliffs, the moments of pushing themselves that kids remember the most.
Japanese Music Teacher
I've learned to see the koto through the lens of a music educator emphasizing concept-based inquiry, and I am looking at more and more how YIS can become a voice for this kind of program, using the koto to teach foundational skills and bringing about a sort of renaissance for traditional music across Japan.
Grade 4 Teacher
We brainstormed together, things that they could do with this time, words that are associated with creation, and they came up with the three words, play, inspire, create.
Director of Activities and Community Programs
We have great kids who are super eager. They want to be involved in YIS, they want to be a part of this community, and they are very proud of the school. It makes my job so much easier because I don't have to sell YIS to the kids - they're sold already.
The best part of my day happens to be the four periods of lunch when so many students are coming in and out of the library during that time. We'll have DP students studying, middle school students reading, and elementary students playing board games. The fact that everyone can share the space and allow all these activities to happen at once is one of the things I love about the YIS community.
Japanese Language Teacher
The best part of my school day is when I see my students have an "aha!" moment. Seeing my students discover something, whether it's intentional or not, is the best entertainment I could ever have in my life. I learn so much from these moments.
The IB program and inquiry-based learning is so important. In the corporate world, it's translated as thought leadership, and the ability to communicate clearly is a really needed skill.
We arrived to Japan the week before the YIS Food Fair two years ago. I knew about it before we got here because I was looking at the school website, and I thought, what a great opportunity to go see the school and to introduce the kids to the school. So we really started YIS with the Food Fair.
YIS parent and middle school coach
Seeing the progression of skill is great, because by the time the season ends, you have a completely different player. You can't underestimate a player's potential to grow and learn. What you see on day 1 is not what you'll see on the last day of the season..
We chose YIS because we wanted an IB school for Audrey and Jasmine. Our biggest desire for them in life and in education is to be happy, confident, open minded and well balanced. We feel YIS embodies this ethos and is a small enough school that the girls feel comfortable and important.
In addition to the high quality, well balanced education that as parents we all want our kids to have, YIS offers this wonderful sense of community amongst the students, teachers and parents that you can immediately feel, but cannot easily describe - this is what makes YIS a truly special place.
At YIS, they are teaching more how to learn than what to learn. Many schools are more top-down, meaning that teachers tell students what to learn based on the textbook, but here kids have to study how to learn by themselves based on their inquiry.
Teachers here look at the whole child, and not just test scores. They want the child to succeed not only at school but in life, and they impart those skills.
Class of 2016
YIS supported me with so many chances to perform koto, and that really helped me to improve. I really like composing, so it was fun to challenge myself by composing an original piece as a YIS alumni. I really enjoy coming back and working with the YIS students.
Class of 2004
The IB programme really prepared me well for the future. Perhaps the most important class I ever took in YIS was Theory of Knowledge. I was encouraged to question and scrutinise everything that I had ever learnt. It was truly eye-opening. The critical thinking skills I gained in that class has helped me throughout my whole career as a scientist.
Class of 1973
I met all kinds of people at YIS and that has helped me to appreciate people with different backgrounds and different perspectives.
Class of 2009
YIS's small class sizes, collaborative projects, group extracurriculars and class trips created tons of opportunities to learn to work well with other students - across the smorgasbord of cultures they embodied. In the same vein, the exposure to alternate ways of thinking that YIS provided has given me a unique point of view to bring to the otherwise homogeneous American workplace I'm currently in. Both of these things have definitely helped distinguish me from my peers.