Elementary School Activities Program at YIS

Elementary School Activities Program at YIS

by Brinya Tananone, Director of Activities & Community Programs

The Elementary School Activities (ESAs) program has been an integral part of the YIS curriculum for several years, consistently highlighting many of our students' elementary school experiences. These activities are divided into two categories. First the internal activities, which are run by our faculty and staff at no additional cost, and external activities, run by outside providers with a fee attached. These activities are designed to cater to a wide range of interests, hopefully ensuring that every student has the opportunity to explore and develop their passions beyond the traditional classroom setting. 

ES Gardening Club students tend to the 3F Garden and collect herbs for sale to the YIS community

Internally, the school provides a variety of options focusing on creativity, physical fitness, critical thinking, and cultural awareness. Some of these, such as Lego Club and Origami, have been mainstays of the ESA program for over 15 years, while others such as Chess Club and Sew & Stitch Lab are fairly new. Regardless of whether they are longstanding or relatively new activities, each is developed by the teacher based on their passion and expertise.

Similar to our internal programs, our external ESAs range from the tried and true, such as Aikido, which has been operating out of YIS for over 20 years, to Ballet, which is the new kid on the block, being offered for the first time this year. While we do have some limitations on facilities and the schedule we are constantly looking for more opportunities for the program to grow. This is in large part because our external providers truly help to make our after-school activities program much more robust and enriching. 

Dragon Cooking Academy students prepare delicious pancakes with guidance from Chef Darren

While YIS is able to provide an amazing array of activities for our elementary students, there are, of course, some limitations in allowing students to participate in all the activities they desire. This may come in the form of grade level restrictions, for example Basketball Club is only available to Grades 3 and 4, or limits on the class size of the activity, Dragon Cooking Academy can only accommodate 12 students, or even the day that they are offered. However, despite these restrictions, YIS does its best to accommodate as many students as possible each term. We have always strived to ensure that each student gets at least one of their choices, and for the particularly popular classes, we do our best to ensure that if a student does not get into an activity the first term, they will be able to join in a subsequent term.

Overall, by offering a diverse selection of activities, YIS continues to nurture the development of its elementary students, helping them to thrive socially and emotionally beyond the regular classroom. It is our mission that through these activities, students discover their passions and unlock their potential, becoming lifelong learners and contributors to a diverse and interconnected world.

Click here to find out more about our ESAs.