Founded in 1994, Kingston International School and Children’s Centre, or often referred to as just Kingston, has spent more than 20 years creating well-rounded individuals by providing a stimulating environment where English and Chinese (Putonghua) are widely used as languages of instruction.
The Kingston International School became the first authorised International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (IBPYP) international school in Hong Kong, and was instrumental in founding the Hong Kong IBPYP School Network, as well as the pioneer in the dual language English cum Chinese approach to the IB primary programme.
Kingston International School offers education ranging from Playgroup, Nursery, Kindergarten, to Primary level. As the first international school to receive authorisation to offer the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme or IBPYP, Kingston proudly provides a flexible and unique framework that places its students in challenging and stimulating learning environments.
This school’s IBPYP programme is bilingual, in both English and Potonghua, and is for students starting from one all the way up to eleven years old. The Kingston group has three campuses altogether: besides the Kingston International Kindergarten (KIK) campus which houses the 1 to 4-year-olds, there is also a Lower Primary campus for those between Year 1 and Year 3, and an Upper Primary campus for students in Year 4 to Year 6.
KIK’s Playgroup provides the essential foundation for early childhood development, at the stage where a firm base for progressive learning is established and a proper introduction to the dual language approach at Kingston. The kids can become acclimatised to new surroundings besides their own home for the first time, and be introduced to other children and also responsible adults.
The 2-year-olds go to the Children’s Centre, and are spent developing their language skills in both languages, while taking part in planned play sessions which are designed to teach the kids to interact with each other. At age three and four, the young learners begin their journey in studying the IBPYP, where four concept driven IBPYP units form the basis for the curriculum.
At the proper Primary Years Programme stage, students will learn the knowledge, concepts, and skills that go with each critical subject of language, mathematics, social studies, science, personal, social, physical education, and the arts. In addition, the Programme also incorporates at least 4 out of 6 the transdisciplinary themes that are key to the IB World School structure.
The framework allows Kingston to deliver international-standard education to its students while maintaining its practice in bilingualism. With each class led by a pair of teachers qualified in English and Putonghua respectively, students are given the opportunity to excel in the language curriculum by engaging with their peers and teachers in classroom lessons and activities.
Even with three campuses in total, the school still manages to retain a small school feel overall, with a comfortable community atmosphere. The classes are maintained at small classroom sizes, ensuring each student gets the personalised attention they require at these young formative years, in both core languages which is why there are dedicated teachers for both, for each class.
In Kingston, the teachers come from different countries, bringing vast expertise and experiences to the teaching field. These experiences are valuable to the school and beneficial to the learning approaches of the IB Programme as students would be more exposed to the world outside and hence, apply what they learnt in school in the world.