>
Shu Ren International School
Berkeley, CA
Mandarin-English Immersion
Pre-K to 8th Grade
An IB World School
Berkeley, CA
Shu Ren International School
Berkeley, CA
info@shurenschool.org
510-841-8899
Mandarin-English Immersion
Pre-K to 8th Grade
An IB World School
Berkeley, CA
Shu Ren International School
Berkeley, CA
Mandarin-English Immersion
Pre-K to 8th Grade
An IB World School
Berkeley, CA

The Trouble with Homework

There’s been a LOT of discussion in the media lately about homework (see links, below) – its value to learning, the volume, and whether it may be discriminatory to children who don’t have help at home to get homework done. In fact, due at least in part to the discrimination concern, LA Unified just adopted a new policy making homework only worth 10% of a class grade! It seems to me that doing homework which repeats work done in class is good for Math – kind of like practicing an instrument or mastering the skills of a particular sport. I tend to agree with Malcolm Gladwell about the “10,000 hours to expertise” rule. And I’ve seen some kids I know master soccer and gymnastics skills through hours and hours of determined practice. One of the guests in the KQED program, Alfie Kohn, got my attention when he said, “knowledge cannot be reinforced, only behavior can.” That really makes sense to me. Sure, I want my child to learn math, but I also want her to “learn how to learn” and to experience the joy that comes from figuring out something for herself. The IB constructivist/inquiry approach to learning supports this “learn how to learn” approach. Yes, there is homework in IB but, generally speaking, the work isn’t merely a repeat of what was done in class. Rather, the homework enables the child to further engage in the inquiry and should be able to complete the work on their own! What do you think? Links: David Brooks Blog KQED Forum [Photo by Simon Shek via flickr CC...

Shu Ren Approved as IB Candidate School

Exciting news! Shu Ren’s application for International Baccalaureate (IB) PYP candidacy status has been approved effective September 1, 2011. Shu Ren International School is a candidate school* for the Primary Years Programme. This school is pursuing authorization as an IB World School. These are schools that share a common philosophy—a commitment to high quality, challenging, international education that Shu Ren International School believes is important for our students. *Only schools authorized by the IB Organization can offer any of its three academic programmes: the Primary Years Programme (PYP), the Middle Years Programme (MYP), or the Diploma Programme (and in addition the IB Career-related Certificate). Candidate status gives no guarantee that authorization will be granted. For further information about the IB and its programmes, visit...

Kung Fu Panda 2 – A Positive Message for ALL kids!

As it turns out, Kung Fu Panda 2 was a great movie! My daughter and I both enjoyed seeing the characters again and story was as good as the first movie. Po the Panda learns the story of his adoption and aims to find his “real parents.” But through the story, he realizes he is very much his (goose) father’s son and learns, “no matter where you come from, what matters most is who you choose to be today!” I hope you enjoy Kung Fu Panda 2 as much as we did...

The Benefits of Bilingualism

The New York Times has an interview with cognitive neuroscientist, Ellen Bialystok, who has discovered through her research that bilingualism has many cognitive advantages, including delaying the onset of Alzheimer’s symptoms: Q. Many immigrants choose not to teach their children their native language. Is this a good thing? A. I’m asked about this all the time. People e-mail me and say, “I’m getting married to someone from another culture, what should we do with the children?” I always say, “You’re sitting on a potential gift.” There are two major reasons people should pass their heritage language onto children. First, it connects children to their ancestors. The second is my research: Bilingualism is good for you. It makes brains stronger. It is brain...