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        Principal's Welcome

        It gives me great pleasure to write the welcome message for the YK Pao Primary School. Located in a beautiful and purpose-built campus in the heart of Shanghai’s Changing district, we offer a uniquely blended Chinese and international curriculum which is rigourous, purposeful and exciting, and ensure through continuous assessment and tracking that we provide a personalised and effective educational experience for every child.

        At Pao School we believe in educating the whole child and place equal importance on developing good character alongside academic excellence. Our curriculum is broad and balanced, and our students are offered a wide and varied programme of learning which includes music, sports, the arts and technology, as well as outstanding character development. Working in both languages allows our pupils to develop superb language skills in both English and Mandarin; ultimately placing them in an enviable position amongst their peers at other schools here in Shanghai and beyond.

        Our students look forward to coming to school every day because we provide learning that is student-centred and challenging. We recognise that our students need to be prepared for a fast paced and ever-changing world and so ensure that our curriculum enables them to be flexible and disciplined learners. Our teachers are highly qualified and experienced from a range of fields and countries to ensure that our students benefit from the international mindset that these characteristics provide. Our teachers and support staff care deeply for our students and the warm and nurturing environment which we have at Pao School is a key feature and a real strength of the school.

        Effective partnerships with parents are extremely important to us as we recognise that this is central to ensuring that our students have the best learning opportunities possible. We actively encourage our parents to have an engaged and proactive involvement in school life via our PTA and other parent led committees and events.

        I am confident that Pao School is the best school for your child and would encourage you to come along and visit us to see first-hand why this is true. You will find happy and purposely engaged students and a warm and friendly environment which is hard to improve on. We look forward to meeting you.

        Siobhain Allum
        Primary Principal and Head of Wuding Campus


        • Siobhain video teaser1.jpg

          An interview with Siobhain Allum


        Subject Areas

        Core Subjects
        ChineseMathEnglishExploratory Units
        Specialist Subjects
        MusicVisual ArtsPhysical EducationICT
        Co-Curricular Activities (CCA)
        Individualised learning

        Young Pioneers

        Young Paoneers

        Academic SupportService Learning

        Language Allocation in the Curriculum

        The dual-language learning environment at YK Pao School is unique. We are one of only a very small number of schools in the world where a substantial number of Chinese and English native-speaking students are immersed equally in both languages. This means that we not only teach in two languages, but we also offer a rich classroom environment in terms of culture, as students share the benefits of their differing cultural backgrounds with the class. In addition, students are immersed in the two languages in specialist subjects such as Art, Music, PE and ICT. This ensures both languages are used in an authentic as well as academic way. In addition, some subjects are taught bilingually to ensure students have understandings of skills and concepts in both languages. Research indicates that a proficiency in both languages takes at least five years to develop so, over time, students at YK Pao School are immersed equally in both languages although there may be variations from year to year.


        Curriculum Details


        Comprehensive and practical, the Chinese course focuses on cultivating students' ability to use the spoken and written Chinese language. It serves as a foundation course for future study of the Chinese language while also helping students develop virtuous character traits and a correct outlook on life. In the Primary School curriculum, students will initially learn to use Chinese for basic communication. They will also learn about ancient and modern Chinese culture and the cultures of other countries. The Chinese classroom focuses on the interplay between listening, speaking, reading and writing. The Chinese course uses the Chinese National Curriculum textbook. In the teaching process, we adopt a combination of formative assessment and summative evaluation. Every year group, there are five hours of classroom study time per week.


        In English, teachers provide a positive learning environment that fosters creativity and independent growth within the English language. English is taught to students 5 hours a week with learning goals divided between speaking, listening, reading and writing with further support for phonics, spelling and grammar. Teachers guide students towards the sourced learning standards by using reflective practices, giving regular focused learning feedback and differentiated instruction in order to meet their individual needs.


        The mathematics course is designed to help students enjoy learning about mathematics, appreciate its beauty and understand its importance. Mathematics is a core subject of the national curriculum standards and are categorised into five strands: using and applying mathematics; number; algebra; shape and space; handling data. The mathematics syllabus is organised on a subject basis outside the main topic framework of the curriculum (although topic work will often also include mathematical activities). Mathematics is taught for 3.5 hours per week.

        Exploratory Units

        EU is a highly motivating, child-centered programme taught as a multidisciplinary subject. The key learning areas include: Humanities and Science. Humanities helps students develop knowledge, skills, and understandings that will enhance their sense of personal and social identity and enable them to participate actively in maintaining or improving the quality of our society and our environment. Science courses help students understand natural phenomena and in acquiring the skills, thinking processes, knowledge and skills relevant to science and scientific investigation. The philosophy of the subject of EU is designed around two essential constructs: The Learning Goals for the subject of EU seek to encourage the holistic development of internationally-minded learners, with three categories of Learning Goals consisting of: ‘Character traits’; ‘International’; and ‘Subject’.


        The Music curriculum is designed for everyone, whether or not they have a lot of musical experience or background. In Music we explore cultures and ideas through the disciplines of Performing, Composing, Listening and Appraising. Students will develop their singing and will use a number of instruments to explore music from different cultures and times. Each class has one hour-long lesson per week. Students will learn vocal, ensemble, creative and listening skills throughout the course. Not only do we wish to equip our students with musical and life skills, but we also want to instill a life-long love of music and learning.

        Visual Arts

        In the art programme we strive to give students a well-rounded and dynamic education in the Visual Arts. We acknowledge the importance of creativity and the fostering self-expression in each of our students as they develop into the whole child. Our vision is to create children that understand and enjoy art and will continue to explore its many possibilities confidently in future years after their primary education. Art classes are held across each grade level for one hour per week. Students keep a record of their ideas and learning in a sketchbook format. Each unit will culminate with a final project, where the main focus is the process rather than the outcome. Students are assessed based on the entire process of creating, solving and their attitude towards learning.

        Physical Education

        The aim of our PE syllabus is to develop in each student, the knowledge, skills, understanding and values needed to lead healthy, active and fulfilling lives. In doing so, this syllabus will form the basis for students to adopt a responsible and productive role in society. Students in Year 1-5 have a 60-minute class of PE and a 60-minute class of swimming per week. Students will also be given opportunities to participate in the school's sports teams via CCAs and morning and lunchtime training sessions. All physical education lessons and sports team training sessions are considered an essential and compulsory part of the school’s curriculum. Above all, we value effort, positive attitude and commitment as key qualities we expect from each student.


        The ICT curriculum is designed around the school’s learning goals within Information and Communication Technology. The curriculum is designed to incorporate the 4Cs of 21st century learning, with each unit structured to provide opportunity for: Communication, Collaboration, Analytical Thinking and Creativity. The 5 strands of ICT are adapted and implemented alongside YK Pao School's units of study, promoting opportunities for cross-subject links, greater depth of understanding, project based learning and analytical thinking: Applications for Learning - Computer Programming – Robotics – Augmented/Virtual Reality – Design.