Experience China Week

Posted by on May 5, 2011

The group Last week the 1st graders at BCIS had ECW, “Experience China week”. Each day they toured different sites in Beijing. They learned things about Chinese culture, they ate yummy food and even went on a rickshaw ride.DSC_6039 Besides it being a week to explore the city, it was also a week to teach some independence and therefore parents were not allowed to go.Because of that I don’t have a lot of details on what each day was like for them but I have a list of their activities and I have a bunch of photos (thanks to the teachers at BCIS).

P1110128Each day Miles came home hungry and tired. At about 7:30 he would ask if it was bedtime yet. His normal bedtime is at about 9:00. He had a great week and each day would tell me in depth what they had seen and done that day.I know when Miles really enjoys something because if it was just a so-so day, his response when I ask “what did you do today” is usually “nothing”. Each day last week though he would talk a mile a minute until he finished telling me about the whole day.

CalligraphyOne of the days was spent at a park and they used big Calligraphy brushes which they got wet and then wrote Chinese characters on the cement. P1110150 It’s something that a lot of older men do in parks around the city. They also made something like a “hackey sack” but it was made out of feathers and washers.


DSC05243 Tuesday (Monday they did activities at the school) the kids went to the “Ethnic Minority Park” and then had a picnic in the park and then did Home sketches. have been studying about different styles and types of homes.





Painting the KiteOn Wednesday they had Happy land Chinese culture activities at school.  They made their kites that day and Miles was sad because there wasn’t enough wind to make them fly.  not sure what else they did at school that day so I thought I would just post a bunch of photos of things they made during ECW.



Learning the ropes

pottery 101The kids learned how to throw pottery on a wheel and Miles made a cute bowl with his name on it. They also made clay carrots, and some figurines. Miles rabbit looked more like a Gremlin, remember that movie?



P1110040Thursday they took a Rickshaw tour of Houhai park and visited with local Chinese families. For lunch they ate at Xiao Wang’s Family restaurant and then played Chinese games at a park. Miles tried broccoli for the first time this day. His teacher Mrs. Kader was really good about getting him to try stir fried rice with broccoli. She told him that he had to try it to see if he would like it. It’s funny because we’ve tried that same approach with him many times but it hasn’t worked with us. It’s funny how other people can get your kids to try something or do something but when we say the same thing, it’s a big “no”. I’m so glad he tried it. Now he loves it and Mark fixed it for him over the weekend.


DSC_6228On Friday they visited a Hutong, called “The Hutong”. They made Jiaozi (dumplings) at a place in the Hutong and Miles loved it. We make Jiaozi at home all the time and he loves making them and more than anything he loves to eat them. We usually buy the skins (the dough part) at a store already made but when Miles and his classmates made Jiaozi they made the dough themselves and rolled it out.What a fun experience for all of them. I really hope Miles doesn’t forget ECW and will always remember the new things he tried and did that week.

rolling out the dough
Jiaozi 101

I thought that friends and family back in the states and even here in China would enjoy seeing what all Miles did last week. Mark and I were very jealous. It looked like a really fun week. I hope that with all the photos they gave us that Miles can remember what a fun and educational week he had. I hope his teachers and all the helpers have been able to rest. They work so hard at BCIS to make the school days educational and fun for the students. We are very grateful to both the Elementary school and Middle school.

10 Responses to Experience China Week

  1. Mark Griffith

    It was such a great week for Miles, special thanks to his teacher for helping them see so much of China last week.

  2. Valerie

    Thanks for posting this! My kids will be attending BCIS next year for the first time, and it’s great to get these wonderful, in depth updates about what they are doing. I can see why Miles couldn’t stop talking about it. I hope they also do a similar experience in the the upper elementary and middle schools.

  3. Stacey Griffith

    Valerie, when are you moving here? If you have any questions at all please ask. We have been very happy with BCIS. Our kids jumped right in and quickly settled in. They love it. Our daughter that is in 6th grade has told us she wants to stay here long enough for her to graduate from high school at BCIS. This coming from the girl who cried the first week (because of jet-lag) and wanted to go back to her friends and school in the US. I think you will be very pleased with the school.

    • Valerie

      Stacey, we will be moving the first week of August. My husband is in Beijing looking at housing this week. That’s a complicated decision! Too many choices. My son will be in the same grade as your daughter. I also have a daughter who will be entering 4th grade. I’m sure they will be nervous in the beginning. I hope they adjust as well as your daughter did. We know a family returning to the US this summer, and their daughters said the same thing about not wanting to leave Beijing. I have really enjoyed reading your posts. You make living in Beijing look like a piece of cake!

  4. Stefy

    Dear Valerie

    We are in Beijing since 2007 and my 2 kids attend BCIS.The school is fantastic and they are very happy . They were in Grade 1 and Grade 6
    ECW it is a great experience, in Grade 3 they sleep over one night at school and in grade 4 they usually go to Tianjin and sleep over 3 days.My daughter told me this trip was “soooo cooool”! In grade 6 they usually go to the Great Wall , this happens in September so they can make friend more easily with their new classmates. and living in beijing is very nice really…we all enjoy our life here. Hope to meet you at BCIS next year. Feel free to ask further info I will be very happy to help you

  5. Stacey griffith

    Stefy, who are your children?

  6. Valerie

    Thanks Stefy. Your comments are much appreciated.

    Stacey, is there a way to contact you directly? My husband looked at apartments on Sunday, and as it turns out, his two favorites were located in Park Avenue and Palm Springs. I know that’s your territory and I have questions to ask you about shopping subway access, and things for kids to do in area. I don’t mind discussing it in this blog, but it might get lengthy. Now that I think about it, your answers might be helpful to others.

  7. Stacey

    Valerie, ask away. Send me an email with as many questions as you have. I’m more than happy to help, even though we’ve been here just a short time. I may not know all the answers but I’ll try. I love Park Avenue, as does our whole family. Chaoyang Park is behind us or in front of us depending on how you look at it. 🙂 It’s like Central Park in NY. It stretches on forever and there are all kinds of things for the family to do from roller coaster rides, to playing tennis, to eating. Park Avenue has two playgrounds, a little grocery store, a bank, gym and a little cafe. We have been very happy so far with the location and the management. I don’t know where your husband works but as far as distance to the school from either Palm Springs or Park Avenue, it’s about a 15-20 (depending on traffic) bus ride to BCIS. The school bus picks them up out in front of Park Avenue as I’m sure it does at Palm Spings. I’ll stop for now and let you ask me questions in an email. I think you’d like the location though.

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