Student Blog

  • The Importance of Collaboration in House Competitions

    House competitions have always played an important role within our closely-packed, family-like school community. We have four houses: the Green Gators, Blue Wolverines, Yellow Jaguars, and the Red Scorpions. The members of these houses are randomly selected, with the exception being that siblings are placed in the same team. This selection process means that most of the time, friendship groups are separated, which sounds quite intimidating. But is it really? Not at all! With the involvement of the entire student body, these house competitions enable students to build friendships across all year levels. The students are supportive of one another, regardless of age, gender, or abilities, and this allows students to push each other out of their comfort zones, and for them to grow as individuals.

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  • Discovering My Culture

    Seventeen years ago, my dad left his hometown of Adelaide, Australia to come to Shanghai to teach at YCIS. Within a year he met my mum, who’s from Shanghai, and soon after they got married. After some time, I was born in Shanghai, and I have lived here ever since. So, I’m half Australian and half Chinese, but I’ve lived in China my whole life. I’m surrounded by Chinese culture, but I’m always finding ways to connect with the Australian part of myself.

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  • Why "Battle of the Bands" Is So Special

    The YCIS Puxi "Battle of the Bands" is an event which is always a highlight in every school year. For this event, students form their own rock bands to play covers of various songs. What makes it special, however, is both the feeling of performing on stage, in front of the huge crowd, with the lights on and the cameras rolling, and also the process of being with your band, practising, laughing and succeeding together. Having personally performed, I can say that while there is some fear that comes with playing in front of such a large crowd, once you step onto that stage and perform for the sake of performing, those worries just melt away and its so enjoyable to be next to your friends, playing instruments together, and making it a night to remember.

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  • What I Like Most about Pudong

    Pudong, Shanghai is undeniably one of the most vibrant, memorable districts in the world. Whether you’re gazing up at the breath-taking skyscrapers of the financial district that seem to reach into the clouds, or you are examining the incredibly sophisticated architecture of the district’s ancient temples, you’ll always find yourself blown away as you explore what Pudong has to offer.

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  • Why I’d Recommend YCIS to a Friend

    YCIS is a friendly and tight-knit community where everyone feels like they belong and that they're supported. Walking down the hallway at school, you’d always be greeted by students and staff members with warm smiles! Whilst we are a bonded group, we welcome all of our new students with hospitality and try our best to make them feel comfortable at school. This includes an orientation program, where the new students are given a tour around the school by our Prefects, and a “buddy” program in Lower Secondary, where the new students are assigned a buddy for the first few weeks of school to ensure that they are enjoying their time at YCIS.

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  • My Top Five Study Tips for Exams

    Many students have, in their lifetimes, done an "all-nighter", or "burned the midnight oil". However, it is widely accepted that this study method is counterproductive. According to neuroscientific research, staying up the whole night can lead to a 30% decrease in brain function. To avoid this situation, I have summarised below my top five study tips for exams:

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  • The Five Things I Love Most about YCIS Puxi

    Since joining the YCIS Puxi family in Year 9, I have gained many experiences and the most enjoyable memories over the past five years. YCIS is the witness of my growth and experience, and I am here to share my opinion on the five things I love the most about my school. 

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  • Secret Shanghai: An Insider’s Guide to the Most Unique Places in Shanghai

    Are you tired of visiting the usual tourist attractions? Are you looking for more unique experiences? We have a few suggestions for you that you may not have heard about. Having lived in Shanghai for years, we have gained insight into some of the most unique places to visit.

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  • Learning about Cultural Differences in China

    People often wonder if being an expatriate in Shanghai is a challenge with language barriers and other differences, but after immersing myself in Chinese culture, I have learned to speak the Chinese language, appreciate the arts of China, and savour Chinese cuisine.  Immersing yourself in Chinese culture and stepping outside the terrains of your comfort zone will provide you with opportunities to make new friends and become more open-minded. Taste a couple of delectable local snacks with your family and friends. Have fun celebrating Chinese holidays, and educate yourself on the history behind them. Enhance your Chinese language skills, and visit the many galleries that display ancient Chinese calligraphy or pottery.  In our Chinese Studies class, we have learned about the origins of the Chinese language and culture, and we have also played many fun Chinese board games. These lessons have encouraged communication and sparked creativity, helping students collaborate with their classmates over rounds of Chinese chess, and igniting a passion for the Chinese arts.  Throughout the years, I have realised that understanding and engaging in cultural differences can facilitate your growth as a global citizen, and give you a more diverse outlook on the world. Embrace cultural differences, and you will see that a little variety will always spice up your stay in Shanghai.

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