Latest news and updates for our Kuala Lumpur Young Learner parents - January 2016

There’s so much more than classes we offer!

Did you know that the British Council offers a range of fun and interesting activities for both parents and students? Look for the following activities and special events we will run in 2016:

  • The Young Learners Library is open most weekends underneath the spiral staircase. Students can borrow books to read at home. Ask a TA or librarian for details.
  • Wise Owl is an owl who lives near the British Council and loves to write letters! Students can write a letter to Wise Owl and post it into the red post box near the library. Wise Owl usually takes about 2 weeks to reply through the student’s class teacher.
  • Storytelling: Our resident story teller is here in week 2 of each term.
  • Parent workshops: These occur in weeks 4 and 8 of each term. More details about these can be found below.
  • The Reading Challenge happens every year in the British Council. This year the topic will be World Records. Students must read 6 books in 10 weeks! Details on this year’s Reading Challenge are below.

Reading challenge

For our Primary Plus and Upper Primary levels, we launch the annual Reading Challenge in KL on 30th January. The aim of the challenge is for the children to read six books as fast as they can before 20th March. Certificates and prizes are also up for grabs for those children who meet the challenge. 

To mark this exciting event, weekly activities will be taking place throughout the weeks of the challenge at our library, located on the ground floor. Check the library notice board each week for details of the activities. Hope to see you there!

All new Seniors competition

On February 13th, we will be launching our first ever Travel Blog writing competition with our secondary classes. The students will have a few weeks to work on the project at home, before submitting their entries by 6th March. Exciting prizes are up for grabs by the best entries. Stay tuned for more details coming soon.

Parent workshops

Our YL team offers 2 parent workshops every term, in weeks 4 and 8. The workshops are always run in room 17 between 1:20 and 2:00.

Our theme for this term is The Basics. In workshop 1 our topic is Welcome to the British Council. Workshop 2 will be on Introduction to Phonics. More details are below.

Welcome to the British Council: In this session we will be introducing you to some important information about the British Council and our classes. This session will include basic information about how we work to keep your children safe, our methodology and how you can support your child’s learning at home.

Dates: 13th and 14th February

Introduction to Phonics: In this session we will introduce you to phonics; what they are and why they are important. We will look at how we teach phonics in class and how you can support your child’s development of phonics at home. This will be very interesting for parents of children in Primary Plus 1, 2 and 3.

Dates: 12th and 13th March

These sessions are always very popular, so please come early to secure a seat.

Learning spelling

In order to continue improving learning in class, this year we are improving how we teach spelling. Rather than regular testing, which is not necessarily an effective approach, and which has been a source of distress for many children in our classes, teachers will focus on developing students’ spelling skills through regular spelling activities in class. They will also focus on teaching students how to effectively learn to spell words, through techniques such as using phonics to segment the words and the “look, read, cover, write, check” technique. For more information on these techniques, please come to our first parent workshop on the 13th and 14th February.

Meet the teacher

In lesson 3 (30/31st January), parents of children in Primary Plus and Upper Primary classes will be invited in to the class for the last 10 minutes to meet the teacher and hear some information about what their child will study this year. Please be outside your child's class at least 15 minutes before the end of class and the teacher will invite you in.

Lower Secondary Survey

This term we would really like to find oput more about our Lower Secondary students and why they choose to learn at the British Council. In January, we will be sending home a survey with our Lower Secondary students to let them tell us what they think. If you have a child in Lower Secondary, please watch out for it this month.

Best tips for helping your child with their homework

  • Build routines and set goals together
  • Be encouraging. Homework helps your child review and helps the teacher identify what your child has learned. It’s okay if they don’t get it all correct, or if they can’t do it all.
  • Let the teacher see their mistakes.
  • Help them to self-correct. If you see a mistake, ask your child questions for example – are you sure this is correct? Is that word missing something

And finally, did you know that...

  • As a world leader in English language education, The British Council accredits over 550 UK schools, colleges and universities as providers of quality English language learning. 
  • The British Council builds links between higher education institutions in the UK and Commonwealth member states, improving the exchange of scientific research and innovation between Malaysia and other Commonwealth nations.
  • The British Council aims to reach over 500 million people worldwide through Shakespeare Lives, a major programme of events and activities celebrating Shakespeare’s life on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of his death in 2016. For more information about British Council sponsored events, visit our Facebook page.