Location – G/F & 1/F, Kong Chian Tower, 351 Des Voeux Road West, Shek Tong Tsui, Hong Kong
Website – http://www.fairchild.edu.hk/
Contact – +852 2803 2638
Ancient commercially important landmarks, vibrant cities, diverse flavors and cuisine-these are not the only aspects Hong Kong is known for. It is also known for maintaining outstanding education and providing opportunities for students to learn and grow. There are some of the most famous educational institutions in this country. They open the door to endless opportunities in education and professional excellence. These institutions take every step to ensure that each student achieves their goals and progresses in stages.
Fairchild Kindergarten is an international kindergarten established in 2017 in Hong Kong by Fairchild Canadian Academy, with programs for children from age 2 to 6 years.
The school aims at cultivating curiosity, creativity and confidence in its children through use of the Reggio Emilia approach in Hong Kong. The school believes that life is a journey and not a race. Fairchild encourages children to enjoy their children through playful, interesting and age-appropriate activities.
Emphasis on Academic Excellence
Fairchild Kindergarten has 6 classrooms, a water play space, a sensory and creative arts area, a STEM lab, a shared discovery area, a cookery area, and a custom-built indoor tree house playground. Fairchild brings the outdoors inside in an urban context, providing excellent learning opportunities in natural settings that encourage children to play, ask, and learn. When you walk into a Fairchild campus, you’ll notice the warmth, calmness, and beauty that comes from the utilisation of natural components such as daylight, wood, water, sand, and soil in the architecture. Natural learning tools such as wooden blocks, shells, gemstones, and a variety of other open-ended play resources and stations are available to help children’s imaginations soar.
The Erudite Spearhead
Fairchild Kindergarten and Fairchild Junior Academy founder Joseph Fung got his inspiration in the great outdoors of Canada, where he grew up from the age of three. His surroundings in Vancouver – wide-open areas, untamed nature, and a wonderful school – motivated him to develop an engaging and natural environment for children in Hong Kong with hands-on experiences.
In Hong Kong, there is undoubtedly a market for play-based and progressive learning. He desired a school where kids could explore natural environments, interact with the environment, and learn at their own pace. To achieve this, he picked the Reggio Emilia framework, which has had a significant impact on Hong Kong’s early childhood education.
Beyond Traditional Curriculum
The school’s learning approach has an inquiry focus. The ‘Hundred Languages’ of Children is one aspect of the Reggio Emilia approach, and emphasizes hands-on discovery learning allowing children to use all their senses and different ‘languages’ to learn and express themselves.
Fairchild promotes collaboration, communication, and exploration among children while recognising their abilities and interests. It respects children’s right to play, with committed and skilled instructors assisting in the development of deep bonds via rich, hands-on learning. The development of the whole child in a play-based environment is at the heart of what Fairchild does. For children’s health, play has important neurological, cognitive, socio-emotional, and physiological effects.
Children are at work when they are playing, thinking out their own hypotheses about how a stone can drop in water or why the turtle swims in shallow water. Rather than being spoon-fed the answers, students develop up their own theories based on real-life examples and explore and confront for themselves. Children can be much more creative and innovative as a result of this active learning process, and they will frequently ask questions that we may not always know the answers too! We want youngsters to be curious and ask questions since this is how they learn best.
Fairchild uses the school environment as a third teacher and understands it as a central aspect of Reggio Emilia’s philosophy. The thoughtfully designed school offers a unique learning space. Not only sand, water, shells and plants, but also many natural elements such as insects, butterflies, turtles and geckos are incorporated into the classroom. With natural creatures in school, children take care of insects and animals, learn about body parts, life cycle, what to eat, and raise awareness of empathy, understanding and sustainability. Children learn to understand the relationships of the world and how the natural world affects them and others.
The school provides an immersive language-rich environment for students in an International school with children come from a diverse community from countries all over the world including the U.K., the U.S.A., France, Italy, Canada, Australia, Korea, Japan, China, Hong Kong and more. At our kindergarten, we have an International Stream and a Dual Language Stream, which is in English and Mandarin. This helps us to promote Bilingualism and reflects part of our culture in Hong Kong and China. We are also respectful of different cultures and encourage children to share the festivals or traditions students celebrate at the school – this helps build knowledge and awareness between their peers!
Fairchild works hand in hand with families to ensure a happy, healthy and all-rounded development of each child. Fairchild doesn’t only provide financial flexibility to family in need, but also works closely with our Parent and Education Consultant and external providers to support diverse needs for both children and parents. Our Parent and Education Consultant is available to meet with parents to discuss any early childhood development issues or for school advisory support.
Our kindergarten children are actively engaged in all areas of development. Rather than following a fixed schedule of learning, Fairchild’s teachers follow the interests of the children, in what is known as an emergent curriculum, so their themes in the classroom are varied. Getting a rich variety of hands-on experiences based on children’s interests, such as feeding a pet, visiting the restaurant kitchen and planting in the community garden, makes learning much more meaningful to a child. This makes the learning more interesting for the children, and they are therefore more engaged by having more ownership of the content of their learning. Children thereby become active learners, they don’t need teachers to ‘teach’, they just need teachers to support and guide their questions.
Building a Pathway to Bright Careers
Fairchild Kindergarten places great emphasis on nurturing all-round children and preparing them with life-long skills for the future. Fairchild believes that through children engaged and are exposed to meaningful life experiences at the school help build a strong foundation towards being confident and responsible citizens of the future; being involved in applying innovative and creative ways to problem solve, they will develop critical thinking skills and achieve good all-round development to prepare for any future opportunities.
Graduates from Fairchild Kindergarten are carrying on their learning path in different elite international schools and local schools befitting their individual characters and interests. Wherever they go, their strong educational foundation established at Fairchild has them prepared for any future challenges and opportunities.
The Pandemic Dynamic
We maintain learning opportunities as much as possible. At Fairchild, we offer daily activities shared on our communication platform, Storypark, whereby families can access stories read by teachers and hand on practical activities parents can do at home with their children – this might be a sensory exploration, or a cooking activity, maybe family yoga! We also prepare learning packs of materials each week which we send home for children to do while at home, designed by the class teachers. We have offered child care support, as well as an outreach service if circumstances allow, depending on the local situation.
The key for us is to maintain routines and connections with our children and families, which we arrange through individual or small group video calls or phone calls. We also encourage parents to share photos and videos of the children doing our home activities through our application, Storypark, so we keep engaged with our community. The external situation keeps changing, but we are fortunate to have strong community relationships which help us continue to support children and their families during these difficult times.
Fairchild Kindergarten has been awarded “Top 10 Most Valuable Preschool in Hong Kong” by The Knowledge Review. Fairchild schools are also the nominees for Hong Kong Education Awards, including “Kindergarten of the Year”, “Best Student-Centered School” and “Most Socially Responsible School”. And the founder of Fairchild schools, Joseph Fung, has been awarded the “Global Education Leaders of 2021” by Education Stalwarts.
The ‘perfect place’, defined by the students of Fairchild themselves, is one where children come to school every day with a big smile. The best rewards are from the children and families themselves.
Towards a Bright Tomorrow
Fairchild’s future plan is to continuously enhancing the quality of early childhood education programs in Hong Kong with active collaborations with various educational institutions and open more schools. In the meantime, Fairchild will continue to support and engage in different innovative education technology projects to uplift the standard of early childhood education in Hong Kong.