Primary School

At the Primary School, we aim to make children confident and independent learners. We provide many opportunities for students to demonstrate what they have learned. Learning at HJIS is generally inquiry-based, where students are encouraged to identify pertinent questions and construct well-informed answers.


Image result for ib logoThe IB PYP is an international curriculum framework designed for children between the ages of 3 and 12 years.  This programme is based on the latest educational research and takes into consideration each child’s individuality—their personality, learning style and combination of intelligence types. Opportunity is given, within a structured framework, for students to explore their own interests and questions. PYP students are well prepared for the next step of education (including participation in the IB Middle Years Programme [MYP]).

Keeping our young learners in mind, the IBPYP focuses on their social, physical, emotional, and cultural needs as part of a strong academic ethos.


Internationalism is a key aspect of the PYP curriculum. The students are exposed to alternative perspectives and examples of data from around the world. Teachers use tried and tested techniques from many countries while also searching for new ideas from different cultures.

Inquiry-based Learning

Teaching methods build on students’ individual knowledge and interests. Inquiry is the leading, but not exclusive, pedagogical approach of the PYP. It is recognised as being intimately connected with the development of children’s comprehension of the world. Inquiry is the process initiated by the learner or the teacher, which moves the learner from his or her current level of understanding to a new and deeper level of understanding. This can mean:

  • Exploring, wondering and questioning
  • Experimenting and playing with possibilities
  • Researching and seeking information
  • Collecting data and reporting findings
  • Clarifying existing ideas and reappraising events
  • Making and testing theories
  • Making predictions and acting purposefully to see what happens
  • Elaborating on solutions to problems.

The IBPYP develops

  • sensitivity to the experiences of others through the curriculum
  • the characteristics listed in the student profile
  • the attitudes that are an explicit element of the programme
  • the expectation of socially-responsible action as a result of the learning experience.

Japanese National Curriculum

For Kokugo (Japanese at Native Level) we implement the Japanese National Curriculum of the Ministry of Education (Monbusho) at our primary school. The students learn the same level of Japanese as taught at a Japanese public school, and lesson materials and Kanji goals are aligned with the Japanese National Curriculum.

Extra Curricular Activities

After School Programmes (ASP)
HJIS provides several after school programmes for its students. The objective of ASPs is to give students from age 4 and up the opportunity to do activities that cannot be done in their regular classes. These extracurricular activities, guided by members of our faculty or the larger community, give the students a chance to relax and socialize with others.
We are currently running 18 ASPs each week in primary school. Any nominal additional cost is to cover materials used for an ASP related activity. Some examples of the past and current ASPs are:

RoboticsSoccerDramaYogaArts & Crafts
3D DesignMaths ClubCookingFrench ClubChess
Rock BandProgrammingTable TennisVolleyballBasketball

Saturday School
A unique aspect of HJIS is our Saturday Activity Sessions. The Saturday sessions were started a few years ago by one of our passionate teachers who volunteered to teach remedial classes. The students responded so positively to the Saturday sessions that our teachers have continued to volunteer teaching both curricular and non-curricular subjects. Currently, Saturday sessions teach our students from age 5 and up—and even some of our parents! Some of our sessions include:

  • Fun with Maths
  • Science Club
  • Drama and Writing
  • EAL Support

Support Services

English as an Additional Language (EAL)

The objective of the EAL program is to facilitate the inclusion of non-native English speaking students in their mainstream classes.
We strive to provide quality EAL support for our students. Although students are required to have a certain level of English proficiency according to the year level they are applying to enter, we work with our EAL team and homeroom teachers to enable the EAL students’ transition into the mainstream class.

We adapt ‘ESL in the Mainstream’ in our curriculum and track student progress with our EAL Scope and Scales (starting from the date they are screened for admissions purposes till they are included in the mainstream class).

There are mainly two types of EAL support provided at HJIS:

  • Pull-out Support
    Pull-out support is for students who feel more comfortable receiving instruction at their level of proficiency. They are withdrawn from their English Language Arts classes all or part of the week by an EAL teacher and English is taught at a lower level until they gain confidence in entering the regular classes.
  • In-class Support
    In-class support is provided to students who feel comfortable being instructed at the school level, but need assistance accomplishing tasks assigned during English Language Arts classes. The EAL teacher spends time inside the classroom with students and they work together on the language activities, allowing the student to be supported as they become an independent learner.

Japanese as an Additional Language (JAL)
The objective of the JAL program is to enable the inclusion of students in Kokugo classes. With JAL, students are provided with lower level tasks, receive in-class support with an assistant teacher, or are pulled out of the classroom so that their needs are catered to.

A Typical Day

Line Up

Hello and welcome to the HJIS Primary School. We would like to tell you how we spend a day at school and the activities we do here. We arrive at school after 8 in the morning. Some of us come with parents, some on their own, and others with a teacher on the school bus. There is always a teacher that welcomes and supervises us in the schoolyard and reminds us to change into our indoor shoes.

We line up at the playground at 8:20, show good manners and listen to the teachers for announcements. We can ask questions if we have any.

At 8:30 we have morning meetings, where we greet our peers, do a calendar activity, talk about the day’s activities, sing songs, and have sharing time. It helps us wake up and concentrate for the day ahead of us.

Regular classes start at 9 as two 40-minute-periods with a short break in between. We have a snack recess after the second period. Most of us like to take this time to enjoy a snack from home, but some of us prefer to wait until lunch.

After another two periods, with a 5-minute-break in between them, we have a 45-minute lunch break at 12:05. We eat lunches that we bring from home; we love when we get to eat our favourite foods! We spend the rest of our lunch break running, jumping and playing with friends in the schoolyard.

One privilege we have here at Horizon is our access to several specialist teachers and facilities. They specialize in subjects such as Maths, Science, Music, Arts and Design, PE (for Grades 3-6), and ICT. This both gives our homeroom teachers time to plan lessons and allows us to enjoy learning from different teachers in specially designed classrooms.

We do a quick line up before the last three study periods. Time passes quickly and we finish our day with a short afternoon meeting between 3:10 and 3:25. We are dismissed by our teachers to either join another teacher for After School Programmes (or supervision when there is no ASP) or return home.

Our After School Programmes are from 3:30 to 4:10, and the teachers organize fun extracurricular activities for us! We have a number of ASP options to choose from; some of us like doing sports and other physical activities while others choose arts, music, language or environment-related programmes. (Please note: bus riders are required to join an ASP as the school is unable to provide extra supervision for them.)

After a long and fun-filled day, we leave at 4:20 to go home so we can get ready for another great day at school!

Morning Meeting
Period 1
Period 2
Snack & Recess
Period 3
Period 4
Lunch & Recess
Period 5
Period 6
Period 7
Afternoon Meeting
After School Programmes

Student Responsibilities

School Uniform

Students are required to dress neatly in uniforms at all times to maintain a good learning environment. Uniforms are purchased through the school and if additional items are needed, you can contact the office to request order forms.

PE Uniform

A different uniform is worn for PE; students are to change into their PE outfit before their classes. Students can choose to wear their PE clothes to/from home on PE days.

Indoor Shoes

Each student will need a pair of indoor shoes to change into when entering the school building. Due to safety concerns, slip-on style shoes are not allowed.


Students can bring their own lunch or order their lunch through the private catering company HJIS works with. Since many of our students have diet restrictions, sharing food with others is not allowed. Students are asked to show good table manners while enjoying their lunch.


A 15-minute snack recess is provided once a day. Students are expected to bring their own snacks. Younger students are required to bring a snack, but Grade 3-6 students may decide for themselves if they want to bring one. Students are not permitted to share their snacks due to dietary restrictions.

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