What Makes Us Unique?
In order to achieve the goal of nurturing students to become Kingdom agents serving in multicultural contexts of the world and, more specifically, to develop characteristics specified in our ESLRs, all the programs at HIS are run under the following four specific foci.
All the curricular and extracurricular activities at HIS are intended to encourage students to develop a Christian worldview in integrated and practical ways. These activities are designed to help students avoid compartmentalization of faith and to help them develop a holistic view of their faith. Students gain understanding that all areas of life are God’s creation. They also view that the world is tainted with sin but can be restored as we participate in the redemptive work of Christ.
To achieve this goal, we help students cultivate a solid devotional life through chapel services, Bible classes and class devotions, thereby deepening their view of God and developing their heart towards the world. The biblical studies classes in the middle and high school are intentionally integrated with the humanities and social sciences so that the students will learn to view and engage the world through and with biblical principles. Furthermore, through all the curricular and extracurricular programs, students have opportunities to investigate and appreciate God’s created order, to critically analyze the corrupted aspects of the creation, and to think about how to restore the original state of creation.
Secondly, HIS offers programs which provide opportunities for students to develop cross-cultural aptitude, which may be defined as the competence and character needed in order to understand and serve those who are of a different cultural heritage. We believe this is one of the essential qualities for the workers in the Kingdom of God.
To achieve this goal, HIS embraces an English Immersion/Dual Language Program, offering classes both in English and Korean. For those who are less proficient, we provide an ESL (English as a Second Language) program, a KSL (Korean as a Second Language) program, as well as Independent Korean Studies in English. In addition to these programs, we offer foreign language courses such as Spanish, Russian and Chinese to help students acquire more foreign language skills and to experience diverse cultures. Furthermore, HIS actively participates in inter-school programs with other international schools in Korea in order to help students broaden their cultural perspectives. Those programs include various athletic competition events, MUN (Model United Nations), and a Spelling Bee. We also celebrate International Day each year in which students are involved in exciting presentations on various countries that they learn about.
Unity and Diversity
Another characteristic of HIS education is that we celebrate the diversity of individuals and the unity of our community at the same time. Students learn to understand that God created each and every individual uniquely. At the same time, they appreciate the value of living and learning together.
To emphasize the unity of this community, we celebrate HIS Spirit Week and host Sports Day and H-Festival. The festival is a means of acknowledging the varied cultural backgrounds of our students. Throughout the year middle and high school students organize teams composed of members from different grades who meet regularly to accomplish various missions in the school events while learning how to solve problems together. The annual camping trip also provides an excellent opportunity to carry out some challenging tasks together.
Elementary students are encouraged to discover and develop their talents through a number of after-school clubs such as inline skating, basketball, baseball, board games, knitting, Chinese language, and flute. In the middle and high school, students may choose their own elective courses according to their talents and interests. These courses include science project, math project, social studies project, choir, musical, orchestra, drawing, and sculpting. Also, students can develop their talents more deeply through various club activities such as creative writing, debate club, basketball, mathematics club, soccer, movie club, and MUN.
Engaging the world
Finally, HIS would like to see the students grow as active participants in faithfully serving various parts of the world, rather than just living in their own intellectual comfort zone. Nothing is complete unless you put it in its final shape. Learning takes its final shape when students are engaged in solving practical problems creatively by applying what they have learned. Various field exposures thus help students to be better motivated and to see the purpose of learning more clearly.
To that end, elementary students go on a field trip once a semester and mission work through various fundraising activities. Through our Vision and Vocation course, high school students are challenged and encouraged to recognize their unique callings. Local Engagement and Intercultural Engagement courses are designed to help students learn and serve in their local and international communities. In addition, students take important roles in the planning of school events and they learn servant-leadership by participating in the SCA (Student Council Association) or the praise and worship team.
The various educational programs at HIS under the above four focuses, namely Christian Worldview, Cross-cultural Aptitude, Unity and Diversity, and Engaging the world, are closely related to one another in order to help students grow up as competent and responsible workers for the Kingdom of God. We hope our students will be equipped with a Christian mind, Christ-like character and cross-cultural aptitude.