At all our schools, DUCKS is set in a purpose-built Early Years environment catering to children ages 2 to 7 years old. It comprises of Toddler, Nursery, and Reception (collectively known as our Early Years programme) and Year 1 & 2. During their DUCKS years, our students develop their Personal, Social and Emotional skills, Communication and Language skills, and Physical movement skills, while building their foundation in Literacy, Mathematics, Art and World cultures.


Early Years

Early Years in DUCKS is based on the best of Early Years education from around the world within the well-defined expectations of the Early Years Foundation Stage from the U.K.

Child-led learning and play-based exploration underpin the approach where learning is supported through positive interaction with adults whose careful questioning, observations, and reflections inform their daily practice.

At all our schools, Early Years students are immersed in our Dual Language programme, providing powerful opportunities to strengthen children’s cognitive abilities through rich language exposure continuously throughout the day. Strong thinking skills, highly developed logical reasoning, increased ability to focus, remember, and make decisions as well as greater social and cultural awareness are all at the forefront of language acquisition.

The aim of the Dual Language approach in DUCKS is to develop fluent speakers in English and Mandarin by the end of Year 2 who can comfortably switch from one language to another whilst always remaining secure in their first language.

Year 1 and Year 2

In Year 1 and Year 2 DUCKS teachers build upon and extend the child-led learning and play-based exploration to a more structured approach to learning following the English National Curriculum.

Children delve deeper into areas of learning, including core subjects of English, Mathematics, Science and the foundation subjects; Art and Design, Computing, Geography, History, Music and Physical Education (PE). Depending on their age, children will have specialist lessons each week for Music, Library and Physical Education.

Mandarin is taught in discrete lessons and our Mandarin learners are divided into three pathways depending on each student's context and aims: Chinese Native Language (CNL), Mandarin as a second language, and Mandarin as a foreign language. Our CNL pathway is designed to lay a solid foundation for success in the IBDP and as well as long-term bilingual excellence. Read more about our Mandarin program.

Holistic Education

At DCI, holistic education is central to the student. Children in Reception begin to participate in our Co-curricular Activities (CCA), such as tennis, martial arts, drawing, eco clubs, crafts and drama, when they are developmentally ready.

DUCKS students also begin actively engaging with technology in Year 1 though we remain vigilant about managing screen time. To promote a curious mindset and offer children opportunities to explore creative problem solving, the DUCKS campus has a dedicated space for our SE21 programme, which you can read more about here.

DUCKS places each child's sense of self and wellbeing at the heart of everything we do. DUCKS is a school where the foundations for lifelong learning are at the core of an atmosphere that is caring, nurturing, and stimulating. The ethos of DUCKS is warm and inviting, challenging each child in a safe and exciting learning environment.

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