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The Arts

The inclusive Arts curriculum at NIS allows for both responses to and the creation of artwork, whether musical, dramatic, or through the visual arts.

The arts are a universal form of human expression and a unique way of knowing that engage us in affective, imaginative and productive activity. Learning through the arts helps us to explore, shape and communicate our sense of identity and understanding of the world, while providing opportunities to develop self‑confidence, resilience and adaptability.


students in a group

In Drama, our students have a multitude of opportunities to pursue their performing talents out of the classroom as well. All Grade 2-5 students perform in at least one production and all Secondary students can perform in several productions and activities throughout the year. Some of these opportunities include:

  • Secondary Production
  • Accidental Theatre Company
  • Service Drama Club

There are also opportunities for students to be involved with the running of performances working as Stage Managers, Theatre Crew, Front of House and set, prop and costume design and making.

International Schools Theatre Association (ISTA)

NIS is an active participant of ISTA. We regularly attend Primary and Secondary School ISTA events in China as well as hosting ISTA events.


students in a group

Music education at NIS is available to all students from Early Years to Grade 12. 

Our music programs focus on building practical playing skills within personalised contexts, which students may access via two basic strands: an inclusive and broad-reaching curricular approach, and performance-intensive after-school activities. Classroom studies cover music fundamentals, skill-building on instruments and performance aesthetics, while opportunities for student-directed activities include group work like instrumental and vocal ensembles, as well as rock bands, drumming clubs, and electronic music. 

Students’ great efforts are showcased through a variety of performances throughout the school year. With an NIS focus on inquiry-based learning, some students will choose to organise events of their own, developing valuable skills along the way not only with performing but also with self-management, collaboration practices, marketing, and production in real-world situations. 

Some of the music activities for our Primary and Secondary include:

  • Choir 
  • Concert Band 
  • Advanced Orchestra 
  • Rock Bands 

Our school’s mission focuses on international mindedness, and as such our musical programme seeks to engage with the local community whenever possible. The ‘Arts in the Community’ program allows students to perform at a variety of local venues, including the Amity Benefit Concert, Winter Charity Festival, Ting Ting Deaf School, local Chinese kindergartens, and more. All of these performances help build towards the end-of-year final performance – a formal evening entitled “Music Evening.” 

Visual Arts

students in a group

Our students can participate in activities outside the classroom and after school that are designed to develop skills and self-confidence in visual arts, regardless of any prior experience. This includes the opportunity to create and display their work at school, have it published in school publications, and share their knowledge and creativity.


Nanjing International School offers students at all grade levels opportunities to participate in 10 different inclusive, competitive sports.

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Student Activities

Our Primary School offers diverse activities, including culture, crafts, performing arts, and sports for Grades 1-5. In Secondary School, students engage in clubs, performing arts, and service to develop skills, interests, and leadership opportunities.

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Global Citizen Diploma

As Global Citizens, our students live their lives with a promise to understand others, make decisions with the awareness of its effect on the local and global communities while advocating for responsibility for sustainability.

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