Three of the children have serious but non-life-threatening injuries after the attack, which took place on Tuesday at around 11:20am.
In a follow-up statement, police identified the suspect as a 49-year-old man by the surname Jia from Heilongjiang province.
A man rides with a student past crime scene investigators as they leave the Beijing No. 1 Affiliated Elementary School of Xuanwu Normal School in Beijing, China, Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019.
Parents and family members escort their children just outside the gates of an elementary school in Beijing following an attack on January 8.
In the video footage, which showed dozens of angry parents demanding details from staff, they were repeatedly urged to stop filming by the head teacher. Instead of using a knife, the attacker is reported to have used a hammer to strike the kids. Second grade classrooms are on the first floor, it was children from those classes. The injured children have been hospitalised.
"I heard that children were attacked (by someone) with a knife, so I'm very anxious", said a woman surnamed Zhou as she waited for her child to finish school.
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"At the moment, if we have not called you, your child should be safe".
"People who hurt children do not deserved to be forgiven", a social media user wrote in a post on Weibo, a Twitter-like microblog.
A hospital bystander said: "Police have tightened security at Beijing Children's Hospital and Xuanwu Hospital".
Violent attacks targeting schoolchildren are not uncommon in China, which has seen a slew of deadly incidents over the past few years, usually involving knives.
Two children were also stabbed to death outside a Shanghai kindergarten in June, while nine children died in a knife attack at a school in Shaanxi province in April.