One of my favourite activities as Head of Secondary is to take a walk around the school, dropping into classrooms and seeing what students are learning about. The evidence of their knowledge and understanding can be heard in their ideas and dialogue. When I see a group of students working independently, enjoying collaborating on a task that they find meaningful, and enjoying learning, or when a student gives a presentation to parents at a PTA meeting, then I can see the product of the hard work teachers and students put into achieving the goal of enabling “all students to realise their full potential in a caring and positive learning environment”, as stated in our Mission.
In this issue:
- Reporting on student progress
- Grade 8 Humanities explore the Millenium Development Goals
- Introducing the IB’s Approaches to Learning Skills (AtL Skills)
- Grade 9 Geography Debate
- Dates for your Diary
- Photo Gallery
Reporting on student progress
We have made some changes to the reporting process in Secondary this year. One significant change is that we will no longer be sending home written quarter reports at the end of Quarters 1 and 3. Instead, we will be opening up our management system, ManageBac, to parents so that you can keep track of the work your children are doing and their ongoing performance. Teachers are regularly recording assessment results in ManageBac, and many are using this as a vehicle for providing feedback to students as well. You will be able to see this information.
You will receive an email within the next week (before October break) with details of how to login to ManageBac. If you have any issues getting access, ask your child as he/she should be able to help you. Alternatively, get in touch with your child’s homeroom teacher, Mr Daniel, or myself, and we’ll help resolve the problem.
On November 2nd, during the parent-student-teacher conferences, we will be running a couple of workshops to help parents access ManageBac and understand how to use the system. Details of how to sign up for conferences will go out to parents in the near future.
Grade 8 Humanities explore the Millenium Development Goals
Mr Dan’s Grade 8 class have recently been studying the Millenium Development Goals and assessing how successful we have been as a global community at achieving these goals. Here are two very good analyses, focusing on MDGs 7 & 8.
I am impressed at the level of knowledge and understanding being demonstrated by these two Grade 8 students.
Introducing the IB’s Approaches to Learning Skills (AtL Skills)
On Wednesday 9th September we had our first Late Start of the year. These are important professional development sessions as they enable staff to dedicate several hours to collaborative planning and dialogue focused on curriculum improvement. On this occasion Daniel Suarez, our MYP Coordinator, led a session on the Approaches to Learning Skills which are at the centre of the MYP and the DP. The AtL Skills are a core part of the skill set needed by students as they face the learning challenges presented by these programmes and the world around them, and we will be focusing on them more and more.
Grade 9 Geography Debate
Learning to debate, and to accept that there are often multiple legitimate arguments on either side of a debate, is an important skill. Mr Brandon’s Grade 9 Geography class recently debated the following statement: “To what extent are the causes of global climatic change natural.” While there was no winning group, the students were diligent researchers looking at both sides and sometimes debating something they did not believe in. However, In Hye said it best to summarize her group’s position, “The causes of climate change are irrelevant, what we need is action to combat the effects!” I have to say I agree with In Hye.
Dates for your Diary
- Tuesday 22nd Sept: Whole School Collaborative Sports Day – POSTPONED to November
- 24-25 Sept: ISA Testing, Grades 7 & 9 only
- 3rd- 13th October: Autumn Break.
- 14th – 21st October: Bali Trip to attend the GIN Conference
- 26th – 30th October: Secondary Camps Week
- 2nd November: Parent-Student-Teacher Conferences, all day. No school for students, though they are required to attend conferences with their parents.
- 5th November: UKMT Senior Competition
- 5th – 8th November: MRISA Sr Volleyball @SSIS
- 9th November: Late Start