Friday, November 8, 2013
Issue 12 Volume 50
Dear AISL Community,
AISL has been a very busy place as usual these past two weeks. Last weekend AISL hosted the Western African International Schools Activities League (WAISAL) with the International School of Dakar, Senegal; American International School of Abuja, Nigeria; Lincoln Community School in Accra, Ghana; and our very own American International School of Lagos. Our coaches reported that the AISL swimmers performed very well in the tournament but more importantly, were gracious hosts to our international guests and showed excellent sportsmanship. Special thanks to events organizers Mr. Blondin and Mr. Imhoff and to our AISL Swim Coaches, but thank you to the AISL community who pitched in and provided accommodations to the visiting athletes and coaches. Thank you also to our parent volunteers, faculty volunteers, student volunteers, and our maintenance staff who worked so hard in pull off a very successful event.
This weekend the AISL Drama class is putting on the production, “Don’t Drink The Water,” tonight (Friday) and Saturday evenings, beginning at 7 p.m. Tickets are on sale and you won’t want to miss this production. Thank you in advance to our producer, Mr. Anton Pav, and his assistant, Ms. Janet Hallwood and to all of the student performers. Again, thank you to our reliable maintenance crews who work tirelessly to make each of the AISL events successful. Enjoy the performance!
Have a great weekend,
Tim Travers Superintendent
Elementary School Update Meet With M&M!
How about an extra special thank you to Karin Troy and the other parents who organized the after school trick or treating last week! They did a lot of organizational work that resulted in hundreds of happy children. Congratulations also to our AISL swim team that included 4th and 5th graders. They did a great job at the WAISAL swim meet last weekend with a 2nd place showing. Thank you parents for sponsoring young athletes from other schools and for helping to organize the event. We had many compliments given to the AISL community from our sister schools!
American International School of Lagos Behind 1004 Estates, Victoria Island, P.O. Box 2803 Lagos, Nigeria http://aislagos.org Phone (234-1) 461-0985 (234-1) 461-0987
This Friday is the end of the first after school activities session. Next week (the week of November 11) there will be no after school activities and elementary students should all be going home after the 2:25 dismissal. Parents still have time to sign up for second trimester activities if you would like to. Mr. Imhoff will have signup tables in the courtyard again next week. Please look for the notice in this newsletter for signup times. The 2nd round of after school activities will begin the following week (November 18).
Fax (234-1) 461-0986 Superintendent Tim Travers High School Principal Garth Wyncoll High School Vice Principal Carlos De La Sobera
Next Wednesday, November 13, is an early dismissal day for all students in preschool to 12th grade. All teachers and staff will be involved in training that day, so there should be no students here on Wednesday after dismissal. Preschool to 5th grade will dismiss at 11:00, middle school at 11:10, and high school at 11:20.
Middle School Principal Dan Luce Elementary Principal Bill Martin-Muth Early Childhood Coordinator/ Director of Admissions Donnie McCoy
The end of the trimester is next week and elementary report cards will be coming home on the 22nd of November. It’s hard to believe that we are already 1/3 of the way through the school year! Mr. Martin-Muth Elementary School Principal
Curriculum Coordinator Kim Hayes
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Middle School Update Greetings!
Some of you have no doubt heard me talk about my vision for the students whose lives mine intersects with to believe in their ability to become world changers. I often ask groups of students when I have an opportunity to address them in the classroom or an assembly if they believe that they can change the world. Some of them respond affirmatively, but often they do not. I make it my mission to convince them that anyone who ever made a difference in the world came into it exactly the same you as each of us did. Every human being started as infants and moved through all of the phases, just like us. My goal in getting them to think about that is to plant a seed that will help them to begin to establish a dream for themselves. A dream that will motivate them to do whatever it takes to achieve it.
I came across a story that I want to share that I hope might make a positive impact. Hopefully you will share it with your children. I am uncertain who to attribute it to but it goes something like this: Monty has let me use his house to put on fund-raising events to raise money for youth at risk programs. The last time I was there he introduced me by saying, “I want to tell you why I let Jack use my horse. It all goes back to a story about a young man who was the son of an itinerant horse trainer who would go from stable to stable, race track to race track, farm to farm and ranch to ranch, training horses. As a result, the boy’s high school career was continually interrupted. When he was a senior, he was asked to write a paper about what he wanted to be and do when he grew up”.
That night he wrote a seven-page paper describing his goal of someday owning a horse ranch. He wrote about his dream in great detail and he even drew a diagram of a 200-acre ranch, showing the location of all the buildings, the stables and the track. Then he drew a detailed floor plan for a 4,000-square-foot house that would sit on a 200acre dream ranch.
He put a great deal of his heart into the project and the next day he handed it in to his teacher. Two days later he received his paper back. On the front page was a large red ‘F’ with a note that read, “See me after class.” The boy with the dream went to see the teacher after class and asked, `Why did I receive an F?’ The teacher said, "This is an unrealistic dream for a young boy like you. You have no money. You come from an itinerant family. You have no resources. Owning a horse ranch requires a lot of money. You have to buy the land. You have to pay for the original breeding stock and later you’ll have to pay large stud fees. There’s no way you could ever do it.” Then the teacher added, “If you will rewrite this paper with a more realistic goal, I will reconsider your grade.”
The boy went home and thought about it long and hard. He asked his father what he should do. His father said, “Look, son, you have to make up your own mind on this. However, I think it is a very important decision for you.” Finally, after sitting with it for a week, the boy turned in the same paper, making no changes at all.
He stated, “You can keep the F and I’ll keep my dream.” Monty then turned to the assembled group and said, “I tell you this story because you are sitting in my 4,000square-foot house in the middle of my 200-acre horse ranch. I still have that school paper framed over the fireplace.” He added, “The best part of the story is that two summers ago that same schoolteacher brought 30 kids to camp out on my ranch for a week.” When the teacher was leaving, he said, “Look, Monty, I can tell you this now. When I was your teacher, I was something of a dream stealer. During those years I stole a lot of kids’ dreams. Fortunately you had enough gumption not to give up on yours.”
! ! ! !
Don’t let anyone steal your dreams. Follow your heart, no matter what. “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” ~ Henry David Thoreau
Thank you for the privilege of serving your student. Dan Luce MS Principal
High School Update AISL faculty members will participate in a professional development half-day next Wednesday, November 13. HS students will be dismissed at 11:20 a.m. The faculty will continue discussing best practices on the assessment of student learning. We will have horizontal grade level team meetings and meet in vertically aligned departments to discuss assessment strategies. This work will eventually lead to a new assessment policy at AISL that is current and based on our academic standards.
Congratulations to the AISL Swim Team for their 2nd Place finish in the WAISAL meet. The following HS swimmers did a fantastic job: Shristi Sarkar (1 bronze medal) Zoe Meerschman (2 silver medals) Julian Deenstra (3 silver, 3 bronze medals) Hamayel Qureshi (1 silver medal) Andrea Freddi (1 gold, 5 silver medals) Adam Kobus Caden Wyncoll (2 silver, 3 bronze medals) Ricki Edghill Parents who hosted visiting athletes, helped out at the swim meet, provided food for coaches and assisted with the organization of the meet are truly thanked. We could not have done this without you. The event was fantastic due in large part to the AISL team of volunteers! Special thanks to our team leaders: Haley Bailey, Renee Vos De Vaal, Nadia Wagenaar and Karin Troy.
Woody Allen’s play, “Don’t Drink the Water” opens this evening and runs through Saturday. Tickets are H-O-T. If you have yours, guard them with your life. If you have not purchased them yet, there may be a few left at the door.
November is a busy month with one WAISAL finishing last weekend, and our volleyball teams leaving next Thursday for a WAISAL tournament in Ghana. Good luck teams! Basketball season begins soon and international trips are around the corner.
Upcoming Events “Don’t Drink the Water” November 8 & 9 at 7:00 p.m. in the gym
HS Movie Night November 15 at 6:30 p.m.
HS Parent Forum November 20 at 2:00 p.m. Topics: HS Merit System, IT at Home, Career Education
International Trips November 23-30
Counselor’s Corner News & Events Cliques at schools have been around forever. According to Wikipedia, the word "clique" is used to describe a group of 2 to 12 (averaging 5 or 6) "persons who interact with each other more regularly and intensely than others in the same setting." Interacting with cliques is part of normative social development regardless of gender, ethnicity, or popularity. Although cliques are most commonly studied during adolescence and middle childhood, they exist in all age groups. What happens when you are different and just don’t fit in? The Challenges of Differences by John Sommers Flanagan Being different can be enormously hard. The tendency to torment students who are different is puzzling when we realize that being different is natural. Just as there are no absolutely identical snowflakes or blades of grass, there are no absolutely identical human beings. Even monozygotic twins are slightly different than each other. Humans vary widely in terms of shape, size and skin/hair/eye color. We also vary in gifts, strengths, personalities and abilities. A hopeful attribute of human beings is our ability to learn. Sure, we have some responses that don’t seem learned, such as a dislike of certain food tastes or fears of rodents or the dark. But even these “natural” responses or preferences can be changed when we’re given new information. Think of foods you’ve come to appreciate or fears you’ve overcome by “teaching” yourself how to handle the fear. Maybe someone else helped you by explaining that unfamiliar, scarylooking thing or by modeling how fun it could be to pet the dog or the hamster. Children aren’t programmed to automatically fear, hate or belittle people who are different. Fear and hate are learned responses. Unfortunately, such learning perpetuates itself in some terrible ways. Once our children absorb the idea that “different” is bad, scary or something to make fun of, they become afraid of being different. This learned and cruel response to diversity perpetuates itself. It’s partly a hierarchical problem. Everyone is scrambling to be higher on the social ladder than someone else, and everyone is afraid of being pushed down.You probably glimpsed this reality from your own school experiences. For many middle-school students and teens, social acceptance and belonging to a group are so important that they will conform to the rules even if it violates their individuality, their sense of what is right for themselves or what is right in the world.
This brings us to a perennial debate. Many parents feel like giving up once their children hit adolescence. After all, isn’t it true that when your children become teenagers it doesn’t really matter what adults want or expect from them? Our answer is an unequivocal “No.” In fact, parents and teachers and other adults continue to have influence throughout the teen years. What if we all, parents, teachers, administrators, counselors, bus drivers, babysitters, what if everyone taught our children curiosity and tolerance instead of fear and hatred? This would include teaching children to value the differences within themselves. We’re fairly certain that readers with children who are “different” just rolled their eyes and said something like, “Get real.” to us just now. And readers with children who fear or hate differences probably had a similar reaction. Maybe we are a bit idealistic, but what are the options? In a world as fractured and judgmental as ours, we need to find ways to break down barriers and value each other just as we are. Of course, this would involve an attitude shift, one articulated decades ago by the Trappist Monk, Thomas Merton. Merton wondered aloud how different our story would be if the first white explorers had learned to encounter other cultures with an attitude of curiosity, an attitude of respect and mystery. He wondered how things would be different if we began with the assumption that everyone was worthwhile. What if we believed everyone had something to offer or teach us? What if we firmly and steadily taught our children these beliefs instead of allowing them to absorb the fear and hatred so readily available in our culture? Educators need your help. Tell your children you expect them to treat everyone at school with respect, and then back up your talk with action. Treat your children, your spouse or partner, your neighbors and yourself with respect. And if/when you hear a disrespectful comment or behavior toward a minority group, counter that comment or behavior with a polite and calm rebuttal. Parents, teachers and school counselors need to stand strong together as advocates for a respectful school and community where all children are free to fulfill their learning potential.
! Sommers Flanagan, John. "-The Challenges of Differences." ASCA School Counselor. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 Jan. 2013. <http:// www.ascaschoolcounselor.org/article_content.asp? edition=91>.
News & Events Calling All Families for Support! The Elementary Student Council is sponsoring a bake sale to raise money to buy school supplies for the children of AISL’s adopted school, the Archbishop Taylor Nursery/Primary School in Lagos.
When: On Tuesday, Nov. 12, between 7:00 - 8:00 A. M., drop off goodies in one of these rooms: Grade 1 – Mrs. Williams Grade 2 – Ms. Garvey Grade 3 – Ms. Aiken Grade 4 – Mrs. Radcliffe Grade 5 – Mrs. Baietto
What: We would appreciate one dozen individually wrapped baked goods: cookies, cupcakes, brownies, donuts, any baked goods that kids & adults will enjoy @their recess or lunch break! Do you have a special recipe? Send it in!
! Thanks so much for your support and please put Nov. 12 on your calendar! ! Thank you from the ESC 2013-14!
! Upcoming AISL Drama Sure to Tickle Your Funny Bone On November 8 and 9, the AISL Drama Department will present Woody Allen’s Don’t Drink the Water, a slapstick farce about a New Jersey family captive in the American Embassy in Cold War Russia. The comedy features a host of quirky characters, such as a priest who moonlights as a magician and Walter Hollander (Victor Williams), a cranky Newark caterer proud to be the first guy to “make the bridegroom out of potato salad.” Walter, along with his wife Marion (Oyinkansola Ogunlowo) and his daughter Susan (Brenda Ukah), are vacationing in Russia when the Communist police mistake them for spies. The wacky story is carried along by Woody Allen’s fast-paced dialogue and one-line zingers. “Go ahead and leave,” Marion dares Walter as he threatens to walk out the Embassy door. “Go get brainwashed. In your case, it might help.” This theatrical production will be the treat of the AISL fall theater season, so be on the lookout, as tickets go on sale soon.
News & Events NOTICE
After School Activities ( ASA ) session I ends today, Friday November 8, 2013.
! FYI ! !
Late Registration for ( ASA ) Session 2 is ONLY on Monday, Nov. 11th & Tuesday, Nov.12th Times: 7:30 am – 8:30 am and 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
SATURDAY SPORTS SOCCER EVALUATION DAY is November 23rd Pre K / K 8:00 - 9:00 am 9:00 - 10:00 am 1st / 2nd 3rd / 4th 10:00 - 11:00 am 5th / 6th 11:00 - 12:00 Girls 7th/up12:00 - 1:00 pm Boys 7/8 1:00 - 2:00 pm Boys 9-12 2:00 - 3:00 pm
Sign ups for Saturday Soccer are November 13th, 14th and 15th Time: 7:30-8:30 am and 2:30-3:30 pm Cost: $125.00 US or =N= 20,500 Location: In front of the PTO building
Extra Registration on Saturday Nov. 16th at 9:00am to 12:00 noon close to the AISL pool.You may also sign up all day on Evaluation / Try out day (Nov. 23rd). Table will be close to AISL pool.
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UNIFORMS ARE HERE!!!! PLEASE COME TO THE PTO ROOM ON SATURDAY BETWEEN 9-12 TO COLLECT YOUR UNIFORMS AND BOOKS - PAYMENT MUST BE MADE BEFORE YOU CAN COLLECT THEM.
SCHOOL PHOTO If you haven’t ordered the school picture, please do so today. Mr. Friday Thompson will be available for you to do so. Thank you.
SAVE THE DATE: PACK MEETING The next Pack Meeting will be held on Saturday November 16 at AIS Gym at 1-3pm. We will be handing out belt loops and Pins that you have been working on.
Let your Den Leader know when you have completed the achievements for belt loops and pins. Questions?? - Contact Karen Bishop (Pack Secretary) firstname.lastname@example.org or your Den Leader.
The MS Talent Show is around the corner. The Talent Show is open to students, faculty, and the AISL Community. The purpose of the Talent Show is to raise money for the winter formal. A portion of the proceeds will go towards charity.
Tickets are on sale now in room 115!!!
Time: 6:00pm Where: AISL Gym
Sponsored by: Sandra Okosun and Sophia Spears. Approved by the Middle School Executive Council
School Calendar November 2013 Sunday
All School Spirit Week
SWAISAL Swim Meet
WAISAL Swim Meet
AM Scholars WAISAL Assembly 3
Session 2 ASA Sign Up’s
Session 2 ASA Sign Up’s
Session 2 ASA Sign Up’s
Session 2 ASA Sign Up’s
Session 2 ASA Sign Up’s
Session 2 ASA Sign Up’s
Session 2 ASA Sign Up’s
11am Dismissal PD
ASA Session 1 Ends
HS Drama Production - Gym
HS Drama Production - Gym 14
HS Volleyball WAISAL @ Ghana
HS Volleyball WAISAL @ Ghana Tentative Swim Meet - Abuja ES 1st Tri Ends
16 HS Volleyball WAISAL @ Ghana Tentative Swim Meet - Abuja Saturday Basketball Awards - Pool
HS Movie Night Gym 5:30-8:00pm
ASA Session 2 Starts
HS Parent Forum Collaboration Meeting 3:00-4:00pm
HS BAsketball vs. CIS - Gym
ES Report Cards (going home)
PTO Board Meeting - Parent Lounge House Basketball PM Scholars
Saturday Soccer Begins HS International Trips
MS Talent Show Stage/Gym 5-9pm 24
HS International Trips
HS Interntional Trips
HS Interntional Trips
A HS Interntional Trips
PTO Teachers Thanksgiving Brunch - Staff Room
BOD Meeting 4:30-6:30pm