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The American International School of Rotterdam

SHARK 23.03.12


From the Interim Director and Elementary Principal First of all, I would like to say a very big “Thank You” to all the people who made last Saturday nightʼs Dinner Dance such a wonderful success. In particular, I would like to thank Sue Syah for pulling it all together and to Glen Badyna for making the auction an event to remember! AISR students are very busy this weekend! Some of our MS and HS students are attending the Global Issues Network Conference in Luxembourg. Other HS students are in London for the Model United Nations. And last but not least, students from Elementary, Middle and HS are in Stavanger for the Swimming Tournament - Go Sharks! I will bring you up to date with their trips in next week’s Shark. Here is a message from Ms. Sanna Heinonen and Ms. Nina Markham: This is a reminder to sign up your son or daughter for our CanSat afternoon of spacerelated fun next Tuesday from 15:00-17:00! There will be science experiments that every child will enjoy! Register your child at this link: REGISTRATION The early bird cost is 8 Euro/child or 15 Euro/sibling set! See the AISR website for more information by clicking on this link: Sign up now! We have had inquiries about allowing younger students PreK 1 and 2 to come to our CanSat afternoon of fun. We have decided to open our invitation to this age-group as long as the child is accompanied by an older person who can be responsible for him/her (such as a responsible sibling, babysitter, or parent). Support our CanSat team and send your child to an afternoon of fun Science!Any questions? Please contact either Nina Markham ( or Sanna Heinonon ( REMINDERS: Report Cards will be posted home today. Daylight Savings is this weekend, so don’t forget to turn your clocks forward 1 hour! “Fall back…Spring Forward”. I am leaving you with a very interesting article written by John K. Mullen, who is a senior U.S. government executive with 26 years of international-affairs and security experience.

“If you're a digital native, you should be aware that the internet may have partially rewired your brain in such a way that when you meet people face to face, you're less capable of figuring out what they're thinking. No, I'm not joking. There's a significant amount of scientific literature on this. Compared with people who didn't grow up using computers and the internet, you may be slower to pick up on nonverbal cues such as facial expressions, tones of voice, and body language.”

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“That could be a liability if you want to work in a field such as consulting, financial advising, and diplomacy that requires face-to-face interactions. The trick, if you're looking for a job in areas such as these, is to be aware of your possible shortcomings and try to compensate for them. Research on the brain's response to electronic media is fascinating, and not a little disturbing. On the plus side, it suggests that digital natives have higher baseline activity in the part of the brain governing short-term memory, the sorting of complex information, and the integration of sensations and thoughts — so, in certain respects, computers make you smarter. As if to underline that point, IQ scores are on the increase in the United States as the number of digital natives rises, and people's ability to multitask without errors is improving. But other research suggests that excessive, long-term exposure to electronic environments is reconfiguring young people's neural networks and possibly diminishing their ability to develop empathy, interpersonal relations, and nonverbal communication skills. One study indicates that because there's only so much time in the day, face-to-face interaction time drops by nearly 30 minutes for every hour a person spends on a computer. With more time devoted to computers and less to in-person interactions, young people may be under stimulating and under developing the neural pathways necessary for honing social skills. Another study shows that after long periods of time on the internet, digital natives display poor eye contact and a reluctance to interact socially. Are digital natives really lacking the interpersonal skills necessary for certain types of jobs? An executive of a U.S. wealth-management firm told me that after the financial collapse in 2008, some of the bright young advisers were communicating with wiped-out clients via emails that said, essentially, "Sorry, we can't help you." Those who did meet with clients had little time for them and gave the impression that they weren't interested in hearing clients' stories. They seemed unable to empathize. So the firm let these employees go, replacing them with older advisers who were willing to sit down, look clients in the eye, and discuss matters face to face. That's just one anecdote, but it resonates with HR executives I've spoken to in a variety of businesses that rely on building trust with customers. So if you're a digital native and you're looking for a position in a field that requires human interaction, you've got your work cut out for you, and the first hurdle is landing the job. A few points to consider: Your interviewer may be specifically looking for evidence that you're willing to make eye contact. Engage the interviewer — show a lively interest. This may not come easily. 1.

The interviewer also may be looking for evidence of your ability to pick up on nonverbal cues. Watch for and react to shifts in tone of voice or body language. One study suggests that 55% of person-toperson communication is nonverbal.


Make clear that you understand the importance of face-to-face meetings and that you're willing to sit down with people. If an interviewer or a questionnaire asks how you'd contact someone in a potentially fraught situation, don't assume that email is the correct answer.

And once you get the job? That's a whole other subject. Some researchers say the neurological changes wrought by computer use are reversible; others disagree. Even if they're not, digital natives can train themselves to recognize the limitations of email and Facebook and choose face-to-face meetings if appropriate. They can also continually remind themselves that they may be a bit lacking in the ability to pick up on nonverbal cues — and that they need to make a special effort to pay attention”.

Have a lovely weekend – enjoy this beautiful weather!

Anne-Marie Blitz


From the Secondary Principal and Curriculum Director Next week we welcome Mr. Neal Dilk, who will take over as Director of AISR in July. He and his family will be visiting the school during the week as well as exploring the local community. We are all looking forward to his visit and to having him lead our team here at AISR. Upcoming Dates: • Coffee, Croissants and Curriculum for Secondary: Friday, March 30th from 8:15-9:15 • Science & Space Activities for CANSAT: March 27th from 3:00-5:00 • Winter Sports Awards Evening: March 27th from 6:00-9:00 • Junior College Night: March 28th from 6:00-7:30 As mentioned previously, I will be sharing some food for thought about the current trends in education with regards to E-Learning during the month of March. There is much discussion and debate about the role of technology in education and this is an issue schools around the world are facing more and more. The excerpts come from Bridget McCrea and the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Trend # 4 - Getting a Grip: More Learning Management Systems The growth of online learning has resulted in more data, information, coursework, and communication. All of these elements must be effectively managed without over-taxing districts that are already testing the limits of their budgets and human resources. With states like Idaho and Arkansas passing legislation that requires districts to integrate online learning options into their curricula the push to create effective management systems increases even further. According to Canipe, one viable solution lies in the various learning management systems (LMS). These software applications--which include Moodle's open platform and Blackboard's free CourseSites offering--are used to administer, track, document, and report classroom and online material and events. "I expect we'll see even more LMSs hit the market in 2012," said Canipe, who points to Google's CloudCourse course scheduling system as a possibility for the K-12 sector. "With the whole push toward online learning in full swing," said Canipe, "the need to ensure that the online delivery itself is a planned, orderly event will also grow." Please don't hesitate to contact me at anytime for further information or if you have any questions or concerns. I can be reached at or by calling the school at extension 316.

Enjoy the weekend,

Alison Lipp


From the PTSA

PTSA Dinner Dance Update !!! The 2012 Dinner Dance was a HUGE Success! ! The money raised through raffles and the auction exceeded our expectations! Thank you to all the staff and parents who made the evening so enjoyable. Special thank you to Glen Badyna for M/C and Ruud Temminck for his DJ expertise! AISR Staff, please starting thinking about your wish list. After the May 13, 2012 Fun Run / Spring Fair with Silent Auction the PTSA will compile the money raised and fulfill the wish list. AISR Parents, please forward any wishes or requests you would like to see at AISR to The PTSA Board

From the Library Our very first AISR Elementary Book Carnival 2012! The AISR Library Invites All Elementary Students and their families to a Fun-Filled Book event on Friday, May 11 from 3 to 5 pm in the library...

Test your book knowledge – Book/author quizzes and more… ~ Solve the Mystery Book puzzle ~ Make a Bookmark ~ Enter Book Raffle Support your school library!! Come and help make our first Book Carnival a success! More info to come!

Mrs. van Ringelesteijn


2012_03_23 Bulletin  

The weekly AISR bulletin to parents and carers.