Page 1

M A RC H 2 0 1 6

Online

ISSUE 39.

UPDATE 57 WOLGYE-RO 45GA-G I L , NOWO N- G U, S EO UL , 0 1 87 4 , KOREA

IN THIS ISSUE:

■ Field Trips ■ ES Choral Festival ■ Owl Pellet Project

■ T. 0 2 .9 0 7 .2 7 4 7

■ F. 0 2 .9 0 7 .2 7 4 2

■ WWW. A PIS .O RG

IN THIS ISSUE:

■ ■International Day Elementary Chinese & Japanese ■ ■AMIS Festivals Faculty Retreat ■ Soccer Season Update


MARCH 2016

E L E M E N TA R Y S C H O O L N E W S & E V E N T S

Day at the Science Museum

C

ulminating a third quarter science unit on weather and the water cycle, Grade 2 students traveled to Gwacheon National Science Museum on March 3. Their day at the museum included participating in a typhoon simulation, as well as an earthquake simulation. For the simulated typhoon, students donned head-to-toe raingear, provided by the museum, and held on tight to a metal bar in a special enclosed room while the wind picked up and “rain” began to fall. Heumjae Cho said afterward, “Typhoons are so powerful.” Later, in the earthquake simulation, students wore 3D glasses and went for a virtual ride that included an animated film of an imagined earthquake response in Seoul. The experience incorporated physical movement (seats and platform rocked and swayed), and additional special effects, such as wind and intermittent sprays of water. Josuha Oh said, “It made me feel like there’s a real earthquake.” In addition to the simulations, students spent time exploring two floors of permanent exhibits that included a Tesla Coil, optical experiments that helped students understand how the brain is connected with sight and how lenses can work to distort or restore vision, fossils — including an Edmontosaurus replica, ecosystems, fish and other sea life, and robots. Most students selected either the typhoon or earthquake as their favorite activity of the day. However, the dancing robots were also a hit. The 25-centimeter tall humanoid robots performed an impressive repertoire, including Psy’s “Gangnam Style.” When asked if they would like to visit the museum again, all students responded with an enthusiastic, “Yes!” 2

w w w. a p i s . o r g


Students Represent APIS for First Time at Festival

APIS elementary students, dressed in bright green T-shirts, join together with students from eight other international schools to sing together at the festival.

T

here are a flurry of music festivals each year for secondary students at APIS. But, normally, the elementary school students here don’t have that opportunity. This year was different. A scheduling change allowed the Grade 5 students to double up on their music instruction. And that gave the chorus teacher, Melinda Baum, sufficient time to prepare the group and then take them to the KIMEA Elementary Chorus Festival, held March 12 at KIS. “It was an amazing event,” Ms. Baum said. “The kids came back so excited.”

MARCH 2016

E L E M E N TA R Y S C H O O L N E W S & E V E N T S

Each of the nine international schools that participated in the festival selected a T-shirt color to wear for the event. Ms. Baum’s students chose APIS green. They learned the festival songs in class before the festival. Then, all but one of the APIS fifth graders (the one student had a prior commitment) traveled to the festival and joined with the 200-student choir to rehearse together and then perform. “It was phenomenal,” Ms. Baum said. The APIS students made a positive impression during their first interschool music festival. A music teacher from another international school contacted Ms. Baum after the event and let her know that the APIS students impressed his students. They told him, “APIS was like … professional.” Grade 5 students who attended the festival included Rin Choi, Jacob Hong, Christine Jeong, Joanna Kim, Joyce Kim, and Edric Yoon on part 1. Part 2 singers were Jaeho Choi, Jeanette Jeong, Tu Ngo, Claire Park, and Somang Yang.

w w w. a p i s . o r g

3


MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Talking About Conservation, Starting at the Zoo

T

he first stop at Seoul Zoo for the grade 1 students and their three grade 11 guides — zebras. The older students pulled out their notes, as the younger students clung to the fence and peered in at the small herd of striped animals. “Do you know where this animal lives?” asked Yea Kyoung Lee (Grade 11). The first graders studied the zebras and offered a few suggestions. “Do you remember savannah and desert?” Yea Kyoung asked. Before the March 23 field trip, the older students, all members of Mandy Kern’s environmental science class, had met with several of the elementary school grades in their classrooms back at APIS. In those meetings, the older students had discussed topics like ecosystems and conservation, as well as the kind of animals they would get to see at the zoo. And they had talked about habitats like savannah and desert. After discussing zebras, the next stop for the first graders was the enclosure for the tiny fennec fox. Andrew Shima (Grade 11) stepped up to take a turn as teacher. “Do you see they have large ears? Why do you think that is?” After the younger students made a few suggestions, Andrew said that the fox’s large ears help it keep cool in the hot desert. The trip to the zoo was an interactive, on-site science lesson. The younger students — students in kindergarten and first, second, and fourth grade — saw and learned from the older students about lions, elephants, ostriches, camels, and many more animals that they visited in between snacks and lunch and a dolphin show. But the experience was about more than teaching or learning science. It was an effort by the environmental science students to build relationships with the younger students and spark discussion about conservation and biodiversity. “The earlier we can start, the better,” Ms. Kern said. “It was a nice chance to give them another impression, that we are not that bad,” said Michelle Suh (Grade 11), about working with the younger students. “And also, we had to be really prepared and know the material to teach them.” The older students also got a taste of how challenging teaching can be. On the bus ride home at the end of the zoo visit, Stephanie Kim (Grade 11) leaned back in her seat. “I learned how hard it is to be an elementary teacher,” she said.

4

w w w. a p i s . o r g


Getting Good at Games

I

t was a project that combined the “low” technology of hammers, saws, and sanders with the high-tech capabilities of the school’s 3D printer. For the past several months, Jeff Woodrow’s woodworking classes have been designing and then creating wooden game boards — chess, Chinese checkers, go, tic-tac-toe, and more. Then, once the student designed the game pieces required, such as the different chess men or checkers, the design information was fed into the ZPrinter 450, which transformed those designs into physical objects that the students painted.

Kenny Jang (Grade 12) puts the finishing touches on his game board.

“The aim was to create a project that would encourage students to ... use repurposed materials to create something new,” Mr. Woodrow said. “The focus was on board games and traditional games crafted by hand. The students were encouraged to use found objects, reclaimed wood, new materials, and element from the 3D printer in their work.”

Kenny Jang (Grade 12) chose to create a tic-tac-toe board. “It was really hard to fit it together, to get the right measurements,” he said as he applied stain to the board during class. “The way it looks, I feel accomplished.”

MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Josephine Oh (Grade 10) made a Chinese checkers game, with yellow, blue, and red balls as playing pieces. Her project did not go smoothly at first, she said. She tried to make the board thinner and it broke apart in the process. “I had to start over again,” she said. “That was challenging.” Andrew Yoo (Grade 9) also started over more than once as he made a go board. “It was kind of hard for me to measure the angle and make the board a perfect shape,” he said. But the extra work to get it right paid off, he said, as he was pleased with his final project. “This project-based class has seen such wonderful results from some very ambitious students who love to work with their hands and learn by doing,” Mr. Woodrow said.

w w w. a p i s . o r g

5


MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

THEIA Looks Closer to Home “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” Matthew 25:40 (NIV)

THEIA members pose for a picture at Gabriel's House, Yongsan.

W

hen the annual THEIA GCP Missions trip to the Philippines was canceled due to security concerns, THEIA members worried that local opportunities to serve might not be as spiritually satisfying as past Philippines missions work has been. What the 18 THEIA students who participated in the local mission work soon discovered, however, is that needs are often just as great right next door as they are across the world. On two separate local service outings, one to Yeson (near APIS), and another to Gabriel’s House in Yongsan, students were reminded that we are more alike than different, and that the opportunity to serve and share God’s love is always close at hand. As school K-12 counselor and CLC Director Ward Milligan said, “When we minister to others, something changes in us.” Senior Lynn Kim shared, “I've been going to the Philippines mission trip for the past three years. I've never served disabled people in Korea . . . this experience got me thinking that I should help people who I am more close to in terms of location. Not just the people in the Philippines, but also people in Korea.”

6

At Yeson (an art program where adults with developmental disabilities go during the day to learn art skills and create cards that are sold through a local church), APIS students shared a worship service and a craft project, then provided a snack and visited with the artists. “I was amazed by their creativity in art and music,” said Jamie Yoon (Grade 9). w w w. a p i s . o r g


THEIA Looks Closer to Home At Gabriel's House in Yongsan, where children and adults with disabilities who are unable to live in their own homes, due to financial reasons or the nature of the disability, reside, students also shared a worship service, small craft, and a meal, assisting residents who needed help with feeding themselves. Jennifer Lee said, “There was a lady who I became very close with at the THEIA students reflect on their service experiences during secondary chapel. service . . . when I was going around to introduce myself she grabbed me by the arm and asked, ‘Are you scared of me?’ I was extremely stunned by that question, and when I said, ‘No, I’m not scared of you at all,’ she gave me the biggest smile and held my hand the whole time I was there. I realized how society must have treated her or looked at her for her to even ask me that in the first place.” Back at APIS, THEIA students were invited to present on their GCP service projects at middle school and secondary chapels on March 24. Se Eun Park (Grade 9) shared, “I was worried about how I would approach these people ... but once I began to get to know the people, I realized that instead of treating these people as ... they’re different from us, I should use a friendly approach ... this was the right choice, because they opened up to us, and I was glad that I was able to bond with [them]. No matter how others treat them because of their condition, I realized that in the end, we’re all the same people, and they are no different.”

MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

“They are great people who deserve to be loved,” added Julia Kim (Grade 10). Many students told how sharing a worship service with the individuals they met helped to deepen their faith, and their joy. Students came to understand that there is need anywhere there is life. God is everywhere, and the opportunities to share in worship, and in service, are right next door, if one is willing to look. “I don’t have to travel far to please God,” concluded Janice Kim (Grade 9).

w w w. a p i s . o r g

7


MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Spring Soccer

I

n his first season as APIS boys’ varsity soccer coach, secondary math/science teacher, Brett Askinas, says, "This is an incredibly talented group of guys who have great leadership and a good senior core as well as young talented rising stars ... we have been telling the guys since the start of the practices that the championship is our goal. We are good enough to play with and beat any team in this league and if we peak as a team at the right time ... we will win. The key is playing as a team, one unit working together. Selfishness on the field would hinder us. I am confident under the leadership of our senior captains, Ha-An Choi, Harry Park, Kevin Kim, and Kenny Jang, that we can come together and really create something special this season." Mr. Askinas is assisted by secondary social studies teacher, Jason Webster. Girls’ varsity soccer coaches, Pastor Zachary Luginbill and Dean of Students Andrew Murphy, are co-coaching their third season together at APIS. They are assisted by Anna Luginbill. Pastor Luginbill said the leadership of senior captains, Lynn Kim and Lina Kim, has helped create a positive team atmosphere where players ranging from grade 8 through grade 12 can compete, play, and work together as a cohesive unit. Seeing many players return from the past season has allowed both coaches to note significant growth in fundamental skills. The season opened with a strong win against SIS and another big win against the team’s first match up with GSIS. Regardless of the final score, Pastor Luginbill expressed joy in seeing players give it their best and walk off the field at game’s end with a positive attitude.

April Games SUN 3

MON 4

TUE 5

Varsity Girls/Boys

WED 6

Away 7

THU

FRI 8

3:30 pm SIS 10

11

12

13

14

15

9

Away

3:30 pm CI

8

w w w. a p i s . o r g

SAT

16

Home

9:00 am CI


Senior Named National Merit Scholar

J

eho Hahm (Grade 12) excels not only at academic work but is wellrounded enough to make time to participate in other activities, such as band, drama, and basketball. Jeho has been accepted at Dartmouth, a notoriously picky Ivy League college. And Jeho’s latest achievement is to be named a National Merit Scholarship Finalist, an honor conferred on students (U.S. citizens only) who performed particularly well on the PSAT, the precursor to the SAT, a key test used by many U.S. universities as part of the admission decision process. A National Merit Scholarship Finalist is a tremendous recognition by itself, but it also makes Jeho eligible for a variety of scholarships.

Jeho Hahm (Grade 12)

What is the secret to this student’s success, particularly his SAT success? Jeho laughed at this question and then stopped to think during an interview at the APIS library early in March. He came up with a few ideas — lots of reading, getting familiar with the test by taking it several times, selecting courses that assisted him with his weak points, and having a big breakfast the day of the test. He took the PSAT three times and the SAT twice. He also said he found taking AP English Language, taught by Sarah McRoberts, particularly helpful. “I think it all paid off, one way or the other,” he said. Jeho’s test-taking routine began the night before taking the SAT. He would come home from school, eat dinner, and go to bed very early, at 7 or 8 p.m. “to maximize my sleeping hours.” He’d wake up early, at 5 or 6 a.m., to read something, “to get my brain warmed up.” And then he’d eat that big breakfast.

MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Two of his teachers weighed in on Jeho being named a National Merit Scholarship Finalist. “I believe that Jeho has achieved this incredible honor because he has an almost insatiable desire for learning and knowledge,” said Ms. McRoberts. “He asks and answers the 'hard' questions in class, he explores unique and creative ideas for projects and problems, and he constantly challenges himself and those around him to become better.” His band teacher for the past eight years, Sophie Holbrook, noted Jeho’s connection to the learning process. “Jeho’s disposition shows that he is eager for knowledge on a daily basis,” she said. “I have never seen Jeho inattentive or distracted in class; rather he asks bright questions to check his understanding and often expands upon the topic to broaden his intellect. His retention has proved nothing short of amazing and he continually surprises me by bringing a point up that I taught in a class years ago.” Ms. Holbrook also commented on Jeho's leadership qualities and impressive work ethic. At Dartmouth, Jeho plans to study political science, with the hope of eventually pursuing a career in government policy. Jeho’s interest in government policy is very much shaped his desire to continue his family’s legacy. His great-grandfather was Tai Young Hahm, vice president of Korea (1952-1956), and his grandfather was Pyong-choon Hahm, the Korean president’s chief of staff (who was killed in a North Korean terrorist attack in Myanmar).

w w w. a p i s . o r g

9


MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Disgusting, But Really Cool Science

A

licia Morgenroth has cracked the code. She knows how to teach science in a way that every sixth-grade student in her room is completely engaged and focused. The secret is owl pellets. Ms. Morgenroth kicked off her science class on March 16 with a short video showing an owl gagging several times and then regurgitating a slimy wad of … something. “Ewwww” and “That’s disgusting!” said students throughout the room. The “something” was an owl pellet — a compact collection of indigestible materials like fur, feathers, and bones left over after an owl’s meal of mice, moles, small birds, or similar critters. The owl digests what it can and expels or regurgitates the rest. The regurgitated portion is a boon to scientists studying the owl’s diet and the food supply in an area. The owl pellets also serve as fascinating objects to study for young scientists. “We’re just digging deeper into the food chain,” Ms. Morgenroth said. “Seriously?” asked Sarah Koo (Grade 6) as her group’s pellet was delivered to her table. Wearing plastic gloves and armed with tweezers and magnifying glasses, the students worked in groups of two to carefully break open and then tease apart their group’s dried and sterilized owl pellet to see what it contained. The pellets were ordered from an educational science company in the United States for this special science project.

What did I eat for lunch?

t. k at a bone fragmen 6) takes a closer loo de ra (G ak Kw e nic Eu

10

w w w. a p i s . o r g


Owl Pellet Project “You’re going to be amazed at the size of the owl pellet and all the things you’re going to find,” Ms. Morgenroth said, as she handed out materials to each of the groups. The students were initially tentative but quickly became absorbed in their work as they searched through the clump of fur and fuzz and discovered tiny rodent skulls, some with teeth intact, as well as a plethora of tiny bones of all shapes. “A skull!” “I think I found a beak!” “It’s freaky,” said Matt Lee (Grade 6) as he examined a tiny claw he found. “For as disgusted as you were 10 minutes ago, you guys are doing a great job,” Ms. Morgenroth said as she walked among the different groups answering questions and noting particularly interesting finds. The students sorted out the types of bones and skulls they discovered, and identified what animals they could from their pellet’s contents.

MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Matthew Lee and Jane Kim, both grade 6, study the contents of their owl pellet.

w w w. a p i s . o r g

11


MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Student Historians Earn Awards

A

PIS middle school students walked away with an impressive number of awards at Korea’s National History Day (NHD) event, held Feb. 27 at Korea International School, Pangyo campus. After months of researching, writing, and refining a presentation, five student groups from APIS were honored with medals for their work. And four of those groups placed high enough in their category (first or second place) to be invited to compete at the final NHD event of the year, which will be held in the United States from June 12 to 16. Middle and high school students from across Korea participated in the February event, where students presented a live performance, documentary, research paper, website, or exhibit on a historical topic that related to this year’s NHD theme: Exploration, Encounter, Exchange in History. The spread of jazz music, the impact of Walt Disney, reconstructing Korea’s economy, the Animal Welfare Act, food cultures, and the history of chocolate are samples of the wide-ranging topics students tackled. Carly Althauser, ELA/social studies teacher, was one of the teachers who accompanied the 32 middle school students from APIS (two high school students also participated). She noted that the value of NHD goes further than winning an award or getting the chance to travel to the United States to compete further. "Competition can add excitement to learning, but winning isn't the main goal,” she said. “Participating in the competition allows students to present their work to a larger audience and lets them participate in the wider academic community, giving them the chance to experience a bit of what historians do … I was impressed with the students' creativity and the intensity of their research efforts and their courage in taking on challenging topics." “It was thrilling to see students from APIS presenting their theses, defending their research, and sharing what they had learned about their topics with others,” said Megan Vosk, ELA/social studies teacher. “NHD is a great way to prepare our youth for university-level assignments."

First Place

• Group Website Category: Justine Kim, Clara Oh, and Alina Chong (all Grade 7) for “Antibiotics from the Past: Encountering the Limits of Drugs” • Performance Category: Anna Frankl and Mei-Mei Timpson (both Grade 8) for “Taiwan’s Exchange: How a Peace Treaty Resulted in Decades of Imperialism”

Second Place • Group Documentary Category:

Lucy Lee and Ella Kim (both Grade 8) for “The Preservation of Hanoks: Exploring Korea’s Forgotten Beauty of the Past” • Group Exhibit Category: Charissa Kim, Jeany Park, and Kimberly Ho (all Grade 7) for “The Truth About Antibiotics: Humanity’s Encounter with an Imperfect Cure”

Third Place 12

w w w. a p i s . o r g

• Group Website Category: Francesco Oh and Justin Lee (both Grade 8) for “Exchanging People for Weapons: The Hungnam Pier Evacuation”


International Festival Impacts Student Singers By Melinda Baum, Chorus Teacher

O

n March 3, 200 students from 44 international schools around the world gathered together at Luxembourg International School to form three very special international honor choirs: a women’s choir, a men’s choir, and a mixed choir. More than 600 young people auditioned for this special event, out of which only the best 200 were selected. Five of those were from Asia Pacific International School. Sandra Kim (Grade 12) was selected but was unable to attend. The other four students, JoonThe students rehearse at Luxembourg International School. woo Kang, Sarah Yoon, and Lia Kim, all Grade 11, and Noah Kim (Grade 10), participated in this event sponsored by the Association of Music in International Schools (AMIS). The first stop on the APIS itinerary included a visit to Brussels for sightseeing. The student singers walked through the city, visiting the Grand Place, St. Michel’s Cathedral, the Notre-Dame du Sablon, the music museum, and the chocolate museum, and, of course, sampled french fries, sausage, waffles, and chocolate.

MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Traveling by train from Brussels, they arrived in Luxembourg in time to get a rest before rehearsals. Three days of intensive work followed. The students learned to unify, balance, and blend their voices under the direction of three professional conductors: Doreen Rao, leading the mixed choir, Lynne Gackle, leading the women's choir, and Axel Theimer, leading the men's choir. The event culminated in a magnificent concert Saturday evening, March 5. “To me, AMIS was an experience that transformed my reason to sing,” said Lia. “The passion and focus that was present in the room inspired me to always look deeper, higher, and wider. AMIS has left unexplainable feelings in my heart that cannot be felt through pictures or videos.” "It was simply the most exhilarating and memorable thing I've done so far,” said Noah."It was great to see people around the world get together because of one sole thing, and that's music." Students from all around the globe working together to achieve something beautiful. These are the future leaders of our countries. I hope they will always reflect on this event.

Ms. Baum, far left, stands proudly with the APIS student singers selected for AMIS honor choirs this year. w w w. a p i s . o r g

13


MARCH 2016

SECONDARY SCHOOL NEWS & EVENTS

Select Band Students Travel to Qatar By Emmalee Johnson, Orchestra Teacher

N

early every corner of the globe was represented on the stage at the American School of Doha on March 19. The Association for Music in International Schools (AMIS) held its International Honor Band and Orchestra festival in Qatar this year, hosting nearly 200 student musicians. These ensembles started forming nearly a year ago when audition The APIS student musicians selected for the AMIS honor band gather for a photo. materials were released. All APIS musicians worked on the audition materials, but only some chose to send them to AMIS. AMIS selected five APIS students to participate — Jeho Hahm (Grade 12, percussion), Chris Kim (Grade 12, trumpet), Jeewon Kim (Grade 12, clarinet), Grace Kim (Grade 11, clarinet), and Shinyoung Lee (Grade 11, trumpet). It is an incredible honor to be selected, signifying all the hours of practice these students have put in since they first picked up their instrument years ago. Meeting musicians and teachers from other international schools was inspiring and heartwarming for the students — leading all to feel like they were a part of something special. Over the course of two and a half days of rehearsal, the student musicians transformed the black dots and lines on paper to high quality, emotional music. Through sectionals and hours of rehearsal, the students pressed onward, striving for improvement and unified sound. Music making involves listening, watching, and feeling, just as much as it does actually playing, and all of the students worked on those skills. Besides the arduous work, AMIS planned social and cultural activities for the students and teachers. We were able to take in all the sights and sounds at the Souq Waqif — we heard call and response music in the street, ate Moroccan food for dinner, and saw all the Souq had to offer, including the falcon market (yes, for pet falcons!). Another evening, the host school organized a calm dinner cruise that showcased local food and the sparkling Doha skyline. Before the festival began, APIS students went on a tour of sand dunes in an SUV, getting an adrenaline fix while seeing the deserts of Qatar. From departure to return, all AMIS students learned about themselves, cultures surrounding them, and the connectivity of excellent music. Band teacher Sophie Holbrook and I were incredibly proud to see Grace, Jeewon, Chris, Jeho, and Shinyoung qualify for this experience and take it all in.

14

w w w. a p i s . o r g


2016 Spring Concerts

T

he spring concerts this year were designed differently. Instead of a single music concert where the orchestra, band, and chorus each performed portions, there were three separate concerts, giving the audience an opportunity to experience the depth and breadth of music. Emmalee Johnson, orchestra director, first opened up the concert series on March 10 with music by classical favorites including, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, and Vivaldi. At the band concert on March 14, the audience heard 18,000 notes played for a single number! Those who attended the choir concert on March 24 had the unique experience of being surrounded by singing students and seeing Melinda Baum, chorus director, conduct sideways — one hand toward the stage and the other toward students singing at the other end of the auditorium. If parents and teachers had missed the KIMEA or KAIAC festivals, they were in for a treat. Students played music that had received gold, platinum ratings.

MARCH 2016

SCHOOL-WIDE

At the concerts, students also took the mike and shared with the audience how music impacts their lives. Michelle Choi (Grade 10) said, “The high school band is not just a group of people playing music together, but a family that listens to each other to create beautiful music … I keep signing up for it because I feel like with all the inconsistencies of studying and grades in high school, band is something that is steady and always there no matter what else is going around.”

w w w. a p i s . o r g

15


MARCH 2016

SCHOOL-WIDE

Principal’s Note: Culture, Time, Experience, and Conversations

H

aving now lived in Korea for almost two years, I have been constantly learning. A new language, a new city, a new school, and a new culture. For many of you, who have come to Korea from somewhere else, or who have come to APIS from somewhere else, you can probably understand how some of those “new” elements feel, and how much learning you have been required to do.

To learn about the new city, I have Google Maps. For the new languages, I have an iPhone/iPad app, youtube videos, flashcards, a book, and some very generous colleagues to help me learn. For the school, I have colleagues who have been here for some time, handbooks, old documents, supervisors, and time to talk with students. All these things help me learn the school. But the culture, that’s the hardest one! And it’s always the hardest one! With Korea being the fifth different culture I have lived and worked in, I have experienced that culture cannot be learned through an iPad app, or a book, a youtube video, or a single person. Culture, from my experience, is something that needs time, experience, and many conversations to be understood. Do I think that I understand the culture of Saudi Arabia having lived there for 5 years or of Laos after spending 7 years there? Can I say I truly understand Australian culture after being born and growing up there? Not at all! But there are elements of it I DO understand much better because of that time, the experience, and the people I spoke with. Korea is no different. As I approach the end of my second year, I am learning simply because I have been here for nearly two years. I am learning through all the experiences I have, which I approach from my multi-cultural perspective, and where I often make mistakes. I often say learning a new culture is like walking through a field of land-mines. No matter how hard you look or try to anticipate where the mines are, the only way you find the mine is by stepping on it. It blows up and you try to repair the damage, having learned a new piece of the culture you are in.

16

w w w. a p i s . o r g


Principal's Note Lastly, and MOST importantly, I am learning about the culture of Korea and of APIS through conversations. Conversations with colleagues, students, teachers, and parents. Some of those conversations have been hard, uncomfortable ones. Most of them the opposite. But regardless of being difficult or not, through each of them I am learning, hopefully avoiding the same mistakes I may have made in the past and slowly developing my understanding of what it means to be a student or a teacher or a parent at APIS in Seoul in Korea. So as my learning continues, I look forward to as many conversations as possible with you about your wonderful children, our great school, or this magnificent country. Please feel welcome to stop by to talk, as it’s through talking that we all learn.

The Latest With the PTO

MARCH 2016

SCHOOL-WIDE

On March 22, APIS parents gathered together in the faculty lounge for a PTO coffee hour with APIS Director Dr. Euysung Kim, Deputy Head of Academics Scott Paulin, Principal Bruce Knox, and Dean of Students Andrew Murphy. The APIS leadership team reflected on the recent GCP trip and ongoing discussions around GCP structure and learning goals, shared about summer programming options, and distributed the new APIS brochure. Parents relayed questions and feedback around school uniforms, college counseling, and human development education at APIS. Parents also expressed interest in some form of written follow-up after meetings so parents can see if there are answers to any unresolved questions brought up at meetings, and families unable to attend meetings can be kept in the loop. The APIS leadership welcomes communication from families and encourages students and parents to bring all questions, comments, and feedback forward to APIS teachers, staff, and school administrators. Please join us on May 24, at 2 p.m., for the final PTO coffee hour of the school year.

w w w. a p i s . o r g

17


MARCH 2016

SCHOOL-WIDE

Learning More About the Wider World

A

PIS students, faculty, and friends celebrated the school’s fourth annual International Day on March 25 at the school gym. “You are about to go on a worldwide tour! And you are going to have a great time doing it!” Jill Iwanuk, literacy specialist and one of the three co-chairs of International Day at APIS, announced over the mic at the beginning of the event. Elementary students kicked off the event with enthusiastic performances of Yesh, a Hebrew line dance; and La Raspa, a Spanish mixer dance. Then, students and visitors had the chance to visit the events’ 33 booths, each representing a different country or a culture, that lined the gym. Food from other cultures was an integral and popular part of the event. Students and visitors sampled potato pancakes from the Ukraine booth, dark chocolate from the Aztec group, Cubans (sandwiches) from the Cuba booth, and spring rolls from Vietnam. The France booth offered crepes filled with bananas and chocolate hazelnut spread as well as croissants with brie cheese. There was curry and rice from India, wafer cookies from Austria, mango juice and dried fruits from the Cambodia booth, sweet butter tart squares to represent Canada, tortilla chips and salsa from Texas, spicy som tam from Thailand, and much more. The China booth featured a pastry called saqima. “It’s really yummy,” said David Jeong (Grade 3), who was helping at the booth. “Try some!” In addition to sampling delicious foods from other parts of the world, visitors had the chance to learn more about a country’s culture or accomplishments or identifying symbols. Some booths used games and activities to pass on this information. Others gave brief presentations with the help of visual aids. Traditionally, most of the booths at the APIS International Fair are hosted by parents and faculty. However, this year was different. “There is more student involvement. I like it,” said Grace Gao, foreign language department chair and another of the three co-chairs of the event.

18

w w w. a p i s . o r g


International Day

We appreciate other cultures!

MARCH 2016

SCHOOL-WIDE

“It’s more than just culture, it is also about global issues,” said Ms. Iwanuk. This year more than half of the booths were staffed entirely by students, with eighth graders teaming up to present information about economic issues in a developing country like Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, or Cuba. The seventh graders presented on notable achievements in a country’s history. “We were studying the Renaissance,” said Megan Vosk, middle school ELA/ social studies teacher and the third co-chair. “We were looking at other cultures that were also having cultural flowering at the same time as Europe.” So, visitors to the fair had the chance to learn about topics like India’s Mughal Empire, the Aztecs of Mexico, and the Safavids of Iran. Sixth-grade students who participated in programs at the APIS campus in Hawaii also hosted a booth where they featured Polynesian food and culture. Ms. Iwanuk said it was a deliberate decision to rely on student involvement more than parent / staff work at this year’s fair. This approach gives the students “a deeper understanding of the issue they have been researching,” she said. “Because they have to explain it to other people, they really have to understand it well.” Students earned raffle tickets at International Day by visiting booths and participating in some activity there. Each group of 15 stamps earned them one raffle ticket. At the end of the event, travel-related prizes like neck pillows, passport covers, and eye covers were awarded to the lucky raffle ticket holders. The grand prize was a suitcase. Prizes for the event were provided by the school and parents. w w w. a p i s . o r g

19


MARCH 2016

SCHOOL-WIDE

What Does APIS Do

Really, Really Well?

T

he faculty and staff were asked this month to brag about our school just a little bit. We asked them to consider, “If you were talking to family or friends back home, what would you tell them is really great about APIS?�

The teachers are willing to do whatever it takes to help our students succeed. I have not worked with a more committed group of teachers anywhere! - Bruce Knox, principal

1. It is great work environment as faculty and staff are very nice and friendly to each other. (We respect each other.) 2. Lunch is The BEST. - Suzie Chung, school registrar

1. The classified staff (office, computer, PR, janitorial) at APIS is exceptional. They are always polite and handle difficult situations with caring and smiles. My mother, a career teacher, once told me that I better be very nice to the office manager at any school, because not only do they deserve the politeness, but they also know how to make things work and can really be helpful. The intelligence and capability of Jade and all the staff at APIS is phenomenal and, when given the power, can and do fantastic jobs. 2. I love the dedication and creativity of the teaching staff at APIS. When given the opportunity and power, they can and do produce exceptional opportunities for APIS students (look at the music department).

- Don Kirkwood, computer science teacher

20

w w w. a p i s . o r g


I love my coworkers!! And my students!

- Megan Vosk, ELA/social studies teacher

What I think is really great about APIS is the supportive and friendly co-workers who will go above and beyond to help you out in any way they can. The teachers and staff really work hard and are committed to doing their best for the students. Also, the students are given a lot of opportunities to grow and develop in their area of interest. They are exposed to a variety of fine arts and language classes. - Kim House, second grade teacher

I have to say my coworkers and students are what gets me through every day with a smile on my face. My coworkers are extremely dedicated teachers and staff members who constantly inspire me. And my students’ unique personalities make each day a new adventure!

- Carly Shinners, mathematics teacher

Having two kids who attend school here, one of the things I value the most about APIS is multi-age learning opportunities. I like how grades are combined for some specials, how grades 2 and 3 teamed together on their poetry cafe, how high school students are mentoring grade 5 students for writing works in progress, and how older students visit younger students and act as reading buddies. One of the best examples of the multi-age grouping I've observed since our family started at APIS is the recent grades 1 and 5 musical, ‘Geology Rocks.’ Not only was it a memorable and magical performance, but the leadership, kindness, and joy I witnessed as the older students mentored the grade 1 students, and the grade 1 students shined and appeared confident in their roles, warmed my heart.

MARCH 2016

SCHOOL-WIDE

- Caroline Webster, communications officer and APIS parent

w w w. a p i s . o r g

21


MARCH 2016

SCHOOL-WIDE

E

Librarian's Pick: Notable Children's Books of 2016

ach year, a committee of the Association for Library Service to Children identifies the best of the best in children's books. If you are looking for a good book this spring, why not start with these? The complete list is at http://www.ala.org/alsc/ awardsgrants/notalists/ncb.

L E V E L: K - G3

L E V E L: G3 - G5

This book is written by a great-granddaughter of Harry Colebourn, and is the story of the bear that inspired the “Winnie-the-Pooh” series. In 1914, Colebourn, a veterinarian on his way to tend horses in World War I, rescued an orphaned bear. This little bear, Winnipeg, brought some sunshine to the battlefield. The book describes the smiling faces of the soldiers when bringing food to the little bear. Find out what happens to Winnipeg. This book is a New York Times Bestseller and winner of the 2016 Caldecott Medal.

Newbery Award-winning author Louis Sachar writes about what happens when Tamaya and Marshall evade a bully by taking a shortcut home through forbidden woods that surround their school. This mistake is the start of endless trouble. Besides describing the school issues and friendship of the main characters, this book also touches on environmental pollution and issues of scientific discoveries, such as alternative energy and gene manipulation.

The Seventh Most Important Thing by Shelley Pearsall

L E V E L: G5 - G7

Arthur threw a brick to the junkman. He is assigned to 120 hours of community service, working for the same junkman. Arthur is given a cart with a list of the seven most important things: glass bottles, foil, cardboard, wood, light bulbs, coffee cans, and mirrors. Eventually, this garbage is turned into something valuable! Inspired by the work of American artist James Hampton, this novel is about discovering what shines within us all.

Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings: A Memoir by Margarita Engle

L E V E L: G6 - G11

22

Margarita is a girl from two different worlds during the Cold War. The author's memories focus on the first 14 years of her life, beginning with idyllic summers spent in her mother's homeland of Cuba. Dreaming about visiting Cuba again was Margarita’s only hope when she was struggling with discrimination and loneliness in the U.S. How can the two countries she loves hate each other? This book won the Pura Belpré Author Award.

w w w. a p i s . o r g EDITORIAL TEAM: ■ Euysung Kim Director ■ Nicole Suh Art & Design Editor ■ Josephine Shim Communications & PR Team Leader ■ Susan Craton Writing / Editing Staff ■ Caroline Webster Writing / Editing Staff

Issue 39 APIS Update March 2016 (online)  

Issue 39 APIS Update March 2016 (online)

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you