IGB International School’s Weekly Newsletter - Issue 63, Week 4, January 2016
Book and Character Dress-up Day
Inside this week’s Newsletter Message from Head of School Mrs. Anne Fowles, Head of School
Upcoming Events Thursday, 4th February 2016
Chinese New Year Assembly Friday, 5th February 2016 Sports Day
News from Elementary School Mrs. Claire McLeod, Elementary School Principal
News from Secondary School Mr. Lennox Meldrum, Secondary School Principal
Message from Head of School Mrs. Anne Fowles Head of School Dear IGBIS Parents and Community Members, IGBIS Language Policy The focus for the newsletter this week is Language. As noted in the IGBIS Language Policy, ‘Language is the medium of inquiry and connects all elements of the curriculum. It is necessary to learn language, to learn about language and to learn through language. Therefore, we believe that every member of the community has an important role in language development and that every teacher at IGBIS is a language teacher. The common language of communication and learning at IGBIS is English. …. The school encourages students to become multilingual communicators, therefore students are required to learn a language in addition to English.’ Please read our Language policy and other articles about the policy and practices at IGBIS. ID Cards It is necessary for members of the IGBIS community to use their ID Card to access the school through the turnstiles on Level 2. We have noticed that a number of students and parents have not been using their ID card to gain entry into the school, instead they have asked for the guards to open the wheelchair access gate. This is making it very difficult for the school to maintain high standards of security. The wheelchair access will be locked from Monday February 1, 2016 and all students, staff and parents must use their ID card for access to the school building. Any community members who do not bring their ID card will have to request special entry and sign in before they will be given entry to the school. They will also need to later sign out when exiting the school. Please remember to bring your ID card to assist us with security and to prevent any delays in gaining entry to the school.
IGBIS Sports Day On Friday February 5th IGBIS will be having its inaugrual Sports Day. This event will be a day of fun events with students from Early Years right through to Grade 12 involved. The students have recently been placed into house teams that will be used to form the basis of the teams for Sports Day. The house system is something that most of our community are aware of but may be new to some. We have introduced the houses: Aer, Ignis, Terra, Aqua (Air, Fire, Earth, Water) as a way of building spirit and community within our student body and we hope to see this flow onto our whole school community as well. Each house is associated with a colour and we encourage students to wear their house colours on Sports Day.
Ignis – Red
Aqua – Blue
Terra – Green
Aer - Yellow
The school has also been working towards branding itself as the IGBIS Phoenix and this was also recently introduced to an excited student body. We would love to see as many parents as possible at the Sports Day as we see this as an opportunity to celebrate our school community in a fun and exciting way as we head into the Chinese New Year holiday. Andy Mullin PE Coordinator
News from Elementary School Mrs. Claire McLeod Elementary School Principal Language Policy It is important for our parents to be aware of the Language Policy of IGBIS. We believe in the importance of developing internationally-minded students who are reflective, open-minded, multilingual communicators. As language is the medium of inquiry and connects all elements of the curriculum, all our teachers are language teachers. It is necessary to learn language, to learn about language and to learn through language. The development of mother tongue is crucial for cognitive development and maintaining cultural identity. A strong foundation in mother tongue supports the learning of additional languages. English for Speakers of Other Languages Support (ESOL) is available for those students who have a limited level of English proficiency and require support to connect to their learning. Identification of these students is usually during the admissions process. ESOL support is provided as withdrawal or in class support. Our ESOL teacher assess the needs of each student and works alongside their class teacher to develop a plan to support their reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. Host Nation The school recognises the importance of all students having access to Malay language and the cultures of the host country. All students in the PYP programme participate in one Host Nation class per week. The class focuses on developing culture and language skills. World Languages All students from Early Years to Grade 5 participate in four Chinese language lessons each week. Lessons are based on the reading, writing, listening and speaking skills of the students and the development of their understanding of the Chinese culture. Parent/Teacher Conferences Thank you for supporting your child’s development and learning by attending the conferences this week; our teachers appreciate your contributions to these discussions. Security Tags Whilst completing gate duty at the carpark it is disappointing to see so many students from across the school without their security tag. I encourage parents to remind their children to have their tags with them every day and use them as they walk through the security turnstiles. Chinese New Year All parents are welcome to join us for the Chinese New Year assembly next Thursday at 2pm in the school Theatre. On that day we ask all students and teachers to wear something that reflects the cuture of China. Sports Day Next Friday we will have our first whole school Sports Day, with all students and teachers placed in four different house teams. Please make sure you know the colour of your child’s team and encourage them to wear a t-shirt of that colour. Parents are most welcome to attend. What’s coming up? 4th February – Chine New Year assembly 5th February – Sports Day and last day before holidays 15th February – first day back after the holidays.
Parent Feedback Survey Over the past few weeks parents have received semester reports and had the opportunity to meet with teachers about their child(ren)’s progress so far this year. We invite you to take a few minutes to share feedback about what your child is learning at IGBIS, school communication, your child’s semester report and the recent teacher conferences. Your feedback is valuable to us as we continue to grow and develop our school. Please use this link to begin the survey: http://goo.gl/forms/szAfkj5Vht Simon Millward (PYP Coordinator), Phil Clark (MYP Coordinator), Matthew Marshall (DP Coordinator)
Expectations of Digital Device use and care â€˜IGB International School believes the teaching of cyber safety and responsible online behaviour is essential to the lives of students and is best taught in partnership between home and school. As an IB school we believe the Learner Profile attributes are central to learning. Students, teachers and parents should strive to use the Learner Profile attributes when thinking about the way they use technology in a responsible and safe way. Safe and responsible behaviour is explicitly taught at our school and parents/guardians are requested to reinforce this behaviour at home.â€™ (extract from Elementary School Expectations of Digital Device use and care) Over the next couple of weeks all students and parents from Grade 2 to Grade 5 in Elementary School will need to sign and agree to an acceptable use agreement. This is a document which outlines how students use technology in a responsible and safe way at school and home using school devices, school accounts and while completing home learning. We will also be running sessions to introduce these ideas to the younger students. Keep an eye out for the agreement coming home. This is an opportunity to have a chat with your kids about what it means to be a responsible and safe user of technology. At school over the next couple of weeks we will be explicitly introducing this to the students giving the students an opportunity to explore and discuss some of the concepts and ideas. They will then take it home and we expect all students and parents to sign and agree to the document. Geoffrey Derry Technology Integration Specialist
Language in the PYP Language is everywhere and is fundamental in giving students the ability to communicate. Right from birth children are surrounded by language and are listening to it and learning from it. Language gives children the ability to communicate their understanding of the world around them. Children learn to talk, listen, read and write, and these skills are used in every area of the curriculum. Teachers move children through fundamental and developmental stages of learning language, from Early Years right through to Secondary School. They plan learning experiences that will build on prior knowledge and help children make connections to previous learning. Part of my job as the Elementary School Language Co-ordinator is to work alongside teachers, sharing ideas and developing skills and strategies that enable teachers to provide the best possible learning experiences for the children. Yolaine Johanson Elementary School Language Co-ordinator
MYP Community Project Our Grade 8 and Grade 10 students have been working on their IB Middle Years Programme Projects for the past few months. The Grade 8 Community Project is completed during Semester 1 while the Grade 10 Personal Project is completed during Semesters 1 and 2. After six months of hard work, the Grade 8 student completed and presented their Community Projects to an audience of students and parents during the ParentStudent-Teacher Conferences this week.
The MYP Community Project focuses on community action and service. Students selected communities that were of interest to them and investigated the needs within those communities. They set goals, researched, and planned how they could help meet the needs of their chosen communities. Over the following weeks the students took action to address those needs through service learning. When they had completed their action, the students reflected on their Community Project - how successful they had been at meeting their project goal, things they had learned about themselves and others, things they had learned about project and time management, etc.
Below is a brief summary of the Community Projects selected by this year’s Grade 8 students: Fur Kids Farm - https://youtu.be/fl0ke0sc4fA Balqis and Sofea focused on the animal rescue organisation “Fur Kids Farm”. They decided to raise awareness about animal cruelty and the work of “Fur Kids Farm” by creating an informative, promotional video which has been posted on YouTube. We invite you to view their video using the link above. Save the Rhino - https://www.savetherhino.org/ Hong Yi, Kai and Lucas developed an awareness raising campaign about the plight of the African black and white rhinos. They created posters that were displayed around school and also collected money to donate to a rhino conservation organisation. Ti-Ratana Orphanage - http://ti-ratana.org.my/ Clarissa, Pei Hua and Ria chose to work with the Ti-Ratana foundation and organised a book and games donation across Elementary and Secondary School. They loaded up a truck full of books and games that were donated to a Ti-Ratana orphanage. Hope Worldwide - http://www.hopeww.org.my/ Han Wen and Jia Dong chose to raise awareness about the work of the Hope organisation with urban poverty in Malaysia. Han Wen created posters and Jia Dong created a video. They both helped with food distribution in Kuala Lumpur. SPCA - http://www.spca.org.my/ Mathilda and Tayana volunteered with the SPCA in Selangor. They completed a training course and learnt how to take care of rescued cats, dogs, birds, guinea pigs and rabbits. They also created a promotional video to showcase the work of the SPCA. UNHCR - http://www.unhcr.org.my/ Alex and Gabriel chose to develop their own computer game. The game was a “platformer” game where the player had to jump from platform to platform and defend him or herself from attack. They decided to sell copies of their game online to raise money for the UNHCR Syrian Refugee Appeal. Refugee School Lucas, Matthew and Yuto worked with a volunteer organisation that provides education for refugee children here in Kuala Lumpur. They had a number of different project ideas and decided to organise a series of lunchtime sports events. Student teams paid to participate in the events. Lucas, Matthew and Yuto’s project raised enough money to buy educational resources and sports equipment for the refugee school. IB Learner Profile - http://www.ibo.org/benefits/learner-profile/ Lucy decided to create characters to represent each of the IB Learner Profile attributes. She wanted to help students who are new to IB schools to more easily understand the Learner Profile. She drew a series of illustrations, each character displaying particular features that represented their specific Learner Profile attribute. IGBIS - Student Noticeboard Ee-Li and Sidnee focussed on the IGBIS Secondary School student community. They created a notice board where students can find answers to school-based questions. They created an anonymous online survey where students can post questions and the answers will be displayed on the notice board in the cafeteria. IGBIS - Instrument Lockers Harrison, Jaden and Justus also focussed on the IGBIS Secondary School student community. They identified a need for musical instrument lockers and set about designing lockers and sourcing companies who could produce them at a competitive price, along with potential appropriate sponsors for the lockers. Congratulations to all our Grade 8 students who sustained their projects for six months, developed their self-management and timemanagements skills, learned new things and positively contributed to the wider community. I will keep you updated in the coming months as the Grade 10 students continue their Personal Projects. We look forward to the Grade 10 students presenting their projects at their exhibition in May. Phil Clark Middle Years Programme Coordinator
News from Secondary School Mr. Lennox Meldrum Secondary School Principal It was another wonderful week of celebrations in the Secondary School. Our Parent-Student-Teacher conferences were a way to celebrate the successes of the first semester for each of our students and for teachers to share an insight with the parents into the daily lives of their children. Through the common understanding of our expectations and programme pathways, students can receive the best education in school and home with support in both locations. On Wednesday and Thursday we also celebrated with the Grade 8 students as they presented about their Community Project. It was wonderful to sit with the parents of the students and listen to students describe not only the obvious successes and trials of their projects, but how they personally have grown and changed throughout the project. These Approaches To Learning skills they were describing are a core aspect of the IB programmes and are deeply embedded in each of our subject areas. On Wednesday morning we also had the opportunity to celebrate the achievements of some students who participated in a summer school programme last year. Kingdom Education, a summer school provider who focuses on university visits in the UK, US, Australia, and New Zealand, provided scholarships and opportunities for IGBIS students to help prepare them for university. Three of these students were presented with awards for academic achievement in medical sciences and psychology, academic achievement in engineering and technology, and one of our Grade 12 students received the award for most outstanding student of the programme. This has enhanced the IGBIS name with universities of the highest level across the globe and provided positive groundwork for future graduates. Well done Ernest, Seong Jin, and Claudia! As we continue to promote our policies, you will find a number of articles in this newsletter discussing our Language Policy. We are very fortunate to have a skilled set of language practitioners across the school who focus on specific language areas, but we also have an amazing set of teachers who are all language teachers in their own way. Have a great weekend.
IGBIS Instrumental Music Academy At last weeks End of Semester Concerts I mentioned to parents that I would be making videos of the concerts available for your viewing. These videos have now been uploaded to the Music Academy Splash page. By logging into the Splash page with your parent email and login details parents and students will now be able to view the videos. Registration for Semester 2 Mucis Academy Registration for Semester 2 closed on Friday 29th January. Parents should have begun to receive their invoice for payment to the Finance Office or by bank deposit. A reminder that if you are paying by bank deposit please email Ms Natalie Lim with a copy of your bank deposit slip. (firstname.lastname@example.org) Thank you to those parents who have already made the payments. Semester 2 lessons will commence the week beginning 15th February and all the schedules will be shared via the Splash page by the end of next week. I would like to wish everyone an enjoyable holiday break coming up. Gong Xi Fa Cai Mr. Jon Suffolk, Performing Arts Teacher
DP Coordinator News Thanks to the school community for the great turnout at the Parent-Student-Teacher Conferences that took place on Wednesday and Thursday. Communication between the school and the school community is an essential aspect of creating a positive and effective learning environment at IGBIS. During the Parent-Student-Teacher Conferences I held information sessions regarding the Grade 10 transition into Grade 11. This transition is an important one because the students will be changing academic programmes after the completion of the MYP at the end of Grade 10. There are two academic programmes (IBDP and IGBISD) available in Grades 11/12 for our students, and placing the students in the most appropriate programme and courses requires counselling and guidance. Hopefully the information provided at the information sessions was valuable for the Grade 10 parents, and provided a clear understanding of the transition process and procedures. Placing students in the appropriate language courses is essential and can have implications on their success in the DP and IGBISD programmes. Therefore, the language placement guidelines which were outlined at the information session and the IGBIS Language Policy, have been created to help make student placement in language classes clear, transparent and in accordance with IB guidelines. The Grade 11 students will begin start the Extended Essay (EE) process next week and will be given deadlines to help them complete this demanding assignment. The EE is an independent, self-directed piece of research, finishing with a 4,000 word paper. One component of the IBDP core, the EE is mandatory for all IBDP students. The students have been given information regarding the EE through ManageBac and at information session in order to help them make an informed decision on which DP subject they wish to use as the focus of their EE. The students will have approximately one year to finish the EE. If there are any questions regarding the DP at IGBIS please email me at email@example.com. Mr. Matthew Marshall, DP Coordinator
A Language Policy: new beginnings It has been a busy year so far at IGB International School. Besides our teaching duties, the Whole School Languages Department has been working closely with the IB coordinators to create a Language Policy. Finally, after several discussions, meetings, and long writing sessions, we have it ready to share with the whole school community. The process was challenging and exciting at the same time, since we are a young school and we are establishing ourselves among the best international schools in the area by offering three IB programmes. You might be wondering what a Language Policy is and why we need one. Well, to start with, this Language Policy reflects who we are as a school. “We believe in the importance of developing internationally-minded students who are reflective, open-minded, multilingual communicators”, the Language Policy reads. We value the acquisition of additional languages as a way to expand our world, understand others, and build a better future for the generations to come. The Language Policy will also help us – parents and teachers - to understand the needs of our student population in a better way. It is a great resource for planning our students’ language pathways, and to decide which language and which level will better suit their needs. This Language Policy will be soon followed by a survey that will allow us to map even further the languages spoken at school, as well as to plan for staffing and subjects offerings in future years. We thank you in advance for taking the time to read this policy and to complete this survey. Gustav Helman Whole School Languages Coordinator
Activities Highlights Coming Up in Sport... Friday, January 29th - U13 Boys Basketball @ IGBIS vs ISKL Friday, January 29th - U15 Boys Basketball @ IGBIS vs ISKL Friday, January 29th - U15 Girls Basketball @ IGBIS vs ISKL Saturday, January 30th - U18 Boys/Girls Basketball Tournament @ IGBIS Saturday, January 30th - Tee Ball Coaching Clinic @ ISP Wednesday, February 3rd - U11 Boys Football Tournament @ Tenby Tuesday, February 16th - Athletics Field Events @ ISP Wednesday, February 17th - U9 Boys Football Tournament @ IGBIS Monday, February 22nd - Athletics Track Events @ IGBIS Activities Confirmations for activities have been sent out this week. Please check your childâ€™s activities. Activities commence February 15th, 2016. Look for more information coming soon. Ms. Jasmine Brawn, Athletics & Activities Director