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Volume 6 Newsletter of International School Suva

18th September, 2017

Principal’s Report Greetings ISS parents, families, students, and friends,

Inside this Issue

We are nearing the end of Term 3 and this a good time to focus on finishing the term well. That usually means completing any unfinished school work. Projects, missed work, or reading tasks should receive a concentrated effort in coming days. As always, helping our students stay focused is a joint effort between our teachers and the students’ parents.

 Principal’s Report

Construction projects continue and are easily seen when you are around campus. The new arts building, J Block, is being prepared for roof trusses and will begin to look like a real building soon. A key phase, pouring the concrete upper roof supports, is now complete and the final shape of the building can be seen. The stairs to the Primary building, L Block, are nearing completion and can be seen fairly clearly now. In coming weeks, we will see both projects take more of their final shape. The new athletic field and parking area will be nearing completion in the next month. We are also exploring placing an early childhood play area beside the Think Tank and may be able to do that using in-house materials.

 School Nurse

I am planning a series of Parent Coffees during November and hereby invite interested parents to meet with me to discuss the school’s direction and goals. Please consider coming to help further those discussions. I do not know how many parents will attend, but am tentatively planning to hold them in the conference room next to my office which will accommodate 30 comfortably and a few more with less comfort. They will be as follows: High School Parents Middle School Parents Primary Parents

Tuesday November 7 Tuesday November 14 Tuesday November 21

3-4 p.m. 3-4 p.m. 3-4 p.m.

In other exciting news, we are participating by special invitation in the Round Square International Conference in Cape Town to explore membership in that organization. Round Square (RS) is a prestigious affiliation of private international schools with 180 member schools in 50 countries dedicated to promoting experiential learning, global mindedness, and service. RS is built on the following six ideals: Internationalism, Leadership, Democracy, Service, Environmentalism, and Adventure. RS is a means for schools and students to collaborate internationally and to guide school improvement. For further information, see Congratulations to our two students who have been selected through a competitive process to represent the school, Stella Keenan and Shayden Saberi. I believe they will represent ISS well and help us understand better whether we will benefit by official membership. Finally, I hope all of you have a wonderful break in another week. The term break is certainly a great time to enjoy family and step away from school for two weeks. We will then all be rejuvenated and focused for the last term of the year. Best wishes, Steve Cathers


 Sydney Arts Trip  Out Door Education  Head of Primary  Head Of High  PYP Coordinator  Library  Term Dates 2018  Upcoming Events

ABRSM Congratulations... Huge congratulations go to the 15 students from Year 3 to Year 11 who participated in the Associated Board of Royal School of Music (ABRSM) practical examinations! Photographed are some of the students who took the examinations, but overall each student’s result is as follows: MADINA BURKHANOVA

Year 8

PIANO Grade 7 Distinction


Year 11

PIANO Grade 7 Merit


Year 10

PIANO Grade 6 Merit


Year 9

GUITAR Grade 2 Merit


Year 10


Year 10

PIANO Grade 4 Merit


Year 7

GUITAR Grade 2 Pass


Year 4

PIANO Grade 3 Merit


Year 10

PIANO Grade 2 Pass


Year 9

GUITAR Grade 4 Distinction


Year 3

PIANO Grade 1 Merit


Year 7

PIANO Grade 6 Distinction


Year 5

PIANO Grade 1 Pass


Year 9

PIANO Grade 2 Pass


Year 5

PIANO Grade 5 Merit


Year 9

PIANO Grade 6 Merit


Year 4

PIANO Grade 4 Merit

CLARINET Grade 4 Pass GUITAR Grade 4 Pass

SCHOOL NURSE NEWS AND NOTES Why many of our students are at risk of contacting preventable diseases

Most parents would agree that they try to do everything possible to make sure their children are healthy and protected from preventable diseases. Immunisation is the best way to do that; however, due to a lot of confusing and conflicting information out there many struggle with the decision “to immunise or not to immunise.” It is important to question what you read and hear –and check where it came from. Some parents choose not to immunise due to the autism-immunisation theory. Recent comprehensive scientific studies and reviews have not found a link between vaccines and autism. Groups of experts, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Institute of Medicine (IOM), the National Institute of Health (NIH), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other agencies also agree that vaccines are not responsible for the number of children now recognized to have autism. According to current peer reviewed literature, immunizations are the number one public health achievement of the last century, saving millions of lives and preventing illness and lifelong disability in millions more. Vaccination can protect your child from serious illness and complications of vaccine-preventable diseases such as measles, mumps, varicella (chicken pox) and pertussis (whooping cough). These diseases are still a threat and continue to infect many children resulting in unnecessary hospitalizations every year. Such outbreaks usually occur when many parents decide not to vaccinate their children. There may be some discomfort, pain, redness or tenderness at the site of injection of the vaccination; however, this is minimal compared to the pain, discomfort, and trauma of the diseases these vaccines prevent. J. Barons (RN) *World Heart Day at ISS To raise awareness for the prevention of Cardiovascular Disease. Help raise funds for the purchase of an AED


On our Sydney Arts trip, we learned a lot .We learned how broad the Music industry is, and how AIM (Australian Institute of Music) also builds skills in areas other than music, such as marketing.

My Sydney Arts trip experience was definitely a fun and memorable one. I loved visiting the different Art Galleries, meeting new people, travelling with friends and especially given the opportunity to work with professional artists. I cannot express enough how much fun I had on this trip, I would love to do it all over again. – Melini

The trip not only taught me more about the wonderful and magical world of theatre, it also taught me how to use theatre to make changes in our society It was so nice to meet the cast of Neville’s Island- Carlos

We went through various workshops including a performance workshop, a theory workshop, and a tech workshop where we looked at the different ways AIM pushes their musical studies.

The part that stood out was the activity at NIDA with masks, and how they have a character of their own.

We also viewed a symphony inside the Sydney Opera House, which was unreal, and we watched a musical called Kinky Boots. It was a really beneficial workshop and the shows were life changing. We hope that our future music students will have as much fun and learn as much as we did on our trip when they go in 2 years’ time.

Waiting for the Sydney Theatre tour‌ can hardly wait for the extraordinary 1984

Seeing so many cultures, and integrating in a university was amazing! -Ra’ed

The ferry ride was a nice way of getting from Circular Quay to Darling Harbour

It was nice to be together

We were conservative on transport‌ but worth it- Inho

Amazing!! I especially loved visiting all of the different Art Galleries- Mahima

Outdoor Education Leadership and the Rock This semester, the brave students of the Year 12 Outdoor Education class are:  Learning abseiling skills including abseiling techniques, negotiation of obstacles, use of top or bottom belay, use of prusik loop to effect a self rescue  Developing caving skills including safe and efficient movement through caves, navigation in caves using maps, compasses and planned routes, laddering techniques Wailotoua Caves, Nahehe Caves and Zipline Fiji, have provided the practical experiences necessary for the students to reflect and analyse their personal leadership and practical skills. Brett Barons Outdoor Education

Transdisciplinary learning This past week has seen an introduction into the new unit of inquiry your child will be studying. One of the strengths of ISS is its transdisciplinary approach to teaching and learning. This is an approach to curriculum integration which dissolves the boundaries between the conventional disciplines and organizes teaching and learning around the construction of meaning in the context of real-world problems or themes. Within a unit of inquiry the students will be interacting with a single subject discipline to enrich their inquiry. This enables students to see the big ideas and how they relate to themselves and the world around them. To ensure this meets the needs of our students our teachers meticulously plan collaboratively, reflect and then adjust how this program is delivered. This next unit sees the following groups working together: Reception and IT Year 1 and PE Year 2 and Art Year 3 and Fijian Studies Year 4 and Music Year 5 and Hindi Studies

Rebecca Clentworth Head of Primary

Transition in High School Now is a time of decision making for our students in Year 8 and Year 10. The Year 8s are moving into High School, and for Year 10, decisions have to be made as to what program they will matriculate in. Often for many students and parents it is quite an anxious time, so it is important to know as much as you can about the programs on offer. In Year 9 and 10 students do the International General Certificate of Education (IGCSE). This is a two year program of study, with exams based on the two year program. All students are expected to do Science, Mathematics, and English as well as a school based program in PE. Students then can choose four other subjects from the Humanities, Arts, and Languages. The key is to choose subjects that they are good at or are interested in. It is really important to also look at how the subjects progress into Year 11 and 12. For the most part, subjects taken for IGCSE can progress into subjects taken in Year 11 and 12, apart from ICT which is not offered in the last two years of school. Information can be found at Moving into Year 11 is also a time of real decision-making as students have two programs to choose from, the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program (IBDP) or the Australian Capital Territories (ACT) Senior Secondary Certificate and ATAR (Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank). Both programs are internationally recognized and allow students to move into tertiary studies around the world. We have had students selected for placement into universities in the UK, USA, Korea, Norway, Africa, Australia and New Zealand to name a few, with either qualification. Please note the ACT does not restrict students to studying in NZ or Australia by any means. The IBDP requires students to study a Core which includes Theory of Knowledge, the Extended Essay (both of which are an excellent preparation for university), as well as complete CAS (Creativity, Activity and Service). They are required to study 6 subjects: a first language (usually English), a second language (French or Chinese), choose a subject from our humanities department (History, Economics, Psychology or Business Management), choose a Science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, or Environmental Systems), choose a Mathematics level, as well as take a subject from our Arts department (Visual Art, Theatre or Music). Should a student not wish to take a subject from the Arts, then they can do another subject from the Sciences, or a second from our humanities department. We also have an interdisciplinary subject on offer which is Environmental Systems and Societies which can stand as either a Science or Humanities. Three subjects must be taken at higher level (more depth) and three at standard level. Students do not have a completely free choice in terms of which subjects they can take due to the timetable constraints, for example usually Biology and Physics run at the same time which means if students wish to take two science subjects they have to take Physics and Chemistry, or Biology and Chemistry rather than Biology and Physics. Information about the IBDP can be accessed The ACT has greater subject choice as students can take 5 or 6 subjects, Maths and English is compulsory and then three or four subjects are chosen. There are some subjects that are specific to ACT such as Accounting, Sports Studies, Travel and Events Management, Outdoor Education which are not offered for the IBDP. For all other subjects, usually classes are combined with the IBDP as content is fairly similar. Our students are required to complete the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award which is run at the same time as CAS. Information about the ACT can be accessed at In terms of choosing a program of study, the key is to go with a student’s passion for a subject where possible, in the face of lots of subject choice. The IBDP is aimed at providing a more generalist approach to study, with a wide range of subjects across disciplines. In contrast, a student can focus on a specific course of study in the ACT, for example it is not compulsory to do a second language or Science. Each has its merits for individual students. Another major difference is that at the end of two years, the IBDP requires students to sit final examinations in each subject (although there is also an internal component). The ACT has a semester-based approach to study, similar to that found at university, where units are completed each semester. At the end of the two years, however, there is an external examination called the ACT Scaling Test which tests critical thinking in literacy and numeracy. Whilst students are expected to build their content knowledge, skills taught for all programs are very similar and progressive. By the end of High School, we would like students to be effective self-managers, understand how to approach research, have strong critical thinking skills, be good problem solvers, and be effective communicators who work well both individually and in groups, and also be someone who is understanding of what it means to be a global citizen, work well in society and be socially responsible. The following quote says it all: “What is of paramount importance in the pre-university stage is not what is learned but learning how to learn … What matters is not the absorption and regurgitation either of fact or predigested interpretations of facts, but the development of powers of the mind or ways of thinking which can be applied to new situations and new presentations of facts as they arise.” —Alec Peterson Peterson, A. 1972. The International Baccalaureate: An experiment in International Education. London. George Harrap -dp-en.pdf Megan Navunisaravi Head of High School

Inquiry through Mathematics

“Strong inquiry schools have a distinct climate – a climate that breeds curiosity, a relentless passion for investigation and a genuine fascination with learning.” ~ Kath Murdoch Mathematics in the PYP is different and exciting. Teachers work alongside students to understand what they know and utilize students’ prior knowledge in order to involve them in the learning process. Learning experiences go beyond the worksheets and textbooks. They are designed to allow students to explore concepts using manipulatives and to engage in group discussions. A balanced programme allows students to learn about, and learn through mathematics. A maths classroom will allow opportunities for students to construct meaning by answering concept questions which provides depth in their understanding; such questions help students to think math-

ematically and develop their problem-solving skills. For example, students investigate open-ended questions which can engage all students regardless of their ability. These questions challenge students to apply skills that they have acquired and develop mathematical literacy. What are the different ways we can represent a number? Eg. 96      

Draw the amount 9 rods and 6 cubes (base ten materials) Use tally marks 9 tens and 6 ones Write the number in different languages 8 tens and 16 ones

Modeling numbers in different ways.

Write down the different strategies that can be used to solve a particular problem e.g. 12 x 8     

Prior knowledge 10 groups of 8 = 80 and 2 groups of 8 =16 add the 2 answers 8 (10 +2) 12 (5+3) Draw arrays Skip count in 8s or 12s (recall multiplication tables)

How do we know our answer is correct? Is there connection between the numbers 12 and 8? How are they similar / different? How can you use this knowledge of numbers to help you create something in the real world?


Sorting Out

Rosi Uluiviti PYP Coordinator

Sharing Strategies


Our school celebrated literacy week from Monday 4th – Friday 8th of September. Our theme, “Escape to Everywhere” was integrated into classroom work by teachers, especially through classroom door decoration, designing a book cover on the theme, Giant crosswords author, book and character hunt, school wide read aloud, Young writers’ day, Book character parade, Fijian storytelling and movie afternoon. We had activities scheduled throughout the week. On Tuesday our students met with a local illustrator, Mr Tui Ledua. He showed our students techniques he uses in his work and spoke about his life as an illustrator. Mr Ledua has illustrated books locally like “O Teri kei Kalavo” and has also written books which will be released soon. Our students enjoyed their sessions and here is what they said: “He drew in a messy way but when he outlined it, it looked cool.” Nikhil 3D “I really like how he could do his illustrations in cartoon style.” Alex 3D “I found that it is a lot easier to begin with break the picture up into shapes and go from there!!!!!!” Myah 5G The dragon was really well done!! Jack 5G (After he drew Princess Ms Shelly). Ms Jill’s class followed the steps the illustrator used to draw their very own hippo. Well done Year 1C. To celebrate this year’s literacy theme “Literacy in the digital world,” the US Embassy librarian together with the library staff ran Maker Space activities in the library to encourage our students to be innovative and encourage creativity through technology. We offered maker space activities such as Electronic snap circuits, 3 Doodler pen, Trace effects Educational game, Makeymakey kit, K’NEX and LEGOS. The program was a success as our students were super involved and engaged in the activities. This year, each class came up with some very creative book door decoration with ECH 1 coming out as the overall winner with “The very hungry caterpillar” inspired door. You can check out the classroom decorated doors in the library blog page. Our literacy week ended with wonderful character parade by students and teachers and an exciting afternoon of watching theme-related movies. Today, we celebrated literacy week along with everyone else in the world to support and raise awareness of the importance of literacy and numeracy, both in school and beyond, and to instill in our students a lifelong love for books and reading. Thank you for encouraging your children to read and to love books! Happy literacy day! Ms Salu & the library team Email: Library webpage:


TERM DATES 2018 Term 1 (10 weeks) Tuesday16th January 2018 Thursday 18th January 2018 Tuesday 23rd January 2018 Thursday 29th March 2018 Friday 30th March 2018

New teachers start All teachers start Students start Term ends Good Friday

Term 2 (10 weeks) Teachers and Y11 and Y12 ACT students start All Students start. Term ends National Sports day

Monday 16th April 2018 Tuesday 17th April 2018 Friday 22nd June 2018 Friday 29 June 2018

Term 3 (10 weeks) Teachers start Teachers, Y11 and Y12 ACT students start All Students start Constitution Day – Public Holiday Term ends

Monday 16th July 2018 Tuesday 17th July 2018 Wednesday 18th July 2018 Friday 7 September 2018 Friday 21st September 2018

Term 4 (9 weeks) Teachers start Students start Fiji Day – Public Holiday Diwali Prophet Muhammad’s birthday Term ends for students Term ends for teachers

Monday 8th October 2018 Tuesday 9th October 2018 Wednesday 10thOctober 2018 Wed 7 November 2018 Monday 19 November 2018 Thursday 6th December 2018 Friday 7th December 2018

Upcoming Events Term 3 & 4 Week 10 Term 3 to Week 4 Term 4 T3 Week 10 Monday, September 18 Year 10 Curriculum Information Evening Year 11 Camp Mon-Wed Tuesday, September 19 Primary Planning Week Wednesday, September 20 Primary Planning Week Primary Student Led Conferences Thursday, September 21 Primary Planning Week Friday, September 22 » 4:00pm Primary Planning Week Term Ends 1:30pm Peace day assembly

T4 Week 1 Monday, October 9 Teachers Start Tuesday, October 10 Public Holiday - Fiji Day Wednesday, October 11 Students Start Friday, October 13 FIJI DAY ASSEMBLY T4 Week 2 Tuesday, October 17 ISA Assessment Wednesday, October 18 ISA Assessment Thursday, October 19 Public Holiday - Diwali T4 Week 3 Monday, October 23 Exam Leave Year 10 Exam Leave Year 12 IBDP Friday, October 27 Biggest Morning Tea T4 Week 4 Tuesday, October 31 IBDP Exams begin

Talanoa Volume 6  

2017 Talanoa Volume 6

Talanoa Volume 6  

2017 Talanoa Volume 6