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New sl et t er 0 6 Thu rsday 28 Febr u ar y 20 19

Sunday 3 Mar

Monday 4 Mar

Tuesday 5 Mar Book Week

08:00 - 09:15 Parenting With Love & Logic 6 week Course with Jennifer Heathcote Osborne

Wednesday 6 Mar

Thursday 7 Mar

School Closed

13:30 - 15:30 QUESSU16s Girls' Football Fixtures 14:00 - 16:30 QUESSU14 Girls' Football

13:30 - 15:30 QUESS U14s & U12s Girls' Football Fixtures

Dav i d Mon k , Head of School

07:45 - 08:25 Book Character Fashion Show

Friday 8 Mar

Saturday 9 Mar

15:30 - 20:00 DESMUN Conference

08:00 - 12:30 International SAT&SAT Subject test 10:00 - 19:30 World Scholar's Cup: Regional Round

15:30 - 20:00 DESMUN Conference

Menu | Mar 03 - 07

Complete Calendar

Dear Parents, In the last newsletter, I gave you information regarding the process that we follow for recruiting new teachers. In an increasingly competitive market, we will always seek to recruit the best teachers who are creative and innovative in their application of current educational research, in order to ensure that we maximise our impact on student learning. We also recognise that our students deserve the best facilities that we can provide for them, and I am very pleased to announce that work on the long awaited swimming pool will begin within the next month. It is our intention to open this exciting addition to our campus in the 2019-2020 academic year.

I can also tell you that plans have been submitted for a new indoor, air-conditioned sports facility, thus increasing the space available for physical education, play and for socialising during the hot summer months when it is not possible to be outdoors.

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Save the date? We are in the planning stages of an exciting 10th Anniversary Celebration Dinner and Gala at the Grand Hyatt on 25 April. All parents and staff of the school will be invited, and tickets for this event will go on sale soon. The evening will contain performances and representations of student work from all parts of the school as well as a sumptuous dinner and soft drinks, served by the Grand Hyatt. Further details will follow. Draft Academic Calendar 2019 ? 2020 You will find the draft calendar for the next academic year here. While we hope that this draft calendar may help you plan ahead for holidays next year, please note that this has not yet been approved by the Ministry of Education and so may well be subject to change.

Rou l a Ism ai l , Head of Pr i m ar y What doesit mean to value diversity? As we begin to plan for the Mother Tongue Assembly, and the International Family Food Fair Day, I am reminded of a typical conversation, that I often have with potential teachers applying to join our school. Me: So why are interested in coming to our school? Teacher: I looked at your website and you have so many nationalities, there isso much diversity. Your offer so many languages. Me: Yes, we value mother tongue development and so we offer nine mother tongue languagesin our school. Teacher: Wow! That isreally impressive! Reflecting on our strengths as a school, and our unique identity I am wondering what does valuing diversity really mean? Is it enough to teach nine mother tongue languages, to have one international day a year, or to offer additional languages? Does having a group of students from different countries together in a room, or a group of teachers from every corner of the globe together in a school lead to the valuing of diversity?

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The answer in my opinion is No. Referring back to our school?s four pillars: Identity, Understanding, Passion and Diversity. All important, all relevant, all interdependent and need each other to flourish. Diversity plus Understanding leads to Intercultural Understanding, Diversity plus Identity leads to international-mindedness, and Diversity and Passion leads to student agency. All the pillars put together are the defining factors that make our school truly impressive!

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Pr i m ar y New s Grade 3

To inspire the Grade 3 students on their PYP learning journey we visited the Mathaf Museum of Modern art. Students responded to various pieces of art and had the opportunity to create a piece of art and ask the guide questions about the artists and their art works.

Grade 3 students enthusiastically shared their passion for poetry with EC, before the excited EC students shared their library books. ?I felt pleased and honoured because I got to see little kids and read them poems.?(Roudha 3C) ?I felt happy because I helped EC?s by reading to them.?(Candella 3C)

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Jen ny Pow el l , EC Coordi n at or Global School Play Day

Learning occurs when children are provided with opportunities to make connections between their previous and current perceptions, test their theories and confirm or revise their points of view. Children develop their understanding about the world and construct meaning through observation, exploration, investigation and inquiry. Play is therefore the pillar to the construction of knowledge as play reflects the principles of how children learn. Our early childhood and kindergarten students participated in an international movement called Global School Play Day. Our youngest learners began by developing play plans to design a purposeful invitation to play. They then had to organize and set up the resources and equipment needed. On the day, our students were given the opportunity to engage in uninterrupted, sustained time for play where they self directed and regulated their day of play. The power of our participation in this global movement was resonated in the responses and reflections of our students, parents and teachers. -From our students: It was a day of choices. We could choose which activities we wanted to do and eat and drink when we wanted to. It was so much fun! I think we should do this every day! -From a parent: My child had a really great day today. He said his favorite parts were the books, the water table and the rain. Thanks for all your hard work! -From a teacher: When you unpack the learning outcomes, you appreciate all the learning outcomes and how much can be achieved through a single invitation to play. Evident in the responses and reflections from our students and teachers, the place for play in school is a necessity. Play is the way our students learn. Play does not detract from academic learning but actually enables students to learn.

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We are Dog Handlers!

Lola, the dog visited EC1A. It was a great way to wrap up the Sharing the Planet Unit with the children. They patted her gently and demonstrated how courageous they were by approaching her. Lola interacted with them by showing off dog tricks that the children requested like "wave", "high five" and "box". This was a great way remind the children how humans and animals should interact and they did just that. Well done EC1A.

Who We Are

On the 7th of February the Atrium was a hive of activity as the KG students celebrated their learning through the unit Cultures Recognise Important Occasions Through Celebrations under the theme of Who We Are. The students presented a celebration that was important to them as well as what they had learnt about celebrations from other cultures. It was a truly multimodal experience with links to videos celebrating the students learning in PEand Performing Arts, completing Venn diagrams as a team to compare and contrast 2 different celebrations and a gallery walk to look at artefacts made through the unit and the work done by the other classes.

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Students taking Action Some students in 4C took action by organizing a food/used toy sale during lunch in February. Students were asked to contribute old toys, slime and food in order to raise funds for charity. Basil and Al Joud in 4C liaised with Mr. Robert to advertise the event. They set the date and were instrumental in getting all of 4C on board, a common purpose can be very persuasive. We are proud of the communication, vision, leadership and good will demonstr

Ni ck Bot t i n g, Head of Secon dar y Up on the Rooftop According to David Kolb, experiential learning can be defined as "the process whereby knowledge is created through the transformation of experience. Knowledge results from the combinations of grasping and transforming the experience." (https://www.verywellmind.com/experiential-learning-2795154)

During our week without walls, students were exposed to a range of challenges both here in Qatar and overseas. One particular activity caught my attention due to the opportunities it provided for students to develop self-directedness and deepen their learning over an extended 5-day period. Recognising the work of Dr. Fernandez in originally conceptualising the rooftop garden, Arkan De Lomas, Petra Fallaha and Marco Zamara, set about bringing value to the project by providing a unique location where students and teachers could engage in learning in a tranquil environment. Working throughout the week with groups of up to 20 students, the three of them, under the green-fingered supervision of Mr. Julio, created opportunities for critical thinking, taking principled action and exploring ecosystems and biomes through the lens of sustainability. As the discussions gathered momentum, some of the students made 3-D models of their ideal rooftop garden, all of them inspired by the creative brain-storming activities designed by their student leaders. Ideas were shared from each student?s own home country, including the diverting of grey water from the school?s taps to irrigate the garden, painting and the growing of fruit, such as tomatoes. Future plans, however, all focus on the theme of sustainability, learning environments and tranquility. I look forward to the entering this unique location via an archway of bougainvillea?

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MYP New s WEEK WITHOUT WALLS? and ISL Qatar?s 10th Anniversary While many MYPstudents were able to take advantage of school-arranged trips to Sweden, Kenya, Thailand and Sri Lanka, a number of students chose to remain in Doha and attend an ?action-packed?series of non-traditional learning experiences facilitated by their teachers. These experiences were designed to extend the students?understanding of the world through exploration, cultural immersion, team building, service learning and personal growth opportunities. They included, to name but a few, the following: Rooftop Garden, Computer Animation, Team Building, Nomadik-Hub Desert, Sumo Bot Challenge, Qatari Crafts, Cubing, Collective Sculpture, Board Game Design, Slam Poetry and the Unique Ecology of Qatar. The ?Collective Sculpture?team was tasked with developing a sculpture to celebrate ISL Qatar?s 10th Anniversary. Ten chairs representing 10 different subjects over the past 10 years were selected and covered with paper.

Helen Jeffery, MYPCoordinator

Collective Sculpture with Mr. Nicholson Marta Garcia and Carolina Daou (Grade 9) Laith Al Rahmani (Grade 11) Photographs by: Milo Bourland (Grade 8)

LEARNINGBY DESIGN ? Billed as More than Just an Event. International School of Brussels February, 2019

The 3rd Learning by Design conference was held in Brussels, Belgium from the 14th to the 16th of February, 2019 and attended by Katie Gellatly, Helen Jeffery and Sophia Kritsineli from the Secondary school. More than just a conference, this was a call, for all the participants to re-imagine ?the way schools facilitate learning in a culture characterized by open knowledge systems, inclusive educational communities and rapid social change.?The three teachers from ISL Qatar were challenged - both before the conference and throughout the three days to consider the following inquiries: Question #1 How can we find the time and space to innovate our practices? Question #2 How can we help students to design the kind of learning that they want and design the kind of future that they want to have? Question #3 How do we develop a different concept of the teacher that is fit for the future? Question #4 How can we design learning experiences that change the health of the whole community? Question #5 At what cost do we ignore these questions?

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GROWTH BY GOINGGRADELESS? the Conversation Continues. Decades of research show that grades diminish student interest in whatever they are learning, discourage students from taking academic risks and reduce the quality of the learner?s thinking. Alfie Kohn, Will Richardson, Dylan Wiliam (a world authority on assessment) and other educational writers have for years railed against the practice of grading in schools and these three ?robust conclusions?were drawn from their research. While the IB ? like others ? has attempted to justify and ?improve?the practice of grading by using standards-based levels of achievement, they do not address the fundamental problem that these approaches are based on the rather simplistic premise that having more data is always good; and that ?learning can and should be broken down into its components?and evaluated separately into 4 objectives, labelled A, B, C and D. Throughout the secondary school, we have advocated a change of practice from ?assessment of learning?to ?assessment for learning?. There are many studies which based on Jo Boaler?s (2008) research, have assessed student work in three different ways: 1. using feedback 2. using grades 3. using both feedback and grades

What the studies are continuing to find is that the students who receive only comments significantly increase their performance, whereas, surprisingly, the students who received both grades and comments perform as poorly as those who receive only grades without any comments on their work. Black and Wiliam (1998) report that checking in regularly on students?understanding is more helpful than an end-of-unit summary of mastery. At ISL Qatar we have found, too, that the practice of grading is a real impediment to learning. "I feel like you are limiting me to correct answers." In a recent conversation with a student currently in Grade 11, Harry Pell likened the way he saw his learning experience to that of a square prism ? a three dimensional cuboid figure, ?We all know that a square prism is 3-dimensional, with length, width and height ? our ?x?, ?y?and ?z??. He went on to elaborate that he associates each of these axis with an aspect of school progress: ?x?= his scores/levels or grades; ?y?= his effort and finally, ?z?= his enjoyment of the course. By focusing our energies solely on the x-axis ? the grade - students can be prone to choose the path of least resistance and strategically take courses merely to benefit their end-of-year grade. As a learning community, do we want our students to engage in this type of behaviour? Will this make them educated individuals? Harry?s argument was that by placing so much emphasis on a student?s grade, their personal development was becoming a footnote. The one-dimensional character of grades does not measure the 3-dimensional character of the student. During an ECISmodule on ?Assessment?which ISL Qatar hosted during the 2017 to 2018 school year, those of us who attended the 2-day course were set the challenge to resist putting a grade at the top of our students?assignments, both to de-emphasize the importance of the grade and to place the value on our students?understanding. At that time, many of us started to ?change the conversation?in our classrooms, asking the students to start viewing their learning as a process through which they can practice, make mistakes and learn from those mistakes to improve their understanding. We are focused on student learning, not their grades. Fewer students have since asked the question - ?Is this a formative or a summative assignment? Based on what we know about the impact of grades, we took the bold move to inform those parents who attended the MYPAssessment evening (25th September, 2018) that the mid-year reports to be issued on 7th February, 2019, would not provide students either with subject-specific levels of achievement or mid-year subject-specific grades. Rather, MYPstudents ? like the students in the PYP ? would be provided with useful, targeted information on the learners?growth and well-being. The teacher comment is designed to be focused and sufficiently specific to prompt questions, and to get the student talking to the teacher and their parents, about what they might need to support their future learning. It is our belief that a simplistic grade given mid-way through the year does not enhance the learner?s growth but, in fact, actually hinders or is detrimental to it. A mid-year grade and/or levels of achievement tends to be attached to specific tasks or types of tasks and is too granular in terms of thinking how the student is developing as a learner. It provides the impression that the only thing that is valued at school is the student?s ability to ?get through?a test or how they perform on a summative assignment. After discussion and listening to our explanations, the parents were seemingly perfectly happy and there was widespread acceptance of the change in the school?s reporting practice. Prior to the mid-year reporting session, the teachers were given the opportunity to have a dialogue about what they are expecting of students and what that looks like. In collaboration, they prepared 16 learner insights ?comment banks?. I am sure that you, like all of us at ISL Qatar, agree that the purpose of school is to empower our students to become ?learners for life?. The school?s new mission statement makes the claim that we ?are committed to developing a passion for life and learning that leads to the betterment of the world in which we live.?We need to put learners at the centre of all that we do and, in this case, to focus on their learning, not the grades. We are continuing to ?upgrade?our practices within the MYPyears to ensure that our grading and our assessments more accurately represent actual student learning and builds student self-esteem. The Case against Grades Boaler, Jo. What?s Math Got to Do with It? (2008) New York: Penguin Group. Kohn, Alfie Educational Leadership, v69 n3 p28-33 Nov 2011.

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Per f or m i n g Ar t s

On the 24th of January, the Grade 2 students went to the Katara Drama Theatre to see the Musical Theatre performance: Nora a Girl of the Desert, with the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra. The children were very excited to see an Orchestra and observe the connection between Drama and Music. For many of them this was the first time they had seen a live performance of this scale. This trip was connected to the Unit of inquiry How we expressourselvesand provided an excellent example of one of the greatest ways for us express ourselves - through the Arts!

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Mot her Ton gu e International Mother Language Day ISL Qatar is a truly diverse community where we prepare our students to become good global citizens, to appreciate the diverse society in which they live and to find a way to live in harmony with people who are different from us. This week, the Mother- Tongue students celebrated the ?International Mother Language Day?, an event that promotes language diversity and give recognition to an estimated 7,000 languages spoken internationally. Our secondary mother- tongue students from G6 to G11prepared, games, quizzes and prizes to showcase their cultural identity and to entertain their peers during break time. We ended the day by a ?Mother Tongue?assembly. Our primary students from EC2 to grade 5 presented with enthusiasm a versatile show with dances, songs, presentations and short sketches in Dutch, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese and Spanish.

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Italian Movie Time!

One afternoon, a group of primary and secondary Italian students enjoyed, for the first time, the screening of an animation movie in its original Italian language: the event took place in the school auditorium and was welcomed by everybody. We hope to repeat soon the experience.

Week W i t hou t Wal l s Kenya Trip

From deworming local goats to hammering out an elephant deterrent fence, our students were elbow deep into helping the local community around Camp Tsavo in rural Kenya. We spent two days collecting river soil, mixing it with cement, and making bricks to help the Marungu school build a new kitchen. In total, we made 64 bricks! Our students couldn't stop talking about how gratifying their work made them feel. A fter some rigorous work, we were able to relax with the local women's empowerment group by learning traditional jewelry making and making elephant dung paper. If that weren't enough, we spent a day hiking into Marungu Hills, ate lunch in a cave and learned how to shoot traditional bows and arrows and make fire. We were also able to visit the Maasai tribe where our students were able to use their knowledge of Nigerian tribal traditions from our English class to ask astute questions to the Maasai people--drawing connections, understanding differences, exploring a new culture. At night, we enjoyed Swahili lessons, card games and a bonfire. We finally finished off our amazing adventure with a safari filled with lion prides, elephants too numerous to mention, giraffe and zebra. This was truly the adventure of a lifetime!

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In t er n at i on al Fam i l y Food Fai r

To follow the event, click here. The Raffle Tickets for Prize Draw can be purchased at the event. With these Raffle Tickets, you get the opportunity to win amazing prizes!

Look out for Nando's station for variety of food at the event. It's going to be PERILICIOUS!

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Work shop Parenting with Love & Logic 6 Week Workshop

With Jennifer Heathcote Osborne: D Room, weekly: Sunday 24th- 31st March 8.00-9.15am Would you like solutions to some of your parenting issues? Do you wonder if you're using too many words in an attempt to implement change? Do you give too many warnings before you give consequences? Are you displaying anger or frustration? Could you use some professional help? Why not join Jennifer and other parents ready to find solutions to many parenting issues that will help you raise self-confident, motivated children who are ready for the real world. Loving, yet powerful tools for parenting children of all ages.Note that the 6-week workshop is not a 'weekly' stand-alone course. Parents are encouraged to participate as either a couple or if time short, as turn-taking individuals. Please sign up here

Gl obal Ci t i zen shi p an d Com m u n i t y Act i on

Environmental Collaboration between Grade 3 and EC2 During their Sharing the Planet units, Grade 3 and EC2 students both learned about the impacts of rubbish in the environment. Grade 3 examined the impacts on animal life, particularly sea creatures, and EC2 looked at how rubbish can pollute soil to the detriment of plant growth. After learning the importance of removing rubbish from the environment, these students then decided to take action! Volunteers from Grade 3 classes had already been spending break times collecting rubbish found in the playground. When EC2 students heard of their successful efforts, they were excited to join in to help keep our school clean. Representatives from all three Grade 3 classrooms visited with the EC2 students over a two-week period. The older students first explained the collection process and then taught the younger students how to use the litter picking tools. Dividing into small groups, each Grade 3 student then showed responsibility and patience as they supervised their team and encouraged them during the break to collect as much rubbish as possible. The EC2 students showed great cooperation skills as they shared the litter picking tools and were committed to search high and low for rubbish in all areas of the playground. The enthusiasm was high on all sides as the students returned after almost 30 minutes with bags full of rubbish. We were all proud of the positive impacts our actions had made and how responsible and caring we had been towards the environment.

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Marine Workshop In the last week 28 Grade 3 students had the chance to participate in a Marine Workshop organised by Qatar University. The workshop was titled Reduce Marine Pollution, Save Marine Lives?and it was a part of Qatar?s Environmental Day on the 26th February. In smaller groups the students visited different station and learnt about different topics like the World of Marine Ecosystem, Step on the Most Polluted Marine Ecosystems, Hawksbill Sea Turtle Project and a virtual Tour of Dugong World.

En gl i sh as an Addi t i on al Lan gu age (EAL) The Centre for Educators of Bilingual and Multilingual Learners The International School of London in Qatar prides itself highly on having over 70 different nationalities represented amongst our student body. We see the importance of investing in our Mother Tongue programmes, and the value in having such a diverse community of students who are bilingual, or even multilingual. In order to provide further support in the classroom to students for whom English is an acquired language, a number of our Teaching Assistants across the school have completed, or will in the near future, a course with The Centre for Educatorsof Bilingual and Multilingual Learners. Our Teaching Assistants have gained experience in understanding some of the social, emotional and academic needs of bilingual and multilingual learners, while gaining practice with new teaching strategies. They have learned how to break down learning and support our students in the classroom. Here is some feedback from our Teaching Assistants on the course: ?I have tried to think of only one thing that isthe most important that I have learned fromthiscourse but I couldn?t. There are so many important things. First of all, I wasn?t aware of the importance and influence of MT (mother tongue) development and maintenance on academic successof our students. Fromnow on I will definitely look at MT through a different lense. I wasn?t aware of processesand stagesthat our BMLs(bilingual and multilingual learners) are going through. It isnot just about learning and education in another language, it isa whole system which we have to understand and support in order to provide the best learning experience for our students. Also, I wasn?t aware of the anxiety that our studentscan experience and consequencesof it. Now, when I am aware of such important and complex issues, I will be able to better understand and support my studentsin the classroom. With many strategiesI have learned, I will be able to make learning experiencesmuch easier for my studentsand I will be able to help themto achieve higher academic successes. It isimportant to educate everyone about bilingual and multilingual learnersand the importance of mother tongue, not just teachersbut parentsaswell, because they often put a lot of pressure on their children to speak just in English. Thisisespecially important when we know that the BMLsare an exploding population in primary and secondary education all over the globe.? Ivana Kosic- KGTeaching Assistant ?I found thiscourse really interesting and useful. It showsthe importance of one?sMT (mother tongue) which, asbeing related to the individual?s culture and identity, playsan important role in their thinking and development. Another remarkable aspect of the course wasthat it showed how important it isto recognize the difference and gap between social and academic language, and, therefore the importance of giving teachersgood training in the basic issuesrelated to BMLs(bilingual and multilingual learners). Having done thiscourse, I can now better understand what BMLs go through, and, with the strategiestaught I feel I amnow more prepared to help them in their learning. " Brenda Isasa- Grade 3 Teaching Assistant ?The experience hasenabled me to consider and further understand BMLs?(bilingual and multilingual learners) different needs, enabling me to plan strategiesto further their learning. Thisunderstanding hasgiven me more confidence in helping studentsand sharing ideaswith colleagues. Essentially itsenabled me to put myself in their shoes( so to speak ) and even apply the principlesto my own learning and development . I too am a BML!? Catherine Derisa- KGTeaching Assistant

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Spor t s

ISL Qatar Boys?Basketball on a Winning Streak Late in January, Al Khor International School hosted an U16 boys?basketball tournament. Our boys had a rough start, but managed to pull together three wins before matching up against the undefeated hosts in the final game of the tournament. If we could manage to unseat this juggernaut, we had a chance at taking the tournament. The game was neck and neck until the final two minutes, when the ISL boys gained the advantage, won the game and took first place overall in the tournament! This success was also followed up by a win over Evolution Sports basketball in the first week of February.

Fr om t h e H R Of f i ce

Usef u l Li n k s

We have several vacancies for the year 2019-2020. Only applicants with a graduate calibre will be considered. Fluency in English is essential, Arabic is an advantage. To view all the vacancies and to apply, please click here.

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