Newsflash: October 31, 2019

Elementary News

by Glenn Davies, Elementary Principal/PYP Coordinator

Language Week Activity in Elementary

Leading up to International Fair Day, the Elementary Language classes celebrated World Language Week by exchanging activities between the Spanish and Mandarin classes. Students from each grade experienced different activities taught to them by their peers in the other language classes.

The Kinder and Grade 1 students played a Dance and Freeze game with number songs in Mandarin and Spanish. Students were able to count from 1 to 10 in both languages after the experience, and because the Mandarin writing system is different from other languages, Mandarin students taught some Mandarin Characters to the Spanish students.

The Grade 2 students practiced and sang songs in 4 different languages. The students gathered together to sing ‘Two Little Tigers’ in English, Mandarin, Spanish, and Cebuano. They were proud to share this song at the International Fair Day performance as well.

The grade 3 students learned about parts of the body and chose to sing the ‘body parts song’ to each other, and practiced how to greet each other in Spanish.

Grade 4 and 5 students worked diligently to develop a station exchange activity. The Spanish students made the Kahoot Game with fun facts about their Spanish speaking country, while the Mandarin students made a slide show to present to their Spanish guests. The students particularly enjoyed playing the Spanish Kahoot!

Book Week Character Parade

by Aimee Sesbreño, Early Years 2/3 Homeroom Teacher

One of the highlights for our book week celebration is our “Book Character Parade” held this morning. Students came to school with their favorite book character costumes on. Parents were also very supportive in helping prepare their children’s clothes and props. Some wore fancy clothes and dresses and some even made their costumes using recycled materials. The elementary classes went around the MHS building while the MHS students, teachers and parents stayed in designated areas to watch and support our young learners. We ended our parade with DEAR (Drop everything and read) time in the media center while the rest went back to their Homeroom classes for their culture talks/story time. It was indeed a successful parade. Thank you all for taking the time to dress up and showcase your favorite book character. Enjoy the rest of the week!

Middle High School News

Living Library

On Wednesday, our Middle & High School students, together with a few students from Grade 4 & 5, attended the Living Library where they listened to stories from our different guests. They were able to hear and know more about being a filmmaker or producer, a marketing manager of one of Cebu’s community malls, a para-athlete, and an entrepreneur of an eco-friendly store!

Grade 12 Character Parade

The seniors put a little flavor into their Book Week Character Parade by dressing up as the same characters.

For Book character day the senior class dressed up as Handmaids from “The Handmaid’s Tale” by Margaret Atwood. We studied this book in English HL last year, and we wanted to use a book that we learned about. The Handmaid’s Tale is actually a controversial novel about an oppressive dystopian future wherein women are indoctrinated into reproductive servitude, but our dressing up was not meant to poke fun at this depiction of females. Instead we hoped to demonstrate an awareness of how the issues raised in the book still apply today and express our intention of keeping such foreboding conditions in fiction.

– Axelle, Grade 12

Dragon’s Print

Dragon’s Print published four articles this week to celebrate Halloween in conjunction with the annual Book Week. First, we rounded up some of the costumes that stood out in yesterday’s Character Parade and compiled them in one place. Want to get into horror literature? Take our quiz to find out which author you’re most likely to enjoy reading, and then once you’re done, test your strategy skills and see if you can survive our haunted house quiz!

Lastly, if you enjoy dark stories that take a turn for the twisted, you will surely delight in our two-sentence horror stories. These quick two-liners will surely leave a chill down your spine!

Visit http://dragonsprint.cis.edu.ph/ to read all our write-ups!

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Newsflash: October 25, 2019

Elementary News

by Glenn Davies, Elementary Principal/PYP Coordinator

Dear Elementary Community,

The CIS Guiding Statements can be seen on display in various places around the school. I have one in my office that I refer to regularly. The CIS Guiding Statements consist of the CIS Vision, Mission, and Core Beliefs. Although I value and agree with all the CIS Guiding Statements, as an elementary principal, it is the first two Core Beliefs that resonate most strongly with me.

  1. Learning is a joyful, creative and open-ended exploration.
  2. Each child’s curiosity needs to be identified and nurtured (morally, socially, physically and academically) to reach their potential.

On Friday 25th October, following the elementary assembly, a group of parents spent some time exploring the PYP approach to learning mathematics. Currently CIS is transitioning from teaching the Common Core (American) math standards toward adopting the ACARA (Australian) standards. This is where our math content comes from and is similar to other schools all over the world. What is different however is our How, the way we teach mathematics. Mathematics is a joyful, creative, open-ended exploration where each child’s curiosity is nurtured in order to reach their potential.

I encourage you to join us for our PYP learning sessions to understand more about your child’s learning here at CIS. Our next PYP Learning session will be Friday 29th November, 2019.

Grade 4 Book Week Preparations

by the Grade 4 Students

Next week is Book Week so we started doing our door decoration this week. It’s about a book called The Wild Robot. We read it in Grade 3.
First, we covered the door with newspaper and we stuck real leaves to the newspaper because we’re not allowed to stick anything on the glass. We also made the main character, Roz, out of cardboard and recycled cups. It was very fun!

International Fair Day 2019

Student Reflections

Chloe – Grade 5

Last October 19, 2019, CIS celebrated the International Day. I was chosen as one of the emcees of the Parade of Nations and the experience was great. Students from different countries were acknowledged and they’re given the opportunity to welcome everyone in the event using their mother tongue. It was actually my first time speaking on stage like that and it really helped me be more confident when talking in front of many people. Being an emcee is a great opportunity to boost your confidence and bond with higher grades! Other than being an emcee, I also had the chance to perform with other elementary students and some middle-high schoolers. We showed a little teaser of this year’s production called The Music Man. We danced while everyone was eating lunch, so we had the chance to show everyone our fun performance.

Lea – Grade 9

This year’s International day was so fun! Students prepared different activities which celebrate the school’s international mindedness. Variety of foods from different countries were displayed in the dome and I was able to enjoy them right before performing on stage. It was actually my second time dancing in this event, I danced for Mandarin class last year, but this time was very meaningful to me. It was an exhilarating feeling.  It was my first time doing a proper dance on stage. The dance was a little teaser from this year’s production of “The Music Man,” that will be shown this February.

Grade 12 Psychology IA Presentation

by Ms. Choco Laplana – IB DP Psychology

The grade 12 Psychology students presented their findings last Tuesday from their replication of an experiment. This is the Internal Assessment requirement for the Diploma Programme for Psychology Higher and Standard level.

We are proud of the work of our young researchers! Thank you to the parents who attended to watch their children present their findings.

Here are some reflections from the students on the IA experience:

When assessing the internal assessment as a whole, one must be principled by being honest about their findings as the analysis and evaluation both rely on the facts regarding the process and data collected from the experiment. I was principled in using data that aligned with my group’s and refraining from discarding or altering data values. In the evaluation section, I remained principled by providing statements, which were all true, to help support an advantage or disadvantage of either the procedure, design, and/or sample. –Dean

I think I was principled in how I analysed and presented the results of my experiment. I tried to interpret the data in an honest way and to not alter it to my own advantage. –Andrea

I believe I was principled because I was analytical, and I tried my best to recognize what is right or wrong in my IA. –Lei Sitrij

ISAC Season 1 – Volleyball

ISAC is officially in season! Our boys and girls volleyball teams are off to Southville International School in Manila to compete with 6 other international schools for the volleyball win. Let’s wish them all good luck and good health as they represent the school. Go, Dragons!!

College Counseling News

College / University Visits for October & November

DateTime/VenueGuest/Institution
October 31 ThursdayMain 311 9:15 - 10:00 AMRitsumeikan Asia Pacific University (Japan)
November 5 TuesdayMain 311 9:15 - 10:00 AMHong Kong Polytechnic University (Hong Kong)
November 6 WednesdayMain 311 9:15 - 10:00 AMEnderun Colleges (Manila, Philippines)
November 19 TuesdayMain 311 9:15 - 10:00 AMGlion Institute of Higher Education & Les Roches Global Hospitality Education (Switzerland and Spain)
November 23 SaturdayCebu Country Club 10:00 -12:00 noonUniversity of Navarra (Spain)
November 25 MondayMain 311 9:15 - 10:00 AMMount St. Vincent University (Canada)

SAT Test Dates for School Year 2019 – 2020

2019-2010 Test DatesTestRegistration Deadline
November 2, 2019SAT & Subject Tests (includes Language w/ Listening tests)October 6, 2019
December 7, 2019SAT & Subject TestsNovember 8, 2019
March 14, 2020SAT only (no Subject Tests)February 14, 2020
May 2, 2020SAT & Subject TestsApril 3, 2020

To register for the SAT, you may log on to www.collegeboard.org.  If you need assistance, please feel free to email Ms. Jenny Basa at jbasa@cis.edu.ph or call 261-0247 local 112 to set an appointment.  You may also visit her office from 7:15am to 3:30pm. 

PTA News

Dear parents,

We’d like to give a huge THANK YOU to everyone who helped during last Saturday’s International Fair! Whether you ran or helped at a booth, contributed cash donations, or bought lots of food, the day was a great success in large part because of your involvement.

If you’d like to find out more about how much money we earned and how it might be spent, please come to the PTA Coffee Morning next Wednesday, October 30, at 7:30am in the Canteen Annex.

Next week is Book Week, and we will be holding our pre-loved book sale the whole week! Come take a look and refresh your home libraries before and after school all next week in the canteen annex.

See you next week for all the fun!

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Newsflash: October 18, 2019

Middle and High School News

by Mr. Dale Wood, Middle and High School Principal

Managing Homework in MHS

It’s been a great first quarter getting back into the flow and rhythm of the school year. Along the way we have had several small breaks and long weekends which have allowed extra time for students to master content and complete assignments. Having said that, we now enter the second quarter and the pace, as well as the workload, can be expected to increase a bit.

You may recall my writing about this topic in last year’s newsflash, but I think that we, as parents, often do see the same concerns emerging year after year with our children. One of the inevitables in school life is homework, but it doesn’t have to consume all of our family time or make our children miserable. I want to offer a couple of thoughts to help ease some of the pressure and to help with conversations you might have with your children at home. There is actually some research right now claiming that homework has no benefit; however, alternate studies show that students who do their homework enjoy many benefits. I think the crucial variables here are the nature and quality of the work students are doing at home.Here are some thoughts to share with your children as to how they might better cope with the workload and pressure to perform:

1. The focus should be on learning rather than on grades (though strong grades will be a natural by-product of that learning). Students should be, first and foremost, building their personal cognitive library and a toolkit of skills which they will take with them to whatever path lies beyond high school. Students should remember that it is the quality of your work and the quality of the thinking that matters rather than the quantity.

2. Be a proactive learner in class. Take notes, pay attention, and ask questions- these things can help you comprehend the material better in class which will make your homework both easier and less time consuming.

3. Know when good enough is truly “good enough”. Perfectionism can be a killer and usually is unsustainable. Do what you need to do to effectively complete the assignment… and then… move on. Get to your next assignment. Most importantly, be good to yourself. Eat well. Get some exercise. Get enough sleep.

4. Prioritize your assignments. Our 4-day rotation is a blessing since we only have a maximum of 4 assignments due each day. However, if there is a big assignment coming up, don’t wait until the night before to begin. The summative assignments are the tasks where you demonstrate mastery of important knowledge and skills. Whereas your formative assignments are critical for practicing and developing your skills, the summative assignments need to take priority- if you must choose.

5. Manage yourself and manage your time at home. Try to plan out how much time you will need for each assignment. Set a schedule and stick to it. If you are struggling with a question, don’t be afraid or too proud to ask for help. Reach out to your teacher and see them the next day if possible.

6. Start your homework as soon as you get home. Take breaks in between your tasks and reward yourself for devoting yourself to periods of quality work time; the brain really loves to be rewarded for accomplishing goals.

7. Finally, remove distractions so you can work more productively.
When we are distracted, it is easy to make mistakes and squander time completing even the simplest tasks. It is also important to know yourself as a learner. If listening to music is a distraction, have the self-discipline to turn it off. Find a quiet place, concentrate, and focus on learning.

Most of all, be proactive in communicating with your teachers. If you are struggling to complete your homework because you have a test the next day, reach out to your teacher to explain. Your teachers are in this profession because they care about you and your learning. It doesn’t mean that your teacher will always be able to give an extension, but he/she may very well do that. A teacher can’t say yes if you don’t ask.

Language Week

by Ma. Socorro Laplana, Asst. Middle & High School Principal, IBDP Coordinator and Elaine Jin, Mandarin Teacher

As part of International Week, the World Languages team launched the “language week” where each day students tried out a new language. Monday is Cebuano, Tuesday is Spanish, Wednesday is Mandarin, Thursday is Korean and Friday is Japanese. Students had to say aloud some sentences in these languages in front of a judge thereby earning a point for their homeroom class. The class with the highest number of points by the end of the week wins a free dress day. Check out some photos below.

Language Exchange in Mandarin and Spanish Class

by Elaine Jin, Mandarin Teacher

During the International Language Week, the ES and MHS Mandarin and Spanish class exchanged language classes. In the MHS, the Grade 10 students experienced how to be a language teacher. The Mandarin and Spanish students divided themselves into three groups, the number group, the color group and the greeting group. They designed a 10 minute mini lesson and taught classmates basic vocabulary about the numbers, colors and greetings. The Grade 10 students enjoyed playing games and learning new languages.

Elementary News

by Glenn Davies, Elementary Principal/PYP Coordinator

International Day Preparations

Dear Elementary Community,

Over the past week, elementary students have been working in vertical grade groups to prepare their international day games and activities. In past years each class decided on a country they would like to represent at the International Fair Day, this year however we asked students from KG to G5 to select a country they would like to learn more about. Students were then grouped according to their choices and have worked together to learn about their country and prepare games and activities to share with others in our community. This process has honored our belief in student choice and agency, while still providing a structure to ensure quality learning has taken place.

On Saturday 19th October students will be eager to share their learning with you. Each student will be scheduled to serve at their activity for a section of the morning. Following the activities, food, and clean-up, students will be able to leave International Day at 1.00 pm.

Grade 3 student Reflections on Wheels Day

Elementary School Events

Friday 24th October

  • Elementary Assembly in the media center (7.30am – 8.00am)
  • PYP Parent Education Session: Math Learning and Teaching in the PYP (8.00am – 9.00am)

College Counseling News

by Jennifer Basa, College/Careers Counselor/Alumni Liaison

SAT Test Dates for School Year 2019 – 2020

For students who are planning to study in universities/colleges that require the SAT exam, below is the schedule of the SAT tests. Please take note of the test dates and registration deadlines.

To register for the SAT, you may log on to www.collegeboard.org. If you need assistance, please feel free to email Ms. Jenny Basa at jbasa@cis.edu.ph or call 261-0247 local 112 to set an appointment. You may also visit her office from 7:15am to 3:30pm.

CIS Book Week!

October 28 to 31, 2019

by Dan Monfre, eLearning Coordinator

BOOKMARKS AND POSTERS!

Create a bookmark or poster that answers the  question “Who do you read?” All posters or bookmarks should include a photo of an author that you love to read and some of their most famous books and quotes.

LIVING LIBRARY!

The media center will host a living library on Oct. 29, at 10:00 – 11:30.  Local professionals will come and share their stories. Students will have a chance to talk in small groups with the guests and ask questions. 

DROP EVERYTHING AND READ!

D.E.A.R. time will take place in all ELOs and HRs on Thursday, Oct. 31st at 9:15 to 10:00.

CHARACTER PARADE!

Everyone is invited to dress up as their favorite book character on Thursday, October 31. The parade will start at 7:30. Elementary students will parade through the MHS building, showing everyone their exciting and creative costumes.

BOOK DOOR DECORATING!

Homerooms should each choose a book, series, or genre and decorate one of the doors of their homeroom class. For complete rules click here. One MHS and one Elem HR will win a pizza party! Doors will be judged at 10 on Thursday, Oct. 25th.

STORYTIME!

MHS Students and Parent volunteers are invited to come read stories to the elementary classes. Students should use this form to sign up for times to read.

Who is reading?

Come by the media center to check out our board of disguised readers and see if you can determine which teachers are reading the books. There will be a box to submit your guesses and a raffle will be held with the students who get the most correct.

Dragon’s Print

by Russell Greene, English Teacher/EE Coordinator

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Newsflash: October 4, 2019

Admin Note

As we finish up our first term, I would like to congratulate all of our students for focusing and making progress thus far this school year, and thank you as parents for the support you provide to our students on a daily basis.

Today happens to be World Teacher’s Day, so it is good timing to also thank our wonderful, caring teachers for all that they do.

Have a safe, rejuvenating October break, and see you all back on October 14. Keep in mind we then only have ONE WEEK before our much anticipated annual International Fair Day (Saturday Oct 19)!

Regards

Dr. Gwyn Underwood, Superintendent

Language Week

by Elaine Jin, Mandarin Teacher

CIS prides itself on being a multicultural and multilingual school. To celebrate the different languages we use, we want to promote a language week full of activities. During the week of October 14-18, we will learn to speak a few words in different languages. To honor our host city and country, we will learn some Cebuano on Monday. That will be followed by Spanish on Tuesday, Mandarin on Wednesday, Korean on Thursday and Japanese on Friday.

This activity is open to Kindergarten to Grade 12 students. Each day, students are going to scan a QR code for one language (please see the sample attached QR code). They will look at the video and practice eight sentences. During the ES and MHS lunch times, the students will go to the canteen annex to say these sentences to our judges (please see the poster for the judges for each day). If the students are able to say the sentences correctly, they will win a stamp for their homeroom class. After five days, we will calculate and find the homerooms in ES and MHS which have the highest percentage of stamps.

The winning homeroom class will be awarded one uniform-free day! (Students still need to follow the dress code to be respectful!)
Please join our language week and let’s learn to speak in different languages.

World Language

Grade 10 PE Class

by Students of Grade 10

During PE class, we have been learning about a type of exercise called HIIT. It stands for High Interval Intensity Training. We, Chae Eun and Deandra, have taught the class an example of one. We had 10 types of exercises for this whole workout. We placed mats on the floor so that everyone would not get hurt when their classmates worked out. For each exercises, there are 3 reps. One rep would be done 5 times with a resting interval of 5 seconds. Between each exercise, there would be a 10-second interval. It started with exercises that focused on the glutes, then their thighs, then their core areas. We made this our work out because we did not want the class to be so exhausted since we are still starting this unit. We were supposed to make the class do 15 exercises for each rep, but we changed it to 5. We had to do this work out for two cycles, but there wasn’t enough time during class. We chose to focus on these areas of the body because we need that the most. We want to improve those parts of our body. After doing the HIIT, to make sure that no one would get muscle pain, we added a cool-down session. As seen in the picture, we let them stretch their muscles. This part was not intense as it is supposed to relax the stressed muscles.

Ask the Counselor

by Jenny Basa, College/Careers Counselor/Alumni Liaison

1) What is the Common App and which universities are linked to the Common App?

The Common Application (Common App) is a platform for an undergraduate college admission application that applicants may use to apply to more than 800 member colleges and universities in 49 states and the District of Columbia, as well as in Canada, China, and many European countries. All applications are submitted electronically which includes document submissions like transcripts and recommendations.

2) What is the advantage of using the Common App, which universities are members and what are the Common App Essay Prompts?

The Common App saves time and effort in completing multiple college applications. It cuts down paperwork and cost of mailing application documents since all submissions are electronic.
The list of member universities globally are found in this link. You may access the CommonApp Essay Prompts here.

3) What is the difference between the IB Diploma, IB Certificates and the CIS HS Diploma?

The IB Diploma is a qualification awarded by the IB after studying the curriculum for 2 years and culminating in external examinations in May in the final year of high school. To earn the IB Diploma, one has to take 3 Higher level subjects and 3 Standard level subjects and fulfill the core requirements in Theory of Knowledge (TOK), Extended Essay (EE) and Creativity, Activity & Service (CAS).

Taking IB Certificates means a student takes the IB exams for specific subjects. They can choose a minimum of one subject (any level) up to 6 subjects. Most US universities do not require the IB Diploma for admission but students earn credit with their HL certificates if their marks range from 5 to 7. The IB credit scale for universities in the US is dependent on the institution.

The CIS HS Diploma is earned by all students who complete the school’s graduation requirements. This basically means studying 6 subjects (with the option to take all SL if desired) and sitting internal exams at the end of the year set by their subject teachers. Students also need to fulfill the TOK, EE and CAS requirements to earn this diploma. The CIS Diploma is equivalent to a North American HS Diploma. Due to our WASC (Western Association of Schools & Colleges) and CIS (Council of International Schools) accreditation, the CIS Diploma is recognized by major universities abroad. If a student is a graduate of an accredited school, they usually waive the English Proficiency requirement and a student is eligible to apply for admission.

Creativity Action Service (CAS)

This event has made me realize the intensity of the issue regarding waste disposal. I noticed that the residents living within Punta Engaño did not have a proper waste management system. There were no garbage bins present in site for the residents to properly dispose of their trash. As a result, much of the trash produced ended up scattered around the houses and on the beach. By participating in this event, I was able to provide a positive example to the residents of Punta Engaño about the importance of waste management. This event has allowed many organizations to spread awareness, especially to children, about how they can learn to keep their areas clean. – Denise

Dragon’s Print

Dragon’s Print is composed of members from different year levels and interests, but one thing we can all agree on is that we love food! Last Friday, some members visited Sugbo Mercado, an open-air food market in IT Park. We had a great time exploring Sugbo and getting to know each other, but did all the dishes live up to our standards? Read our review at http://dragonsprint.cis.edu.ph/

House Activities Day

It has officially been one week since HAD 1! The first House Activities Day of the school year was met with positivity and excitement.

Students (and teachers too!) engaged in sports, indoor games, and various activities and the four houses competed for the overall first place—finally won by Molave. 100 points for school spirit!

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Newsflash: September 27, 2019

Middle & High School News

by Mr. Dale Wood, Middle & High School Principal

The Importance of Relevance in 21st Century Education

As a teacher of English Literature for over 20 years, I grew weary of students asking me why we had to study Shakespeare. Although I could, and can, wax passionately about the benefits of studying the Bard, the simple (but inadequate) answer was that there were things we just needed to know to be “cultured people”. However much I loved my Shakespeare, though, I could see the students’ point. They just didn’t see the relevance in studying a 400 year-old text in a language they found difficult to access. At CIS we spend a great deal of time discussing the importance of the 3 r’s of 21st century education: rigor, relevance, and relationship. Relevance is a term we use to describe educational experiences that either connect to students’ personal aspirations, interests, and experiences or which develop skills or knowledge they will be able to apply to life beyond school. Relevance is critical to motivating students as they are able to appreciate the value of what they are learning and its importance to their lives. As a result, relevance increases engagement with what is being taught and is even shown to increase students’ knowledge retention and recall.

What is really exciting about CIS in this regard is that our school has already developed a strong culture of learning where relevance is very much on educators’ minds each day. While all schools would likely agree that relevance is important, it is rare to see it being implemented effectively. At CIS our students are at the very center of all we do; we listen to their voices and allow for a great deal of choice, agency, and flexibility within the boundaries of our classroom activities and assessments. We also intentionally seek to get to know our students so that we may ascertain what is relevant to them. The fact that it is our students in every MHS class who, with the guidance of their teachers, create the class “expectations and essential agreements” for a strong and healthy classroom environment, or that our HAD day is student-planned and directed, or that we have students leading clubs and service learning projects, all speak volumes in this regard. Truth be told, I witness relevance every day at CIS whether inside or outside of the classroom.

We can see relevance within our curriculum when, in our science classrooms, students are able to select topics and design their own experiments to explore common concepts. In our Individuals and Society classes students take turns presenting on current events and then lead their classmates in discussing those events. In our Language Acquisition classes students teach each other to reinforce their learning utilizing the language they are studying. We see relevance in Business class where students create their own CIS merchandise products, conduct market research and analysis, and present the products to the administration for possible adoption. While we don’t have the scope here to mention each subject area here, I can assure you that there truly is a widespread focus on relevance in our approach to learning, not to pander to students, but to help them get the most out of each school day.

One of the most powerful and relevant learning experiences our students take part in each year are the MUN conferences, where our students are assigned, in small groups, to countries prior to the event and must research their given nations and work to diplomatically present the viewpoints of those respective nations on a variety of resolutions. While the event is meant to simulate the actual UN, which is fabulous in and of itself, students also develop invaluable debate, oratory, critical-thinking, and diplomacy skills. They also learn a great deal about our world and the various political stances of various countries, some of which may be in conflict with each other and which they may have previously known very little about. Our recent student groups for example, which traveled to Manila last weekend for the MUN local conference (see below), were assigned to Angola, Bahrain, Switzerland, Afghanistan, Ukraine, and other nations, while one of our more experienced students was a member of the MUN Security Council.

Model United Nation (MUN locals)

Just this past weekend 17 HS students from CIS travelled to Manila for the 2019 Model United Nations (MUN) conference held at The International School of Manila. Below are the reflections of two of our senior students who attended this event.

Through my five years of Model United Nations, I have grown substantially as a contributor to this art of debate. From my little 8th grade self, shaking as I ask one POI (point of interest), to now, chairing the most powerful arm of the United Nations, it is an irreplaceably rewarding experience.

For this MUN Locals conference I was chosen to be President of the Security Council. Despite only being two days, I believe I have grown more as a member of debate, developed a more assertive manner, and made connections and friendships that I will remember in the distant future. Being my last MUN conference, I am enigmatically thankful for how well it all went. I could not have asked for better co-chairs, delegates, and fellow CIS representatives. The only difficulty I faced was choosing the Best Delegate, Best Speaker, and Most Diplomatic Delegate for my committee, because of how passionate and engaging the members of the Security Council were. All I can remember from this trip was a blur of bliss and laughter, whether it was with roommates, delegates, or newfound friends.

As I am now in my final year at CIS, it brings me dismay to announce this to be my last Model United Nations conference. To all future delegates contemplating joining, I want to reiterate a quote by Malala Yousafzai: “When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful”. Take that step, develop your voice, and foster that power. You alone can make a change with the first step, and taking that step was the best decision I ever made! – Katrina

Last year was my first exposure to Model United Nations. I came into the Locals conference with virtually no knowledge of debate protocol and resolution-writing. As a result, I learned everything the hard way: I was constantly corrected by the chairs in the middle of my speeches and indirectly criticized by other delegates.

Though my first conference was overwhelming and emotionally draining, there was just something about MUN that made me want to do it again. I decided to sign up for Locals despite the heavy workload of senior year. More than that, I knew that I wanted to push myself for my last MUN conference, so 2 days before we left for Manila, I painstakingly wrote a resolution for China’s One Belt, One Road Initiative, and when we got to the conference, I worked with delegates from other schools who were willing to co-submit with me. I was extremely stressed before the debates, still traumatized from last year’s experience, but at the end of the day (literally, because my resolution was debated last), I got the house to pass my resolution — the second and last to pass out of five submitted resolutions.

As this Locals MUN draws to a close, I’m tremendously proud of myself for transforming from a nervous novice, stammering over her words and shaking behind the podium, to becoming a main submitter who was commended by the President of the General Assembly himself for creating such a “well-written resolution”. It’s too bad that I’m ending my high school MUN experience just when I’ve gotten the hang of it, but I’m so glad I took the risk to even try because I ended up having an unexpectedly meaningful time. – Axelle

Elementary News

by Mr. Glenn Davies, Elementary Principal/PYP Coordinator

The Power of Routines

Routines are powerful habits that enable learners to engage in higher levels of thinking. When humans work to master a new habit or skill, a high level of mental concentration is required in the initial stages, then gradually over time the habit or skill becomes increasingly natural, requiring less and less mental energy. Once the habit or skill becomes automatic, this mental energy can be focused on higher-level thinking. At CIS we call this ‘going slow now so we can go fast later’. Jamie Tredwell, an artist talks about the power of routines within the context of his work. By creating routines for low-level thinking items, he can release his mind to engage in higher-level creative thinking and learning.

CIS elementary utilizes the power of routines to empower students to become agentic learners. These are learners who have high levels of voice, choice, and ownership over their own learning.

Habits and routines do take a while to establish. We know from various studies that a habit or routine takes, approximately, 30 repetitions to become embedded. This means that in most cases when a routine does not seem to be working, it has not yet been practiced or reinforced enough. You will see CIS teachers using routines in every class to develop independent, self-managing learners who make powerful decisions about their own learning. Many of these routines begin with the IB Learner Profile, then move to the ATL skills, and finally into the various subject areas.

  • What are some of the routines you have established at home that support your child’s independence?
  • What may be some routines you could begin to establish at home that over time would allow your child to develop greater independence and responsibility?

Dragon’s Print

Our first House Activities Day (HAD) of the school year occurred today! Students and staff were assigned to one of the four houses (Narra, Molave, Acacia, and Mahogany) at the start of the year, but is this truly the house to which you belong? Are you a true-blue Narra…or secretly an Acacia at heart? Do you pledge your allegiance to Mahogany…or does a part of you cheer for Molave? Take our fun quiz to find out which house you really should be in and learn about the awesome characteristics of each house along the way!

Bonus feature: we’re also publishing a recipe for winning HAD, so be sure to click on that to ensure victory next week!

To take the quiz and read the recipe, visit http://dragonsprint.cis.edu.ph/

Silent Auction

PTA News

by the CIS PTA

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Newsflash: September 20, 2019

​Admin News​

by Dr. Gwyn Underwood (Superintendent)

​CIS is building a dormitory!​

​I am delighted to officially announce that ​CIS has purchased the large white building next to the staff parking lot, and renovations commenced this week to create a boarding​ facility​. The new CIS dorm will cater to domestic and international​ high school students who are attracted to Cebu as a desirable location that has a ​​​low cost of living, and CIS as a premium international IB school with very reasonable fees (CIS fees are high compared to local alternatives, but actually quite low compared to other internationals schools of our quality).

We plan to open the dorm next school year, so please spread the word, and if you or a friend are interested, feel free to express your interest via admissions@cis.edu.ph (but note we do not have many specific details ready to share yet).


​The current building (left) and a design sketch of the new dorm (right)!

Haze concerns

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources​ (DENR) recently​ issued a warning that ​Metro Cebu is currently experiencing ​haze​y weather conditions caused by forest fire​s​ in Indonesia​ (​refer to this article for more info​ ​and the advisory: https://sugbo.ph/2019/haze-in-cebu/​). This has led to Cebu’s Air Quality Index (AQI) ​to rise over what is considered generally safe levels at times, to a level considered “​unhealthy for sensitive groups”​.​​ ​I would like to share the actions we are taking now, and in preparation for possible future spikes in AQI levels:

  • We are monitoring the Air Quality Index (AQI) for Cebu and will take ​all appropriate measures​ within our power to keep our students safe​ if levels rise, following official recommendations.
  • PE/sports/activities teachers and coaches were informed over the past few days to a) reduce levels of activity when the AQI was over 100, and b) ensure students​ with asthma or ​other ​breathing problem​s were aware of the situation and not exercise if necessary. (Note, the AQI dropped below 100 again today so we are fine for now. It is predicted to go back up over 100 tomorrow, however, then back below 100 on Sunday).
  • We will continue to monitor the AQI constantly and adapt our responses according​ to the AQI levels. In general, as the AQI level rises, the intensity of activity will be decreased, students would be kept indoors as much as possible (although this has a limited effect), and if necessary, students with medical conditions will be encouraged to stay at home. Masks can help and may be recommended, but only masks made for PM2.5 particles will be effective (regular cotton cold/flu/dust masks are not adequate!). ​The problem with masks is students find it difficult to wear for long periods of times, especially younger ones, and they are pretty much useless if they do not fit well.
  • The Health and Safety Committee met and​ ​have also set up a sub-committee to develop a more comprehensive action matrix that will help us consider what to do at various risk levels if they rise higher than they have been in future, and what we can consider to do to develop our capabilities if their is a risk of future high levels of pollution.

​Thankfully the AQI levels have not reached unhealthy levels for long periods of time thus far, so we can just hope this continues. On a personal note, one reason I came to Cebu was to get fresh air and escape a heavily polluted city where the AQI levels we have experienced would not have caused much attention at all. I hope Cebu can keep (relatively) fresh and this current haze will dissipate soon!

​Parent Coffee Morning next Wednesday (25th Sept)

Please be advised next week the Parent Coffee Morning will focus on aspect of all three of the IB ​p​rograms​ (the PYP, MYP and DP). Parents from all grade levels are invited to join us at 7:30am in the annex to get a good overview of the programs and the opportunity to learn how the programs work together to provide your child with the best education we know how to provide. Please come if you are able to – these sessions are designed to help you understand what is happening at school! ​For example, elementary​ school parents found it very interesting to learn how we use Makey Makey invention ​kit​s in the ES ​to ​enable students to ​connect everyday objects to computer programs​!​

It has been great to see the various parent groups preparing food from their region for our international day (on Oct 19)​​. If you have yet joined a group, please let the PTA know and they can hook you up with a group!

Have a safe weekend!

Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival

by Ms. Elaine Jin, Mandarin Teacher

On September 12, 2019, the Mandarin AB Initio and B classes celebrated the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival during their 4th block class. The Mid-Autumn Festival is a celebration of harvest. The moon is an important symbol in this festival, which is why many people celebrate it with moon cakes.

To shed more light on the history of the festival, the students in the Mandarin B class told the stories of Hou Yi and Chang E, the deities behind the festivities. Hou Yi was an archer who shot down nine suns, and Chang E was his faithful wife. They also sang “月亮代表我的心” or “The Moon Represents My Heart” in Chinese, Korean, and English. After the performance by the Mandarin B students, everybody gathered together to play games. Everyone enjoyed a fun archery contest and an exciting dice game. During the dice game, all of the students managed to win prizes like bookmarks, pens, and Oreos. At the end of the class, everyone got the chance to taste the mooncake. Yummy!

It was a short, entertaining, and sweet celebration of the annual Chinese Festival, and it further enriched the students’ appreciation for the Chinese language and culture.

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival, everyone!
– Venise Taboada

在9月12日,中文AB Inito和B班一起庆祝中国的中秋节。中秋节是对收获的庆祝。月亮是一个重要的象征,所以许多人会吃月饼庆祝。

中文B班有讲后羿和嫦娥的故事,他们是庆祝活动背后的神灵。后羿是一名 击落九个太阳的弓箭手,嫦娥是他的忠实的妻子。中文B班还用汉语,韩语,和英语唱「月亮代表我的心」。讲故事和唱歌后,大家聚集在一起玩游戏。每个人玩了有趣的射日游戏和令人兴奋的骰子游戏。在玩骰子游戏的时候,每个学生们成功赢得书签,钢笔,和奥利奥的奖品。在快下课的时候,每个人都有机会品尝月饼。月饼非常好吃。

这是一年一度的中国节日,也是有趣和甜蜜的庆祝活动,也进一步丰富了学生对中国语言和文化的欣赏。

祝大家中秋节快乐 – Dana Chloe

Grade 8 Music Class

by Ms. Natasha Arnsby, MHS Music & Band Teacher

CIS Learns “The Blues”

On Thursday, September 12th, The Grade 8 students had a surprise guest in music class. Mr. Wood shared his musical talents with the students and performed a number of blues songs for them. Mr. Wood’s visit tied in nicely with their current unit, which is about the 12-bar blues. The students learned about the history and context of blues music, blues music theory, and even got a chance to “jam” with Mr. Wood, as they improvised a number of choruses over a blues chord progression. Here is what a few Grade 8 students had to say about this entertaining and educational visit:

Mr. Wood played his guitar, and he was really amazing. Afterwards, we learned the basics and others as we played the Blues together. We learned a lot from Mr. Wood and we as a class are really thankful that Mr.Wood has taken some of his time to teach us. – Zhandy

In this class we started with a presentation by Mr. Wood who helped us understand more about the blues, a musical genre. From his lesson we learned a lot and really enjoyed listening to him play the guitar and singing. After that Mr.Swank gave all sections a piece to practice a little before everyone would come together and try to play it. We got to play as a whole band with Mr. Wood and his guitar and got to use our creativity to improvise some parts of the blues piece we were given. In the end we took pictures together and learned more about the rich and interesting history of the blues genre. – Jandra

CIS Security Team Building

by SG Carlos Flores

The CIS security force team came together to celebrate friendship and camaraderie last month as we geared ourselves to the upcoming new school year. The team went offshore and made an educational tour in the fishing shore off Catarman Cordova, Cebu.

This trip gave me the opportunity to know more about my colleagues and most especially enabled me to spend quality time together with them. This experience made me realize how working together in harmony can make a positive impact on our daily tasks. We were also given the opportunity to appreciate the beauty of nature. We also experienced the value of friendship and camaraderie that we should foster as we work together for a common goal.

This trip became even more meaningful as both of our CIS security supervisors joined us and prepared activities for us. Indeed, it was an experience that I will treasure and keep.

Sports News

Dragon’s Print

The first House Activities Day (HAD) of the school year is a week away! Students and staff were assigned to one of the four houses (Narra, Molave, Acacia, and Mahogany) at the start of the year, but is this truly the house to which you belong? Are you a true-blue Narra…or secretly an Acacia at heart? Do you pledge your allegiance to Mahogany…or does a part of you cheer for Molave? Take our fun quiz to find out which house you really should be in and learn about the awesome characteristics of each house along the way!

Bonus feature: we’re also publishing a recipe for winning HAD, so be sure to click on that to ensure victory next week!

To take the quiz and read the recipe, visit http://dragonsprint.cis.edu.ph/

Alumni News

by Ms. Jenny Basa, College & Careers Counselor / Alumni Liaison

CIS congratulates Agustin Dominic (Ado) E. Laplana (Class of 2015) for leading his team from UP Diliman to win 3rd place during the 4th Metal Cup contest in Krasnoyarsk, Russia. Their team also won Best in Presentation among all the countries who joined the contest.

Check this page for more details: https://www.facebook.com/youngmetallurgists/ and https://www.facebook.com/updmmme/posts/2404388563135581

College Counseling News

PTA News

Hi Parents,

Do you ever feel like you are not getting enough news and information about what we, the Parent Teacher Association, are doing during the school year? Well, aside from reading the Newsflash that is posted on the CIS website and sent to your email every Friday afternoon, we also have two Facebook pages that we really want you to go visit!

On the Cebu International School Facebook page, there is a PTA group that you can join. You can see upcoming events and also chat with other parents about questions and ideas you may have.

We have also created a new Facebook page for this year’s Christmas Bazaar! You can search for CIS Christmas Bazaar 2019 and refer the page to friends and family who have businesses and may want to register as vendors. Or book a booth of your own!

See you on Facebook!

PTA Board

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Newsflash: September 13, 2019

Admin Note

If you were to walk around CIS on any given day, you would find a multitude of learning activities occurring. For example, when I walked around the upper elementary the other day, I saw one of our G2 classes in a circle time animatedly discussing something with their teacher and the other one working on individual reading and writing tasks with the teacher assisting small groups and individuals. The G3 students were on the class Chromebook sets with earphones working on a listening task, while the G4 students were in groups – some were making stools in our Makerspace area. The G5 class was participating in a discussion and some direct instruction on a task or event. It was so refreshing to see such a range of group and individualized instruction occurring, with ALL students actively engaged in their respective activities. I did not see a single student off-task (although I am sure there are times when they are as they are still young and learning after all!).

I wanted to share our Core Beliefs with you (listed below), as these are what fundamentally drive how we do things at CIS. The above-mentioned learning is not occurring by accident! Our teachers spend many hours planning for it. I would like to thank them for their efforts, and look forward to seeing the impact it has on our students learning over the year in both ES and MHS.

CIS Core Beliefs

1. Learning is a joyful, creative, and open-ended exploration.
2. Each child’s curiosity needs to be identified and nurtured (morally, socially, physically, and academically) to reach her/his potential.
3. Collaboration, communication, and contribution are essential for learning.
4. As world citizens, we have respect for self and others, and value diversity in all forms.
5. Learning includes contributing to the world through service learning and sustainable environmental stewardship.
6. As an IB World School, the Learner Profile Attributes and Approaches to Learning are embedded in all that we think, say, and do.

Have you seen evidence of these Core Beliefs in school? Parents – have you seen it in your child’s work, words and/or behavior? ​Students – have you see it in the types of learning you participate in? If you do not, I challenge you to ask the relevant person how your learning relates back to these core beliefs. Let me know if you are not satisfied – we are always looking for new ways to improve on how we do things!

​Have a restful weekend,​

Regards,

Dr Gwyn Underwood
​Superintendent

Elementary News

by Glenn Davies, Elementary Principal/PYP Coordinator

Elementary Playground

The big news over the past week has been the artificial grass which has been laid on the lower elementary playground over the past weekend. This was a joint project between the PTA and the school and was made possible largely due to the 2018 Christmas Bazaar organized and run by the PTA. In addition to the grass, several tricycles are also on their way, one of which has already arrived.

Goal Setting Conferences

This coming Wednesday, September 18th, KG to G5 classes will hold their Goal Setting Conferences. Grades 3 to 5 conferences will begin at 12 noon, and KG to G2 conferences will begin at 12:30pm. On Thursday 12th September, you were sent an email inviting you to sign-up for a Goal Setting Conference. Please do review the information in this email carefully.

Friday Parent Drop-in

Today (Friday) grades 2 to 5 held their first formal Friday parent drop-in time between 7:30 am and 8:00 am. Such active involvement from our parent community contributes significantly to the strong learning environment CIS is able to create. We encourage all parents to make the most of the parent drop-in opportunities in order to understand more about your children’s learning journey here at CIS.

Dates for your Calendar

September 18th – Goal Setting Conferences
September 27th – Half day of school (House Activities Day)
Day C wheels days – September 19th, September 25th, October 2nd, and October 15th

NEW ZEALAND Education Fair

September 17 •Tuesday – 9:15 – 10:00am (Canteen Annex)
Open to all parents and Grade 10, 11 and 12 Students

  • The University of Auckland
  • University of Canterbury
  • Massey University
  • Manukau Institute of Technology
  • Southern Institute of Technology
  • Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology
  • Weltec and Whitireia Institute of Technology
  • UC International College
  • UP Education
  • Study Group

 

 

 

 

 

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Newsflash: September 6, 2019

Middle & High School News

by Mr. Dale Wood, Middle & High School Principal

This Wednesday we held our Grade 12 IB Recommitment event in the Media Center from 3:30-5:30 with an understanding that success in the CIS and IB Diploma Programs really does require regular communication and proactive partnership between home and school. We were encouraged that all of our Grade 12 students and the majority of their parents and teachers were able to be present as we shared our expectations, timelines, and valuable insights regarding student progress. As I shared at this gathering, it is a tendency for vision to “leak” and therefore, there is a need to refill our cups to keep the vision full and fresh. We are very proud of our students for what they have accomplished thus far, but we want to inspire and encourage them to recommit themselves to doing their very best and finishing strong.

Our event consisted of four segments, beginning with an open informational meeting that included a timeline for the year, general expectations, and suggestions for how parents might support their children at home. The second part of the meeting included parent-student conferences, where students led their parents through a discussion of their courses and the progress they have made thus far, including an evaluation of their strengths and weaknesses in each subject. This was followed by a rotation through each of the six subject groups and IB Core classes (ToK, CAS, EE) that each student is taking for her or his Diploma. During this section, parents were provided with online expectations for each group, including timelines for each subject. The culminating portion of this meeting was the signing of the Diploma Values Pledge by all students, parents, and teachers to affirm our collective recommitment to each student’s success this year.

We are confident that meeting early on in this final year of the DP program in a spirit of partnership and community solidarity, is critical to student success. We want to make sure every student who sits for the IB and CIS Exams in May 2020 has the full support of her or his family and the school. Ms. Laplana and I will be meeting individually with each of our Grade 12 students in the coming weeks to touch base with them and help them make decisions about registering for the CIS diploma, the IB Diploma, or IB certificates for specific classes.

Our IB Values evening for all Grade 11 students will take place on the 25th of September.

Elementary News

What’s Happening In Elementary

Sneak Peek

Our synthetic grass has arrived and ready to be deployed in the playgrounds! The kids will surely love it.
Our synthetic grass has arrived and ready to be deployed in the playgrounds! The kids will surely love it.

Dragon’s Print

by Russell Greene, MHS English Teacher

It’s the start of another school year, and Dragon’s Print, the school’s online publication, is back with its first article! Venise T. writes about our close call with death-by-asteroid and explains why we should value each day and make the most of our year. Read her write-up on our website here: http://dragonsprint.cis.edu.ph/

This year we’re also teaming up with Dragon’s Voice, the school media club, to expand our coverage and make way for exciting new opportunities. Stay tuned for a fun introduction next week!

PTA News

by PTA Board
We are already getting excited to celebrate our home and host cultures at International Fair Day on October 19! If you are a Homeroom Parent, we invite you to attend a short meeting on Thursday, Sept. 12 at 3:30 in the Media Center (library). We need your input to make this year’s event the best ever!

If you’ve never experienced International Fair at CIS, you’re in for a treat! The students will walk in a Parade of Nations, so you will want to prepare a costume that reflects your home country.

Parents are also invited to perform! If any of you would like to present a dance, song, storytelling or other creative act from your country, please contact Ms. Joy Pierra (fpierra@cis.edu.ph) or the PTA Board (cispta@cis.edu.ph). We also need volunteers for the Bake Sale, so if baking is one of your gifts, let us know!

Lastly, groups are already forming by country and region to prepare a table for selling food at the event. Please consider contributing a dish from your home. Dishes of all shapes and sizes will be welcome! Proceeds from the food sales will go towards a project that will make the learning environment at CIS even better.

For any questions, please contact the PTA Board and we will happily guide you!

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Newsflash: August 30, 2019

News Regarding Former CIS Superintendent Mr. Mark Bretherton

Dear CIS Community,

It is with deep sorrow that we share with you the news of the sudden passing of Mr. Mark Bretherton, CIS Superintendent from 1998-2008. He was most recently acting as the School Principal (Headmaster) at the English Academy in Kuwait.

In her tribute, Deidre Fischer (Superintendent of CIS from 2008-2013) notes that Mark’s contribution to CIS was “unparalleled in the history of the school”. During his leadership, the school was authorized to offer the IB Diploma Programme, built the campus in Pit-os, earned three accreditations (WASC, CIS and PAASCU), worked for enactment of Republic Act 9190 recognizing CIS as a school of international character recognized by the Philippine Government, started the International School Activities Conference (ISAC) along with other international schools in the country and was an actively involved in the Cebu Football Club.

Mark is remembered with great admiration by former colleagues, parents, alumni and the wider community of educators who had the pleasure of working with him. According to colleagues who knew him personally, he was a kind and generous man who valued the school and the people he worked with.

Mark is survived by his wife, Carol and son, Bryan who are based in Leyte. We offer our deepest sympathy to his family.

CIS will host a Memorial Mass/Tribute at 10:00am on Friday September 6, 2019 at the CIS Canteen Annex. Former CIS parents, alumni and community members who wish to attend are welcome.

CIS Administration

Elementary News

by Glenn Davies, Elementary School Principal/PYP Coordinator

Dear Elementary Community,

Last Friday, August 23rd the Lower Elementary classes held their first parent drop-in morning. Between 7.30am and 8.00am a large number parents visited the EY and KG/G1 classes. Students and parents could be found reading, constructing, playing and talking. As I visited various classess I was impressed by the quality of the interaction within our parent-student community. Our elementary students were very proud to have their parents in their class.

A Few Elementary School Reminders

Bedtimes: As we return to our school routines following the long holiday break, we notice some of our learners appear tired at school. We do encourage the recommended 9 to 10 hours of sleep per night, meaning that our younger learners need to be asleep before 8.00pm, while our older learners should have their lights out before 9.00pm. This enables your children to make the most of their learning at school during the day.

7.15am in the Morning: Students and parents are welcome to come upstairs and enter the classrooms from 7.15am in the morning. Before this time we ask that all community members wait downstairs, allowing our teachers time to ready the classrooms for the day’s learning.

Lunches and Lunchboxes: Thank you for supporting your children with healthy low sugar food options in their lunch boxes. This lower level of sugar intake really supports learning in a positive way.  We ask the student do bring these healthy food choices in a suitable school lunchbox that is not easily breakable. Unfortunately, when glass breaks at school, it can prove to be quite hazardous. Please also include an ice pack inside the lunch box holder/bag to ensure the food remains fresh until lunchtime.

Wheels Day: Wheels day proved popular this week. Please do send your child to school with a helmet and any additional safety gear they may need. Children without a helmet will not be able to ride their wheels at school. Our next wheels day is Monday, Sept. 2 (Day C).

Security Gate Opening Time

Please be advised that following a recent security review, our school gate opening times have been adjusted to the following:

South Gate Access (the gate closest to Cebu City)
OPEN –  6:00AM to 7:00PM

North Gate Access:
OPEN – 6:00AM to 8:00AM and 2:00PM to 4:00PM

PTA News

CIS Clothing Drive

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Newsflash: August 23, 2019

Elementary News

by Glenn Davies, Elementary School Principal/PYP Coordinator

Dear Elementary Community,

The school year is now well underway and as I visit the classrooms each day I can see and feel the positive learning culture that our teachers are developing. I see engaged learners and hear quality learning conversations taken place between students. Two of the highly valued capabilities we develop as an IB school is the ability to show empathy for differing perspectives and to respectfully challenge alternative points of view. These capabilities are practiced daily within CIS classrooms.

Mr. Monfre sharing a new piece of literature with Grade 4 and 5 in the media center

As you will be aware from the Elementary Introduction letter (sent home via email on 15 August), we have had several new teachers join the elementary school. Additionally, we have had a number of new families join CIS. Please do welcome our new CIS community members as you come across their paths during the coming weeks.

Over the summer the CIS facilities team have made a number of significant upgrades to the CIS campus. One wonderful new feature is the Early Years garden area which joins onto the Early Years playground. This is a wonderful outdoor learning area that will enable our younger learners to connect with nature in a safe and supervised environment. We look forward to seeing what will grow in the EY Garden boxes.

The EY garden viewed from the second floor of the elementary building

Last year the Elementary Student Council proposed and started Wheels Day. This initiative has proved very popular and takes place during lunch break every Day C. This year we are utilizing our natural oval area for the wheels day activities. This area is closed to cars and our security guards and teachers monitor the Wheels Day activities. All students using wheels must wear their own bicycle helmet. Other appropriate safety gear such as knee pads are also encouraged. Early Years 1, 2 and 3 Wheels Day riders use the Dragon’s Dome.

Day C Wheels Day riders

You will have all received access to the CIS Student and Parent Handbook by now (a link and PDF copy has been sent home via email, and the handbook is available to all parents via the Documents tab on the Hub). You are encouraged to review this document when you have procedural questions about the school’s operations.

During the year, your children may wish to celebrate their birthday and CIS does want to support this. We do ask that when the birthday date draws close that you visit page 62 in the handbook to review what can and cannot be done. This will avoid placing teachers in a difficult position of saying ‘no’ and may avoid disappointment from the families perspective.

As we move into the month of September there are a few dates that you may wish to add to your calendars:

  • Whole School Assemblies: Elementary will attend whole school Monday morning assemblies on September 2nd, September 16th, and September 30th
  • Elementary Assemblies: There will be full elementary assemblies in the Media Center between 7.30am and 8.00am on August 30th and September 27th. These will be followed by PYP Curriculum parent workshops between 8:00am and 9:00am.
  • Parent Drop-in: There will be class parent drop-in sessions for parents to engage in some learning with their child between 7:30am and 8.00am on Friday 23rd August, and Friday 13th September.
  • Goal Setting Conferences: Wednesday, 18th September
  • HAD Day – Half school day: Friday 27th September

Middle and High School News

by Dale Wood, Middle & High School Principal

We have had a busy and exciting opening to our Middle and High School here at CIS, and it has been great to see our entire community get right back into the rhythm of healthy activity and productivity which is the hallmark of a new school year. Students are already working hard in their classes, and we have already finished our ISAC Volleyball try-outs, Musical Production auditions, have almost completed our Student Council elections, and are in the process of choosing our Manila MUN team. 

First of all, we are very thrilled about our new additions to our faculty. We only have four new hires in the MHS, and we have found teachers with energy and a growth mindset who have embraced our school community and our learning philosophy. They are already making positive connections with our students and are leading them well.

I am also thrilled that our grade 11 IB cohort has now reached 36 students, creating healthy and robust IB courses.

A reminder that next week is our final week for any of the Grade 11 IB students to make a course switch; while we want to be careful and cautious about making a schedule change, it makes sense to switch as soon as possible so as to not fall too far behind in the new course.

I am aware that there were some concerns regarding our PE classes meeting only once in the four-day cycle. Let me assure you that we recognize how important it is for our students to remain active in order to maintain health and fitness levels. At the same time, it is also important to acknowledge that it is not always possible for a school to allot as much time for PE in the schedule as some other academic subjects. I am thankful that we still offer our students in-class PE for nearly one-and-a-half hours per week. 

Since we do have ELO/HR for 45 minutes each day, our Homeroom teachers are engaging in a discussion with their respective groups and creating health and fitness activities based on student interest, especially on HR days (Monday and Thursday). Middle School students also tend to receive less homework and have a greater need for activity, so this plan may help our MS students achieve the balance they need.

In addition to this, we are offering numerous after school opportunities, including badminton, swimming, volleyball, dodgeball, swimming, tennis, taekwondo, etc. We just conducted our After School Activities Fair on Monday during ELO to showcase the various options available; our students could, without exaggeration, be in an “active” club each day of the week. Sign-ups were this week and all activities officially begin next week.

School Production Auditions

CIS Corporation Announcement

Membership

All parents or guardians automatically became CIS Corporation Associate Members whey they enroll a child in CIS. After their child has studied at CIS for one year, they are then eligible to full Membership upon payment of an annual membership fee. This is a reminder to eligible parents interested in joining the CIS Corporation Inc. that the deadline for CIS Corporation membership fee payment of 200PhP is Friday, August 30, 2019 by 12 noon. Please pay directly to the cashier.

Advance Notice of the Annual Meeting of the CIS Corporation

The Annual Meeting of the CIS Corporation will be held on Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 5pm, Olive and Walnut Room, Oakridge Executive Club, AS Fortuna St., Mandaue City. Parents, who are interested in contributing to the school and would like to know more about being a CIS Board Trustee, please contact the Superintendent via Azela Diapana (Supt. Secretary). The deadline for nomination of new Trustees is September 5, 2019 at 12 noon.

CIS Activities Fair

Last Monday, August 19, the Student Council and Athletics & Activities department successfully hosted the first ever CIS Activities Fair in the Dragon’s Dome featuring over 60 clubs and activities! Students were able to choose and ultimately decide which clubs they wanted to join, as well as see demos of other clubs they may not know about. In addition to sports, academics, and fun activities for clubs, there were also a variety of student-led clubs offered this school year. Overall, it was a successful event with buzzing interest from the student body!

Basic Mandarin Club

by Elaine Jin

Dear CIS parents and guardians, staff, and teachers,

Welcome to school year 2019-2020!

This year, Mandarin B DP students are starting a new club to give you all an opportunity to learn Chinese. Parents and guardians, staff, and teachers are all welcome to join our Basic Mandarin Club, which will be held every Tuesday from 3:30pm to 4:30pm. This club is run by Mandarin B DP students under the supervisor of Ms. Jin. Here, you will have a chance to learn basic Mandarin used in everyday speaking. Learning a new language is always exciting!
Hope to see you there! If you are interested, please email Ms. Jin at ejin@cis.edu.ph to get enrolled in the club.

Thank you,
DP Mandarin B students and Ms. Jin

PTA Announcement

Dear parents,

We hope you can all attend our first PTA Coffee Morning on Wednesday, August 28, at 7:30 am in the Media Centre (Main building, 2nd floor). Meet this year’s team of officers, get to know other parents, enjoy some refreshments and hear about the exciting things we have planned for this school year!

You may have seen the boxes in the Main and Elementary lobbies labeled for book donation. If you have books at home in good condition that you’re finished with, you can drop them in those boxes and we will collect them for a Pre-Loved Book Sale that will go on during Book Week (the last week of October). Proceeds from the sale will go the PTA general fund.

Enjoy the long weekend, see you on August 28!

College Counselor News

InstitutionDateVenue
Jacobs University (Germany)Monday, Sept. 2 @ 2:00 - 3:00 pmCanteen Annex
Victoria University (Australia)Tuesday, Sept. 10 @ 9:15 - 10:00 amMain 311
New Zealand Education FairTuesday, Sept. 17 @ 9:15 - 10:00 amCanteen Annex
UKEAS Education FairThursday, Oct. 3 @ 9:15 - 10:00 amDragon’s Dome

Activities & Athletics Notice

AFTER-SCHOOL ACTIVITIES

After School Activities will begin on August 27. Please make necessary arrangements with your child’s pick up time.

ISAC Team Practices

The ISAC Volleyball Tournament is on October 23-27 at Southville International School, Las Pinas City.

The practice schedule is every Monday, Wednesday & Friday.

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