Newsflash: December 6, 2019

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Elementary News

by Mr. Glenn Davies, Elementary Principal/PYP Coordinator

Dear Elementary Community,

Today was a wonderful celebration of learning here at CIS. Ms. Natasha and Mr. Mike, our band teachers, arranged a small performance for the grade 4 and 5 bands. This was to be a short presentation to the grade 2 and 3 students, however once the lower elementary grades heard about this, everyone wanted to join. The result was a wonderful celebration assembly, joined by many of you from our parent community. As a school, we are so grateful for your constant support of us. Our class parents do so much to coordinate important class events in the school, and your willingness to be on campus so frequently builds the strength of our school community.

This weekend CIS will host our annual Tree of Giving Christmas sharing for the Umapad, Mandaue children. This community will visit the school on Saturday to take part in a range of games and enjoy some nice food. All children will leave with a gift from theTree of Giving, donated by you.

As we draw to the end of the first semester it is clear that a great deal of growth and learning has taken place across the school. The ATL (Approaches to Learning Skills and Attitudes) are highly evident within our students and it is exciting to see the level of personal ownership our students have over their learning. This can be attributed to the commitment and skill of our teachers who work very strategically to guide your children onto their next learning steps, and who care deeply for their social and emotional well being. I had a great deal of fun this week watching the EY 2 and 3 students build towers with the giant magnetic tiles, observing KG/G1 teachers conferring with individual students, and grade 4 students problem-solve to develop Lego Mindstorm projects in the Makerspace.

As we move into the final week for school, I encourage you to take part in our school events to the degree that you are able to. I trust you will all have a restful and enjoyable holiday season in the weeks ahead.

  • Thursday, 12th December: CIS Elementary Lap-a-Thon (7.45am  – 10.00 am)
  • Friday, 13th December: All school end of semester assembly (8.00 am – 9.00 am), class parties, early finish at 11.30 am
  • Tuesday7th January: First day of school for Semester 2

Student Articles

Music at the CIS PTA Christmas Bazaar

The PTA Christmas Bazaar at Oakridge was a fabulous venue for some of our talented performers to showcase their skills. A couple of our grade 4 clarinetists joined the chamber ensemble this year to perform a selection of Christmas favorites. They demonstrated their musical skills and mature attitude, by playing with the MHS students. Well done to Jiwoo and Seoyeon!

The Aboitiz Cup

A few weeks ago, we had a soccer tournament called the Aboitiz Cup. We had two games to play and we needed to win at least one and tie one to advance to the quarterfinals. We played better than ever and won both of our games!
Our first game we won 6-1 vs USJR Jaguars. Our second game was a day later. We won 2-0 vs USC. We advanced to the quarterfinals!
Now we nervously await the quarterfinals schedule. – by Isaiah, G4

Middle and High School News

by Mr. Dale Wood, Middle & High School Principal

In last week’s Newsflash I shared about the MHS assessment approach and philosophy in relation to our end-of-semester summative tasks. As I mentioned then, our teachers are seeking to think innovatively and create assessment experiences for our students which combine a high level of critical thinking, creative thinking, and relevance, so that students may demonstrate mastery of course content and skills and can also recognize the importance of what they are doing in relation to their own personal lives and the broader world context. We are also intentionally seeking to develop our students’ ATL skills through these assessment tasks.

I am excited to highlight some of these summative tasks our students are engaged in so that you can see how our philosophy is being lived out across grade levels and subject areas within the tasks our students are performing in their respective classes. Not only are these project-based tasks fun (joyful), but they also promote deep learning as our students fully engage with content and apply their skills.

Grade 6 Individuals and Societies Projects

The presentations you see taking place in the photos below are the result of several weeks of preparation. Students first studied where fossil fuels come from, how they are made, what energy is, how electricity is collected and transferred, and the contrast between renewable and nonrenewable resources. Once the students developed a foundation for these concepts, they partook in a larger inquiry-based project.  They were required to find credible sources, use note-taking skills, paraphrase information, and use APA formatting for in-text citations and bibliographies. After writing scripts that incorporated their collected research, students created documentaries and board games to share what they had learned. On Wednesday morning several other classes visited this class in the cafeteria annex and were able to learn from these Grade 6 “student teachers”.

Grade 7 Drama Performance

For the culmination of this semester’s Grade 7 Drama class, students have been quite busy rehearsing over for the past two weeks in preparation for their final performance summative. This project was a student-led activity where students were given a chance to write the script and collaboratively direct one of the two plays entitled “Tangled” and “Cinderella” incorporating those melodramatic elements. They presented their summative presentations on Friday, the 6th of December, 2019 during ELO time where most of the elementary students were able to witness their magical performances. 

Grade 8 Design Mural Project

by Ms. Gerri Jumao-as, IB Art / Design Technology Teacher

A few weeks ago, we shared an article about our new Design courses and the design process, and we focused specifically on the Grade 8 mural project to demonstrate student learning in this subject. A few weeks later the murals are now nearly complete. Basing their murals on the key concept of communities, students looked into the ideas of fairness and sustainable development. The Mural Painting unit looked at morals and shared responsibility which is a central aspect of being a member of any community.  Using the elements/principles of art, students designed and painted a mural in the school’s parking lot to show form and delve into expression while at the same time considering different perspectives.

Mural paintings are relevant as they bring art into the community as well as promote awareness of specific issues. Through these images the Grade 8 students are highlighting 6 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which the UN has established as the blueprint to achieving a better and more sustainable future.  Our student murals this year addressed global challenges such as poverty, climate change, inequality, environmental concerns, peace, and justice.

The students have worked hard on their murals and are now in the finishing stages.  Below are some of the students’ reflections.

Student Reflections:

We feel our mural turned out pretty well. This is because of the tonal values applied in the forms which were applied well and made the painting more interesting. We have heard others say they liked our mural a lot. Though we are not finished, it looks well done.  My group and I have faced many struggles during the mural painting. A challenge that we faced was the countless arguments we had with some members misinterpreting instructions, which led to more problems. We were also taking too long to finish some parts as others took long to accomplish their parts. We overcame this by communicating with each other, and the pressure of the deadline made us work better.  We, however, did not finish on time and had to work outside of class time. –Sofia, Jack, Maki and Zhandy

The goal that my group has chosen is Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions. This goal is mainly about promoting peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development to provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable, and inclusive institutions at all levels. Specifically, this includes number  of issues ranging from drug problems to corruption within high authorities in government. These controversial issues would lead the whole world toward negative consequences. So, we want to remind others of the importance of peace and justice which can be sustained through strong institutions. We decided to add symbols that represent peace within our mural- for example, the dove with an olive branch in its beak, rainbow around the Earth, and the justice sign to represent peace.  –Ami, Rebecca, Sam and Ryan

The mural is coming together pretty well. Although we faced a few challenges when making the mural, we managed to work through them and believe we have done a good job.  We struggled in applying tonal values and in mixing the colors to find the right shades. We often got the wrong shade and had to restart all the painting of a particular part.  We also struggled in writing the catchphrase “Earth Year: 2050”, as the writing would either be slanted or the font was not good enough. We have overcome these challenges by trial and error; we had to restart and try again so many times. This is also one of the reasons why we took so long with our mural and struggled with finishing it.  –Liam, Mahati, Minseong and Vincent

Grade 10 History Harkness Discussion

Last year we implemented the Harkness discussion model as an inquiry-based classroom strategy in MHS. This is a student-directed discussion model (with the teacher as observer who then provides feedback on the quality of the content and style of the discussion) which lends itself particularly well to the IB framework as students are asked to collaborate, communicate, evaluate, and apply their knowledge. Our Grade 10 History students used the Harkness method to demonstrate their understanding of events surrounding the Second World War, using prepared notes from their research to engage in addressing and answering complex questions related to this historical time period.

Grade 10 Physical & Health Education 

For this unit, our grade 10 class is learning the sport of badminton. Badminton is a racquet sport played using rackets to hit a shuttlecock across a net. We usually play with pairs, also known as doubles. Through this sport, we learn many things such as the following: teamwork, communication, focus, and determination. First, badminton teaches you how to focus through having to pay attention to the game and the shuttlecock. Second, playing with a partner teaches you how to communicate and work together as a team to win. Lastly, you learn determination through continuing to stay motivated throughout the whole game, whether you are losing or winning. I am enjoying this unit very much, and have learned a lot through the games we’ve played in class. – Bianca, Grade 10

Grade 11 TOK Harkness Discussion

A couple of weeks ago, we featured the Grade 12 TOK Presentations in the Newsflash. Of course to get to the stage where students are able to do this effectively they need training in order to develop their skills. Harkness Discussions are a very useful method to address key TOK topics and help students engage cognitively as well as consider their classmates’ alternate points of view. For this particular discussion students had prepared notes in relation to two areas of knowing: Natural Sciences and Human Sciences. For example, students discussed the scope of knowledge within the natural sciences as well as the limits of that knowledge, ethical considerations, the relation between faith and science, the difference between scientific theory and fact, the nature of scientific theory (as opposed to other types of theories), etc. 

It is a genuine pleasure listening to our students discuss, debate, and grapple with topics at a level we would expect to encounter at university level. As I mentioned previously, TOK is a unique course in the IB curriculum as it guides and challenges our students to investigate what they know and how they know it, and helps them develop critical thinking skills which are relevant for analysis across their other courses. High School students are, by nature, curious and often struggle to find their own beliefs, identity, and voice, and TOK actually creates a framework where they can explore and develop these areas.

The Internal Assessment in the IB Business Management course

by Choco Laplana, MHS Assistant Principal & IB DP Coordinator and Emily Cornet, IB DP Business Management

A key component of the IB Business Management course is the Internal Assessment (IA), which students work on from April of 11th grade until November of 12th grade. For the IA in Business Management HL, students must choose a business to work with, and then identify a problem that exists. Students come up with the underlying causes for the problem, and then propose solutions that the real-life business could make.

Throughout the research process, students are engaged in interviewing employees at a number of levels of the business, surveying workers and customers, and analyzing data that they are able to access.


PTA News

Dear parents,

Once again, we thank everyone who helped make the PTA Christmas Bazaar such a success! We were very proud of how our students conducted themselves, whether performing, fundraising or being ambassadors for the school.

We also want to express sincere thanks to the teachers and school staff who volunteered time at the bazaar, and to our amazing facilities and marketing teams. We couldn’t have run the event without you!

We will discuss more specific results from the bazaar at next week’s PTA Coffee Morning on December 11 at 7:30am in the Canteen Annex, where we will also assemble and distribute Christmas gift bags for the security and maintenance staff. Many hands make light work, so we hope to see you all there!

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