Newsflash: June 4, 2021

Admin News

by Dr. Gwyn Underwood, Superintendent

We have just finished our last full week, and students are looking forward to our last few days together with mixed emotions. On one hand, I think it is fair to say we are all fairly tired after an eventful year and are looking forward to a nice summer break! On the other hand, classes have provided a sense of stability and connection – even if they have had to be virtual. We also now face the annual social upheaval caused by leaving community members. As I wrote in my Info Brief (sent to registered email addresses on June 1st), this is a sad annual occurrence whereby a few of our community members move on to new challenges around the world. On behalf of CIS, we wish all faculty, graduates, students, and families who are leaving best wishes as you continue on your journey, and we thank you for your contributions to CIS over your years at CIS.

For updated news regarding planning for next year, please refer to the June 1 Infobrief. Here is the schedule for the last day of school next Wednesday 9 June:
8:30 AM: G5 Moving Up Ceremony (recording*)
9:00 AM: G10 Moving Up Ceremony (recording*)
10:00 AM: Class Parties for Students (synchronous – in person)
11:00 AM: EOY Whole School Assembly (recording*)

*The link to these events will be distributed prior to the event via registered email

This will be our last full Newsflash as next week is a half week, however, there will be a short admin Newsflash next week to finish up the school year. End of Semester Two Reports for students will be also published on Wednesday 9 (you will receive an email notifying you when this has been done).

Have a wonderful weekend and I trust your last week is meaningful!

Elementary News

by Mr. Glenn Davies, Elementary School Principal

Dear CIS Community,

It is with some sadness that I write this Newsflash article. Not only is this the final Newsflash article from me for the year, but it is also my final CIS Newsflash ever. As I move on from CIS I, I have so many special memories to take with me,  yet I am sad to be moving on from such a special community.

It is these memories and reflections that cause all of us to be happy and grateful. Our interactions with students, and the memories we form together through the process of learning, are unforgettable. As a PYP school  we believe that learning is a social enterprise. Knowledge is constructed within a social context, and quality relationships are formed with the people that this knowledge is discovered with. It is often said that during times of hardship, our relationships with others deepen. Over these past 12 months, many of us have found aspects of our daily lives to be filled with hardship. Yet, as we reflect on this full year of remote learning, the connections we have with each other, within the CIS community are as strong as ever. It is this level of connection that I will miss the most. 

When preparing for this final Elementary Newsflash, I felt it would be appropriate to invite the most important people in our CIS community to contribute to the Newsflash article, our students. I connected with our talented group of CIS Educational Assistants and asked them to gather some information from our students about their memories throughout the 2020/2021 school year. Our students had so much to say, and our EA team did a simply fantastic job of collating these student voices for us. We asked the student three questions;

  • What did you like most about this year at school?
  • If you could change one thing about school this year, what would it be?
  • What has been your most memorable occasion this year?

In answer to the first question, a common theme from the students across the school was ‘learning with their friends each day’ with the various subjects that are offered by CIS. It seems that although we were not physically connected, the students still felt as though they had progressed academically, and had connected with their peers in meaningful ways. 

The second question brought a wave of expected responses that could be summarised with the statement, “We want to be back on campus together!” Everyone has missed the face to face connection that we all so desire as learners and as human beings. 

The third question then led to a wide range of interesting responses that indicate the students have connected meaningfully with the strong and rigorous academic and Social and Emotional Program of learning that has been designed by our dedicated team of CIS teachers and academic assistants.  

Early Years

  • I like when there’s a party, we play kahoot and eat snacks 
  •  I like it when I do many things and do  fun stuff like in PE. We do games and dance, and hear things.
  • I like learning alphabet and numbers

KG and Grade 1

  • My friends, it felt like we were all at school together
  • I like reading books and we take screenshots
  • Being with my family all the time, this made me very happy
  • Starting school and meeting new friends
  • PE because we can do push up, push up is my favorite exercise
  • Playing KAHOOT
  • The assemblies
  • Spending my time with Mommy and Daddy
  • Week Without Walls
  • Science experiments
  • My baby brother was born

Grade 2

  • The Christmas Pageant and Secret Santa wirth so many elves
  • Our Sharing the Planet unit
  •  It was nice to eat lunch together and roast marshmallows together during Week Without Walls. It felt like we were all at school together
  • 100 days of school and celebrating our birthdays virtually playing Kahoot!
  • Having a fun Friday social chat and a tell-a-joke day

Grade 3

  • Diorama making in Art class.
  • I liked the Christmas party. We had lots of fun games.
  • HAD was the most memorable occasion this year
  • My first day in Grade 3
  • Camp Chronos. We made s’mores and shared stories.
  • The ecosystem project 

Grade 4

  • Meeting  with my classmates
  • Doing remote learning for an entire year is quite memorable
  • HAD because we had a lot of activities and it was so fun!
  • The first call of Grade 4. I remember I was very happy to see my friends.
  • The 3-Way Conference. I felt so happy because I feel proud to share my activities with my mom.
  • Sinulog Celebration
  •  Book week! I enjoy reading books at home

Grade 5

  • Escape room with the MHS teachers. It was really fun and memorable. 
  • The PYP exhibition and it’s journey 
  • 3D book scenes from one of our design days.
  • Week without walls
  • Performing in the assembly
  • HAD 2
  • Many occasions were memorable for me

You can view the feedback slideshow here!

Feeling Grateful,

Glenn Davies
CIS Elementary Principal

Middle and High School News

by Mr. Dale Wood, Middle & High School Principal

Dear parents and members of our CIS community, 

We have come to the end of another academic year, and this is one I’m sure we will never forget. In light of the fact that Covid-19 radically altered the way we conducted school for the entire academic year, it is easy to forget all of the great things that have happened at CIS throughout the past 10 months. In taking a few moments to review retrospectively, we can see that we have still been able to have a great year, both in terms of our learning, but also in developing our students’ holistic growth.

This year’s final assessments in Grades 6-10 continue to be a positive shift in our assessment structure. While traditional exams may feel like a “gotcha” enterprise where students are trying to cover all content areas and predict pitfalls, it is not the intention of teachers to trap or trick them. When we are trying to cognitively challenge students, however, questions that ask them to apply their knowledge to a new situation may seem like a curveball, and not all learners have the proclivity to problem-solve the same way or at the same pace. Project-based (product and performance assessments) allow students to mull over problems and work toward solutions in a way that matches their unique learning styles.


This year we have been able to carry on with the majority of our events and activities that serve to sustain our school culture. We have also added some new events this year, like our new Grade 11 TOK Presentations, which reflect the changes in that specific course, and the MYP Personal Project Exhibition.

With our implementation of the MYP program, our Grade 10 students completed and hosted an exhibition to present their MYP Personal Projects. Last year’s Personal Projects were also commendable, and this year we showed further progress and demonstrated that the Personal Project is becoming an important and valued milestone within our CIS culture.

Some of our events we have been able to carry forward with this year are as follows. This is not an exhaustive list, but demonstrates a sample of the range and scope of our activities this year. In all cases, we have had to be innovative problem-solvers as we have sought to provide quality experiences within a remote learning context. While it’s almost always better to hold these events in person, it was definitely worth moving forward with them as best we could. In all cases, these virtual events required a team effort of teachers and CIS faculty, often students, and parents sometimes as well.

  • Weekly Opening Assemblies
  • Weekly After School Activities
  • Arts week
  • DP Visual Arts Exhibition
  • End-of-year celebrations, such as Moving up ceremonies and Graduation
  • End-of-semester and End-of-year assemblies
  • STEM Week
  • DP Visual Arts Exhibition
  • CIS Production
  • All 3 HAD Days (organized and led by our MHS StuCo—thank you to their faculty sponsor, Mr. Ron deVilla)
  • Week Without Walls
  • Culture week
  • Celebration of Learning

Thank you for a wonderful year and for all of your resilience, patience, and fortitude as we worked hard to make lemonade when life gave us lemons.

Grade 7 Math

This year has been an exciting opportunity for students to use technology to explore new content in their classes. In grade 7 Math the students have created online games, slide shows, inactive quizzes, videos, and more. One of the more recent units allowed us to look at transformations of images. While this is usually a lesson that involves a lot of graphing by hand, this year students were able to use the online graphing software GeoGebra. This tool allows students to graph images and equations and use built in tools to transform the graphs.

Once the students had practiced using the tools they were able to unleash their creative side and create a graph of reflections and rotations to design a kaleidoscope style image.  The interactive nature of this tool allows the students to then spin and change their image.

Here are screenshots of the designs the students made.

Here is a video of one of the designs being manipulated and rotated:

Grade 10 Visual Art

by Mr. Jessie Saclo, IB MYP/DP Visual Art Teacher

Art’ is one of the few words in the English language that shares the same origin in English, French and Italian. From its archaic French origin in the early 10th century, art meant ‘skill as a result of learning or practice’. Around that period of the Middle Ages, the word ‘art’ was utilized for English to also mean ‘skill in scholarship and learning’. At that point the distinction for art was generally between decorative art and applied art. It was not until aesthetic theories developed during the Italian Renaissance that the term ‘fine art’ would come to existence defining the highest art that allowed for the full expression and display of the artist’s skill and imagination. Historically, painting, sculpture, architecture, music, and poetry were considered as the five main fine art disciplines with the addition of theatre and dance to include performing arts. With the advent of technologies emerging during the industrial revolution leading to the present, opportunities for artists to explore new media developed into modern art-making forms such as film, photography, video, design, digital, and conceptual art. 

Visual art in the MYP arts curriculum reflects the collective concepts and culture of great thinkers in the arts enhancing the way in which our students approach art-making through a creative and stimulating process that aims to generate in them a strong sense of agency. The MYP acknowledges the contribution of different cultures and experiences throughout time adding a life-long experience of a wide range of creative and cultural dimensions of art activities to benefit students in their artistic development. An integral part of the MYP curriculum is the process of making ideas a reality through the application of the skills and practices of the visual arts. Students of the MYP Visual Arts study to understand art styles, art movements, artists’ practices, art terminology, and specific artworks to allow a language of visual communication to flourish. Through studio work, students develop their technical skills, observation skills, and intellectual aspects of visual art such as critical and creative thinking, providing them with the ability to incorporate ideas into their own work. 

The grade 10 (year 5) MYP visual art students recently concluded their unit for this quarter where they explored the statement of inquiry, ‘the effective application of symbols through art presents a narrative of creative expression’. In this unit grade 10 students explored the key concept of communication through the exchange or transfer of ideas and symbols to convey meaning. Students also considered the related concept of the audience; examining strategies for engaging the audience, identifying different types of audiences and how the audience–artist relationship affects and influences their work. Another related concept the students explored was narrative; a visual account of connected events; a story, which may be fictional or non-fictional, aimed to manipulate the viewpoint of the audience. Focusing on these concepts, students reflected on their personal concerns that they interpreted using an art form of their choice. By deconstructing the elements of art in an artwork and reconstructing them differently using symbols and visual narrative, students developed an artwork in response to the works of a particular genre, style or artist they have studied.

To view and appreciate the collective work of this year’s grade 10 MYP visual art students please visit the link below.

Grade 10 Visual Art Gallery

College/Careers Counselor Corner

by Ms. Jenny Basa, College/Careers Counselor

Tip of the Week:

PH universities (Documents required)

If you are applying to Philippine universities, these three documents are usually on the list of requirements:  

  • Form 137 or 138
  • PSA birth certificate
  • Certificate of Good Moral Character

Form 137 is also called the Permanent Record Form which is equivalent to what we issue as the Transcript of Records.  This contains all your final grades from Grade 9 to the present.  Form 138 is the document that shows the student’s academic progress within the school year which is equivalent to our Report Cards which are released every quarter.

The PSA birth certificate is the document labeled “Certificate of Live Birth”(if Filipino) issued by the Philippine Statistics Authority.  Filipino citizens may request a copy through  this LINK and the document is delivered to your address for a reasonable fee. If you are a dual citizen, it is recommended that you use your Filipino citizenship when applying to a local university while indicating your other nationality if required. 

The Certificate of Good Moral Character is a letter issued by the school that you are of good standing and have no disciplinary issues.  This certificate can be obtained from the Registrar’s office.  Most Philippine universities have adopted an online application system and waived their entrance examinations since the pandemic.  For next school year, we are not certain if they will revert to their entrance exam system.  For more information, contact Ms. Basa at

UPCOMING VIRTUAL EVENTS and FAIRS: (students & parents are welcome)


June 10 Thursday
8:00PM PH time


Alumni Chat Series Episode 6:  Annyeong Korea!
LINK to join (see posters below)
Alumni Guests:
Changwoo “Edge” Choi – CIS Class of 2011, Yonsei University
Yoori “Veronica” Seo – CIS Class of 2009, Dongguk University & Kaywon University of Art and Design
Minwoo Cho – CIS Class of 2017, Seoul National University
Chihoon Song – Class of 2017, Yonsei University 
Ko Eun “Chloe” Choi – Class of 2019, Hanyang University

June 16
8:30 – 9:30AM
PH time

Studying in Japan – Mini Fair (Japanese University Consortium)
LINK to join
Participating Universities:
University of Tsukuba
Tohoku University
Temple University – Japan Campus
Ritsumeikan University
Ritsumeikan – Asia Pacific University
Osaka University
Okayama University
Nagoya University of Commerce and Business
Nagoya University
Lakeland University Japan
Kyushu University
Kyoto University of Advanced Science
International College of Liberal Arts (iCLA) at Yamanashi Gakuin     University
International Christian University
Hiroshima University
Doshisha University

Share this:
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments