Newsflash: November 11, 2022

Admin News

by Dr. Gwyn Underwood, Superintendent

I was recently asked the question, What makes CIS different from other schools? My immediate thought was, that is easy – it is our wonderfully supportive and friendly community of learners, teachers, staff, parents, and wider community members! Of course, that is just the beginning… here are the other aspects I came up with:

  • Our small international community, which enables a high level of personalized, student-centered attention to our learners.
  • Our unique collection of diverse international cultures from 27 different countries 
  • Our similarly diverse experienced, and qualified faculty from 11 countries
  • Our use of three globally recognized International Baccalaureate (IB) programs covering our whole Early Years to Grade 12 program (and the extensive professional development to ensure our faculty are proficient in delivering the programs in an effective manner!). 
  • Our international accreditation status through two reputable agencies – the US-based Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the international Council of International Schools (CIS). 
  • The spacious facilities we have that enables us to offer a fully supported curriculum.

I found it interesting to compare my response with a survey from ISC Research ( that asked parents what they valued most from their international school. 

It is reassuring to note that what CIS offers matches well with what parents value in the survey. What do you think? Let me know your thoughts, as it is great to get feedback that both reaffirms and gives suggestions for improvement!

Have a restful weekend everyone!

Upcoming events of note

  • Nov. 18: Virtual Open Day for interested and prospective families
  • Nov. 25: School Production “Elf, The Musical” (6:30pm)
  • Nov. 30: Public holiday
  • Dec. 2: End of Semester 1 ASAs / Clubs
  • Dec. 3: CIS Tree of Giving

Please refer to the CIS Event Calendar for the complete calendar of school events.

Presenting our school production this year, Elf The Musical!

Based on the beloved holiday film, this hilarious comedy follows Buddy the Elf in his quest to find his true identity.

The CIS community and family members are invited to watch the show on Friday, November 25!

Tickets are now available for purchase at the CIS Cashier for ₱350!

Grade 2: How We Organize Ourselves

by Ms. Maffy Ocleasa, Grade 2 Teacher

The learning experiences that the Grade 2s engaged in throughout our unit, How We Organize Ourselves, led to action in our community through participation and advocacy. Our Grade 2 inquirers organized their own groups, clubs, or organizations to support the needs of our local and global communities. Using their Approaches to Learning Skills, they gained, consolidated, and transferred their knowledge and understanding about our central idea. 

“Powerful ideas draw people together to achieve common purposes”.

Research Skills
Our Grade 2 inquirers applied what they were learning about the research MISO methods, asking thick and thin questions, and finding and citing reliable sources, evidenced by how they efficiently identified and reflected on the needs of the local and global community using different kinds of media such as Internet, magazines, newspapers, radios, and televisions.

Social Skills
They also followed the norms of collaboration, encouraged others to contribute, took on a variety of roles, and used respectful language as they worked hand in hand with their classmates and teachers.

Source: Thinking Collaborative Twitter: @Think_Collab Art by @PhilEchols

Communication Skills
Using their knowledge and skills in writing persuasive paragraphs, they wrote a letter convincing others to participate in the groups they organized and help them achieve their group’s purpose to support the needs of our community.

The Grade 2s are thrilled for more people to join their groups and help them support the needs of our community. Which group would you like to participate in? 

DP Spanish – Ab Initio

by Ms. Dina Melwani, Spanish Teacher

Collaborative skills

In a society where information and communication technologies increase the possibilities for collaboration, the question of the media and digital skills required for citizens in the 21st century becomes central (Voogt & Roblin, 2012). In foreign language teaching, collaboration enables pupils to be involved in communicative tasks and makes the latter meaningful to the learners (Council of Europe, 2001). However, collaboration is not innate and requires specific skills (Hämäläinen & Häkkinen, 2010; Voogt & Roblin, 2012). As stated by Dillenbourg and Tchounikine (2007), collaboration relies on many external factors, including the ability of the students in the group to collaborate. 

Here are some examples of how collaborative skills have worked:

Grades 11

The students have learned the daily routine and their task was to put in order the different actions we do in our daily lives from what they do in the morning till night. They learnt to conjugate reflexive verbs.

Grade 12

The students came together in groups of three and practiced their writing skills by showcasing the different IB formats they need to know for the paper 1 component. They showed their creative side by putting on their thinking caps.

MYP English

by Ms. Raisa Romer, English Teacher

G6/7: Language Acquisition

What are some ways you can reduce food waste?

G6/7 is talking about all things food in our current unit ‘Eat to live or Live to Eat’. From our own food preferences to  cultural customs around food, this Unit has helped us understand ourselves and others better. Most recently we discussed food waste and its effect not just on climate change but also on global hunger. Being reflective learners, G6/7 designed posters to inform others about how we could ‘love food and hate waste’.

G8/9: Language Acquisition

Can travel make us better people?

G8/9 has been zooming off all over the world….. through our writing. In our current unit, we ask ourselves the question ‘Can we travel through writing?’. We explore travel blogs and take a stab at writing our own, all while discussing how travel influences us. It has led to a few debates as we discuss whether or not Beijing Roast duck (北京烤鸭)is as delicious as it is made out to be, or what the balance between personal narrative and information should be in a blog post.  A resource that helped us to think more critically about the influence of travel was this video. We had some interesting insights.

I don’t think travel will make everyone a better person. It’s not because of travel, it’s because modern people get the purpose of travel wrong. I have seen many examples of this. In the grasslands, many travelers come from the city in order to relax and get away from the concrete jungles. They go to the grasslands, damage the area, disrespect the local customs, and throw garbage. Once, when I was camping on an island, some tourists came to our camp by boat. They were contemptuous of our tents and our sustainable choices. They looked at us as though we were strange. For people like this, travel doesn’t do them any good other than for them to exploit natural beauty and cause harm instead of protecting it.

Anqing, G8

In my opinion, if we travel more, we can see the values, cultural heritage and history of each country, which is helpful for our knowledge. For instance, in my experience, Singapore is the most memorable country I ever visited. I saw the value of well enforced social rules especially around cleanliness. It made for a better experience for everyone. If people travel a lot, they will have more opportunities to be inspired. The people who undergo a lot of travel may be more creative and active than people who don’t enjoy traveling. Reading books is getting information within a short time, and this information can be forgotten in just a few days. However, experiencing firsthand is likely to be more intensely memorable for us. This is why it is helpful and useful for us to go to other countries many times.

Jungwoo, G9

Grade 6-8: Language and Literature

How do our 5 senses help us become better writers?

With a few weeks of Reading and Writing workshop under our belts, students in the G6-8 Language and literature class are making better choices when it comes to choosing books to read. They are working with partners to support the development of their comprehension skills and asking each other questions about the books they are reading. In this Narrative Unit, students have explored Realistic Fiction, Historical Fiction and Fantasy to identify key components of the genre.

In the writing workshop, students have used what they have learned in their reading workshop to craft several small moment stories from their lives. And they haven’t stopped at the end. They have reviewed their writing and used a checklist to identify areas that they can improve. They have rewritten parts of their stories and asked their classmates for feedback. Here’s an excerpt from a student’s re-write. The aim was to be more descriptive.

The stench of the swamp and the smell of moss wafted through the air, making me quicken my steps to get out of there. As we were walking in the forest, we saw a lot of remnants of the war like the simple medical stations. All around me I could hear the insects screaming.

G6 Student

When I walked up to CIS, I was amazed. It was huge! As I walked around I saw big classes with colorful boards. I could hear the teachers talking to their students . The field was big enough to fit all my classes from my old school. Then I saw something that made my eyes go wide. There was a swimming pool! The water was clear and it promised me fun days ahead. I felt better about moving to Cebu.


DP Spanish B – HL/SL

by Mr. Antonio Melgar, MYP/IBDP Spanish Teacher

Estudio de paisaje, La Barrosa

Our Grade 11 and 12 IBDP Spanish B High and Standard Levels students virtually visited the OBRASSINGULARES collections of the Museo de Cádiz in Spain.

Students exchanged emails with their representatives, commenting their observations about the displays, the collections and how user friendly the website is.

As part of the IB program, our students explore the topics of Civilization, (Grade 11) and Beauty (Grade 12), thus visiting a very well known museum from La Junta de Andalucía helped them to go deep on knowing firsthand beautiful representations of the culture and civilizations from that side of the globe, expose them to make profound connections with the discussed theories and interact with native Spanish speakers in a formal environment, using the appropriate communication channels and advanced grammar, syntax and vocabulary required at their level.

The Museo de Cádiz representative, Miss María José Castro Caballero, walked the extra mile and explained to them, individually, the commented pieces and artifacts, with insights that only an expert eye could.

Not only that, the Museo de Cádiz team posted part of our students’ letters on their social media, (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) explaining how excited they are that future generations and people physically far from their expected reach can benefit from preserving, studying and displaying cultural elements of past civilizations.

Please find the links to all social media of Museo de Cadiz above and their comments about our students’ involvement. You are of course encouraged to comment, like and share!

If you like, you can also read the letters exchanged among our students and the Museo de Cadiz representatives by clicking here.

Ten Outstanding Boy Scouts of the Philippines

by Renzo K., Grade 12

The ten outstanding boy scouts of the Philippines (TOBS) is one of the most, or the most, prestigious award one can achieve as a boy scout. In order to gain that title, one must go through a rigorous process, from starting at the local council level then to regional then to national, against thousands of other boy scouts all around the nation. One has to epitomize good moral character, maintain academic excellence, and demonstrate strong qualities of leadership in the institution and the community.

In October 2021, I was one of the recipients of the TOBS award. It took me one year of actual preparation, but the activities and awards that gave me the credibility to win the award were accumulated from my 8 years of scouting. I joined international jamborees, and I was also a representative in the council and regional youth forum, wherein scouts gather to develop and discuss their own projects in line with a theme, like the 17SDGs. The most essential factor in my application was the NGO I founded called Project HOPE. Our focus is to help the community through three main areas, which are entrepreneurship, education, and the environment. The goal is to initiate projects that will provide livelihood, improve access to quality education, and increase sustainability. And due to recent events like typhoon Odette, we have also looked into water filter distribution, in order to give remote areas access to potable water. Together with my other extracurricular activities and academic performance, these are the reasons why I was chosen to be one of the ten outstanding boy scouts of the Philippines in 2021.

Congratulations, Renzo!

Grade 10 PHE

by Mr. Ace Pierra, MYP PHE Teacher / Athletics Director

The first quarter was a Volleyball Unit for our Grade 10 students. They learned the skills of serving, receiving, setting, spiking, and blocking in this unit. The group also learned the importance of dynamic warm-ups and how it is done properly. The learners approached and engaged themselves through Communication and Social skills that are meaningfully integrated into their formative tasks and assessment. The skills are explicitly taught and each student was also given the opportunity to learn through independent practice targeting specific skills that they wanted to develop, refine or improve. This unit also emphasized the importance of the communal benefits of being in a team, how to accept help and give help, and how to work together toward a common goal. The unit also supports the progression of learning across MYP and helps students reach higher levels of achievement for the unit’s objective. At the end of the unit, students were offered authentic and challenging assessments to demonstrate what they know, understand, and can do. Students demonstrate understanding and engaged learning through actual volleyball games and officiating.

Tree of Giving

by CIS Student Council

Dragon’s Print

Visit the Dragon’s Print website to read the articles below!

With the end-of-year exams towards the end of the month, it is no surprise that many students will feel stressed. To help you through these possibly overwhelming weeks, Dragon’s Print has prepared effective study methods that you could use!

For many, repeating or patterned numbers, such as 1111 and 8787 are known as “angel” numbers. As today is 11/11, Dragon’s Print believed it would be a perfect time to explore what angel numbers are and what makes them so special or lucky.

The Dragon’s Report Card Podcast

Listen to the last published episode from The Dragon’s Report Card podcast last month!

As Halloween comes close, the CIS Dragons reminisce their past Halloween costumes and activities that made their celebrations meaningful. With the upcoming busy weeks and semestral exams, the seniors offer more effective study habits that will aid in student learning and mastery of content.

College/Careers Counselor Corner

by Ms. Jenny Basa, College/Careers Counselor Corner

Question of the Week:

College Events (Virtual and Face to Face)


November 12
10:00am – 12:00nn
Cebu Country Club
Link to sign up


University of Navarra (Spain) – Open to all G11 & 12 Students & Parents: Face to face info session followed by Q & A with university reps.  This session is scheduled on a Saturday to allow parents and students to attend.  Lunch will be served after the session.

November 12
Link to register

National University of Singapore (NUS) – NUS Undergraduate Admissions and Faculties Sharing (International)

November 15
9:15 – 10:00AM
Canteen Annex
Link to sign up

Temple University (Japan)  – Face to face info session followed by Q & A with a university rep.

November 25
9:15 – 10:00AM
Canteen Annex
Link to sign up

IE University (Spain) – Face to face info session followed by Q & A with a university rep.

SAT Update for 2022-2023

2022–23 School Year Test Dates

SAT Test Date Deadline for Registration, Changes and Regular Cancellation
December 3, 2022 November 3, 2022
March 11, 2023 (Digital) February 24, 2023
May 6, 2023 (Digital) April 21, 2023
June 3, 2023 (Digital) May 19, 2023

Test dates labeled Digital means that students will bring a device to the test center and take the exam using their device.  The College Board may provide devices for test-takers who do not have access to a device.  All test-takers for Digital SATs are still required to report physically to the test center to take the test.

To register for the SAT, you may click on this link.  If you need assistance or have any questions, please feel free to email Ms. Jenny Basa at

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