Secondary: 23/11/2018

Remembering World War 1

To encourage awareness of the Act of Remembrance, commemorating 100 years since the end of the First World War, ISC staff arranged a series of events in enrichment time on Monday, 12 November. Our aim of the events were to initiate an awareness of the meaning of remembrance and to use this as a platform to encourage wider debate and understanding of the causes and consequences of war.

Our History students created a display of their poems and thoughts on the meaning of the Remembrance Day poppy. Highlights include original poems from Sofia and Viktor, as their homage to the fallen, and Jacqueline wrote a commentary on the experiences during the war of a family relative.

Ms Niki brought a basket of sprigs of rosemary, a plant signifying Remembrance, which were passed out to students. This takes on further significance to our DP students as they are studying Hamlet in English where the connection between rosemary and remembrance is made.

Miss Lockett and our Creative Arts Team came to the library and made poppies to hand out to teachers and students, as well as adding them to our displays.

Student MUN Conference in Monza

Tsunamis and Terrorist Attacks… all in a day’s work for a Model United Nations Delegate!

ISC’s Model United Nations Club took part in their very first conference at the International School of Monza on November 13 and 14.

Congratulations go to all our Delegates for taking part: Gaia Bontempelli, Sofia Spreafico, Matilde Ragozzino, Francesca Moro (representing Japan); Yafet Aklilu, Shefani Livera, Filippo Ferloni, Gabriel Iturralde, Martina Proserpio (representing the UK); Leonardo Riccio, Chiara Gardner, Anaïs Wyder-Pivaral, Barbara Borney (representing Argentina) and Matilda Mikkonen, Sofia Manca, Lorenzo Lanzillotta, Riccardo Sarcone (representing Saudi Arabia).

Together they presented their ‘Resolutions’ to various committees: the Human Rights Committee; the Educational, Scientific and Social Committee; the Environment Committee and the Disarmament and International Security Committee.

Our students have worked incredibly hard to prepare for this conference, including: learning how to lobby; learning how to write a Resolution; learning the language of diplomacy and adhering to official diplomatic conduct.

Five schools took part in the Conference and ISC’s Delegates did extremely well. All took part in the lobbying process and interrogated the work undertaken by other Delegates from other schools. They discussed a wide range of international issues, including: the question of domestic violence against women, taking action to prevent terrorists from crossing international borders and the complete eradication of chemical weapons. They even had to deal with two emergency issues, including a mock terrorist attack and a tsunami!

A special mention goes to the following students:

  • Gabriel Iturralde in Grade 12 for providing the delegates with general research information, guidance and for note-taking during the Conference. Gabriel will be writing an article for the newspaper based on his observations.
  • Leonardo Riccio in Grade 12 (representing Argentina) managed to persuade the Environment Committee that his Resolution presented the best solution to the ‘issue of climate change on achieving sustainable population growth’.
  • Lorenzo Lanzillotta in Grade 11 (representing Saudi Arabia) also received an award for ‘Best Resolution’ for his role in presenting his solutions to the Environment Committee (about the question of food waste).
  • Barbara Borney in Grade 11 (representing Argentina) not only delivered a speech as Ambassador to the entire room of delegates, but also went on to receive an award for ‘Best Resolution’ for her role in presenting her solutions to the Educational, Scientific and Social Committee (on setting up feasible plans for an effective integration of refugees into alien societies).
  • Finally, thanks and well done to Anaïs Wyder-Pivaral in Grade 12 who mentored her fellow delegates in preparing for the conference in general. This included supporting the writing of the Resolutions and providing guidance about the Diplomatic language and conduct.

We are extremely proud of their achievements and we look forward to the next MUN Conference in 2019.

Ms. Adele Evans

Grade 11 visit to Directa Plus

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Mr Clifford writes to share with us the Grade 11 experience of their visit:

On Thursday, November 15 Grade 11 experienced a truly cutting-edge application of the Physics and Chemistry they have been learning. DirectaPlus in Lomazzo produces and utilises graphene, which is a very thin yet super-strong material with lots of strange properties. After an initial presentation, where the students showed great inquiring minds by asking intelligent and thoughtful questions, they were allowed access to the factory where the graphene is manufactured, along with the laboratories where the graphene is incorporated into materials such as clothing. Grade 11 showed considerable maturity and engagement throughout the day, and appreciated the ability to apply their learning.

Staff Collaborative Planning Sessions

During our collaborative planning sessions this week, our staff have been focussing on the important issue of homework.  As we work in partnership with our families, we thank our families who have given us feedback over the last few weeks regarding this. Our students have also been feeding back to staff and they are supporting us in monitoring homework within their Homeroom bases. One of our values as an IB School is that our staff are life long learners and we have been demonstrating this by utilising current educational research in our collaborative discussions and debate.

The purpose of educational research is to support teaching and learning by providing a sound knowledge base with proven expertise in the field. Within the broad subject of homework we are not only considering the arguments and implications of either setting or not setting homework but also, and more importantly, investigating expert recommendations on the types of homework that provide for optimal effective student learning.

Based on our research and discussions, we will consider how we move forward as a school and we look forward to sharing our findings with our school community in the next few weeks.

High School Student Workshop

Ms Caria, and our Italian team, have organised a very interesting workshop for our High School students in school during today, followed by a theatre visit to Como on Monday, November 26.

The project consists in two parts:

  • The workshop – this will take place in our new Drama theatre, covering aspects of the students’ personality, in their full adolescence. Our two guests will focus especially on how young people can express their own emotions and most of all, how to manage their feelings in relations with their peers, in order to become more aware of violent or aggressive behaviours both within themselves and towards others.
  • The theatre show – this which will take place at Teatro Sociale di Como on Monday morning, and it will present the drama of Othello revisited in this key, covering the complexity of human beings. It will offer again an opportunity to reflect on the theme of violence through the words of the most prominent dramatist in the world, William Shakespeare.

The idea came out of a project run by Jacopo Boschini, a theatre director and practitioner, and Valerie Elizabeth Moretti, a pedagogical psychologist who studied counselling at the Midwestern State University, USA and we are delighted to be a part of this.

A Time of Transitions: planning for the future

Transitioning from PYP into MYP

We are delighted to welcome Grade 6 into MYP on Tuesday morning. Our Grade 6 students will be inquiring into the world of Science in our new Science labs, experiencing their first taste of learning in MYP. Our Grade 6 parents will also be involved in our transition morning, taking part in a parent workshop with Ms Whittle and Ms Lockett, our MYP coordinator. The workshop will focus on the transition from PYP into MYP, looking at similarities in the two programmes and how learning in MYP takes place.

As a school, the wellbeing and learning of our students is paramount and we will be hosting regular transition lessons with our Grade 6 through this year, and meetings with Ms Lockett, to help them in their move into MYP.

When students change between Primary and Secondary, they must adjust to new surroundings, become familiar with new teachers and peers, learn new ways of working, and make sense of the rules and routines that operate in their classes. The transition to secondary school often coincides with important social, emotional and physiological changes in the lives of adolescents. Our staff work in collaboration with each other to support our students in this, a real advantage for our students in transitioning within the two phases of our school.

Our parents can also help in this transition process:

Professor Julian Elliott, an educational psychologist at Durham University, England, says: “For many children, secondary school represents a step towards autonomy and the whole process of growing up and leaving childhood behind.” It can be overwhelming for children and parents alike. As a school, we are here to support our families and to answer questions you may have about this.

We look forward to welcoming our parents and students into MYP.

Transitioning from Grade 9 into High School

As a reminder from our previous newsletter, and our e-mail communication, we will be hosting a workshop on Thursday, November 29 at 18:00 for families of our Grade 9 students. The workshop will support our Grade 9 families in understanding our student transition into Grade 10 and High School, and how our High School programme supports our students for the future.

Our Secondary Student Council                 

Our Secondary student councils have been working hard to represent the voice of our students in our community. Over the last few months, discussions have taken place to consider the events our students would like to host. An over-whelming number of students would like us to replace our annual disco night with Movie Night in Middle School, and an apertivo-style event in High School.

SAVE THE DATE: as a result, our first Movie Night will take place for Grade 7 and 8 on Friday, December 7 from 14:35 until 17:00. Heated debates are now taking place as to the choice of our first film! For High School, our first event will take place on Friday, December 14 from 14:30 until 16:30.

We will of course be sending out more details to families closer to the time.

Real Bodies exhibition DP

On Wednesday, our Grade 12 students visited the Real Bodies exhibition in Milan to support their learning in Science and Theory of Knowledge. They have been considering the different systems in the body, how Chemistry is used to support the process of plasticising human bodies and to consider the links between the exhibition, Science and Art, whilst considering the ethical issue of whether human bodies should be used in this way. Features of the exhibition included the work of Leonardo Da Vinci, comparative anatomy (analysing in detail the similarities and differences between human and animal anatomical structures) and biomechanisms (how the body moves).

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And finally, to uniform

Days are now much cooler outside and our classrooms are lovely and warm. We ask families for their continued support in ensuring that our Grade 7-9 students come to school with an ISC sweater and a warm jacket for outside as only ISC sweaters are allowed to be worn in the school building. For our High School students, they should ensure that sweaters and jackets follow our High School dress code. Thank you for your support with our uniform.